Greetings from the "Heartland"

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MaureenyB
Posts: 3
Joined: Sat Feb 19, 2011 9:55 am

Greetings from the "Heartland"

Postby MaureenyB » Sat Feb 19, 2011 10:15 am

Hi All,
My son Ben who is a Marine Officer serving in Afghanistan currently introduced me to John's work and Generational Dynamics a few years back.
I've been neglectful of the site with so much going on in my life but as worker rights are being attacked in our state (Wisconsin is just a few steps ahead of us) and as teachers like me, police, fireman, all other public servants are being targeted with SB 5 I'm feeling the old siren call of GD to explain and understand it all.I have been vigilant about following the general advice to save, avoid stocks, be very lean financially but I'm wondering if I should sell my unpaid off condo and rent. I would love any insight on the current attacks on public workers- seems obvious...Union members have traditionally supported the Dems and since the corporate minions lost the presidential election they are now picking off the states one by one and destroying their main political opposition. Sorry to sound apocalyptic folks but losing 3/4s of my salary, pension and health insurance in one stroke of a crazy governor's pen gets your attention fast.
Thanks for listening if anyone is out there..
Maureen

John
Posts: 8417
Joined: Sat Sep 20, 2008 12:10 pm
Location: Cambridge, MA USA
Contact:

Re: Greetings from the "Heartland"

Postby John » Sun Feb 20, 2011 9:39 am

Dear Maureen,

MaureenyB wrote:> My son Ben who is a Marine Officer serving in Afghanistan
> currently introduced me to John's work and Generational Dynamics a
> few years back.

> I've been neglectful of the site with so much going on in my life
> but as worker rights are being attacked in our state (Wisconsin is
> just a few steps ahead of us) and as teachers like me, police,
> fireman, all other public servants are being targeted with SB 5
> I'm feeling the old siren call of GD to explain and understand it
> all.I have been vigilant about following the general advice to
> save, avoid stocks, be very lean financially but I'm wondering if
> I should sell my unpaid off condo and rent. I would love any
> insight on the current attacks on public workers- seems
> obvious...Union members have traditionally supported the Dems and
> since the corporate minions lost the presidential election they
> are now picking off the states one by one and destroying their
> main political opposition. Sorry to sound apocalyptic folks but
> losing 3/4s of my salary, pension and health insurance in one
> stroke of a crazy governor's pen gets your attention fast.


Welcome to the forum!

My personal view is that unions, particularly public sector unions,
have become too powerful.

The process problem is that a Democratic administration can get votes
in exchange for permanent government commitments for salary and
benefits. That's an archetypical example of collusion and conflict of
interest. This means that the process has to change some how, and
that's the issue in Wisconsin, especially as the state cannot
otherwise escape deep structural debt.

More broadly, as the crisis deepens, nobody can count on much of
anything. Pension funds, social security, medicare, etc., are all
headed for bankruptcy, and the goings-on in Washington are making
things even worse. Many contracts, including union and business
contracts, will be abrogated because there's no choice.

You can't assume that you'll have a job, or that you'll have anything
like your current salary if you do have a job, or that any of the
services that you count on will still be available. You have to
prepare yourself and your family to depend on your own resources.

Here's a story I've posted a couple of times before, and worth
repeating now, about a remark by one of my school teachers in the
1950s. Her name was Miss Shepherd, and she had a wooden leg -- I
assume she lost her leg in the war, but I don't know. One day out of
the blue she said, "People think that if you have a job as a
schoolteacher, then your job is safe, because they always need
schoolteachers. But that isn't what happened in the 1930s. They
would put two or three classes together in a single room, and replace
three teachers with just one teacher." That's all I remember, except
that she was very emotional when she said it -- a combination of anger
and sadness.

So when your son Ben referred you to GenerationalDynamics.com, he
possibly wanted to warn you that you need to prepare.

John

MaureenyB
Posts: 3
Joined: Sat Feb 19, 2011 9:55 am

Re: Greetings from the "Heartland"

Postby MaureenyB » Fri Mar 25, 2011 10:56 am

Hi John,
Not the reply I wanted but likely the reply I needed to hear. I'm still going to fight for teacher rights and a great strong public school system which has been an essential ingredient of a strong healthy democracy in our country. Your assertion that the Dems are in an archetypical example of collusion and conflict of interest is equally so for the Republican governors who are giving payback to their uberwealthy corporate financers, no? And aren't there other ways to more fairly deal with the deep structural debt like taxing the higher income groups and eliminating all the loopholes in our tax system?

Still, your wooden legged teacher story touched my heart and I'm doing all I can to prepare for the worst case scenario..no job...no reliable supplies...energy..fuel, etc. Ben will back from Afghanistan in May (if all goes well) and we're going to sit down with his younger brother and make a plan.
He thinks I should pull my money out of the pension fund here in Ohio too but I'm not sure about that...but everything is on the table.

Thank you for your important work although I'm sure you feel like you're playing a Cassandra role at times.
Best Wishes,
Maureen Rose Baker

John
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Joined: Sat Sep 20, 2008 12:10 pm
Location: Cambridge, MA USA
Contact:

Re: Greetings from the "Heartland"

Postby John » Fri Mar 25, 2011 1:06 pm

Dear Maureen,

MaureenyB wrote:> Your assertion that the Dems are in an archetypical example of
> collusion and conflict of interest is equally so for the
> Republican governors who are giving payback to their uberwealthy
> corporate financers, no?


