Friday, February 22, 2013

Conservatives are Soooooo Superior.... and You're Not!

I'm perfect in every way.. and YOU are just a of those "takers"!

Ducks in a Row (from Sophyta's blog)

Sparring with right wingers may not be the best use of my time ...  I hear many of the same things over and over again.  But there are just a few different tenets underlying right-wing (usually conservative and/or Republican) thinking.  Here is one of the biggies:  

  • If "those people" just "worked harder", "planned ahead", or "made good choices", then they wouldn't need any kind of assistance/would have enough saved for retirement/wouldn't be poor/wouldn't be sick...on and on, bla bla bla, whatever.

But really people.. are we all so superior and so sure of ourselves? 

Look, I KNOW families who THOUGHT they had all their retirement ducks in a row by the time they were 50 who wound up in difficult financial straits or foreclosure.. One guy I know was even homeless for awhile.  This happened to one family I know BEFORE the economic collapse of 2008.

Here are the kinds of things that can happen (even without an economic collapse thrown in) that can cause hardship for people who DID plan ahead, who DID save enough, who DID work hard, who DID get an education.  Few of us are immune from or have enough insurance of varying types to weather these storms... unless we have very wealthy families behind us.

1.  After a job layoff after 50, a man invested some of his money into a business and lived off of the spouse's salary... The business went bad and the company the spouse worked for went belly up a few years later.  (I'm tired of reading that people who are laid off should "start their own businesses".  If the person can do it, fine, but businesses generally require capital and MOST businesses go belly up in the first two years... taking that needed nest egg with them.)
2.  A late in life divorce.. Splitting assets when you are 50 doesn't help your financial situation at all.  But if your spouse has started to wig out in terms of drinking, gambling, perhaps not working, being abusive, chasing other men/women-- and refuses to get help.. what are you supposed to do?   
3.  Health problems in one or the other partner or one of the kids; that is, serious physical or mental health problems.  I know families who spent sums in the tens of thousands of dollars, perhaps as much as a hundred thousand, trying to get a teenaged or young adult kid straightened out... Special schools, rehab facilities, kiddie prisons, you name it.  Physical diseases can be just as taxing and as expensive. 
4.  Disability in the primary worker.  After an accident or a disease, he/she may be tossed out of his job or simply can't work.  It takes two years for disability (SSDI) to go through these days and, IF and when you finally get disability, those $1400 payments (if you are lucky to get that much) don't go far.
5.  A natural disaster in your home.  Anyone who thinks that adequate insurance, FEMA, and flood insurance will put everything back in order hasn't lived through a massive natural disaster.  And you may not know this:  You can move into a house that is NOT in a flood zone.. and find out some years later that your home has been reclassified into a flood zone!  Oh, happy day!
6.  Having kids late in life.  If you have kids in your 30's, they aren't out of the house until you are in your 50's.  Many people plan on working for 10-15 years after the kids are gone to refeather the retirement nest.  And then.. health problems, a lost job, a lost business.  And there they are, 62, no job, no retirement savings.  

There But For the Grace of God...

If one of these things hasn't happened to someone before they retire, Republican or Democrat, conservative or liberal, they need to get down on their knees and thank the Lord, the Great Spirit, or the Goddess Athena herself.

And I know really know families who have somehow been saddled with MANY of these situations, particularly in this Great Recession.

And If You Lack Compassion..

Now to those characters who simply lack compassion, empathy, common sense or all three:  I hate to wish a calamity on anyone...  But if you have ever bragged about how superior you are to someone who needs help...  I DO wish a calamity upon you.  May an uninsured rusty pick up truck cross your path...leaving you with no time to jump out of the way.
More...Just as I was writing this, I came upon this link from  Four Things Politicians Will Never Understand About Poor People.  I personally believe that this is a much bigger problem on the Republican side of the aisle (because I do NOT believe that "Both parties are the same"), but I do agree that many people who have never themselves experienced hardship have a hard time really understanding what it is like to sit on your fence (because you couldn't get the gate open fast enough) and beg the electric company to not turn off your electricity because you had gone down there the day before with a deposit (that you borrowed from a relative) and made a payment plan.  
And I wrote this last year, profiles of several families and people that I know who are struggling:  What Is Unemployment and Poverty in America?  Now, some of the people profiled in that series have improved their situations, but many are still struggling.  


  1. When I first ran across this site I actually believed that you were trying to be fair, but after commenting a few times on some of your articles and reading your responses, I see that you are just being divisive.

    Maybe you don't even realize how your anti conservative anger comes out in your comments.

    You start this article out deriding Republicans and conservatives and telling your readers that they are heartless without compassion, and then conclude the article wishing calamity upon them ...... now how professional is that?

    How pathetic. When one is unable to see the other perspective, nonsense like this sounds so good that one takes the time to write it down and share it with others of like mind. To think that conservatives have no heart or compassion is foolish at best, ignorant at worst.

    People that lean left ignore the fact that money is real, and every entitlement has to be paid by somebody either now, or in the future like the Obama mentality, Paid for by your grand children and great grand children. That 7 trillion in new debt he's racked up already in only 4 1/2 years is real money. So when conservatives think about helping those in need we tend to balance it with the reality that help is real money that we don't have and so are more selective about who we can help and what amount of aid we can endow. Progressive minded people pretend that care and help and aid for those less fortunate comes down like manna from heaven.

    So having this superior attitude (if you don't mind me turning your words against you) that liberals are so caring and conservatives are so selfish, is nonsense and ignores the reality of debt.

    We care, we don't want people starving in the streets, losing their homes, but we are realists and if you have a late life divorce, as you say, sorry, life sucks, but we don't have the money to bail you out of a poor choice you made in a spouse many years ago.

    1. "We care, we don't want people starving in the streets, losing their homes, but we are realists and if you have a late life divorce, as you say, sorry, life sucks, but we don't have the money to bail you out of a poor choice you made in a spouse many years ago."

      Actually, look at the people that you vote into do not care for starving people, people losing their homes....etc. You don't even take the compassionate view of a Christian (follower of Christs teachings) doesn't matter, helping people does. Money is a tool for helping others. Not for Guns, Wars, Bailing out banks, subsidizing oil companies...or whatever you compassionate christians are into this week....oh yeah, a govt shutdown which only hurts everybody because you don't want poor people to have access to healthcare. Wow.

    2. Thank you, Mark. Truth Guy, sorry that I haven't yet replied to you. Don't worry; I will.

  2. Both parties are the same. They talk a lot, but in the end accomplish nothing. I'm a liberal too, but the Democrats are run by the same people as the Republicans, friend. Vote third party.

    1. If you really and truly think that both parties are the same, you have your head in a deep, dark hole. Open your eyes and look at the world around you. A vote for a third party, a left-leaning third party, like the greenies or Nader back in 2000, is a vote for the Republicans.


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