Retirement envy

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It hit me this week that I am having a serious case of retirement envy. I don’t think there is an official diagnosis for this sort of thing, but I have found as I have co-workers retiring or coming up on retirement (one retired this month, one coming at the end of the year, and at least two in the next two years) that I am extremely envious of the life they are entering or going to be entering.

Having turned 50 near the start of the year, it has gotten me thinking about the future and what I want that future to look like. I have heard talk of those who are (or have) retiring that they hit the 30/62 threshold (30 years, age 62) and it made sense for them to step away from the work world. Immediately I have started thinking, “Is that an option for me? Could I really have only 12 years left if done right? Or, am I a 15-17 year person?”

There is, of course, a trade off with retirement. The obvious one is that you are trading age for income, unless you are extremely successful or independently wealthy. To retire earlier, you need money that will support your current lifestyle and last. To retire later, you have to age (get older) to a point where enjoying the retirement years could be jeopardized by the uncertainty of health. There is no perfect answer here.

I am just finding I want the life they are about to get. Envy. The life I would like to lead right now and enjoy seems so far off and I want to be young enough and healthy enough to really enjoy it!

I know I need to set up a meeting with a financial advisor and actually get a better, more complete picture of what needs to be done to make the picture in my head a reality. It is on the agenda for this month. The envy is causing me to get anxious to see what really needs to be done at this point.

Anyone with some experience have some helpful tips or tricks? Advice that would suddenly make the picture more clear and the path forward easier?

Check back

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Yesterday the invasion and subjagation of Ukraine began. The Soviets, er, I mean Russian government is up to it’s old tricks. There was no doubt that it was going to happen. The writing on the wall started well before the last administration. Not to say that the previous administration could have stopped it either, but there shouldn’t have been any surprise that it was only a matter of time.

I listened to Mr. President’s speech and then Q & A after. One thing really stuck out to me.

“Let’s check back in a month and see how the sanctions are working on Russia…” or something to that effect. I can’t remember the exact wording but I was like, “Do you really think the Ukrainian people have a month? This is all going to be over in a month.”

Ukraine is vastly out manned, out gunned, and honestly there are no good options for providing aid to them. We live in a world where the spectre of a nuclear war (if not just a limited, tactical one) hangs over our heads when dealing with Russia or China. But, in this case, Putin is almost sure the Americans will do not much of anything to stop him.

Sanctions aren’t the answer and it can’t be the only answer.

Sanctions take a LONG time to have any effect and almost always it is the people of a country that is harmed by them, not the government or the elite. It’s not like Putin is going to wake up one morning, head to the ATM, and get the “Funds Denied” message so he decides the war with and invasion of Ukraine isn’t worth it. Let’s be real.

I don’t want war, but I am not sure what would convince Putin to stand down. He knows the American people don’t have the stomach for more war (after 20+ years in Afghanistan and the fiasco of a withdrawal there). Most Americans likely will rattle the sabers, talk big, even attend rallies protesting Putin’s actions, but when it comes time to actually get out of their comfort zones and ACTUALLY DO SOMETHING or SACRIFICE SOMETHNG they will balk.

So, we are left with “check back in a month”.

I feel sorry for Ukraine and the lack of action that they really needed from the West to keep it from happening.

I feel sorry for my children and grandchildren as we enter a new Cold War era…

Misplaced blame

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The Sandy Hook and Remington settlement is bad news for gun makers, sets a horrible precedent, and is a total and complete case of misplaced blame by the Left.

Democrats and Progressives have tried to tie gun crimes to guns and gun makers for years and years. In this settlement, they have finally achieved their goal. Demonize the tool and not the criminal. In fact, they have gotten more successful in that direction as a whole.

The Left is decriminalizing all kinds of things that have been crimes in the past because they blame the “system” for failures. This is totally off topic for this post, but of course it isn’t the “system” that has failed – except that they keep making the “system” bigger so the blame could be placed directly in their lap again. Less government, less “system.”

