Monday, April 29, 2013

Set aside $50 a month?

There are many people in the residential homes that I serve (volunteer free medical care) where my patients don't have the money to pay rent each month AND buy medications and food. They can't get "luxuries" such as Internet access much less a MacBook Pro to see such news stories. Instead the basic cable here has commercial after commercial of such "loans." That's why the basic cable is free. One woman gets a total of $735/per month of social security from her own account and her deceased husband's SS ALTOGETHER. Own a car? No way. Yet these residential homes are not built on mass transportation lines (buses, Metro, subway) and must depend on kindness of strangers or sometimes if VERY lucky a family member may visit once every month or so.

Most people have absolutely NO idea what day to day existence is like for the majority of our elderly or disabled. I have a 63 year old patient with cerebral palsy who does not have the money to even communicate with her caretakers much less other people. She is bound forever to a wheelchair and a caretaker...and inside is an intelligent woman. But only a Stephen Hawking has the money for assistive computer devices to even say "I'm hungry" much less give talks on black holes.

Gees People! Go out into the community and see what I do! We are warehousing our elderly and disabled and finding new ways to make money every day!

Monday, October 29, 2012

The gold standard or free money

The FACTS are that the American public is going to be shocked in the near future when reality hits and the number of homes waiting to be foreclosed upon actually start flooding the market. There is a "shadow inventory" of homes that have not even entered the foreclosure process that is astounding. It is significantly greater than you can even imagine. This rebound will not last and I predict that after the November elections (regardless of who wins) we will see a tremendous real estate crash unless ALL political parties get to work to address this issue. As the housing market goes - so goes the economy. And for the record, it doesn’t matter if interest rates sink to 0%. Banks are unwilling, for the most part, to free money to anyone unless you have absolutely perfect credit. There are few people that fit this criterion. Hence the reason that cash is king in this economy and most Sellers choose cash offers because they know they can actually finalize and close on a real estate transaction.
The housing bubble occurred in part because people were buying property they couldn't afford, but it didn't matter because they could always sell it, for more free money if they had to.
But people don't just buy homes for speculation. They buy them as places to live. Being able to afford a home that costs $1 million, or $750,000 means paying a mortgage that costs tens of thousands of dollars a month.
If you can afford it, great. But jobs have been disappearing from the US. Well paying jobs with some security are disappearing.
Rising housing prices, with a middle class that's being reduced, losing wages and moving backwards financially, doesn't go together. There aren't enough people making free money to support all the expensive housing out there.

Tuesday, October 16, 2012

It's time for a simpler lifestyle

The big banks tend to be those behind the federal reserve and use it to limit or destroy the smaller banks. just look at the recent crisis. Many smaller banks went under ( or were forced out or absorbed by the larger banks ).
This is how the large banks retain their power. A fed driven crisis every so often thins the herd of the competition and favors the large banks.
Being worried about this happening without the Fed is incongruent as this already happens now.
often what is needed is a severe pull in the opposite direction for a correction to happen and find the proper balance in the middle certainly there is more work to be done on Ron Pauls ideas.., but without using them as a starting point, true reform will never happen.
It returns the control of the economy to the people and banks may once again become an actual place to hold real, as apposed to virtual, money. Plastic cards could be account cards where funds of gold or silver are verified by the bank.
Banks would be trimmed back to their original purpose instead of as mini Fed creating money out of thin air. Credit might be tight for a while and the strength of the dollar would force a stop to the race to the bottom currency devaluation current currency war. Confusion would be global for a while until all central banks were inline or eliminated with people choosing real money instead of paper virtual money. Interest rates would be set by market demand which would more than likely increase substantially benefiting savers and penalizing speculators. This bill alone would turn thing upside down which is what is needed..

