How are you all holding up with the economy crashing down around you?
While Wall Street takes another 300 point dive and everyone is jumping on the "money-saving tips" bandwagon, I'm sitting in my studio apartment (which houses 2 adults and a cat), typing away on a refurbished (read: cheapy cheap) laptop, with a dinner of Indian dal and garbanzo beans (cooked from dry beans) waiting to get started on the stove.
We have one car. I walk or ride my bike most of the time, and avoid going out unnecessary places, to save the gas cost. We eat vegetarian meals at least once a week, and I usually don't even eat meals by myself at home outside of vegetables, noodles and rice. I shop at Aldi and Wal-Mart and thrift stores. I turn off lights, we don't go out to eat and I only do laundry once a week (if that). I don't think I could save more money if I tried!
Yet, I'm not asking the government for anything in the way of a handout.
As an unemployed person, I could easily qualify for welfare or at least unemployment benefits. I could even go to food pantries and demand they give me a box of canned items. For all intents and purposes, I'm a regular person who happens to be out of work. Now add my debts and student loans into the picture, and the fact that Michigan's high unemployment rate means I'm probably not likely to find a job soon, and I'm a prime candidate for government assistance.
Yet, all I want is for them to make more jobs so that I could get one!
I don't understand why Democrats feel the need to make every low income person beholden to the government. I don't understand why they want people to be on assistance. It seems to come from a position of condescension, that we low income folks just don't know how to take care of ourselves.
But I do know how to take care of myself. When I had a job, I paid bills on time, paid down debt, took care of my health, ate better and generally didn't feel obligated to agree with my government because, though I enjoy certain freedoms upheld by them, I was not reliant on them for my daily functioning. I felt free to criticize or agree with whatever policies fit my worldview.
However, how would my views have been different if I was being sustained by the government? Would I feel like I owed them my allegiance? My blog posts? My voice? My vote? Would I feel like I must defend all policies, whether or not I agreed with them personally? Would I feel as though I must check in with the party line before I decided which companies to shop at, where to live or what to do in my spare time?
Perhaps these are some reasons our government now is pushing to have financial control over more Americans. Big government already owns big banks and mortgages- which means your savings and your house. This creates a culture of fear; if we dare to speak out against the policies of our administration, our homes, money and livelihood may suffer the consequences.
I don't want to live in a totalitarian state. I want America to stay free, so that I can simply work and live and participate in politics like our Constitution encourages us and upholds our right to.