You may be aware that the US had a recent election. Crazy if you live here and didn't know that. The billions of dollars spent in ads to sway you with half-truths to vote. Sadly, many people voted based on these ads and not their own research about each politician or referendum.
My daughter, Miss M, is taking Honors History this year. Her teacher is super excited that it is an election year. He had each student read about both main Presidential candidates and their stand on various topics. I told her she would be more educated going into this election than over half of the people voting.
I have been frustrated reading facebook posts from various people about their complaints over the elections. How stupid is our nation for choosing another 4 years. How it's the President's fault that our gas prices have gone up (by the way - they are incredibly low compared to the rest of the world), how it's his fault that their house is upside down (paid more than it's worth), and how it's his fault that the tax cuts extended to us over the past many years will now expire and we are all going to lose our jobs.
Get real. We are incredibly lucky. I can say this because I have a roof over my head, food on the table at any time, 2 cars to drive, my kids play sports, they attend a local school, I have shoes and a warm jacket. I know we are better off than many people. It may not be the fanciest house or biggest car, but I have the ability to stay warm, fed and get out to exotic locales (besides the local mall).
What's my point - just that I'm irritated by the complaining (though it is their right) and I would rather vent a little here then to start WWIII with my friends and family on facebook.
1. You owe $70k more than your house is worth because the housing market went insane and people fell into buying houses that cost more than you could afford? Boo Hoo. You should have thought about that one. Our Realtors constantly tried to up sell me into a more expensive home. Tried luring me with ARM's that would keep my payments super low for the first 5 years then I could refinance. No thank you. I will take a traditional 30 year loan within a budget I can afford with worrying that we need to have 2 jobs to make the payment.
2. My car is 7 years old and stinky. I have 4 kids ages 7-12. Of course it's going to be gross and stinky. What's the point of buying a new car that will get trashed again. My Honda is doing a wonderful job getting us from here to there and the maintenance has been super easy. Except needing another new set of tires, she has been a beast driving up and down the West Coast. I do have the benefit of a new 3rd car though. I work for my brother and asked him to buy me a new car instead of paying me for the work I do. I know, I'm a little shallow sometimes too.
3. The Presidents doesn't have any influence on the stock market or gas prices. That is at the whim of the oil companies and the investors. Do some research. (Please feel free to comment and correct me here if needed.)
4. Here's the big one - the one we will all worry about and that will affect millions of lives. The FISCAL CLIFF. Trillions of dollars worth of tax cuts are due to expire. The government is considering letting them. So do it. I understand my tax return will be much smaller this next year. I understand that more taxes will be taken out my paychecks. But we voted for those taxes years ago. We've been living large on borrowed money. If you are going to complain about the huge deficit in our country, here is a way to correct it. I'm not saying it's going to be easy. It's going to suck like hell for many people. You might have to have another family of 4 move into your home to help pay for the heat, the food, the mortgage. But you will be saving money and saving another family from having no home, no heat, no food. The affects of the tax hikes are yet to be seen or felt, but I'm glad that we are righting this course. We need to get back to the biggest surplus in history, not the largest deficit in history. It will not only help us, it will help the world.
OK - I think I have it out of my system. My only political comments from the entire year besides what I have discussed with Marc. Back to the regular scheduled program of thinking of fantastic blog stories to share with you and then storing them away in my head. Sorry about that.