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You are currently browsing the Stupidity In Society blog archives for November, 2008.

Nov

22

Issues of Entitlement

By admin

Are you a generally happy person? Thankful for all your blessings and appreciative of the good things you get to experience in life? Or are you an often-angry person, mad that others have more than you and not happy about the way the world works? If it’s the latter, I have a question for you: Just who the heck do you think you are? Why is it you think you deserve anything? The truth is you are darn lucky to have what you have, and that you aren’t starving in some third-world country somewhere.

The attitude that others shouldn’t have more than you, that it’s just not fair, is usually held by those who are not willing to do the work that those who have more do in order to get it. Welfare recipients think their welfare checks should be high enough that they get to drive an SUV and vacation in Europe too, just like their neighbor the workaholic who started a successful business in his spare time. What they don’t seem to understand is that the neighbor who busts his butt to get slightly ahead in life is also busting his butt to pay for that welfare check of his lazy neighbor.

It doesn’t matter to them. They hold a different world view than rational thinking people. Joe the plumber might save enough to finally purchase the company he works for through decades of hard work and wise financial planning. But angry-lazy people who hate society, work as little as possible, blow every cent they make on immediate pleasures, and spend all their spare time watching TV think Joe the plumber owes them something. He’s doing fine. But the angry-lazy people think that his “wealth” should be shared with everyone who didn’t work hard and didn’t bother saving any money.

There is a term used to describe the society which the lazy angry people envision. It’s called socialism. In a socialist society nobody has anything more than anybody else. The government takes most, or even all of, the money you earn and provides for all your needs. There is nothing to be jealous of because everybody has it the same way. Of course, nobody works hard to get ahead because there is no reward for it. So everybody has a very poor standard of living.

You know what? That suits the socialists just fine. They don’t necessarily want nice things for themselves. They just don’t want anybody else to be able to get nice things for themselves either. They want to drag everyone down to their pathetic level.

This dangerous attitude usually starts at a young age. It begins with – you guessed it – bad parenting. Not being able to say no to your child and refusing to discipline them raises them in a frame of mind which makes them think they were born kings or something, and that the world should be rushing to meet their every whim. This carries over into adulthood and causes problems.

If your child throws temper tantrums when they don’t get their way and you allow this, you are dangerously spoiling your kids. Spoiled kids grow up with issues of entitlement . They don’t understand how fortunate they are just to be healthy and living in a wealthy society. They think they deserve it all. What a misconception that is.

I have news for you: You aren’t entitled to anything by virtue of your existence. Nobody is. You might go to prison tomorrow, or come down with a terminal disease. Everything you have might be gone in an instant. There is no security in this life. If you are angry about other people having it better than you, then you need to seriously get over it. If you want more than you have put your nose to the grindstone and do something about it.

The recent election has resulted in our government being dominated by a political party who holds socialist views. That is an obvious fact, even to somebody like me who isn’t into politics. You can expect a flurry of socialist policies to materialize in the coming years. Those who work hard to get ahead will have an ever-growing percentage of the fruits of their labor confiscated and given to angry-lazy people who think they shouldn’t have to work hard to get the same rewards.

Now don’t get me wrong. Papa Riah is not a defender our current society. In fact I find much of it quite stupid, thus the existence of this blog. However socialism is clearly moving backwards. It’s been tried before and has always failed miserably. It results in violent revolutions and therefore must be instilled by military force upon the residents of it’s own country. But when people with issues of entitlement get control of world governments, as is apparently happening before our eyes, that nightmare becomes a very real threat.

Papa Riah

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Nov

18

Driving Tips for Asians

By admin

Ever wonder if there is a special DMV for Asians? I mean, some of the stuff you see them pull off just isn’t going to get you past the driving test unless the DMV test administrator is also Asian. (Hmmmmmm – maybe that’s how they do it.) Whether they have a license or not, most Asians could use a few driving tips. Being the humanitarian that I am, this post is dedicated to helping that cause. It’s for them, it’s for you, and it’s for me. If we can just get the Asians on board with the rest of us, the roads will become a much less hazardous place. And that’s good for all of us.

First off, I do want to mention that Papa Riah has many wonderful Asian friends. However none of them can drive worth a grain of rice. I often wonder if it’s the angled eyes. (If “angled” is now considered a derogatory term I apologize – please substitute another adjective to describe how Asian’s eyes look different from non-Asian’s.) Seriously – squint your eyes and look around. Do you think that would help or hinder in the driving process?

