Tag Archives: Current events

A different kind of prepping

Another Wordy Wednesday for me.

My Pinterest feed has been popping up a lot of “prepping” articles lately, leading me to believe that a lot of people are very pessimistic right now. I understand that. But I think the “preppers” have the wrong end of the stick.

With the passing of RBG, the T-party has embarked on yet another power grab. It’s getting boring.

The US Constitution isn’t worth the paper it’s written on anymore.

Give up protesting, kids, the first amendment** is toast at this point. Also, protesting just gives the T-Party a target, and attention, for reprehensible behavior. But, also…

The real risks right now are fiscal. But don’t panic, prepare.

Vote…and prepare for a depression

Medical expenses are no joke, and medical insurance is not cheap.

The Affordable Car Act is gone, give it up. There is no way to save it. If the Senate flips and Joe Biden is elected president, there might be a new plan, maybe even a better one, but don’t hold your breath. If the senate doesn’t flip, forget it. The Republicans haven’t ever done anything meaningful on health care and they won’t start now.

We all need to take stock of our finances and figure out how to manage without health insurance if you get COVID (or anything else) and cannot work. COBRA insurance costs an arm and a leg, and paying for it may mean some serious sacrifices if you have not accrued some savings before hand.

Remember that POTUS has already signed an executive order that de-funds Medicare and Social Security until the end of the year. The promise to make that permanent means that NOW is the time to get your finances in order, before the payments stop.

Figure out how you will manage without Medicare and Social Security. If you rely on the Affordable Care Act, figure out how you will either manage without health insurance or pay the increased costs.

Spending money stocking up on beans and ammo* may not be the best use for it. A better idea is to make sure to have money on hand. A massive pile of bullets or beans won’t help you pay medical bills…And if you don’t pay those you may wind up on the streets. And those streets are already full of people who went that way before you. The best shopping carts are gone. (That is a reference to an old Dilbert cartoon.)

It also means not borrowing more and paying down any debt you have, maybe giving up on a few luxuries like high price cable, Disney or Netflix.

We went down to one, paid-off, older car a couple of years ago. Savings on insurance alone were big. Maybe you could live in a more modest house…that could save a bundle. I’m putting off things like new carpets (my current one is about 40 years old) and my rummage sale wardrobe is holding up quite well. My husband likely never will finish replacing our fence, but we saved $20 grand over having it done by a contractor, and the dogs aren’t really inclined to roam…

Think through your medical choices and get your will in order

Like the teachers who responsibly made out their wills as they were being forced back to work, we all need to think about how we will manage.

While I plan to keep hiding away in the basement, wearing a mask when I do go out, and generally avoiding people to prevent getting sick (or making others sick), I have already decided that I do not plan to seek any treatment if I do get very sick, from COVID or cancer, or what-ever, in hopes that there will be something left for my son to inherit.

The younger generation is at a tremendous disadvantage: the plethora of jobs created recently are pretty much crap, like serving beer, delivering Amazon packages, and driving Ubers, with low pay and no benefits.

I do sometimes wonder

Will The Economy (as measured by stock indices) eventually reflect what’s going on in our homes?

*Most of the articles on “prepping” are very thinly veiled marketing to get you to spend (waste) a bunch of money so the authors will get rich.

**Second amendment folks shouldn’t get too cocky: they will be next.

Pondering freedom on a smoky day

People were free. They went out into a tinder dry world and set fires, because they were free to set off fireworks and build campfires and no one could tell them what to do.

Now we can’t leave the house, again.

Technically we are “free” to do so, but…

The air is a sickly yellow color. It’s worse than the pandemic restrictions. Before I could take the dogs for a vigorous walk and exercise, now I have to avoid breathing deeply; it’s even unhealthy for my dogs. I got us take out at the local diner last night and spent the evening coughing.

We aren’t free to breath clean air.

Pandemic freedom

USA style

A similar “freedom” phenomenon happened with the pandemic here in the USA. People had to be “free”. They went out and did what they wanted, the virus took hold and people died, and were maimed by the virus.

The people who got sick and died and their families and loved ones had their freedom eliminated by someone else’s freedom; someone who thought that being unable to go out to a bar and party was an outrageous infringement of their rights.

Swedish style

I watched a video about Sweden’s response to the pandemic. It is held up by many as a shining example. But there are actually some key differences between lying about the severity of the virus and pretending it is safe for people to pay no mind to it and what Sweden did.

