About Empathy

2018-09-13_07-38-39.pngI am convinced that, as a general rule, my Republican friends pretty much lack empathy to any degree. I know this could be “painting with a broad brush” type thing but hear me out. I find example after example of this fact in my daily life. Let me give you a few examples.

I have a Republican friend who goes on and on about how all those people on welfare are freeloaders.  To him, they are just too lazy to go out and get a job.  I try to tell him that on the average most people are on welfare less than a year. He has admitted that his sister was on welfare, but he assures me that she really needed it.  He just can’t seem to understand that people who have temporary circumstances need and should get help. To him, everyone besides his sister is just lazy freeloaders.

Then there is Betsy DeVos, the current leader of the department of education who is now in the process of making sure that for-profit colleges get the money they need to pay their shareholders lavish dividends while at the same time making it harder for students to pay off their college debt. There just seems to be a serious lack of empathy among those who call themselves Republicans.

Then there is the soon to be ex-congressmen/ house leader Paul Ryan. His adoration of Ayn Rand along with her “Empathy is the scourge of mankind” certainly shows that he lacks empathy to any degree.

One thing I most admire about Jesus of Nazareth was that he had a huge amount of empathy. He even said that if your neighbor needs help give him the shirt off your back. He said that if you adore money give it all away to the poor and then you can follow him. Sadly, there are just so many who call themselves Christians who seem to believe the exact opposite of Jesus’ teachings! They rail against anyone getting something they didn’t work for. But isn’t that the foundation of Christianity.  “You don’t deserve it but since Christ died for your sins you will live an eternity in heaven.”

What If Someone Better Comes Along?

The2018-09-08_12-54-07.png title above is a very interesting one for me.  Due to my self-diagnosed Aspie traits, my social skills have never been anything approaching normal. I just don’t think in the venue as most everyone else does it seems.  Clicking with almost any female was a non-starter for me. I tried it on several attempts but I usually never got very far. So, it totally surprised me when my now wife of 32 years showed an interest in me. I never dreamed I would have a serious relationship let alone get married.

I imagine that those more socially prone have asked themselves the above question in the title on more than one occasion. At least I hope they have.  One basic problem is that too many of us settle for what is in front of us instead of waiting for something better to come along and that results in over half of us divorcing and usually making the same mistakes all over again the second and third time. 🙂  Instead of the question above, too many of us probably ask the reverse, “what if no one else comes along?”

Outside of the relationship venue, I personally have settled for what was in front of me far too many times in my life. I regret not having admitted that I was in the wrong profession early on in my career.  Instead, I clung to the financial security that my job was providing. It was not until the last fourth of my work life that I finally got into something that I really enjoyed doing.  Because I thought nothing better would come along I spent 20+ years of my life in a job I got little enjoyment from. Don’t make that same mistake…

 

Haters Are…

There just seem to be a lot more haters in the world today.

  • They are bitter about one thing or another
  • they envy so many others, as a result,
  • they voted to put an incompetent, ignorant, bullying narcissist in the Oval Office.

I will come out and say it, I think that many of those who voted for this guy are just lazy losers.  They don’t want to take the time to understand the issues that are confronting us as a nation or even on a personal level.  I think they know that he is incompetent and only thinks of himself but they simply don’t care. But, that is enough politics for now.  On to other areas…

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Were they always like that?  Almost all of us as four-year-olds questioned everything. “Why” was probably the most often used word in our limited vocabulary. Some of us maintained the “Question Everyone” attitude throughout our lives. Since it is a major theme of this blog I like to think I am one of them. But there are others who had it beat out of them early on. They were told to keep quiet and do what you are told.

I know I quote Thomas Jefferson frequently here at RJsCorner, especially the quote about a democracy depends on an informed electorate, but that fact seems to be forgotten by so many I will bring it up again and again. To get back to the quote above, everyone dreams about one thing or another but like the “Why” thing for too many of us, the dreams are never fulfilled because we just don’t have the fire in our belly to make them happy. If you are one of those people think about why you hate so much and do everything you can to strip it from your lives.

