Saturday, May 18, 2013

Saturday May 18, 2013...Thoughts of today

Thoughts of May 18, 2013

I get tired of being against things. It leaves you in a negative mood when all you can complain about are things that upset you. I get tired of politicians who were against something all the time. I want to be for something. I want politicians who are for something. I want politicians like Elizabeth Warren and Bernie Sanders who are positive in what they want to do. They will mention some of the things that are wrong but they will also speak of the things that can be done to correct the situation. It seems so many of the Republicans are against anything but you don't hear what they are for. I know that many of the Republicans are against Obama care but I don't hear a positive replacement for that. I know that many of the Republicans are against the EPA and OSHA but they don't spell out how they would replace those entities. They complain about waste and the government and they somehow believe that private enterprise could replace that more efficiently but they offer no example of when that has happened. We've seen the privatization of much of the military, particularly in the support area. But I'm not sure that they received any money by hiring this out to private enterprise and lobbied acquaintances. When we privatize some of our services there is no incentive for that service to be more efficient or cost less in fact just the opposite occurs because the more it costs the more they make. When I was in construction you made more money from the changes to the contract then you made from the original contract. So right now the emphasis is on performing the work through private enterprise instead of public employees which presents a method to reward lackeys. And we very seldom punish our suppliers for not being cost-efficient. In fact they end up making more money correcting the errors that they themselves brought on.

But here I am being negative again and that isn't what I meant to do. I think I am just like the majority of the American citizens who have been waiting now for several years for Congress to act. We want some positive steps taken to help our economy to help our jobs. Instead always gotten delaying actions in and balking against doing anything productive. They want to point fingers at each other instead of moving forward with plans for the future. Meanwhile the average citizen is losing ground. Homes are worth less than they used to be, and jobs are more scarce, education costs more, food costs have risen, health care costs have risen, payee has stagnated and all Congress can do is block each other. Congress seems to be only responding to the wealthy backers. Corporations and banks seem to be controlling our country and the wishes of the citizens are ignored. Even our Democratic president, who talks a good talk, doesn't follow through for the common man. Something will have to change.

Right now politics is controlled by the wealthy and we are offered only those candidates who can obtain monies from the wealthy in order to run their campaign. So our choice is to take their left hand or the right hand with no other option. We lose going in. Now that the wealthy also control the courts and corporations are now recognized by the courts as having personal rights and the ability to pump money into politics we can only look forward to more and more of the same. Meanwhile certain wealthy individuals or organizations control the news media and we only get the filtered news that they wish us to have. Much of the news is biased and opinionated and often controlled by the whims and decisions of the wealthy. Many people still believe that the news as presented on the various channels but they don't know that the news has been selectively chosen for certain desired effect. I'm not sure when the public will wake up discover that we've lost control of our own country.

Every once in a while you have a Bernie Sanders pop-up or an Elizabeth Warren which gives a spark of hope but their voices often get drowned out by the cacophony of the machine politics. Something will have to change and hopefully soon.

Sunday, May 05, 2013

Sunday May 5, 2013...Survivors

 Life Expectancy Age
Calendar period 0 10 20 30 40 50 60 70 80
White males                  
1850 38.3 48 40.1 34 27.9 21.6 15.6 10.2 5.9
1890 42.5 48.45 40.66 34.05 27.37 20.72 14.73 9.35 5.4
1900–1902 48.23 50.59 42.19 34.88 27.74 20.76 14.35 9.03 5.1
1909–1911 50.23 51.32 42.71 34.87 27.43 20.39 13.98 8.83 5.09
1919–1921 56.34 54.15 45.6 37.65 29.86 22.22 15.25 9.51 5.47
1929–1931 59.12 54.96 46.02 37.54 29.22 21.51 14.72 9.2 5.26
1939–1941 62.81 57.03 47.76 38.8 30.03 21.96 15.05 9.42 5.38
1949–1951 66.31 58.98 49.52 40.29 31.17 22.83 15.76 10.07 5.88
1959–1961 67.55 59.78 50.25 40.98 31.73 23.22 16.01 10.29 5.89

So someone born in 1941 could expect to live an average of 63 years.
But if that person survived till age 40 he could expect to live till 70.
At 70 that person can expect to live till about 80.

These later survivability numbers have held fairly consistent over the last century. Once you survived childhood diseases and youth accidents, you had good life expectancy.
This was true when social Security was first established and still true.

It's nice to be a survivor and to hope for a few more good years.

Thursday, May 02, 2013

Thursday May 2, 2013...DOZENS

Today was my son-in-law's 47th birthday. 
I started thinking of “dozens”.
He is approaching his 4th dozen birthday and I'm approaching my 6th dozen birthday.
A person is lucky to get 7 dozen years and some even get 8 dozen, but not too many.

The first dozen years go by slowly as we learn to speak and walk and run and sing and pass through grade school. By the end of my first dozen years I was through 7th grade and through Cub Scouts and ready for high school.

The second dozen years go by more quickly as we pass through high school and have our first love and learn to drive and to work and to share with others. Some of us go on to college while some go into military and others begin to work. Some of us get married and start our families.

The third dozen years find us buying our first home and establishing our work history, raising our kids, finding our path through life. Some of us end up changing our paths with divorce or changing jobs or changing locations. The years are passing much quicker.

The fourth dozen years find us more mature and looked upon more as leaders in our groups. Our children are growing up and finding their way into life. We are starting to look ahead towards our future retirement. Our bodies are starting to give us a little more trouble as we have worn them with little regard for the passing years. The years pass by almost before we realize them.

The fifth dozen years are the winding down years in our professions. Our families have grown and left and we find little room for change at this point in our lives. We are more accepting of the situations we find ourselves in and are contemplating retirement.

The sixth dozen years find us retired and a little less healthy. We have learned much over the years and have much more wisdom than we had earlier, but our opinion carries less weight in the community at large. The past dozen years have brought tremendous technical changes in our world, but we have memories of simpler times and find the modern times a bit bewildering. Where did the years go?
We are still the young people we once were, in our minds, with much more wisdom to share, but our bodies are not keeping up with our mental facilities. We now know that the end approaches and that we won't leave a lasting legacy for the future generations, but we will try to set an example for our children and grandchildren to follow.

The seventh dozen years are mellow years with little expectation and more enjoyment of the simpler joys. We have done our best and have made it this far and now we can enjoy the sunsets and the breezes and not worry about the future we won't see. The present is enough and the years have flown by far too quickly with many unnoticed. The memories are good and those memories that once hurt are now diffused with the glow of years gone by. We remember only the good and have no bitterness for what might have been.

It has been a good life and I enjoyed the experiences. Each dozen had its own flavor and contributed to the mix.