Thursday, September 15, 2011

I am a Convervative

   Yes, it is true.  I am so conservative some think I am boring.  In my personal life I am rock steady in my beliefs.  I don't make changes quickly.  I have had the same telephone number for over 40 years, the same house since 1971 and the same wife since 1968!
   I have been self employed since 1973.  I have gone through several recessions, economic hardships, good times and bad times.  I have paid more in taxes than anyone I know.  I paid both sides of my own Social Security Tax, as the individual and being self-employed.  No one else paid a dime into it.  I have paid Federal and State Taxes, County Taxes, City Taxes, Licence Taxes, Local Transit Taxes, Unemployment Taxes, Worker's Compensation Taxes and probably a lot of other taxes I am forgetting.  There were many, many times when all these taxing agencies got paid and there was no money left over, none to take home.
And there were other times when there was lots to take home.  That is the nature of the business world and if you want to stay in business you always pay yourself last.
   I liked what I did.  I liked the freedom it gave me, the entrepreneurial spirit of it, the "can do" attitude of it all.
I did it all by choice and it is our American Society that allowed me this choice.  There are many countries in the world where doing what I did is just not possible.  It is our society that offers these possibilities.  In our society a hot dog vendor can become a millionaire.  A pizza worker can run for President.  The lowliest worker at McDonald's can end up owning the place!  I love this about our society!
   I have mentioned "Vertu" and "Fortuna" before.  Two Greek words meaning the measure of a man and the luck he encounters.  In our society the harder you work the luckier you can get and I like that too.
   Without exception ALL of the successful people I have ever met worked long hours to get to where they are.
   We have an opportunity to shape the society in which we live.  We can be helpful or hurtful.  Positive or negative.  Mostly I realize that I am not alone.  I didn't do whatever I have done by myself.  I have had help all along the way, employees, neighbors, fellow citizens, the society in which I live.
   There are two things that often run through my head:  how do I want to be? and how do I want others to be?
   If I lived in Zimbabwe I would be a flaming liberal or a radical of some kind, that is for sure.  We are pretty lucky here.  I do believe that we are caretakers of this planet, that we should clean up our messes and cause no harm.  I don't want garbage dumps, spilled oil, polluted air and undrinkable water.  I am pretty conservative about that.
   I am very conservative when it comes to money.  It is hard to get and I am getting old.  Don't want my debts passed on to my children.  As a business person I understand the value of borrowing money, understand it can be a good thing to borrow a hundred when you could make a thousand out of the deal.
I am tired of war.  Tired of paying for it with borrowed money.  Tired of all the costs yet to come from this.
I am pretty conservative there too.
   I was embarrassed for my country when there were cheers to the idea of allowing a thirty year old to die
unattended rather than contribute to his care.  That is not the kind of world I want.  It is not practical.  It would be smelly.  And what so many people don't realize, it would be more expensive!
   It is not some kind of altruism, some kind of belief in doing good that causes me to want some kind of National Health.  I think of it as wholesale buying.  It is like Costco.  If we bought it together it would be less expensive.  Americans spend more money by far than any other country in the world on health and we get far less for it.  Our system is broken and too many people don't realize what this means.  50,000,000 Americans have no health insurance at all.  More join these ranks every day!  Hospitals are just like any other business,
they need money to operate (litterally!).  They are closing their doors all the time.  With no insurance income
hopitals cannot stay in business.  This will hurt us all.  I don't really understand why emotions enter into this discussion.  It is all pretty simple math.
   I like simple math and it is the way I look at a lot of life, what adds up and what doesn't, who is lying and who is telling the truth.  Corporations are behind most of the television advertizements now.  They hire lawyers and psycologists, slick guys from Wall Street, clever people who can tweek our emotions.  Funny how they can make every side to an argument sound so right! 
   I have become suspicious of the lot of them!  I take more and more with a grain of salt and retreat more a little each day on to my little island.

THIS site is free and I am always there.


freebird said...

A peon running for President? Today? I don't think so. In the past yes but today, so many wealthy people put up their millions the poor guy with just the best ideas doesn't make it.

You are basically right about the rest although hard, long work does not mean you'll attain success. It just means you might be able to pay the bills. And if you don't have insurance, it means you probably still won't be able to pay the bills. Oooh, I guess I've grown a bit pessimistic about the chances for getting ahead. You see, at one time a man could move his family west and settle land he didn't have to pay for except with sweat equity so hard work paid off more often. Then came a time when you could skip school if it was too difficult and get a good job or work the family farm (see last sentence) and still make a success of it through sweat equity. It still wasn't possible for many people though because it took money to move west and it took money to buy land if you didn't move. Today, you have to graduate high school and get some college as a minimum and that is just to get a job that still doesn't let you pay for land or a home in most areas. So how do you get ahead today? You'd best hope you have some wealthy parents to help pay for college and then hope there will be a job to take on and then that you will find a mate who also makes money so you can afford to buy a house and heaven forbid one of you or your kids gets cancer! In the old days no one had medial care and people died often. It was the norm whether you were rich or poor. Today, healthcare without insurance is impossibly expensive unless you are wealthy and you'd better be VERY wealthy or yes, you'll die of something you shouldn't have to. It's becoming the new norm.

stonepost said...

Hi freebird, thanks for the courage to comment! The Godfather Pizza guy is one of the Republicans running forpresident. He stated at the very bottom and got to where he is by shear hard work. I don't agree with him but I have a lot of respect for him.
Things are tough now but they have always been hard one way or another. I know people with 2 jobs, working weekends, everything they can find and they are saving money, buying a house and doing all the American Dream stuff.
Somehow along the way we have forgotten the working hard bit and think it is our right to work an 8 hour day and go home to a flat screen tv and take out for dinner.
Personally, I think 8 hours should be enough but realistically, it isn't and those willing to work harder will still get ahead.
It is bleak, yes, but not desparate. Yet.

Tiffiny said...

From what I have seen the american dream is for most people a thing of the past. I grew up hearing the same thing, "work hard enough and you can be or have anything". This coming from my single mother who worked two and three jobs just to scrape by.

The american dream depends on a lot. Depends on the decisions you make as a teenager and young adult. Make the wrong decisions in the beginning and you may not do anything else than work to survive. Circumstances play another large part in it. My mother didn't have a chance not because she chose to be a single mother but because someone else made the choice for her. This happens a lot, and woman usually don't have as many opportunities to make the living men do for the same work. So yes hard work and long hours can pay off for some, for others it just pays the living expenses and hopefully there is enough left over for something extra, usually not.

I think it's amazing when you hear about people that get out of poverty and achieve or do something great because they worked hard. I just haven't seen it personally. I've seen people work hard and work long hours but anything more than what they have is always just out of reach. These days even more so.

AutumnLeaves said...

Boy, sure know how to set my emotions to rolling. Sometimes this mess just does that to me. So, since I can't say anything intelligent, I'll just roil on in my gut.