Free Markets, Free People

House Praises Irrational Number

No, I’m not referring to any stimulus bill, or deficit spending figures. This was no celebration of a CBO report or Obama budget figures. Instead, the House of Representatives decided that it needed to spend some time lauding that most infamous of all irrational numbers:

With the world swirling about it, the House took a moment Thursday to honor pi, the Greek letter symbolizing that great constant in mathematics representing the ratio of the circumference of a circle to its diameter.


Rounded off, pi equates to 3.14, hence the designation of March 14 as Pi Day under the resolution. Informal celebrations have been held around the country for at least 20 years, but Thursday’s 391-10 vote is the first time Congress has joined the party.

“I’m kind of geeked up about it,” Rep. Brian Baird (D-Wash.) told POLITICO. “It’s crazy, but I’m a whole lot more excited about that than congratulating the winner of last year’s Rose Bowl.

Well that’s reassuring. As long as the peoples’ representatives are happy, then we must all be happy, eh?

“It makes you realize how consequential you really are,” Rep. Bill Delahunt (D-Mass.) said with a smile.

By “you” Delahunt meant himself (“consequential” being defined as “self-important”). Unless, of course, he meant to say “inconsequential” in which case he was referring to the voters, and he was exactly right.

“We were never good at math in my family,” said Rep. John P. Murtha (D-Pa.). “I thought I was voting for p-i-e.”

Or reading and/or spelling? Hey, wait. Does Sara Lee have a factory in Murtha’s district?

That’s your congress-critters for you. only slightly less useful than Chia pets.

UPDATE: In the comments, Shark finds the silver lining: “It’s the least destructive thing they’ve done this year.”

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10 Responses to House Praises Irrational Number

  • My initial reaction was to wonder, “Haven’t they got anything better to do???”

    Then it hit me: Congress doing NOTHING is about the best we can hope for.  The more time they spend voting on pi (or eating pie, for that matter), the less time they have to spend on voting for pork or “stimulus”.

    Perhaps we could come up with a list of other holidays and events they could debate and vote on.  Any suggestions?  How about “Square root of two” day?  Natural logarithm day?  Atomic weight of oxygen day?  The possibilities are almost as endless as the amount of money they are wasting spending wasting.

  • Representative Murtha thought that he was voting for Proto-Indo-European?

  • It’s the least destructive thing they’ve done this year

  • Maybe we could suggest to them they attend to business up front, and once they’re done, GO BACK TO LIVING AMONGST THE PEONS WHO ELECTED THEM, instead of hanging around Washington praising irrationality and other equally useless and meaningless things.  You know, do that which the founders envisioned them doing.

    After all, we’re paying for these critters to be fed, housed and clothed on our dime when they’re in Washington.

  • A more appropriate title for this article may have been “Irrational Praise”.

  • Lighten up Francis, like you guys spend all your time debating life’s big issues. Congress doesn’t have to be saving the world…or the US all the time.

    • “Congress doesn’t have to be saving the world…etc”  Good, then if they’re not saving the world, or the US, they can return home to their districts instead of hanging around Washington like a bunch of frat boys waiting for (and inventing) their next party.

      Where in the Constitution does it say they should draft psuedo-legislation of this sort?  Where does it say they should recognize things like Irrational numbers?  If they aren’t doing the business of governing, they can return home and do the business of being citizens instead of hanging around Washington inventing shit for themselves to feel good do while pretending it’s part of their jobs.  They certainly aren’t the first group of politicians to fritter away time and cash doing this sort of thing.  It’s been going on for a while.  That doesn’t mean I’m inclined to give them a pass for it (Republicans OR Democrats).

  • celebrating irrational numbers??

    Wasn’t that what the stimulus was about?

  • Now if only Congress and the Pres would spend all their time doing this same stuff for the rest of the next 2 years.

  • Well, hell, shows how big of an idiot I am, I thought they were celebrating PEE!