Thursday, January 22, 2009

It Is Not 1998 Anymore, Folks!

"Yes, we did produce a near perfect Republic. But will they keep it, or will they, in the enjoyment of plenty, lose the memory of freedom? Material abundance without character is the surest way to destruction."
-Thomas Jefferson

It is hard to believe that Jefferson wrote this to a friend around 200 years ago. They didn't even have a telegraph at the time. And young people wonder how we managed to survive without cell phones and YouTube.

People who know me will say I don't talk much. I'm a better listener than a talker. But when I do have something to say, even if it isn't in the loud melodramatic form of a Baptist preacher on Sunday morning, you had better listen.

I am doing reasonably well. I'm not where I want to be in terms of career options, but I'm working on it. Now if I can only find time to finish that screenplay. I've managed to keep my sanity through this mess plus a recession eight years ago. I've had to draw on my experiences as a kid such as being in the woods, interacting with the wildlife, growing my own vegetables, etc...
I then moved to Halls Crossroads just before I became a teen and moved away from that for a little while.

I've been warning people for years about NOT going along with that sub-prime mortgage nonsense. "But you have to because rates won't get any lower!" If the adjustable rate mortgage (ARM) is already 2%, then it won't get much lower. It will only go up...eventually.

I've been suggesting to people that they should not run up their credit cards because what would happen if you get laid off?
I rarely carry more than $100 balance on it and pay it off in full when it comes due. I've been suggesting when the opportunity presented itself to learn how to ride and care for a horse because even the rich have limits on how much they will pay for gas.

Now if these times don't cause people to wake up, I don't know what will.
I know what the problem is. We've become too damn comfortable!
I understand the convenience motive. But being too comfortable for too long obscures us from the real world. It is a brutal world. People die. People get sick. People get drunk, obese, run over by life in general. If you haven't had problems yet, you will.

I dare you! I dare you to get outside your comfortable little 5,000 square foot house, walk next door and say hello to your neighbor. You have been neighbors for years now, but never as much as say a word to each other. You say you need a new job? Who knows! Your neighbor might be a business owner and is looking for someone with your qualifications.

Job-hunting like it was the 1990's or even the 20th century in general will not work. Resumes are nice. Even a baby knows what they look like. College degrees look nice. If dead people can vote, then they can certainly obtain a college degree. If people don't grow, they die. You have to update and upgrade while at the same time, having a core set of beliefs and values and not wavering on those beliefs and values in the face of unfriendly fire.

I dare you! Maybe you grew up in the ghetto and listen to hip-hop. Back in the day, I was learning to break-dance and wearing that sequined glove and red jacket. I dare you to move out to the country with all those inbreds and rednecks. Maybe you could learn how to set up a garden and ride horses. Your 1970 something car is on the verge of a breakdown anyways.

I dare you! Maybe you are a life-long Republican who would have nothing to do with any other political party. Or you are a loyal Democrat because your parents are and your grand-parents were, and your family were Democrats since the 3rd century and what not. I dare you to at least expand your horizons a little bit.

I dare you to learn a thing or two about languages even if you will never become affluent in it.

Maybe you are an atheist who has something against Bible-believing Christians, Old-Testament believing Jews or even Koran reading Muslims. You never even read the Bible except through the view of other atheists and many of them never read the Bible too. So, I dare you to read it and begin with the Gospels of Matthew, Mark, Luke and John. Not Genesis as most people do. The Bible is something onto itself and must be treated as such. I have read the Koran and I will you tell you, although I am not and won't be a Muslim anytime soon, when Hamas or Bin Laden claim they do what they do because God approves of it, they are liars and blasemers.

The true cause of Muslims anger towards the United States is because of our policies towards them, not because we have strip clubs or because we have skyscrapers. There are skyscrapers in the United Arab Emirates and they aren't flying planes into those. Bin Laden himself was a CIA operative during the Soviet-Afghan war.

Equally people who justify burning lesbians at the stake because that is what God would want; well let those who are without sin cast the first stone. Besides, watching two women kiss each other is not that big of a deal. Then again, I'm a heterosexual guy, so what do you expect? Ultimately, you stand up for what is right and you stick to your core beliefs, but also be humble enough to realize God will be making the final decisions.

I dare you to check out my website.

I dare you to think outside the box. Times like these require people to do just that.

If we do that and it always starts with just a few people, then we can work towards getting ourselves out of this mess and move onto better things. Not necessarily a bigger house or a faster car, but something that brings us closer to the true purpose in life. I don't know. They didn't have social security when Daniel Boone and David Crockett were around. They didn't do too bad. I do have to admit I do like Davy more though. It sounds cooler.

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