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Honored Advisor

Things you never want to see/think

We've all got some natural or manmade disasters on our horizon right now, it seems.  Floods, fires, tornadoes, and now the US is risking a downgrade in its credit rating....

I mentioned to Merryon below, that I hoped not to ever have the need to see a fire-fighting helicopter "up close and personal."  While I know it is fascinating to view such technology in action, it is one of those elements of modern life - sort of like "getting" to take an ambulance ride - that I would as soon do without, wouldn't you? 

I've also mentioned on a thread here that it is a sad experience to watch and wait while something so powerful follows it serendipitidous course.  It is sort of like the Dopplers and weather computer models are a mixed blessing...you can hopefully figure out if you are at risk in time to flee; but, at the same time, it puts you in the position of watching and wishing that your home and loved ones will be safe. 

The unspoken - and certainly unintended - backside of that wish is that it will go "somewhere else."  Of course, this means it will be have to dealt with my other families and communities, instead of your own.  It gives me a whistling-past-the-graveyard sense of cheating death, at least for another day. 

So, I've taken an ambulance ride, and sent one child on two of them, another took one.  Walked out of a demolished storefront, after the tornado plowed through it only moments before.  Watched the big cargo choppers delivering emergency supplies to our area after hurricanes.  Saw air ambulances evacuate people from a crash scene.  Lots more, more than I like to recall this morning. 

I realize that all of this is a "good" sign, in that we have excellent resources in America.  Still, it just seems that we are all having to hear and see an awful lot of them being expended right about now.  I guess I am just hoping that our country can keep pulling it all together. 

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Senior Contributor

Re: Things you never want to see/think

Very few individuals can actually afford these rescue and emergency services. Too many complain about their costs until they need it themselves. This divided nation is not nearly as strong as an united one.

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Senior Contributor

Re: Things you never want to see/think

Yes it does seem like this has been a very difficult spring so far.  Nature is surely intent on showing us her power.

I also share your uneasiness about the current events and the course it seem so many want to take.

I think many have not thought about all the ramifications if our current political situation  take certain turns.

 

I surely hope many understood President Obama's budget address.  We truely are at a cross roads and the people we have sent to Washington will be deciding the way our country will look in the future.

Hopefully they are watching the wonder and magnificence of the response are country was able to give the the horrible things that happened this past weekend, and the response to what still seems to be coming this week and will handle things in a manor that allows that response to continue.

 

I want my grand children to have the same grand country I grew up in.   With the resources we take for granted.   But I fear they may not.

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Honored Advisor

Re: Things you never want to see/think

Maybe it is the glimmering thought of a first grandchild on the horizon that is making me think so much more about "legacy" these days. I know that developmental considerations of the point in life we've reached now also tend to make one ponder how well we've managed the world on our watch.

It looks like a debt ceiling showdown is forming in DC this week.  Going to be a long, hot summer up there. 

I heard an account on NPR yesterday of how the USGS had posited that the country would run out of oil in '08...1908, that is.  The story went on to talk about fracking for oil in shale deposits, essentially forcing oil out of fractures in solid rock. 

Then, this morning, Ford introduced its new 31-mpg Taurus, which goes to show it could have been done a long time ago.  "It" being a good-sized jump in fuel economy in a car Americans will buy for a family car. 

Resources may be more precious, but we have means at hand to make better use of them.  I just hope we have the will....

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Senior Contributor

Re: Things you never want to see/think

The will is what worries me.

Putting it bluntly I think there are many Americans who no longer care about America.  They care about themselves.  As long as they have plenty of anything.  Plenty of money, plenty of the goods they want and the power to keep making plenty of what ever it is they think they want, they are willing to see all the good things about this country go by the wayside.

They do not see that what made America good and great is that every body mattered.  Every body in some way shared in the American dream.  Even if it was just believing that because we live in America the possibility of doing and accomplishing anything was there.  I think probably even the poorest of the poor, the ones we called lazy and shiftless, the drug addicts and everyone with problems, thinks "If I can just get a break, if I can just conquer this problem,  I live in America and I can do better."

But then Christ told us "the poor are with us always".  So part of what has made America great has been the willingness to help those who cannot, for what ever reason help themselves.

They do not see that every single American having a fire department, police department, social services department and etc. available to them if they need them is what made this country great.

They do not see that having the resources to help whomever, where ever catastrophe strikes is so important to what makes America  America.

