July 28, 2011

Nation Teeters on Brink of Economic Collapse as Netflix Subscription Rates Soar


With the United States economy remaining sluggish, almost-incomprehensible levels of national debt strangling the budget, and the unemployment rate hovering around 9%, the financial state of the union would seem unable to take another blow.

Yet, the online video rental/streaming service Netflix has seemingly delivered that blow. Earlier this month, the company announced a restructuring of their pricing models, raising all of their prices, and some plans by as much as 60%.

“This is going to put a huge dent in my already very-dented wallet,” said Apartment 3 rapper Bobby D, who has been a Netflix subscriber for nearly five years. “Man, I don’t even like movies.”

The hike will most greatly affect users who currently have the unlimited streaming and one DVD at a time plan, which will rise in price from $9.99 to $15.99.

“That extra six dollars a month really adds up,” continued Mr. D. “That’s a pack of cigarettes that I’m not smoking every single month. I could conceivably be less cool because of that.”

While not all plans are soaring as much as the plan Mr. D uses, all of Netflix’s subscription plans are rising.

For example, a plan that might be appropriate for a family of four, featuring unlimited streaming and four DVDs out at a time, and which would make available to this family nearly every movie ever released to video, is rising from $27.99 to $29.98, a difference of almost two dollars.

“It’s goddamn ridiculous,” said Asian sous chef Timmy Q, a self-described buff who watches nearly thirty movies per month. “What a fucking rip-off. This is the last straw. I’m cancelling.”

It’s unclear how the battered American economy will be able to absorb such an increase in the amount that is spent on a home video service.

Lawmakers in Washington are divided on whether the nation should raise its debt ceiling to previously unseen levels in order to accommodate Netflix’s price hike.

“We can’t borrow another cent,” said Republican Speaker of the House John Boehner. “The country’s going to have to make some tough choices, and some Americans are going to have to do without the nation’s premier video rental service.

“Besides,” Mr. Boehner continued, “I heard Wal-Mart is doing that now, too.”

Democrats in Congress have called the new prices “reprehensible,” but have supported a plan to go deeper into debt in order to keep Netflix service uninterrupted for most Americans.

“We knew that when we agreed to [Netflix’s] terms and conditions that they could do this at any time,” said Democratic senator Barbara Boxer. “We made a commitment, and we can’t back out now.”