One difference between this liberal and Trump supporters: I don’t vote my resentments

I stopped in a Red Roof Inn just outside of Columbus, Ohio (off I-70, heading toward Dayton). I went to eat at Perkins and got change to leave for a tip for my motel maid. Then I noticed a couple of them outside of the building, smoking. I had (brief) thoughts of taking my tip back …and before you jump on me…I did NOT take the tip back. I wouldn’t do that, even if I knew that the person who cleaned my room smoked.

But it reminded me: yes, I DO have social resentments, and I share many of these with my conservative friends. This sort of thing disgusts me.

Now yes, I agree with President Obama when he said that “you didn’t build that alone”

And yes, it is NOT just society (schools, parents, infrastructure) it is also like “what you were gifted with and WHEN”. If that doesn’t make sense to you ask yourself this:

Yes, Larry Bird is a wealthy man. Would he have been wealthy, say, 80 years ago? No. He is wealthy because he was a good athlete in an era that rewarded good athletes. Would, say, an ace computer programmer been as well off, say, in the 18’th century? Different gifts thrive in different eras…even if the personality and the will to work hard is the same.

So, I understand that sheer luck has a lot to do with success, EVEN if the person who is successful worked their butt off to attain that said success. Hard work is “necessary but insufficient”, as a mathematician might say.

Nevertheless, stupidity would lead to failure in any era, and yes, there are lot of people who behave in very dumb ways and who make very bad choices.

Time and time again, I’ve been told “you are lucky you didn’t have a family to support” early in life. Well, I knew enough not to impregnate a woman before I was ready to support a kid!!!! But alas, such lessons are lost on many. There is some truth to the “Ant and the Grasshopper” fable.

But…I still support safety net programs, even if it means that a portion of the support goes to dummies and slackers. For one, many people do get hit hard by stuff even a reasonably diligent person might not anticipate (lay-offs, death of a breadwinner, severe illnesses, etc.). And there is evidence that poor kids who get SNAP benefits are less likely to need public aid as adults than poor kids who don’t.

Also, there is some economic stimulus to SNAP/welfare trickles up through the economy; it stimulates demand.

So, for me, the reality of the spreadsheet, along with the compassion that an affluent society can afford, leads me to support such programs with my tax dollars…even if I am disgusted by a small percentage of recipients of said benefits.


December 21, 2016 - Posted by | political/social, poverty, social/political

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