They are willing to let those things go by the wayside so they can continue to accumulate way more than needed.

 

If reason cannot be asserted we will end up a country looking like feudal Europe.  Not the place I want the future generations of my family to live.

Honored Advisor

Re: Things you never want to see/think

I apply that particular phrase "the poor are always with us" probably differently than most people do.  Blame it on my experience as a livestock producer. 

We have a saying about any herd: "Every group of animals always has a bottom ten percent."  You know the ones I mean.  As soon as you cull them out, there is a new set comprising the bottom ten percent.  This is not to suggest that we "cull" people, but we do have to consider how much we can give and not take away fomr those who are actuallyu workgin for their sustenance. 

I have to agree with Dr. Phil that "money problems are not solved with money"...which is the mistake I think our naiton has been making.  Management solves money problems.  You cannot continue to throw money at some issues, and expect them to just dissolve.

I will throw one more thought into this discussion: I do not see that very many who receive assistance are in any way, shape or form grateful for it.  I honestly believe that when one is constantly taking from others and giving nothing in return,  it breeds contempt for the giver.   

I see people who are complaining about being given a free college degree on an everyday basis at my school.  Some are brazen enough to sit and discuss quite inventive ways to beat even more out  of the system.  LA has laid out the victim mentality for us before...a measure of even more contempt.  

I do not know the answers, bu tI am starting to get a handle on the questions.    That's taken me over fifty years.  Maybe I will learn what I want to know about how to solve this social puzzle in the next fifty. 

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Senior Contributor

Re: Things you never want to see/think

Without clear expectations and enforced standards, how does society determine who is ungrateful and who is tacky? That is something management misses when loyalty and nepotism prevails. Unequal justice creates havoc and unrest in a civilized society.

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Senior Contributor

Re: Things you never want to see/think

I saw an eye opener recently on pan-handling. Thousands of young people are doing this as their day jobs and using the money for alcohl and drugs.  The reporter, John Stossel (sp?), dressed like a pan handler and without experience was given enough money that in an eight hour day would have amounted to $90. Not bad for just sitting there with your hand out. (he gave the money back, of course and asked why they donated)

I also saw a report that finally people are beginning to question how the current generation of children are being raised. Those that are given everything and continually being asked 'what do you want or want to do?',  do no chores etc. One mom I know with four young daughters does not want them to do anything because she was raised on a farm and had to pitch in with the work. So grandma takes care of them and does for them too.

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Senior Contributor

Re: Things you never want to see/think

I really cannot respond well to this post.  I don't think I have ever personally known a welfare recipient, any way no one that stayed on the program for any long period of time.

I know my children are grateful for the government money they received for their higher educations.  They joke with me that it was a good thing we were so poor at the time that they were able to get so much. But they also worked very hard also.  One daughter had 3 part time jobs one year.  All together they only gave her about 30 hours work a week but kept her hopping between places.

 

So anyway maybe I am putting my feelings into how I believe people would feel.

 

When Katrina happened I read an article by a black clergyman saying he didn't believe the terrible problems would have happened to the black community if they had not been conditioned for years to have the government take care of them.  His sentiment was that  in an earlier time people wouldn't have ended up in those dire straits because they knew how, and had the drive and self respect to take care of themselves before the government started handing them everything.

 

My dad always said the welfare system blew it when it set itself up to become a way of life instead of just a helping hand during rough times.

 

But still I have to believe that most Americans believe they have opportunities not available elsewhere in the world.  But there are always people who want those opportunities spoon fed to them also/

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Senior Contributor

Re: Things you never want to see/think

We've seen our share of panhandlers when we shop in Lincoln. They're located on the streets leading out of shopping centers. There was a story about one that was arrested over 20 times for panhandling, but he was there the next day and another one on a nearby outlet. Look where they go when they are finished for the day. It is usually to a nicer vehicle than mine (over 15 years old). Didn't see the show, so what were the reasons for the donations? Without these donators, the panhandlers wouldn't have their day job.

Pity does not do the human race much good. I can see the emergency help or the educational help to get a good job. However there are the ones who game the system. Getting extra money illegally from the government for providing student loans, capitalizing on municipal bonds by both buying and selling them are only a couple. I don't have much use for them, but that is how capitalism is taught today. Survival of the fittest and glorified in reality shows (Survivor, Big Brother, the Apprentice). Until these practices are penalized by the general public, I don't see much changing.

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