The norm today, for Republicans and Democrats, is corruption, lying,
and screwing other people for your own benefit. It's a generational
thing, not an ideological thing.

MaureenyB wrote:> And aren't there other ways to more fairly deal with the deep
> structural debt like taxing the higher income groups and
> eliminating all the loopholes in our tax system?


No. It's way to late for that.

John

Marshall Kane
Posts: 37
Joined: Tue Oct 21, 2008 11:53 pm

Re: Greetings from the "Heartland"

Postby Marshall Kane » Fri Mar 25, 2011 10:02 pm

"conflict of interest is equally so for the Republican governors who are giving payback to their uberwealthy corporate financers, no?"

Uberwealthy corporate financers like Bill Gates, Warren Buffett, George Soros ... just to name a few of the wealthiest Americans, who also happen to be Democrats?

Some relevant data:

Bloomberg News http://www.bloomberg.com/news/2010-04-21/democratic-party-helped-by-wall-street-outraising-republicans.html reported last year:

Wall Street helped give a fundraising edge to Democratic committees and candidates. Employees in the securities and investment industry made $34.3 million in donations last year, about the same as in 2007, with 62 percent going to Democrats, the party’s largest share in a non-election year in the 20 years of data compiled by the Center for Responsive Politics, a Washington-based research group.


Here is a useful list of the top campaign donors from 1989-2010 (this include businesses, interest groups, unions, etc.): http://www.opensecrets.org/orgs/list.php?type=A

The nefarious Koch Brothers are actually 84th on the list, with about 11 million dollars going to mostly Republicans. Meanwhile, among the top 20 donors, only one leaned Republican. Each of those in top 20 gave $25-50 million to Democrats.

Also, 12 of the top 20 are unions, who gave mostly to Democrats. For example:
- National Education Association provided 93% of $32 million in contributions to Democrats
- American Federation of Teachers gave 98% of $29 million in contributions to Democrats.

Teachers don't seem to care that only about 35% of the population identify as Democrat. As a Republican taxpayer, why should MY tax money (remember, teachers are paid by taxpayers) be spent by public employee unions on partisan activities that undermine my values? If a big corporation is involved in political activities that I find objectionable at least I have the power to choose not to buy their products. When it comes to public unions, I have no such option.

Also, corporations have no loyalty to either party - and they certainly do not have a passion for the free market. They support whoever will serve their interest. In fact, corporations love big government. A huge established business is all in favor of regulations, since they squeeze out competitors who can't afford the expense of "going green" or whatnot. Also, they're all for big spending politicians who hand out subsidies, etc.

This whole notion that Republicans are somehow lackeys in the service of shadowy corporations is a tiresome, cartoonish view of reality. Look, I generally disagree with Democrats, but I do believe that most of them support unions because of a sincere belief in worker's rights. As a conservative I have a genuine philosophical difference on the role of government and the nature of rights. Its impossible to have a productive discussion on the issues when we assign nefarious motives to the other side.

MaureenyB
Posts: 3
Joined: Sat Feb 19, 2011 9:55 am

Re: Greetings from the "Heartland"

Postby MaureenyB » Sat Mar 26, 2011 3:41 pm

Well gentlemen...interesting food for thought and the vitriol directed at teachers is a popular theme song in some circles right now...though where I live most of my fellow teachers are republican and/or conservative so they are feeling particularly betrayed by our new governor. Oh and by the way my own tax money goes to support the public school where I teach so let's not pretend that public workers don't pay into the tax funds that support their positions.

As to whether assigning nefarious motives rarely gets us anywhere I would suggest their are times in history when we needed to do that much more!

I would like to understand the overall outlook of the GD philosophy as it relates to our discussion and more rather than float around in any "tiresome, cartoonish view of reality."

So John, is the Generational Dynamics position that we are totally screwed and can't do a thing about it? Just wait for the next spin of the generational wheel and try to focus on personal survival for ourselves and our near and dear?

Is there no faith in the human race to evolve and overcome our current disasters?

faarizamar
Posts: 1
Joined: Mon Jan 12, 2015 12:42 pm

Re: Greetings from the "Heartland"

Postby faarizamar » Mon Jan 12, 2015 12:55 pm

I always appreciate any military commentary,
wasi

WritingDuke
Posts: 4
Joined: Thu Aug 27, 2015 9:24 am

Re: Greetings from the "Heartland"

Postby WritingDuke » Tue Sep 01, 2015 12:34 pm

Hey all,

New member her, looking forward to meaningful discussions to learn more.

John
Posts: 8417
Joined: Sat Sep 20, 2008 12:10 pm
Location: Cambridge, MA USA
Contact:

Re: Greetings from the "Heartland"

Postby John » Tue Sep 01, 2015 1:31 pm

WritingDuke wrote:> Hey all,

> New member here, looking forward to meaningful discussions to learn
> more.


Welcome to the forum.

The best places are the "Financial Topics" under "Finance and
Investments," or any of the threads associated with the daily World
View columns, under "Weblog News Comments and Discussion".

JohnARenick
Posts: 1
Joined: Thu Sep 03, 2015 7:43 pm

Re: Greetings from the "Heartland"

Postby JohnARenick » Thu Sep 03, 2015 7:56 pm

I am a retired teacher, at both secondary and college levels, in several disciplines, and always interested (to the extent I have time) in discussion on significant topics.


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