Anyway, the settlement with the gun maker isn’t a solution. The blame should be placed squarely on the individual who committed the crime. The gun (and the gun maker) didn’t commit the crime. The gun is a tool, and when used incorrectly it obviously can have devastating and tragic consequences.

But let’s get realistic though. Are you going to blame a knife and knife maker for a mass stabbing? Are you going to blame a hammer and hammer maker for a mass bludgeoning? A car and car maker for someone who plows through a crowd of people?

You can’t blame the tool or the tool maker. The action comes from the person on the end of the tool causing tool to either fulfill it’s purpose or to misuse it from it’s purpose.

The person is the only person who can take the blame. The person provides the impetus, the motive, the intent, the action. Otherwise, the tool sits there – useless.

The Left needs to think about the true cause of the crime. It isn’t the tool. It’s the person wielding the tool. The heart of the person. The mind of the person. There is the true cause. Until they recognize this and actually do something about making a difference in people’s lives that ACTUALLY makes a difference, they are just addressing the symptom, not the cause.

Stop misplacing the blame and start addressing the heart and mind issues.

On fire

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Anyone else feel like the world is on fire? Like, if you were to stand still for a moment and take a look around “everything” seems to be burning up, falling down, getting destroyed?

Look at the news – crap.

Look at health – crap.

Look at finances – crap.

Look at law and order – crap.

Look at the assault on freedom loving people – crap.

Look at the disregard for the Constitution – crap.

Look at safety – crap.

Look at spending and deficits – crap.

Look at the disintegration of infrastructure – crap.

Look at education – crap.

Look at younger generations – crap.

Look at entertainment (music, movies, tv, etc) – crap.

Look at leadership – crap.

Look at political leadership – totally crap.

Look at exploitation people, the environment, goverment – crap.

Look at the “social justice” being pushed – crap.

Look at the loss of moral ideology, leadership, fortitude, living – crap.

Look at….you name it and it’s probably crap too.

Everything has gone to crap, is on “fire” and any semblance of returning to “normal” is pure fiction. If you believe that anything will “go back to the way it was” you are lying to yourself and to everyone around you. It ain’t. It won’t. The hope of such return is gone.

“The good ol’ days” isn’t really a thing because everything has a different perception of what was “good” so we can’t really hope for something that people can’t agree on.

Anyway, anyone else feel this way? It’s been a bit overwhelming as of late and it really makes one consider moving to some place that has no contact with the outside world.

Theoretical question

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Or questionable theory. Or question and theory. Or I’m insane. Or how many “conspiracies theories” have already come true since March or 2020?

Anyway, can DNA be collected from snot?

How do you collect the DNA of every (or nearly every) living human on the planet?

How do you collect the DNA of people who would normally not willingly give up their DNA?

Theoretical answer?

Virus. Fear. Control. Media. Propaganda. Social “pressure.” More government.

I have no idea what I am talking about, really. I am just sitting here on a slow work day pondering the unponderable. Have you pondered this too?

Weird.

The danger of precedent

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You’re gonna hear about the Supreme Court a lot in the coming days and weeks. They’re hearing a case that could change the course of human events in the U.S. for a long time to come (or not). It really depends on how the court decides the case it heard yesterday, the one about abortion and limiting it.

One of the ways the court makes it’s decisions is based on precedent. Precedent is used to help guide the court in making decisions related to issues of the past. A court obviously can’t really know if a decision they are making in the current day will be used as precedent, but they certainly know in the present when they are using the precedent set by earlier courts.

One of the things about SCOTUS (Supreme Court of the United States) is that it relies heavily on precedents set by previous courts. This is kind of a nod to the fact that those justices have made a correct ruling based on interpretation of the Constitution, intent of the Founders, etc., etc. Therefore, most decisions coming from the court often don’t step on previous decisions and most often don’t overturn precedent.

But, there have been times where that has taken place and it was no small matter.

