“Money can’t buy happiness” is a proverb I’ve often heard.

I think money can pave the way to happiness.

I think lack of money won’t buy happiness either, and lack of money will cause an exhaustion like no other. No sooner have you solved one problem, than you find yourself saddled with another, if money is involved and you don’t have much.

China makes its citizens stop working at age 60. That’s it. You’re done. Your children will have to take care of any needs you no longer can provide for yourself. If they don’t? There’s “Shaming”.

Shame in America seems to have become elusive as folks blame other folks for their problems, and no one is ashamed because no one has done anything wrong . . . except the other fellow . . . but I digress.

I asked someone I know who lives in China how bad “shaming” was? Well, it can lead to financial ruin, as in, “Don’t patronize that company because the owner doesn’t take care of his aged parents”. Yeah. that’s pretty bad.

But I find as I’ve aged, my money has dwindled and so has my ability to earn more. That leads to all sorts of problems, including postponing medical procedures because of the cost.

I think money can buy happiness. It can buy a relief from the constant stress of not having money. It can buy food when you’re hungry and food makes most people happy. It can buy entertainment . . . there again, happy . . .


Manipulating My Emotions

I am seriously tired of the media trying to stir up my emotions about every little thing. To live in America today is to live in either constant fear, worry, anxiousness, concern, etc. for any and every little thing. The media reports on what shoes the President’s wife is wearing. They report on storms for days before their arrival and move the “cone of probability”, or whatever they call it, around so that every person n every possible affected state runs out and buys and drives up the prices of gas and food and becomes as agitated as they can be as they see bare shelves and continue to hear dire predictions.

I’ve had enough.

IF and that’s a big and unlikely IF, the media ever learns how to report the news again, I might give them another chance. In the meantime, I will remain blissfully ignorant of what the important news of the day is and how I should feel about it. If it’s not in my personal sphere, I don’t care. There! I figured out how to feel about it. I don’t care!

America and Illegals

I keep reading about illegals being deported and how upset they are. They don’t seem to understand that in most countries, you don’t sneak in and live and get to stay once it’s noticed that you did that. There are ways to become a citizen of another country, but breaking the law that says it must be done a certain way is serious.

I think Americans embrace others who are hurting or need help, but at some point people must look after their own interests and their own lives.

Americans pay taxes to support public schools. When an ESL teacher (English as Second Language) became necessary in every school, it began to affect American citizens. That’s a teacher being paid to teach a large group of people the English language. Her or his salary comes from tax dollars.

Then there is the annoyance of being told to “Press One for English”. This was a new thing at one time, but now it’s the norm.

When immigrants come to America, they should expect to learn the language and the customs and assimilate into American society. You would not sneak into China and expect the people in China to learn your language.

If I move to another country, or even if I just visit, I will try to learn the language of that country and not expect them to know my language just because I show up. That’s arrogance.

I do feel for the people being deported. I wish they had entered the country legally in the first place.

As part Native American, I also wish the Native Americans had been more savvy about allowing immigrants to enter their country. You see how that worked out.

There have to be rules and they have to be followed. If immigrants cannot be bothered to learn the country’s language and to teach it to their children, then how interested are they really in the success of the country? If they want things to stay exactly like they were in their former country, why did they come here? This is America.


Peasants In America

Most people in America are peasants. They would never admit it, but that’s the kind of life most live. They own very little. They work five days a week, 8 hours a day, at jobs that do not make them rich, but it makes whoever owns the company they work for rich.

An American dream is to own a house – or it used to be. Home ownership leads to being tied to working 8 hours a day, 5 days a week.

There are 168 hours in a week. IF, and they usually don’t, but if the peasants sleep 8 hours a night for 7 days a week, that uses up 56 of those hours. Most peasants are sleep deprived because working 40 hours a week means they don’t have time for much of anything else. If you add the 56 hours sleeping to the 40 hours working, you get 96 hours a week. That doesn’t count any overtime work, paid or not paid. If you are “salaried” in America, you don’t get any overtime pay. You get paid a set amount for the job, no matter how much time you spend doing it. School teachers are salaried employees and they work more than 40 hours a week, but don’t get any additional pay.

Most people who are paid according to how many hours they work will welcome overtime work because it is usually paid at 1 1/2 times the regular rate of pay. They welcome it because they cannot afford much of anythng with their regular 40 hour a week paycheck.

I’ve digressed. Work plus sleep equals 96 hours a week. When you subtract that from 168, you get 72 hours a week of “freedom”. Some of this time will be spent “commuting” to your place of work. For my last job, I spent twenty minutes driving from my home to my workplace. That was 40 minutes every day in my car driving. Some people spend thirty minutes or more communting to work. Let’s say a peasant spends thirty minutes each way getting to and from work. That’s an hour each day. If the peasant works five days a week, that’s five hours gone. 72 minus 5 equals 67.

