Thursday, February 4, 2010

Give me a Break

I don't know about you, but when I hear the mainstream media use the term "unexpectedly" to describe yet another bad jobs report or a weaker than hoped for economic indicator, I don't know whether to laugh or punch a hole in the wall. I mean it must be obvious to all but the most detached of us that we are in a bad way. It is hard to buy into this "recovery" when most of us know people who are in very dire straits. Well, it must be getting better somewhere else right? I don't see it. The jobs report for Jan. is expected to be bad, and if you follow various sources such as Mish or Drudge, there are lots of lay-offs announced for the near future. But people are going back to work right? Doesn't seem like it when first time claims are up, continuing claims are up and morale is down. Foreclosures-up. Home sales-down. Instead of planning for the future, many are hanging on for dear life.

What can we do? Well first, you can either be the sort that looks to the government for help, or you can determine to help yourself. If you have decided to curl up in ball and wait for the government to come to your aid, you do yourself and me a disservice. Hopefully that mindset is not contagious. If on the other hand you are determined to help yourself, you have to realize that despite your best efforts you may still need help. We all need help sometimes and there is no shame in it.

Problem is, I see more and more people unwilling to try. I know people who will accept food stamps but will not sacrifice cable. Maybe they're on Medicaid and still paying for a cell phone with an unlimited data plan. Good grief what has happened to us? I am not even advocating real suffering. How about this: If you expect me to get up and go to work each day to help support you, how about using coupons at the grocery store. Maybe actually take care of yourself so you have less need of medical care. How about realizing that although there is nothing wrong with accepting help, your goal should be to take care of yourself. Food stamps, medicaid and these giant tax returns that end up being spent on t.v.s instead of necessities don't come without a price. How about a little humility instead to the attitude of entitlement that is becoming more and more common?

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