Mirror Mirror On The Wall

We hear about and look at the civil strife in so many countries and shake our heads in disbelief. Yet in our short sightedness aren’t we creating exactly the same environment here that fosters the hopelessness that fires the violence of people trying to be heard, to ask for their fair share?

Here we increase the rewards to those near or at the top while diminishing the compensation of those in the middle and depriving those at the bottom.

Meanwhile, millions of dollars buy elected officials, get them elected, and direct their actions. Even if the American voter votes his or her choice, it is a choice delivered without their input. Rather, the “powers that be” determine who is available for election.

If we look in the mirrors of history, mirrors past and mirrors present, we should see the path we are also following. But it’s not too late. The greed at the top is self-destructive: Perhaps not now, not tomorrow, but soon, and sooner than any may realize. The proverbial tipping point, pointed out by historians like Toynbee, when destruction commences, is not from without but from within. It is then that the carrion will feast.

Think about the 1950s and 60s. The middle class flourished. The common family could buy a car every year or two. They took vacations to Florida, went to the races or nightclub once a week … and enjoyed peaceful parks.

Today we pay more taxes, we have less … why? Trickle down. The rich pay less taxes, the industrial tax base that provided jobs, revenue for the cities and counties, has gone offshore, and the rich build huge homes (2nd-3rd-4th) upon which they receive tax breaks, have all their amenities built in and are gated to keep the common riffraff out, except to perform yard maintenance and house repairs.

The pen may be mightier than the sword. But, is it mightier than the almighty dollar?

Will They Give US the Work(s)?

As of July 13, 2014, 1,090 groups organized as Super PACs have reported total receipts of $242,129,104 and total independent expenditures of $79,563,819 in the 2014 cycle. In other words, that’s just this year.

If these billionaire PACs such as Club for Growth Action, American Crossroads and Citizens for a Working America were so concerned about creating and preserving jobs, what if they invested that money in doing business and hiring people?

Just askin’.

Waste Not Want Not?

A brief item in the AARP magazine about food expiration dates and ways to extend them and when we should also not pitch out the food noted that ….every year, 40% of all food in the USA goes uneaten. A typical 4 person household discards roughly $1,500 of food a year. It’s not just $$ that are wasted but the resources to produce the food and the CO2 involved … 3.5 billion metric tons. It seems that we have forgotten the old adage, waste not want not. As the Food Lion “Lion” would say, that’s just my 2 cents.

Words Taken to Deadly Extremes

Considering the latest stabbing and shooting episode by a troubled young California man, the sad thing is that the every day, run of the mill disrespect so many express for women and others becomes amplified and radicalized by those who are very sick, very evil or both. Words (and images) hold much power and if we as a society don’t start considering that words can kill in spirit and deed, and we don’t start controlling our tongues, then we have a bleak futures indeed. If we speak good things and speak well of each other and respect and honor the uniqueness of men and women in general and individually, then good will come of it. If not?

R. Bodo 2014

Holding Fast to the Past and $$$

I find it intriguing that our representatives are upset that the US Armed Forces are trying to meet their budget cuts by discarding old (50 and 60 year old) technology, tactics and bases and the congress prefers they meet their budget by cutting the 21st century equipment, facilities and tactics instead. I can only think that line of thinking is not wanting to lose the jobs attached to the old bases and equipment. This same myopia seems to be the pattern in education, economics and communications. Protect the old at the cost of our future.

Robin Hood Repurposed

Today there is a developing line of thought in the USA (and perhaps the world) that reasons thus: The national public lands produce no tax revenue for the state that the Federal Lands are in. This land should be sold to private individuals or enterprises so they can be subject to state taxes . . . real estate, income, corporate, etc. So, by this reasoning, the lands and facilities paid for by the general public through their tax dollars over many years that set aside these public lands to secure and preserve natural resources or provide for the education and enjoyment, of all the citizens should be sacrificed for the benefit of those who can profit. Thus not only does the average tax paying citizen lose a resource that they paid for, they receive less for their ongoing taxes. Thus, those who have enjoyed recreation on the lands they paid for would no longer have access to those lands. In this case less is not more (except for the rich) it is less for more. It seems that this is a continuing line of thought that propose we should take from those who can least afford it because they have the least power to resist or respond. I would call this a reverse Robin Hood strategy. Take from the poor and give to the rich. In this version of the story, the wicked King and the Sheriff of Nottingham win.
(c) 2014 Roger W. Bodo