Wednesday, September 24, 2008

Riding the Rail in America

Riding the Rails: Teenagers on the Move During the Great Depression (Hardcover)
by Errol Lincoln Uys (Author) "At the height of the Great Depression, 250,000 teenage hoboes were roaming America ...

Riding the Rail - when we used that term where I grew up, it meant that we were sort of compromising - riding the rail meant that we could bail out, one way or the other. Reminds me of our government right now. I want to order the above book...but before I start on that:

Sorry to be such a bummer blogger - I thought I would have more time when daughter left home, but it isn't working out that way. I have had a bummer of a sinus infection since I visited the eye clinic for the first time - it cleared out a bit for a few days, then I had to go back there and now I have "it" back, even worse, including bronchitis. Started a Z pack and trying to take care of self - but not too successful it seems. Did bury myself in magnets yesterday afternoon and it seemed to at least move things along to where I could breath better by nightfall.

Then an emergency happened, or rather I flunked the test in taking care of myself and I lifted a sofa with a 200 pounds person on it because he had stuck his arm behind the couch and was screaming he couldn't get it out and would not let me call the fire department. (I am mad because I forgot I had a choice in this process!) Yeh, laugh. It may be funny someday when I get over my mad.

So, I can barely walk. Or sit. Or sleep. Went to the pain doctor begging for more injections, but he won't touch me until the blood clot is gone from my arm and the flu or whatever it is, is gone. I still haven't heard from the surgeon. I think he ran, maybe thinking I am a walking malpractice machine. Finally, after four weeks, the blood doctor's office must have found my message and returned my call. Nothing to do but wait for it to move and dissolve or whatever those things do.

What TV I have watched keeps screeching something about an economic meltdown. They aren't kidding. This is VERY serious. How can the government bail out the economy when it is in debt in the amount of trillions and trillions of dollars? Rather we should ask, what country will we owe our soul to after this one? I have never seen this country in such bad shape - two wars - I just try to pray and not think.

We had forgotten history when we went into Afghanistan and dragged it out - those fighters in them thar hills bankrupted Russia. But Russia had sense enough to get out. They have been struggling YEARS to recover. What made us think we were immune?

The silly twittering of the economics people in the 70's with the relish they presented in their books about America moving from an industrial age to an information age failed to foresee a nation of people in the 2007-8's wondering where all this ample supply of informational jobs might be hiding. (Pakistan or India at twenty five cents an hour - called a computer tech line yet, anyone?) Or maybe they were shouting a warning to us that we did not heed. Somehow we've forgotten to learn from our grandparents the lesson of the Great Depression. But then, an economic system has been built that has carefully programmed us to be as we are today.

Some folks are waking up and wading against the mainstream. When Russia failed, an underground economy developed. Yet, it was still pretty grim.

The mortgage thing makes me angry - I remember when I was going to buy that mobile home in Wyoming - the bank was going to loan to me, no problem. As part of the buy, I did what any smart girl would do on older construction and ordered up a home inspection. The findings: A substandard sewer line that was propped up by paint buckets, a water heater falling through the floor, multiple electrical violations, water problems (no duh), a roof 20 years past its replacement date patched with multiple coats of tar, air conditioning broke, the furnace years past its replacement date - and the bank had the nerve to get snotty and ask me why I "bailed" out - I told them exactly what I found. Oh yeh, and when the people thought they had it sold, they bought in a bunch of cats with no litter boxes and the carpets were ruined. And guess what? Yeh, the bank went ahead and financed it "as is" for someone else. Sad thing was, the financing was at the top - could not borrow anymore to rebuild the dang thing - - - - and we need the government to bail us out of these bad decisions?

I think it is different if its a solid loan on a solid piece of property and the buyers have sat down and made out a budget - and asked a very crucial question? "Can we afford these payments?" Ok, yes, things happen - they've happened to us - job loss, illness, death of family member, tornado, hurricane, these things happen - and we take it on the jaw when the insurance companies refuse to pay, when the new job doesn't come so quickly or at all. Also some mortgage companies are not scrupulous and made false representations. Then, yes, maybe some intervention - like jailing the crooks, and a payment plan for the hard hit folks that they can meet.

And I think I have a revelation - no president will be able to fix this. We've sat back like good little boys and girls and let them do their thing while lobbyists did their thing.

I should never post so late at night - grammar gets worse and besides that, I'm grumpy - no new pretty flowers to report - they are feeling fall's early darkness and are going away - desktop computer won't get on line much of the time - and I have to unplug the mouse to plug in the printer because the periphial plug ins or whatever they are called are failing one by one. I have the laptop, but so reluctant to load it up with all the programs I have in this one and it takes twice as long because I can't get used to the keyboard....crazy, crazy, crazy.


Candy Minx said...

Oh boy...well there is a lot of things going on...and I think many people are feeling pushed and pulled. And people want answers and they want help or even more to help.

So it doesn't surprise me to see late night blogging pull emotions out of us.

First i am fascinated by hobo culture...and want to see this hopefully I remembered to record it.

It's such an appropriate theme or show for these times right now huh?

It's a bit late...I'll be back in the morning o re-read...happy dreams Gardenia!

Milla said...

Well, I hope the crazyness aournd you (and the paain in general) will leave you alone soon.

In the meantime, I am ordering the book you write about. Thanks!

tshsmom said...

Don't watch the news if you want to relax your back so it can heal!! Bush's speech last night started muscle spasms in my back for the first time in 2 weeks.

Isn't it funny how the gov't can't pay back all the money they stole from Social Security, and every time we mention fixing our healthcare system they scream socialism? THEN they want to bail out privately owned banks!! Hypocritical bastards!

Gardenia said...

Yes, the news would give a person brain spasms, back spasms, etc., etc. We can cope with problems we can do something about but this is something far beyond our reach - that was caused by greed that isn't our greed - yet we're going to have to pay for it. Ack, there goes another spasm.

Then, they let the insurance companies get by with not honoring our insurance policies when we get hit by a hurricane. Go figure. Still paying for repairs here.