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Saturday, September 29, 2012

It's a very hard lifestyle

I am a Ron Paul supporter, but I also think that Ron Paul's explanation of the banking system is somewhat lacking in certain areas. There is no question that his critique of the cronyism between banks and governments is spot on, but he sometimes fails to explain the mechanics of the current banking system that creates the instability and inflation. The fact is that FRACTIONAL RESERVE BANKING is the real culprit for inflation and business cycles. However, Ron Paul chooses to direct most of his criticisms toward the Federal Reserve. In a way the Fed is more of a symbol of the current banking system than anything else. What people need to realize is that the only sound and honest banking model is a free money model. What we need to recognize is the difference between deposit banking and loan banking. Ideally, deposit banking is a service that banks can provide by charging a "warehousing" fee to its customers for the service of keeping their money safe and secure. Loan banking on the other hand is a system where customers willingly send their surplus capital to bank financiers so that they can lend it to other productive sectors of the economy. While this may not be what modern day bankers want to hear, it is exactly what needs to be addressed in order for us to get back on the path to prosperity......

Friday, July 20, 2012

Money is the problem.

I was raised on welfare. Knowing the basic necessities of life were being provided for allowed for exploring and learning about many other things unrelated to money. One thing I learned is that it's not the increase in money that reduces stress, but the assurance I will always have enough to meet necessities that does the trick.
Those who think that making more money means more work are missing the point. This is clearly a hypothetical question - AKA a "thought experiment". Imagine that you got a 100% raise tomorrow, while doing exactly the same job you do now. Would you be happier?
I'm sure I'd be happier tomorrow. I'd probably be happier in one month. But next year, on in ten years? I would have adjusted to my new income and lifestyle, would find new things to worry about, and would be just about as happy as I started.
The point about reaching more happiness through experiences than through "stuff" is important, and it makes me sad that our society is biased against it. I would happily take a 25% "reduction" in salary in exchange for three months more of vacation time. Time I could spend travelling, being with family and friends, learning, practicing hobbies... But very few employers will offer you such a deal. They don't want to deal with employees being away for a long time because it breaks the "flow" of business.
OK, three months may be taking it a bit far, but many companies in Europe (where people are often happier) practically shut down for at least a month during the summer, while everyone takes a month-long vacation. I remember being told when I lived and worked in Switzerland that I was "required" to take at least half of my annual vacation time in one chunk. They said they wanted to ensure you actually relaxed, instead of taking one day off every other week all year long! 

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Saturday, June 30, 2012

Don't let facts stand in your way

What a terrible waste of money in a world where many Americans live below the poverty rate.
Why are our political elections dominated by advertisement rather than straightforward campaigning - why do we put stock in these stupid television adverts that demonize the opponent? Why don't Americans just focus on the issues? I want to be part of a populace that votes based on real information rather than propaganda. Makes me not want to vote at all - but I can't be that ignorant.
If we the people want to displace big money donors from politics, we the people will have to replace that money with our own.
If we the people want to save our democracy from the new brutality of the Citizen's United debacle, we the people must consistently participate in our politics and stop hiring politicians to do it for us.
If we the people want to rule ourselves, we the people must pay attention to what's going on and show up at the polls on E Day.
If we the people fail to do this, then they the economic dictators will, from their private salons, be our rulers.
I always find it disgusting that money plays such a big role in campaigns. The one with the richest friends wins. Does that make sense? And it seems to favor big business interests, too.
Let's elect people on the basis of platform and past history. And, while we're at it, let's make it a law that candidates have to write their own speeches.
My $40 donation to the democrats times 1 million other donations is around $40 million. No small number, yet peanuts compared to the Koch brothers $200 million.( I plan to give more over the summer) In the end, the three of us each have one vote. Yes, $200 million can influence more people, but, that is when our citizenship comes into play. Each of us has a responsibilty to read, investigate, and listen to all of the candidates in order to make an informed decision.
I take time every day to read the papers, look for information online, and watch "news" reports. Most poeple don't have that time available, I make the time. It is important in todays political and economic climate to be informed, to weed out the junk and choose a candidate who best suits your interests. Voting is a selfish proposition.
300 million+ people all want their own way. I have never voted for anyone because they spent more money on the campaign..

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