But there also seems to be something in the decision making process that just shuts down when they are on the road controlling a 4-wheel internal-combustion powered vehicle. I mean, they can ride a bicycle like nobody’s business. They can engineer fantastic solutions to insanely complicated technical problems. Let’s face it, most of them are wicked smart. But throw a simple problem at them like the donut shop is in the strip mall you just passed on the left and all their mental faculties just freeze up – along with their car.

Where I live there are a couple of Asian communities nearby. As you drive into these areas you know to slow down and be really careful. Vehicular obstacles are to be expected. Sudden unexpected moves anywhere from any car are something you need to factor into the possibilities when simply passing by another car in an adjacent lane – even going the opposite way. Things are not normal there.

With that in mind, here are some driving tips for our eastern friends.

• When there is only one of you and 100 of everybody else, it really is easier if you blend into what the 100 other people are doing as opposed to all of them stopping and conforming to what you are doing.

• From Webster:

merge

Verb

[merging, merged]

1. to combine, esp. so as to become part of a larger whole: the two airlines merged in 1983

2. to blend gradually, without any sudden change being apparent: late afternoon merged imperceptibly into early evening [Latin mergere to plunge]

Try to remember that you are not alone on the road – there are other people driving all around you at all times. This is critical to understand.

• If you suddenly realize that the place you need to be is over there, the best course of action is not always to stop in the middle of moving traffic and attempt to make a direct B-line to that place you need to be. There might actually be objects in the way, not the least of which is opposing traffic.

• The rear view mirror shows you other cars that are driving behind you, at the same speed (that’s a safe bet). This is actually very helpful. You should get into the habit of looking into it to see what is happening behind you once in a while.

• The reason your side windows are made of clear glass is so you can see what is going on beside you on either side. Try looking through them some time – it’s really pretty cool.

• Those numbers on the speedometer – the reason they go so much higher than just the first few is that your car actually goes faster. Really.

Papa Riah

Nov

15

Financial Bailout, Wrong Recipients

By admin

You don’t want to know what’s happening with the $700 billion (with a b) bailout money that was supposed to be earmarked for large financial institution’s foreclosure and mortgage-related losses. Trust me, you really don’t. Especially if you are the type who gets mad when the leaders of your country act foolishly, irresponsibly, and with self-interest as their first priority. This is one time when it’s definitely better to stick your head in the sand. In fact I don’t even want to watch the news any more, especially financial and political news. I’m sure I’m not alone there.

The whole idea behind the bailout was to rescue large financial institutions whose exposure to the subprime mortgage business (and foreclosed properties that can only be unloaded for large losses) was threatening their existence. That’s what it was for. Unfortunately between the time the legislation passed and now, which has only been a matter of weeks, lots of other uses for the money have popped up. Gee, who would have thunk?

Bank of America already received $25 billion (with a b) of that money. Now they are a company that is in good financial health and has never been involved in the mortgage business. They have no bad subprime loans, nor do they own any foreclosed residential homes. BOA is doing just fine charging their customers every time they talk to a teller. So how did they get their hands on that cash? Is it because they have a sign that says Bank on the front of their building? Or do they know the right person somewhere?

Today on television the mayor of Philadelphia made a desperate plea to use the money to bail out city governments – in particular, his city. When it was explained to him that the legislation which allocated the funds would not allow that, he responded that they need to give him some other money then – just like the auto makers are apparently getting. When asked where the money was supposed to come from, he said (and I kid you not) The federal government are the ones who print the money – just print some and give it to us.

As a reader of this blog I hope you understand why that doesn’t work. That crazy mayor might as well print the needed money himself – it will be worth just as much as all American currency will be if the federal government starts printing money to give to every failing entity. Heck, haven’t you made some investment decisions that didn’t work out? Have the government print you some money to bail you out.

The really scary thing is, what the government is actually doing with these bailouts isn’t much different than just printing the money. The effects are going to be the same – they just don’t realize it yet. Or perhaps they don’t care what happens to the next generation in America. By spending more and more money on an unlimited credit line that they have setup for themselves, they are setting a terrible example to the American consumer. The whole system could be bankrupt in our lifetimes, not in our grandchildren’s as we are all planning on. At least consumers have a point where their credit is maxed out. Our government can just keep borrowing – and because they can, they do.

Eventually all this government borrowing and printing money will come home to roost. When it does, expect the US dollar to be worthless – not only overseas but within our own country as well. How are you set on gold coins and gold bars? You might want to stock up on them the way things are going. Either that or you will need chickens, pigs, apples, and ears of corn for currency.

Papa Riah