Why Is This Popular?

Painting Every Single Rock in Guatemala

by Steve Mullaney

As you can probably tell, as every single billboard in the country is being filled with the smiling faces of politicians, it is now election season. Legally, candidates cannot begin to campaign yet, although political parties can “proselyte” to the public*.  Part of this process has apparently been to paint every single rock in the country. Why are political parties doing this? This month’s WITP goes behind the political curtain to dig out the truth.

1) The 0 key got stuck. As the candidates were emailing their painters the “0” key got stuck on the keyboard and nobody bothered to fix it. What was supposed to be an order for 10 rocks ended up as an order for 10000000000000000 rocks. Unfortunately, this was a mistake that has happened to every single political party… during every single electoral year.

2) Comex and Sherman Williams are the real power in Guatemala. Forget what you’ve read in the newspaper, the real people running things are the paint magnates Comex and Sherman Williams. There’s a reason that President Colom doesn’t want to anyone to know his real name is Álvaro Sherman Williams Colom Caballeros. Paint kickbacks. Follow the money.

3) People are highly influenced by things painted on rocks. A study done by Guatemalan marketers has determined that people are over 50% more likely to buy something if they see it painted on a rock. Actually, that’s not true. That was a joke article that XelaWho published during the 2007 election, but apparently a lot of political parties took that one seriously.

4) Bored. I mean, what else are you going to do all day? Not paint rocks by the side of the road? Come on…

5) Government supports the lucrative rock painting industry. Given the massive unemployment that is crippling Guatemala, government has finally taken a stand and is working to develop the “painting of rocks” industry. Actually, a lot of foreign foundations were hoodwinked by this being “sustainable development” and, as a result, the rock painting is paid for by international agencies.

Instead of thinking about how the scenery is being ruined, try to think of political propaganda as part of the ecosystem—and we wouldn’t want to do anything to affect the ecosystem, now would we? If you want to lend a hand we’re planning on presenting the magazine itself as a candidate for president. So if you want to get out there and paint our logo on some rocks, we’d really appreciate it.

* Don’t worry – we don’t understand this one either.

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