Daily Dollars

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You don’t have to be a millionaire to be a philanthropist. As a matter of fact, I’ve been doing it for years on a salary under $40K/year.

You do however, have to be a millionaire to do that for long without losing everything!

3 Years ago, a close friend lost her job. The company that fired her, also owned the apartment she was living in, and gave her a hard deadline to get out … her family was unwilling to take her in, her daughter was unable to, and she was literally about to be thrown out into the snow.  I had been sending cash to buy food and pay bills for about 6 months, and a week before the deadline, when it was clear she’d be kicked out, and had no place else to go, I got in my car, drove to Illinois, packed up her belongings to put them in storage, and brought her to my house to live in my spare bedroom, until she could get back on her feet.

That took about a year.  Unemployment kept her bills at bay, but there was little she could contribute toward my budget, and she was working hard to get a degree online, which took what little extra dough she did have …

I didn’t do it to be a hero, or to gain favors of any sort from her, or to obligate her to me:  she needed help, and no one else was going to give it;  I couldn’t have turned my eyes away, and still live with myself.

Almost as soon as she’d gotten a job and left the room, I met a young woman whose arms bore dozens of cutting scars … she’d lived a horrifying life, and was trying to make it in college, and just wasn’t succeeding very well:  her family could contribute almost nothing, her job didn’t pay much, and Government aid was not very forthcoming …

I loved her – and I couldn’t watch her fail and have to go back to that life … she became the next occupant of the room, and lives there still, two years later (she lived in a tiny little Katrina cottage for a few months, but the person who’d promised to pay the bills, pulled the rug out from under her … unable to meet her obligations, she made a suicide attempt … while she was in the hospital, I shut down her old place, and moved her belongings back in with me. She’s been there a year, now, and I genuinely hope she stays a little longer, because she’s been just that good company!)

Meanwhile, the economy was improving, but Republicans were continuing their obstructionist tactics, and now they’ve forced us into the sequestration – a fancy way of saying people all over the country are going to lose their jobs, or face, at the least, unpaid furloughs.

Which will, in turn, tank the economy, and start a downward spiral that may be impossible to stop.

These are, by and large, wealthy people. They are people with ties to big business. They are people interested in making life even easier for the very wealthy, and not at all interested in helping out the very poor. One of their leaders was taped, in an expensive, closed-door fund-raiser, explaining his disdain for the “47%” of America, who are “free-loaders”, and “lazy” …

And yet, even with all the people Mitt Romney alienated – the poor, the hispanics, the blacks, women, and plenty of just plain people who had a retired Veteran in the family, or a Grandmother trying to live on social security, or a sister on food stamps – even with all that, there are still tons of working-class Americans that support his stupid agenda, geared toward the benefit of the wealthy, and businesses, rather than the people themselves …

I don’t understand. I just don’t. What’s worse, however, is that, despite Mitt’s defeat, there’s a ton of Republicans in the House.  Many of them have never had to worry how they were going to keep the lights on, or where they’d find money to buy gas, or food. Never had to worry about how to pay medical bills, and feed their family.  Never had to worry that they’d lose their home, or their job, or their dignity …

These are the people responsible for the current nightmare, and it’s likely subsequent disaster. Silver spoons.

Meanwhile, I look after my Kayla, get deeper and deeper in debt, and wonder when someone will offer ME a helping hand …

It needs to be soon. Real Soon.

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~ by dourscot on March 6, 2013.

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