The best example of a court reversing it’s own precedent (and really the best one to apply now to abortion) is the 1896 case of Plessy vs. Ferguson. The precedent that was set by the court as a result of that case became known as the “separate but equal” doctrine. Essentially it established that, for all intents and purposes, segregation was legal as long as accommodations were equal for both races. Of course, we know the application of that doctrine didn’t really get applied that way and was the basis for all sorts of discriminatory and racist laws. Over and over there challenges to those racist laws and over and over the court upheld decisions in favor of racism simply because the justification was the precedent of Plessy. That precedent would eventually be overturned by a different and later court, which set a new precedent. The 1954 case of Brown vs. The Board of Education turned Plessy on it’s head by deciding in the case that separate was not equal but inherently unequal. Thus, sanctioned and legal racism was stamped out by a future court righting the wrongs of a previous court. There was a new understanding and interpretation and it was decided that the precedent was wrong, so they fixed it and made it right. It took 58 years to make that morally wrong decision, morally right.

Today, some 43 years after the Roe vs. Wade court decision SCOTUS has a chance to right another wrong. A chance to reverse a precedent that has cost millions and millions of human lives – those of unborn children. A chance to stand on what is morally right, saving the lives of babies, instead of standing on what is morally wrong, killing babies. It doesn’t seem like this should be that tough of a decision. But, apparently it is.

Going against public opinion isn’t an easy thing and I am sure it wasn’t that easy in the Brown decision, but it was the right thing to do. Lots of things have changed in 43 years since Roe was decided. Healthcare, medical knowledge, and technology has gotten a lot better in those years, so denying that life starts at conception is backwards as saying the Sun revolves around the Earth.

The arguments from the liberal side of the bench were a little strange yesterday. Sonia Sotomayor is standing on precedent and arguing for maintaining the status quo simple so the court can take on the appearance of legitimacy? Isn’t it less legitimate if it doesn’t correct precedent and right a wrong? To me that seems like a weird argument to make when talking about morally wrong judgements. Can you imagine if the court argued in 1954’s Brown decision that they needed to keep the Plessy precedent to “survive” and remain legitimate?

Anyone else find that strange?

Anyone else care about this topic? What do you think?

Ultimately, precedent can be a positive way to look at pending cases and it can be used as a guide to current issues, but if precedent can’t ever be corrected (despite public opinion) it’s a dangerous thing to stand on.

Proof positive

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Proof positive that Biden’s (and Dem’s) policies don’t work. It’s only taken 10 months for him/them to cripple the economy and all those people who supposedly got a raise in pay are now back to seeing no benefit as that boost is eaten up with higher and higher costs.

What more do you need? What evidence does it take to see that the Dems are actually working against the common man to consolidate power and demand reliance on their benevolence? Proof is in the numbers today. All who voted for the career politician have been duped.

The inflation numbers are being (largely) driven by energy costs. Gas/oil prices are up. Natural gas prices are up. I know this will be hard for some to fathom, but do you think cancelling the Keystone Pipeline isn’t a factor in this? You can bet your ass it is. Yet, the Biden administration didn’t see the impact ahead of what that would do financially to every American’s pocketbook?

We aren’t talking about just a certain industry. This is a cost that affects everyone’s buying power – from food, to goods, to major purchases. If American’s aren’t spending money on things, then that costs business profit. Lost business profit means lost jobs. Lost jobs means even less money to spend. You see how that works right? There’s an endless cycle here. That’s how it works.

Oh, but wait! Less money to spend because of higher costs and lost wages…the expectation is that Americans will turn to the government to make up the difference via handouts and social programs. Those get paid for with higher taxes on those who can afford them. Instead of making/helping Americans become more self-sufficient, it is creating more dependent Americans.

UGH! This is so obvious! How are people not seeing this??

Stop electing people into the government who say the government should solve many or all of our problems.

OK. I guess I am done ranting for now. This probably all doesn’t make sense.

Actually, it probably does make sense to people who can see what is going on…but I can almost guarantee that there are a whole lot of blind people that will deny or ignore what is going on. Pathetic.