A peasant has to be clean for most jobs. That means they shower daily. They have to get dressed for work, dressed for bed, and dressed for other activities. If a peasant spends 15 minutes a day getting dressed for each activity, they spend at least 30 minutes a day doing this. If they spend 15 minutes taking a shower, that brings this total to 45 minutes. Then there is teeth brushing, laundry, some housework, and some have yard work as well. If you subtract the 45 minutes of showering and getting dressed . . . Let’s call it an hour because many people spend more time than that. There’s makeup and hair and selecting clothes to wear . . . Let’s say most people spend an hour a day dressing or getting ready to be presentable, and undressing or changing clothes for non-work activities. That’s 7 more hours out of the week. Now we’re down to 60 hours a week of free time.

How long does the average peasant take to eat? Does the peasant also fix his own meal, or does s/he go out for it? This also takes time. There are three meals a day. School teachers get about 20 minutes for lunch, if they’re lucky. That’s the amount of time alloted to eating the lunch. It still has to be either purchased or prepared. Let’s call it thirty minutes a day per meal and assume most peasants eat three meals a day. That’s an hour and a half per day for preparing and eating food. Multiply that by 7, because there are 7 days in a week. You get 10.5 hours a week eating and preparing food. Subtract that from 60 and you have 49.5 hours a week “free”. This still does not count the time spent doing laundry, cleaning house, or doing yardwork. But if you divide the 49.5 by 7, you get roughly 7 hours a day of “free time”.

Most of this free time you are tired from working at least 8 hours a day. You spend part of that time paying bills with the money you earn when you exchange your time for dollars. In America, there are many taxes to pay. The government takes taxes out of your earned money when you make it and then again takes taxes when you spend it. Americans “file taxes” once a year to be sure that according to how much money they earn, the government gets what it considers to be its fair share. If you have bought anything like a house or property in America and you sell it, you must pay taxes as well. There are county taxes and federal taxes and in many states, state taxes for many different things. There is money taken for social security, which is income provided for “old age”. If you die before you are old enough to collect all this social security money back, you just forfeit that money that has been taken out of every paycheck you ever earned. How much “tax” goes into the social security collection? Each person and their employer contributes 12.4 percent total of the person’s earnings to this collection. Each person contributes half of this amount, or 6.2% out of every dollar earned for a whole lifetime with no guarantee of living long enough to get it back. The employer pays the other 6.2%.

Social Security is financed by a 12.4 percent tax on wages up to the taxable-earnings cap, with half (6.2 percent) paid by workers and the other half paid by employers. This taxable wage base usually goes up each year—it rose from $117,000 in 2014 to $118,500 in 2015, but stayed put at that level for 2016.Oct 18, 2016″  (found online

Most people don’t stop to think about how little free time they have in America. They’re too busy working and worrying about bills and health and other worrisome things. This keeps the peasant’s mind occupied so they don’t realize they are peasants.

College graduates who have been told that education would improve their lot in life graduate saddled with thousands of dollars in student loan debts. That is another guarantee that they will live a conforming peasant style life and “contribute to society”, which is actually making sure the rich stay rich while the peasant believes the lies of the American dream. Although the money many borrowed is government money, the college graduates (or even non-graduates, but college attendees) pay high interest rates for borrowing this money. Many end up paying twice what they borrowed back for the privilege of having enough education to do a higher paid job in America. I don’t know where the interest on this money goes, but since many of the loans come from the government, I would assume the government keeps the “interest” money as well.

Merriam-Webster defines a peasant this way:  :  “a member of a European class of persons tilling the soil as small landowners or as laborers.”

Americans are a class of laborers, whether it be skilled or unskilled. Most Americans enjoy the peasant lifestyle.


Whose Fault Is That?

I’ve always been soft-hearted. I have (or had) a lot of empathy.

Lately I wonder if I’ve become cynical, realistic, logical or what?

I already hate watching movies and TV episodes when the “go to” reply is always “It wasn’t your fault.” Many times I’m looking at the clear result of poor planning or no forethought and my mind is screaming “It IS their fault! Why are you coddling them? If they don’t realize they caused that, they may cause it again!”

Perhaps my folks were too harsh? I grew up with comments like “They’ve made their bed, now they can lie in it.” I also heard, “You should have thought of that before whatever happened happened.”

I was warned not to run with scissors in my hand. I was warned about a lot of potential outcomes of poor choices. Now I sit and watch people being reassured that something rhat was clearly their fault was not their fault.

