Wednesday, February 11, 2009

Taking back the streets

It was nice out yesterday. The sun shined in the sky melting snow all around. It didn't matter too much to me as I was stuck inside a building all day, unable to enjoy the warm weather.

What I was able to enjoy was the melted snow. I noticed it right away when I turned onto my street and drove down to the corner. It was curb reclamation day! The curbs were back and cars were actually parked next to them. The street was wider and there was plenty of room to drive. No more cars parked 3 feet into the roadway. Well, there is always an idiot or two that won't pull up next to the curb because of the snow that is still there, but most people hugged the side of the road.

I will celebrate that win for now. It is only February afterall. I know there will be more snow. Which is why I again make this offer to the people of Milwaukee. Help pay for the cost of repairing a snow blower and there will be no more snow this season. Murphy's Law will kick in if I get the thing fixed. You may scoff and say it is only a month to go to which I say Fool! We have had snow in April and May before. Step up and give me some cash and I can just about guarantee no more snow this season.

Caught this little gem in BG's shared reading widget. Surprising stories behind 20 muppet characters. Just enough for you to waste some time at work.

One other thing in the web world that caught my eye was over at Go Be Rude. What started as a question about why people are not buying cars turned into observations of the American family. Duggles had some valid points even though he left out government meddling. Even though we were told "politics of fear" are gone, Obama keeps invoking fear with every speech. Catastrophe, economic spiral, destruction. If we don't act now we are doomed! Pelosi wails about 500 million jobs being lost. And Reid, well he is just an buffoon. All of this talk is to spend trillions of dollars on projects that are wasteful and provide no economic stimulus as they claim.

The true effect it is having is freezing the consumer. A politician whines that if we do nothing that jobs will be lost. Americans are stupid. They know that even if this pork package gets passed that they may still lose their jobs because as VP Biden has said, there is a 30% chance it will not work. Thus they are saving. Years ago we were told we are not saving enough. Now saving is a bad thing.

And those that have abused the system by buying houses that could not afford, maxing out credit cards on stuff they didn't need are waiting for the government to bail them out just so they can do it all over again. I see that in the bar every day. People I know that are not working sitting there drinking beer. I do not begrudge them for their drink, but should they be sitting in a bar 5 days a week drinking? They can afford to spend time in a bar which means they are not paying their credit cards or other bills.

Those who have been responsible get little in return. I have paid my taxes and mortgage. What do I get out of this? Little. You want me to buy a car? Give me a deal better than you are giving to anyone financing the deal. I will pay cash. You give me the vehicle at below cost so I can take it off the lot. You get your money, I get a vehicle at a great price. It does nothing sitting on your lot with no one wanting it. That should be my reward.

My opinion isn't that people are not buying, they are just being smarter. I just spent a decent chunk on new furniture. I waited and got a great deal. I couldn't help notice that the store I ended up buying at was pretty busy each time I went in. Those who have been responsible are reaping some of the reward in lower prices. And part of that responsibility was not buying everything in sight as well as buying within our means.

Hell, I would go buy a car if all politicians would just shut the hell up. Every time they speak the stock market tanks and I lose money. Money that could have been used to buy a car.

Now the amusing part of Duggle's post was how it turned into a critique of the American family and values in the comments. Whose fault is it that families are not like the Cleavers or the Huxtables? Could it be the parents? WE HAVE A WINNER!

Maybe it is the Midwest or the people I know. I can think of two close friends with 2 kids a piece. They spend time with their children. They don't dismiss them to the television or video games. They are involved with the education and make sure they are respectful of teachers and their elders. They are not giving their kids video games because Billy down the street has one. They are not living beyond their means to keep up with the Joneses. They know how to say NO.

Saying NO. That ain't too difficult, is it?


AletaR said...


Drizztdj said...

The learning word "no" should be the first lesson any parent gives to their kid.

The second one should be how to use the freakin toilet by themselves.