The Chamber of Commerce Welcomes You to Pottersville

Welcome to Pottersville, our newly-rejuvenated hamlet made great again by our super-smart leader, Mr. Potter!

Here, we banish things like locally-owned emporiums which turn no profits, so-called “friendly” watering holes where not nearly enough shots of booze are sold to boost our tax base, and mom-and-pop building-and-loan operations which recklessly approve mortgages for losers like cab drivers. Such fiscal impropriety there used to be in our old Bedford Falls businesses. Sad!

However, since the ascension of our illustrious stable genius leader, Mr. Potter, we are celebrating traditional values again, ones where we put Pottersvillians first, where we keep what we have piled up in our bank vaults and don’t, as the communist Bailey family used to say, “spread the wealth.” It’s our money, after all, so why should we share anything with anyone, never mind layabouts and illegal immigrants like the residents of the failing Bailey Park?

Mr. Potter has elevated our community and our spirits so much that we affectionately renamed our heavily-patrolled, neon-lit town after him. He’s managed to keep a watchful eye (and a strong thumb) on our thrifty working class, and hasn’t succumbed to that Bailey family pish-posh of just handing out money for homes. Our citizens save their pennies while living in Pottersville’s many fine apartments, built by Mr. Potter’s various companies. Sure, some may call the units uninhabitable, but those are just the whiners, the failures!

We no longer tolerate those who blame substance abuse for wreaking havoc on our citizenry. (We’re talking to you Mr. Gower!) While our downtown is now packed with profitable bars and strip clubs frequented by some who cannot responsibly consume their alcohol, those oafs aren’t our concern; they don’t make Pottersville great. Neither, for that matter, did the washed-up family-owned businesses that used to clog Main Street during the bad Bedford Falls days. Today, we are full of promise. Just ask Mr. Potter. He knows exactly what we need, better than anybody else and, in fact, generously invested his own money in many of our flourishing Main Street businesses, for which he also issued his own permits. So, in effect, he saved us from ourselves.

On that note, it’s also important to add here that we do not tolerate people who are careless with their money. (Eyes on you, Billy Bailey!) Those people need to be taught lessons about responsibility, something Mr. Potter has taught us on a number of occasions.

To keep the peace and to protect our (his) sacred investments, we proudly send members of our top-notch police force out in droves to protect our streets, with the directives not to be “too nice” to detainees and to “accidentally” bang their heads against police car doors as the scumbags are being arrested. We now have zero tolerance for people who behave strangely in public, regardless of the reason; it’s bad for business. If anyone dares to sully our fair Pottersville, our officers are empowered to shoot them in the open streets. Our law-abiding citizens have been instructed to duck when an officer draws his weapon. If somebody is accidentally shot during the volley, it’s that person’s fault for not ducking quickly enough. Survival of the fittest and all …

In fact, our leader, Mr. Potter, is mentally and spiritually, the fittest of them all. Sure, he may disparage his citizens, cheat them, steal from them, attempt to crush business operations and families which defy him, but hey, that’s who we picked to lead us, a strong man who knows how to succeed, who knows how to hit back, and who drained that Bedford Falls swamp and replaced it with something that crackles with electricity when the sun sets.

To celebrate him, we at the Pottersville Chamber of Commerce, reviewed some of his most famous quotes. Alongside his favorite phrases — “the suckers,” “discontented, lazy rabble,” and “they’re not my children” — here are our two all-time favorites:

“Are you running a business or a charity ward?”

“I am an old man and most people hate me, but I don’t like them either, so that makes it all even.”

Remember when we had so-called “leaders” like that stiff George Bailey? There’s this one sanctimonious speech Snowflake Bailey gave showing how clueless he was about the needs of our businesses. Mr. Potter had rightly stated that those who took out loans should repay them. You borrow the money, you’re expected to pay it back. On time. Of course, Bailey started in with his bleeding heart sob-stories as he pleaded for more time for the riff-raff to pay up:

“Just remember this Mr. Potter, that this rabble you’re talking about, they do most of the working and paying and living and dying in this community,” Low-Energy Bailey screeched. “Well, is it too much to have them live and die in a couple of decent rooms and a bath? Anyway, my father didn’t think so. People were human beings to him.”

As Mr. Potter later quipped, “Sentimental hogwash!”

Life has been so much better since Mr. Potter took over. A million times better. He reminds us of this every day and he is so absolutely right. So be sure to remember to pay homage to him, to speak his name with reverence, and to always be thankful that we have collectively made Pottersville great again.

Meredith O’Brien is a Boston area writer and author of three books.