Because come on

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Philip Bump's article about the initiative aimed at splitting Caifornia into six new states contains a cute example of a new playful extension of the use of because:

Happily, in this instance the federal government would have to sign off on the idea, which it will never do, because, come on.

It's not a real extension of the syntax that allows because to take imperative clause complements, of course; it's just a humorous way to dismiss the idea of federal approval, taking its structure from the kind of changes of plan that happen in casual talk. Here the plan for a preposition phrase with because is just abandoned, and the idiomatic "come on" injunction to get real is substituted. But it works very nicely.

The article is worth reading: it contains actual statistics concerning what the six states replacing California would be like. They would include the richest of the 55 states (which would contain my former employer, now presumably renamed the Unversity of Silicon Valley, Santa Cruz), and the poorest as well.

Bump is of course right that it's never going to happen. One of the only good things about California's disastrous initiative system is that its failures cause the pumping of large amounts of billionaires' cash (in this case, about $5 million from venture capitalist Tim Draper) into the economy in the form of payments to advertisement firms and signature-gatherers. Better to have Draper's money spent on stupidness in California than have it lying fallow in a Swiss bank account. Because economic stimulus, stupid.

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