Stodghill Says So

An opinionated posting on a variety of subjects by a former newspaper reporter and columnist whose daily column was named best in Indiana by UPI. The Blog title is that used in his high school sports predictions for the Muncie Evening Press.

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Location: Cuyahoga Falls, Ohio, United States

At the age of 18 I was a 4th Infantry Division rifleman in the invasion of Normandy, then later was called back for the Korean War. Put in a couple of years as a Pinkerton detective. Much of my life was spent as a newspaper reporter, sports writer and daily columnist. Published three books on high school sports in Ohio and Indiana. I write mystery fiction for Alfred Hitchcock Mystery Magazine and others. Three books, Normandy 1944 - A Young Rifleman's War, The Hoosier Hot Shots, and From Devout Catholic to Communist Agitator are now available from Amazon, Barnes & Noble and other booksellers. So are four collections of short mysteries: Jack Eddy Stories Volumes 1 and 2, Midland Murders, and The Rough Old Stuff From Mike Shayne Mystery Magazine.

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Thursday, May 08, 2008

We Brought it on Ourselves

It's a mess out there and we let it happen. We had to do it our way and it wasn't the right way. We had to have our big SUVs and our gas-hungry pickup trucks. We had to have our boats and our all-terrain vehicles. We had to hop in the car to drive two blocks for a bag of potato chips. We had to have houses we couldn't afford, big houses with more room than we needed. We had to have a power mower and a snowblower and that meant driving to a gym to work out because we weren't getting enough exercise.
Yes, we were the guy on the TV commercial who says, "I want it all and I want it now."
So we got it all. We got payday lenders with exorbitant rates of interest because the money runs out too soon. We got huge credit card balances because we couldn't wait until we had the money to buy a new carpet or a big-screen TV. We got foreclosures because we wanted that big house in the suburbs but wouldn't take time to read the fine print. We got high gasoline prices, although they are far lower than you find in many countries. And we got fat because we no longer could afford to go to the gym after using our labor-saving devices.
We got a war costing billions of dollars a week and trillions of dollars of debt to foreign countries because we voted for people who believe such things are fine. We got free trade from the same people so we can buy our clothes from China or Bangladesh and our electronic devices from Japan, China and God only knows where else. We got high unemployment because we didn't complain when our lawmakers gave tax breaks to companies that ship jobs overseas. We got those lawmakers because we didn't pay attention and didn't bother to vote.
Yes, we got it all and now the chickens have come home to roost. The same chickens that Herbert Hoover said would be in every pot along with two cars in every garage if he got elected. He did, and soon people were saying they didn't have a car, didn't have a garage and didn't have a pot to put the chicken in - if they had a chicken.
We learned a lot from that, though. We learned not to buy something until we had the money to pay for it. We learned to lay a little money aside every week, even if it was small change. We knew enough to live in houses we could pay for. We knew how to push a lawnmower and shovel snow and didn't need a gym to stay fit.
But years went by and all that was forgotten in favor of something called instant gratification. Now we aren't as gratified as we expected to be so we got one more thing, stress.
So indeed we got it all. We have only to look in a mirror to learn who is to blame.
This was to be about transportation but in keeping with the times I got something. I got sidetracked.


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