Shift Focus From the Little Things

*Federal Budget Discussion Rant*

I’ve been watching for a while and the federal budget discussion is disgusting.  Fox News and MSNBC just keep feeding the rabid idiots with bad information. 

Unfortunately, the vast majority of people and the press are glomming onto line items that don’t matter.  For some reason the politicians have been able to successfully position this debate and make everyone believe that this is about “waste” or “excess” without addressing the reality – it is all broken and it is going to really really hurt to fix it. 

A harsh reality is that the “greatest generation” is to thank for building this country into what it is, and at the same time responsible for the core policies that have brought us to the precipice. 

I haven’t done a good political rant in a while so here is something I hope people start to realize. 

 

1. We can’t balance the federal budget without growth.  Period.  End of discussion.  No mathematician on earth can do it.  We need real growth, not this 1-2% nonsense.  You can’t legislate growth, no matter what politicians tell you.  This is something we all have to fix. 

 

2. We can’t “trim the fat” enough in the federal budget to get it back under control.  It is like believing that you can balance your household budget by cutting out toothpaste and going to cheaper toilet paper.  Both just make it miserable.

 

Ponder this, if we eliminated all foreign aide (less than 1%), all welfare (less than 6%), and the entire Department of Education (less than 4%) we would still be in the hole by about 7% or $245 billion dollars.  Stop worrying about the little things and endlessly going on with this incessant debate.  

Nearly 70% of the TOTAL federal budget goes to three categories; Defense, Medicare/Medicaid, and Social Security.  Defense is the sacred cow of the republican party, Social Security is the sacred cow of the Democrat Party, and no one wants to touch Medicare/Medicaid because seniors all vote.  We absolutely can not fix our long term issues without changing the way these three things are structured.  I don’t ever see that happening without major public pressure to do so. 

Right now there is none because we are all fixated on things like a militaristic shutdown of the National Parks and why we are sending money to Somalia…   

 

The solution for you and I is to stop voting people out of office that compromise.  We the people are to blame for ratcheting up the rhetoric.  Stop negatively labeling politicians as a “RHINO” or “Blue Dog Democrat.”  If there was ever a time in our history we needed some ugly ole fashion behind doors sausage making in Washington DC it is right now.  I’d trade some federal bill filled with horrible .00003% pork spending if it restructured Social Security and made it solvent for my generation.

 

*rant over*

 

Call me when the parks open back up.

A Culture of Surveillance

I watch the news and I read twitter. I love Flipbook. I’d consider myself up on current events. I’m blown away.

I’m scanning the headlines every day and cant help but wonder why more people aren’t people talking about our government monitoring your every move? This is scary. The implications are enormous. If you are part of the “I don’t have anything to hide crowd” you are naively justifying actions that you obviously don’t understand.

They are building a database on every person that eats and breathes. All in the name to “protect you.” Who watches the watchers? They are supposed to work for us after all. “In the name of National Security” shouldn’t be a Carte Blanche excuse to data mine everyone’s very existence.

I guess I shouldn’t be surprised based on what is popular on television. In a strange way did Reality TV pave the way for the societal acceptance of this?

We are quickly deteriorating into a society of surveillance.

This is the absolute top news story in every country but this one and this society of Americans… of “freedom loving people”… is far more concerned with what Katniss will wear in the Next Hunger Games.

Every click on Facebook builds a profile on you, but you choose to use the product. The government taking that data and aggregating it with your life doesn’t provide you with a choice. They are tracking your car at every stop light. They are following your check ins. Sure you aren’t a “target” today… but what if you were unfairly accused some day? What if the politics swing and you end up having a viewpoint that needs to be “watched?” It may seem like I’m wearing a tin foil hat, but its all out there now.

I am at my wits end with frustration with all that is happening. I am flummoxed with the fact that there isn’t outrage from people that should be clearly outraged based on their actual principals.

Instead, I watch as people tow a party line and defend a party and president that doesn’t deserve your support. This feigning love affair with Barak Obama has me utterly baffled. He can get on that podium and people just fall into line.

See… I was under the assumption that liberal people valued the right to choice, privacy, and personal freedom above all else. Oh and you republicans… you supported the Patriot Act in droves back in 2001. Doesn’t feel as good now that the shoe is on the other foot?

I somewhat understand. I used to be far more partisan and defend the wrong ideological decisions based on nothing more than lemming loyalty. Actions people. Watch the actions of those in power. Stop being sheep. Ignorance is not bliss.

We have to collectively stand up to try to stem the tide. This is just the beginning.