America is not what it used to be. It’s obvious to even the most non-observant that the country is changing rapidly; not for the better. It appears as if our very foundations are being rocked, and speculation has come from diverse experts that an economic collapse is on the horizon. Even the most stalwart naysayer and conspiracy-theorist basher can't deny that what is happening in America seems as if someone is plotting its demise.
Manufacturing has been sent out of the country, leaving hollowed out communities in its wake, that has spawned an illegal drug epidemic, with the resultant crime, and tragic loss of life.
Prices on everything has gone up as wages have remained flat, contributing to stress and the shrinking middle class. Many Americans are said to be one paycheck away from homelessness.
Shifting social standards has left several generations of confused youth and adults alike. We live in an era of shows where one’s peers callously vote someone off the island, and the term "being voted off the island" is even in the urban slang dictionary. Television is a molder of public opinion, and this generation appears to be deliberately conditioned to be cruel, if not confused.
Almost nonexistent border security has left many Americans fearful of another attack, yet our borders remain dangerously vulnerable, with no sensible or sane fix in sight.
Washington continues on an uncontrolled spend-fest that boggles the mind. Here are a few jaw droppers:
1. $16 - $20 million dollars helping students from Indonesia get master’s degrees. (Where is the help for American students, drowning in student debt?)
2. $175,587 to determine if cocaine makes Japanese quail engage in sexually risky behavior. (Quail.Really?)
3. The Department of Health and Human Services spent $500 million on a program to solve the problem of 5-year old children who can’t sit still in a kindergarten classroom. (Fidgeting children is now apparently an anomaly to be “cured”. Soon a grim-faced psychologist will label these social misfits with: “oppositional fidgeting disorder” with the diagnosis placed in their file to follow them throughout life.)
4. $2.6 million to train Chinese prostitutes to drink responsibly. (And why are we paying for this?)
5. The U.S. Postal Service spent $13,500 on a single dinner at a Steakhouse. (Five-star restaurant dinners at taxpayers expense is sure to be widespread, even as children in America and elsewhere go to bed hungry.)
6. For more than 20 years, Northwestern University researchers received National Institutes of Health money to watch hamster fights. The University received more than $3 million over the course of the project.
7. The National Science Foundation received a million dollars to see if Mountain Lions could be taught to ride a treadmill.
These are just a few modest examples of wasteful spending of taxes extracted from American citizens. Think about that the next time your alarm rings at 5:00 a.m. and you have to drag yourself to work or can't afford a prescription or trip to the doctor. Special interest groups go after that Federal money, and it seems that no one responsible is overseeing it. That money could rebuild our infrastructure, create jobs, care for our Veterans, and invest in our youth. The waste is unforgivable.
Vitriolic political discussions have displaced decorum, leaving real problems unaddressed. There is an ever-widening income gap between the have and the have-nots, and 49% of people in America are on some form of assistance.
Morals have plummeted, and there seems to be a pervasive sense of unease. An overall sense of hope is gone and many have compared America’s decline to the collapse of Rome.
Rome reached its peak of power in the 2nd century. Stretching from England to Syria, it was the largest empire of the ancient world. Once a global superpower, it collapsed from within.
Although there is an ongoing debate about the specifics of what caused the fall of Rome, some historians attribute it to the following:
"Then there is the constant, pervasive atmosphere of cruelty that defines America — just as it did Rome. Rome had its coliseums and its gladiators and, America has reality TV and no-holds-barred sports. These, too, tell us something about a nation’s ideals, its values. Rome lionized the strong, and scorned the weak, to an extreme degree — just as America does.”
Perhaps it's time for America to unplug. It would make for an interesting study to see what would happen - it would be a wiser use of our tax dollars. But there is a lot that we can do individually in the time that we're on this earth; we can do our part to spread good, and we ourselves can be good. "Be the change you wish to see in the world." We each can do something every day to spread kindness and goodness in whatever way is made available to us. Maybe a balance sheet really does exist that records our every deed and we reap what we sow. And just maybe we can recreate a little bit of Mayberry.
Something else that we can do is prepare for a variety of eventualities. If something happens, and we're prepared for it, it will take enormous stress off of us. Don't be caught off-guard. Get prepared today: Purchase an emergency food supply, for the peace of mind that comes from knowing that you're prepared
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