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Dogbert sits on the hassock watching television. A newscaster says, "The budget for education was cut ten million dollars." Dogbert thinks, "Is that a big percentage? Does it make any difference?" The reporter says, "Congress considered a music safety law after studies showed a ten percent increase in piano-related deaths." Dogbert wonders, "How does that compare to other health risks? Should I be concerned?" The newscaster continues, "Lawmakers debated a bill to lower capital gains tax rates . . ." Dogbert thinks, "What do most economists think? Would it stimulate the economy much? Should I care?" The newscaster continues, "A new poll show that many voters have strong opinions on these issues despite the fact that we provide no useful contextual data." Dogbert walks away with his ears standing up. He thinks, "I've got to stop watching scary shows right before bedtime."
Dilbert stands across from the Boss's desk and says, "Government statistics show that office productivity went DOWN as computers became widely used." Dilbert continues, "But I didn't believe it." Dilbert says, "So I wrote a little software program to test that conclusion." Dilbert continues, "It only tood a month, but it produced some impressive data." Dilbert continues, "In fact, it was so impressive it took a week to figure out how to print it." Dilbert continues, "But before I could print, my computer crashed and I didn't have backup copies." Dilbert concludes, "So, it seems the government was right; computers are to blame for the decline in productivity." The Boss asks, "Do you think the employees could be partly responsible?" Dilbert replies, "Sure, find a scapegoat."
Dilbert stands in a shoe store. A salesperson asks, "Can I help you?" Dilbert tells the salesman, "I oppose the slaughter of helpless animals. Do you have any shoes that aren't made of leather?" The man replies, "Yeah, but they would make you look like a twit." Dilbert says, "Well, forget that. Do you have any shoes made in this country?" The salesman replies, "Yeah, but they cost more." Dilbert says, "Okay, forget that. Just show me some shoes that weren't made with slave labor." The man says, "We charge a premium for no-slave shoes." Dilbert replies, "Well, forget that." Dilbert arrives at home with a shoebox. Dogbert asks, "How much did you sell your soul for?" Dilbert answers, "Forty bucks and a little shine cloth."
Dilbert and Dogbert stand in a parking lot. A man approaches their car and says, "Hey! Dilbert! Is that your nerdmobile?" The man laughs. Dilbert thinks, "It's my old high school nemesis, Chuck." Chuck says, "Maybe you'd like to race me in my Corvette." He laughs. Dilbert points to his car and says, "Actually, Chuck, if you had taken a science class you'd know this a 'Seebeck effect' power plant capable of 600 miles per hour." Dilbert continues, "Any idiot knows you can get massive power simply by using the sun to heat the junction of two dissimilar wires joined at both ends." Dilbert continues, "Apparently I'm faster AND smarter than you. And these tax forms show that I also earn more than you." Dogbert holds up the forms. Chuck says, "Here's a picture of my new girlfriend. She teaches aerobics." Dilbert says, "He's winning. Help me out here, Dogbert." Dogbert waves his paw and says, "Step aside." Dogbert tells Chuck, "I notice that your girlfriend has unusually large hands and a very pronounced Adam's apple." Chuck asks, "So?"
The Boss walks up to Dilbert with magnets all over his body. The Boss says, "I'm feeling much healthier since I strapped all of these magnets to my body." Dilbert says, "That's fascinating. You should show them to Wally. It would have a big impact on him." The boss says, "Okay." From off-panel Wally screams, "You erased my #%!!* hard drive!!"
The Boss: "Laurie's our new engineer. Show her the ropes, Dilbert." "I meant figuratively." Dilbert: "This is your anti-productivity pod." "It's equipped with a little device that rings anytime you try to concentrate." "The top is open so none of the background noise is inadvertently muffled." "And you're on the main aisle, so you'll be haunted every minute by footsteps behind you. Step...step...step." The Boss: "We need to talk."
Tags #habits of highly defective people, #ignore signs, #belittle people, #newest team, #all complainers fault, #motivate me, #therapist, #controversial issues, #barney as mascot, #assembly line code, #prejudices, #crisp photo copy, #cpmics, #psychology
The panel contains the title, "The Seven Habits of Highly Defective People." The caption says, "1. Ignore any signs of discomfort in others." The Boss sits across the table from a dusty skeleton and says, "But hey, I've been doing all of the talking." The caption says, "2. Use humor to belittle people in public." The Boss puts his arm around a man and tells Wally, "Our newest team member has movie star looks. Specifically, Lassie." Wally laughs. The caption says, "3. Treat all complaints as the complainer's fault." Dilbert says, "You don't motivate me." The Boss replies, "Maybe you should see a therapist." The caption says, "4. Show up late and raise controversial issues." The Boss walks into a meeting room and says, "I think we should license 'Barney' as our mascot." The caption says, "5. Give advice on things you don't understand." The Boss points to Dilbert's monitor and says, "Try writing some assembly line code here." The caption says, "6. Use compliments to show your prejudices." The Boss says to Alice, "Ooh, nice crisp photocopy, Alice. I don't think a man could have done it better!" The caption says, "7. Think the comics are not about you." The Boss reads the newspaper and says, "Hee hee! Look at the hair on that guy!"
The Boss, Alice, Wally and Dilbert sit at a conference table. The Boss says, "Alice, our records show that you haven't taken a vacation all year." The Boss continues, "Company policy requires you to use your vacation days." Alice says, "How?? You told me to work seven days a week to prepare the project for your boss's year-end review." Alice asks, "Do you want me to meet the artificial project target or the artificial vacation target?" Alice stands up and screams, "Hello!!! These are mutually exclusive goals!!! Hello!!!" Alice says, "Ooh . . . Sorry, I usually just think that last part in silent frustration." The Boss says, "Moving right along . . . Kudos to Wally for using all of his vacation days ahead of schedule." Alice looks furious. Wally says, "Get over it, Alice. We can't all be superstars."
Dilbert and Dogbert sit at a table. Dilbert holds a device and says, "I call my invention the D-Chip Television Filter." Dogbert says, "I feel safer already." Dilbert explains, "It screens out any show with violence." Dogbert replies, "There goes the news, sports and dramas." Dilbert says, "It also gets rid of shows that feature dishonesty or sexual innuendos." Dogbert says, "Goodbye comedy and commercials." Dilbert says, "Let's hook it up." Dilbert sits on the couch holding the remote control and Dogbert sits on the backrest. Dilbert looks at the television and says, "All we're getting is weather reports." The newscaster says, "A huge tornado ripped through a . . ." There is a beep and then only static. Dilbert says, "It works! The evil can't get to us now, Dogbert." Dogbert says, "Unhook that #!*% thing or I'll rip off your leg and beat you to death with it."
The caption says, "The Budget Trap." The Boss says, "I need a quick estimate for how much your next project will cost, Wally." Wally replies, "How should I know? You haven't even told me what my next project is." The Boss says, "That's okay. I only need a rough estimate for planning purposes." Wally says, "I see where this is going. You're going to turn my wild guess into a budget. Later I'll be blamed when it's wrong." The Boss replies, "No, no. I won't hold you to these numbers." Wally says, "Well . . . Okay, let's say two million dollars." The Boss says as he walks away, "Ooh . . . Can't afford that. I'll put you down for twenty thousand dollars." The caption says, "One year later . . ." The Boss sits at his desk and says to Wally, "You're way over budget. Can you show me the cause?" Wally replies, "It depends. Can mirrors reflect your image?"