I just stopped watching a TV episode to write this. Two parents have one son who needs a kidney transplant. The parents are doing everything possible to get their son a kidney. I understand that. What I do not understand, as they ask a doctor to convince a patient, who will not be able to dance again professionaly to give up her kidney because “he’s our only son”. Well, my mind blurted out silently, “whose fault is that?”.

I have three children. Each one is unique. Each pregnancy came with risks. I almost died twice – once with two of them. Still, I have more than one child. I made my choices. To see someone else want to pressure another person because “he’s our only child” . . . ??

I’ve also often wondered if people who use that phrase realize that each and every one of my children mean as much to me as “their only child”? I am insulted by the sentiment that because they only have one, theirs is more valuable than mine.

Like I wrote, I don’t know if my aging process is making me less charitable, but I do know there are some things I don’t like about how some other people think.

Donald Trump has recently become President Elect. One of his appeals was his ability and willingness to shun political correctness and take back his freedom of speech, which all Americans had in the past. We have been taught to censure our words just as if we had been threatened with severe punishment for saying anything the government doesn’t approve of. Sometimes because of my age, I will use a term (ie, “oriental” when the PC word is “Asian”  – or that’s what it was the last time I was corrected) and will immediately get jumped on by the spoken word “police” about my “inappropriate language”. It is bad enough that I stop and think about most of what I say and freely censure myself daily. I am very, very tired of doing that. It’s akin to walking on eggshells all day long and it is tedius and tiresome.

I would never hurt someone’s feelings on purpose. I just don’t think I should have to be so very, very careful what I say in order not to offend someone else, who often says things that offend me, but I don’t protest.

The whole PC situation in America has gotten out of hand. While I would not blurt out to parents whose “only child” may be dying if they can’t take from someone else what they need for their own dream . . . that the reason he’s their only child may be their own fault . . . they decided to have only one child . . . (or perhaps they couldn’t conceive again. I don’t know). But many situations humans find themselves in are their own makings and yes, sometimes it is their fault and the energy I spend comforting them and worrying about them would be best spent elsewhere.

It does feel good to have tighter heartstrings that cannot be yanked on by so many who have taken advantage of me in the past. But you know what? That was my own damned fault.

It’s time for people to realize that their lives are not something that happens to them, but some things they cause to happen when they make certain choices.


President Donald J. Trump

Donald J. Trump won the election for President last night. His acceptance speech was very gracious to Hillary Clinton and he continued with his hope for the future that America can become the land she once was for Americans.

For those who do not know, seeing homeless people sleeping on the streets was not part of the America I knew. Seeing people “dumpster dive” to have food to eat was not even imagined.

Donald J. Trump wants to bring jobs back, promote law and order and secure our borders. As we watch videos of people calling themselves refugees (most are strong healthy men; why didn’t they stay in their country and fight?) . . . but as we watch them overtaking Europe in posted videos, and as we struggle to take care of everyone in America, including those who came over the southern border illegally, America needs to do some serious soul searching.

America was great in the past because there was not so much hunger or homelessness. People who wanted to work could find jobs. Police were respected and citizens didn’t take to the street to demolish businesses when things didn’t go their way.

There was often peace in our land.

To me, that is the America Donald J. Trump hopes for us to return to.

Anyone, who does not support him and who clings to the idea that he doesn’t represent them, should listen to his acceptance speech. Give the man a chance. Give America a chance to recover from years of neglect. We all have a job to do. One of them is facing this day and every day with renewed hope and a positive outlook.

President Donald J. Trump’s Acceptance Speech

Political Correctness

My son, who lives in Asia, sent me an audio recording of someone who was speaking her mind. She’s from an Asian country, and I was surprised at how freely she spoke her thoughts.
It used to be that way in my country. Here is my reply to his sending me her audio recording. I won’t put the recording here because I don’t want to read the comments that I’d see, if I did. Used to, Americans could say what they truly thought. Now . . . we bite our tongues so much, it’s a wonder they still function.
To his comments about her refresing lack of PC and my sadness at what my country has done to freedom of speech . . . I told him:
lol! That’s another thing I like about Trump. He says we don’t have time to be PC. I think PC came about to cause people to self censor themselves and to take away our freedom of speech .. . we used to be stronger and able to tolerate insults more . . . “consider the source” was the phrase someone would use when being insulted . . . it didn’t matter . . . the person saying it wasn’t important enough to care about . . . now we all run around screaming “I’m offended!” at everything. Well, guess what . . . who really cares? Let me stop this rant. She sounded like she’d had a drink, but maybe they are more able to say what they want to in Asia than we can over here. We’re not a free country over here. or land of the free; If you try to better your lot in life, you end up shackled by student debt . We now have our artistocrats and anyone else, short of winning the lottery, cannot advance much in life. We are peasants, who have been taught to keep our mouths shut, share what little we have, and try to feel good about it.
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