More than 324 years after architect Sir Christopher Wren constructed fake pillars at Windsor Town Hall near London to satisfy building inspectors, tourists remain fascinated with the good-for-nothing posts.
The story goes that in 1689, local inspectors warned that the town hall would crumble without additional support. Rather than fight City Hall, Wren, England’s greatest architect – who disagreed with the inspectors – fooled them by building four pillars that offered the illusion of more support but which did not even reach the ceiling.
Stunts deceiving observers by illusion are not, of course, relegated to 17th century building inspections. They can occur in outright wallet-crushing fashion today.
Take, for example, Kentucky’s Medicaid shanty.
Inspectors have carefully examined the leaning structure and determined that adding 300,000 new enrollees into the Obamacare program – which Gov. Steve Beshear announced he will do – would add an unbearable financial weight to a structure that’s already crumbling.