In Sweden the government told people the truth about the virus and what they could do to stay safe. They requested that everyone do their best to keep the virus under control. AND THEY DID!

They trusted their government and the doctors and did as they advised. They were free to make decisions and made ones that supported the common good.

Uneasy money

I’ve been following the news lately and pondering about “The Economy”. These days The Economy is being treated as a living entity. We are being bullied to do unsafe things for its sake.

The Economy has more respect and right to life than human beings. The USA recently passed 190,000 COVID-19 deaths with no fanfare from the press, or any acknowledgement of that grim milestone of pain from our dear leaders, but plenty of assurances from those same “leaders” that The Economy is healthy.

Pretty, but you can’t buy food or pay rent with it.

What is The Economy?

Continue reading Uneasy money

Another must see for US citizens

I have been in deep depression this weekend. I was already down after the ridiculosity of the TNC* and violence of last week. But I have a college age niece who lives in Portland… The images of Trump supporting, crassly immature, wanna-be real men driving their phallic symbol pickup trucks as they acted out some kind of video-game fantasy by shooting randomly at people (paint balls can hurt people and mace is a weapon) raised my ire.

This clip by John Oliver contains some foul language**, but it puts into words a lot of what I’ve been groping to express.

Continue reading Another must see for US citizens

Random reflections

A gallery of reflections from a trip to Guilin China in May of 2019. Beautiful area, May is rainy season, so there were plenty of reflections, even on the walkways. It is on my list to go back at a different time of year. Alas.

A more philosophical reflection

Answer versus solution

I remember a conversation with my father-in-law where he, a PhD mechanical engineer, expounded on the difference between a solution and an answer. I believe the conversation came up with regard to some, rather esoteric, topic related to computers and their ability to solve problems, numerical integration maybe? it was an awfully long time ago. His point, which was totally correct, was that the computer can give you an answer, but not a solution.

Continue reading Random reflections

What, after all, is the flag?

We’ve been seeing the flag a lot these last few days. It’s gotten me thinking quite a bit.

I pledge allegiance to the flag,
of the United States of America,
and to the Republic for which it stands,
one nation, under God,
with liberty and justice for all.

When I started school, back in the dark ages, we said the Pledge of Allegiance every morning.

Today I see the flag as being abused: used by people who are not paying attention to the point of the flag, as clearly stated in the pledge of allegiance.

Specifically, the flag is a symbol, it stands for our Republic. Our Republic, which is defined by our constitution.

Continue reading What, after all, is the flag?

Another way to vote

I read this morning that POTUS is planning to abuse his privilege, nothing new, but it’s getting to where constant push back is needed if we are going to have a democratic republic, as laid out in the Constitution.

Because the current incumbent of the White House is planning to abuse the White House, by using it as the background for his acceptance speech, I believe that we should all protest by not watching the convention.

Trust me you won’t miss it…its always better to wait for fact checking on anything he says. The ratings being low will send a powerful message. Frankly, the only one he understands.

Another wordy Wednesday

If you aren’t caring about the political situation in the USA this post isn’t for you. I am working on a post of late summer in the garden that should be done soon.

I’m following the Democratic National Convention this week. This is the first time I will have seen it in full. I figured out how to stream it from PBS.

I have also been following the news a bit. I have a major peeve. I am really getting sick of people speaking as if Ms. Obama attacked the current resident of the White House. She spoke calmly, lucidly, eloquently and sincerely. Yet the news describes her speech using the same words that are used to describe tirades by the likes of Tucker Carlson, Laura Ingraham and Janine Pirro. There is simply no comparison. They are not calm, lucid, eloquent or sincere.

I would also point out that if people truly believed that the current incumbent had done a good job then they would not judge her use of his own words to describe his presidency as “it is what it is” as an insult. The real insult was his insult to the citizens of this nation when he chose to use that phrase to speak of what was then over 150,000, and is now over 170,000, deaths due to Covid 19.

While I am at it, because I feel it is a related complaint, I would like to point out that after reading that the current incumbent had gone on about how “mean” Senator Harris was to Brett Kavanaugh and others. I reviewed the videos and she said things like “would you please answer the question?” she was never rude, simply polite but not letting them get away without answering the questions. When one compares this to the rudeness to which Congressman Jordan subjected Dr. Fauci, there is no comparison.

I am getting sick of this miss-characterization of people who are being courteous, calm and reasoned in testimony and debate as comparable to the frothing-at-the-mouth, bat-crap-crazy “conservatives”.