In the wake of yet another highly publicized tragedy, the U.S. sympathy market has been flooded with condolences, both genuine and counterfeit, causing the price of thoughts and prayers to plummet to an all-time low.
Walt Wisher, chief economist at the Dubbles Institute for Social Economics, says that a solid one-minute prayer is now worth one-tenth of its 2006 value, and that the value of thoughts has fallen so sharply that they are now virtually worthless.
“This tragedy-induced drop is just part of an unprecedented 10-year inflationary period to which there’s no end in sight,” Wisher said. “While prayers still hold some value, especially in rural areas, thoughts are worth almost nothing.”
Wisher says that in some major cities, you can find traders offering a whole barrel of thoughts for nothing more than a single kind regard.
“They’re even shipping U.S. thoughts by the ton to Venezuela, where farmers are using them as manure,” he said.
Until recently, the value of thoughts and prayers had remained stable, with prices only slumping during national tragedies, such as when the Challenger Space Shuttle exploded in 1986 and in the weeks following the 9/11 attacks.
Nowadays, however, with smartphones and social media so ubiquitous, Americans are devoting many hours every day to consuming news about tragic events — while simultaneously sending hundreds of thoughts and prayers.
“Before Twitter and Facebook, people generally held on to their thoughts and prayers, and would only use them in extreme circumstances, such as when friends and relatives were directly affected by misfortune or violence,” Wisher said. “Even when John F. Kennedy was assassinated, most Americans sent either a few heartfelt thoughts or a prayer, but not both, and certainly not in the sheer volume that we’re seeing today.”
“My own sister is known to send thoughts when her Facebook friends post complaints about bad traffic, and one time she offered a prayer for a neighbor whose son failed his driving license exam.”
The value of thoughts and prayers is so low, according to experts, that funeral mourners are said to be pooling them to give them actual meaning. Also, in some online communities, the phrase “sending my thoughts and prayers” has become shorthand for “I don’t care, so go screw yourself.”