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You Always Have A Choice..

2018-08-12_11-47-05All of us have pity parties at times in our lives. We bemoan that we didn’t get the breaks in life that so many others did.  The strike back reaction for many now days is to publically insult those we stealthily envy. It goes like this “I can’t have it so they shouldn’t either!”

I learned the lesson in the above quote later in life than I realized. Whenever life gives you an opportunity you need to realize that you always have a choice.  Many times circumstances that you once dreaded proved to be a jump-start for a new opportunity.  For those who hate change, these times are agonizing but often necessary. For example, being replaced by a robot gives you the opportunity to go to a trade school to prepare for a job that is much more secure than the one you were forced out of. You always have a choice.

I know some folks have thoroughly convinced themselves, or maybe it was driven into them by others, that they can’t learn anything new. They might not admit that but deep down too many have such low self-esteem to believe that they actually have a choice.  When their no-thinking-required manual labor job disappears they think their only option is to become bitter about their life’s circumstances. They strike out at almost anyone and everyone. You always have a choice.

There are those who were born in rural America who see their way of life disappearing due to agricultural automation and consolidation.  Their little town is a now an empty shell of what it once was and they are bitter about that.  They have a mentality that they are a tree and are permanently rooted in their current circumstances. You always have a choice.

You Always Have A Choice

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Can We Americans Process Reality?

2018-09-16_21-28-06.pngI often wonder how the rest of the world see those of us who are born in the US? Thanks to my new friend over at Eudaimonia and Co I am beginning to get a clearer view of that.

  • I know the rest of the world pretty much thinks all of us are obsessed with our guns to the point of being willing to sacrifice our kids in order to keep them.
  • I have known for a long time that most Europeans are fascinated by the junk and inferior products we Americans are willing to accept.
  • I know that during my visits to Canada they just can’t understand why we put up with our grossly high-cost medical system and then deny people even that!

The words below put my thoughts on another level of the basic difference between our consumer-driven capitalism and the socialist models of it found in Europe and Scandinavia.

Americans don’t seem capable of processing, integrating, or accepting basic everyday realities about the world anymore. Not the ones from Harvard and Yale. Nor the ones from Kansas and Nebraska. Now, both of these tribes loathe one another. But whom does that leave, precisely? Go ahead and look around. What do you see. “The economy’s booming!” Wait — life expectancy’s falling. “Socialism’s too expensive!!” Uh, have you seen American healthcare prices?…

Do you see what I see? A psychology that is totally, fatally, shatteringly disconnected from reality. Americans seem to need to take refuge in fabulous and grandiose myths, of how wonderful and special they are…

Source: Can Americans Process Reality? – Eudaimonia and Co

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Unreported Income??

2018-09-07_11-36-49.pngIt is estimated that the IRS loses about $500 billion yearly due to unreported income. A big part of that amount is from the self-employed who simply pocket money without putting it on their books. Except for the fast-food franchises and of course the local Walmart, the small town I live in is pretty much local businesses. When I go to the hardware store, more often than not, the cash from my small sale is mostly just pocketed. I imagine the same happens in small towns across America.

If the IRS is losing $500 billion that basically means that if all our citizens paid their fair share we could as one example finally fund universal healthcare so that we would join the rest of the world in deeming that healthcare is an inalienable right for all instead of just those who can afford it.  $500 billion a year would also go a long way in improving our infrastructure.  The USA is becoming the laughing stock of the world for our 3rd world roads and bridges.

It really bugs me whenever I see that TV commercial where some smiling person proudly proclaims that he owed $250,000 in taxes but only had to pay $500 because he went to the company that paid for the advertisement. I don’t believe in debtor’s prison but this guy should be put in jail making other pay his share!!

There just seems to be too many people who shun their responsibilities of citizenship around today. They want something for nothing.   But, perhaps the biggest problem is their failure to vote. By doing so, they let a small minority elect a know-nothing president.

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