Plain and simple.

You reap what you sow.

Hey, kid

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Your momma warned you back in the day. Don’t take candy from strangers, especially the guy that rolls up in a creepy looking van and entices a kid to get in by offering them a piece of candy. You remember that ol’, “Hey, kid, want a piece of candy?” thing, right?

Well, it seems the Democrats in New York essentially have become “that guy in the van.” This is beyond creepy.

Now that the shot is approved for kids 5-11, NY has taken to bribing children to get the shot. Right now, at least according to the article, it can happen at school with parent permission. I can only imagine that when not enough get vaccinated that way the Dems will find a way to remove the parental permission and just let kids decide for themselves. I mean, parental rights have been removed for other healthcare things so why stop for a shot?

Man, this just makes you feel dirty when you think about how the government is going after our kids.

Sure, there is some need for shots and there have been great advances but do you think this is going a little overboard? Actually bribing kids and making it attractive to get a shot when they can’t (in most cases) or won’t even brush their teeth, take a shower, brush their hair, or even wear deodorant?

Oh, but let’s just add one more thing for kids to bully, tease, and harass other students about. I can hear it now…”I got my shot. Did you get yours?”…”So and so doesn’t have the shot! Ewww, you’re do dirty!”…”I bought such and such with my shot money. What did you get?”…

The peer pressure will be immense and you know, without a doubt, that kids will be forging their parents’ names to get the $100.

Sorry, but this is almost criminal when you start thinking of the implications.

Really, really disturbing the Dems have done this route. But maybe I really shouldn’t be surprised, they are already bullying and threatening adults who don’t get the shot, so this is the next logical step.

The slippery slope is no longer a slope.

Remember, remember…

“Remember, remember, the 5th of November…”

Is it weird to celebrate a graphic novel and iconic movie today?

I mean, after all, at one time the dystopian tale of government created viruses, large numbers of deaths, protests, government crackdowns, citizen demands for safety over freedom, increased government surveillance, and finally forced obedience/compliance to a national party/religion seemed like a tale that would never happen in real life. Right? Clearly no one would ever fall into that story or scenario. Right? Has “V for Vendetta” become prophetic?

Well, here we are. I am left thinking that the students I used to show this film to and the way we analyzed it would keep them from doing exactly what I see some of them doing, and actually advocating for the very thing they thought was over-the-top when they watched the film.

How short their memories are…

Maybe we haven’t gotten that far in the U.S., yet. But it may be coming sooner than we think or would like. Maybe they have gotten there in Australia, or New Zealand. It’s weird to watch it on a screen and then watch it from what feels like a world away. Yet, it also feels like we are watching it inch closer and closer in the U.S. Almost as though it is an out-of-body experience. You can watch the events from afar and you can see what is going to happen before it happens, but you can’t do anything about it or you are unable to influence the outcome.

It’s weird, right?

Anyone else see the eerie similarities or is it just me?

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OK, good to know I am not alone in this…

Where’s your line? The government is coming for you and your job. Blind compliance out of fear? Where’s your line? Safety over freedom? What are you begging for? Does the government have to grant it to you? Where’s your line?

Gonna stand up and be counted, or sit down and be quiet?

I’ve decided

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I have decided it is most important for me to protect the dental health of others.

Therefore, I am considering a medical procedure that I hope every other person will also consider. Maybe it should even be government mandated to protect others as well, whether the others have teeth or not.

Anyway, I think if I have all my teeth removed it will keep others from getting cavities. It’s simple, really. If I can’t get cavities, then they shouldn’t be able to get them either.

If we all were to get out teeth removed, well, then no one could get cavities! Gosh, this is such a smart way to ensure dental health and it’s completely practical. It likely would lead to other health improvements too.

Don’t come at me with logic. That doesn’t work these days. It’s practically settled. Besides, logic is overrated. Science says, if you have no teeth, you can’t get cavities. Follow the science.

I can’t wait for this to happen!