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Greed Or Contentment: We MUST Make A Choice!
It's A Choice We All MUST Make...
A BRIEF INTRODUCTION:
Money is not evil! The love of money is... OK... Now the air is clear.
THE CRUX OF THE ISSUE:
I don't wish to sound harsh, but I feel greed is a part of our DNA; rearing its ugly mug with many profiles.
People are greedy for acceptance, greedy for love, greedy for status... The list ensues...
According to the free dictionary, greed is an excessive want to acquire or possess more than what one needs or deserves, especially with respect to material wealth.
And then there's...
Contentment: The state of being content; satisfied.
Greed is the opposite of contentment, which is why (in my humble opinion) America is stalled at the intersection of ‘fall' street and ‘recession' avenue.
I don't think many would argue our great nation is witnessing her most catastrophic financial crisis since the great depression.
Although the onus of blame is being placed on 'fall' street investment bankers and their willing participants in shame, the back-burner kettle behind this mess is us: Me, you, and everyone else with an investment stake in corporate america.
This milieu of greed has its roots (some, not all) with our 401k plans, stock portfolios, and other corporate investments. All of which are geared toward our long-term successes and happy retirements.
This is where a lot of it started.
In our desire for the golden, golden years, (all the while maintaining our happy-go-lucky lifestyles), millions of Americans bought into the easy money being 'manufactured' in the housing bubble and the seemingly, can't-miss mortgage-backed securities.
I know. I made a living in the housing business during the inflation, the rising, and the bursting of the bubble. And let me tell you, IT IS AS UGLY as you hear.
In the middle of it, you're blinded by the work. Complacency becomes your mis-guided friend and you become vulnernable... sad, but true.
The last time I checked, greed, doubling as the blind-eye hypnotist, had us mesmerized.
Many years from now, I HOPE, we can look back upon this tumultuous piece of history as a foothold to greater personal, corporate, and governmental fiscal responsibility.
Wise men and women, along with their communities, learn from their mistakes.
I HOPE we can learn from ours.
Money, Money, Money.... Money
Let's Breathe The Air Of Fiscal Responsibility.
All that being said; and regardless of what the pundits spout, GREED is the SEED that has grown into this mature tree of financial recklessness.
With a sad heart, I feel we had this coming.
Financial greed has been epitomized and gaudily exposed in this great country of ours.
It has weakened our ability to compete. It has downgraded our standing in the world economy. But worst of all, it has made our great nation vulnerable like never before: Both financially and militarily.
We've been complacent!
A wise proverb once said: ‘Drink from the well of ease too often and the drink will spoil'
How true is that?
How often have we (America) as a culture lived the life of ease with no recompense for tomorrow?... Unfortunately, too long.
Most of our parents didn't live this way and did just fine. A calm sense of contentment reigned. I know it sounds cliche, but life, not that long ago, was a lot simpler.
And I'm not talking about 40 or 50 years ago. It was the 1970s and early 1980s. Although I was just a kid and a young teenager, I never felt the pressures of wanting to have so much stuff like I see today.
True, there's more stuff to have and many more ways to spend money. But living within our means was by no means a crime or a reason for ridicule. It was common sense.
And yes, common sense along with a few cents WILL get you a cup of coffee...
People, something has gone gravely wrong in America.
We've become the victim of our own wantonness for stuff and our desire for instant gratification. It's become a party drug for us... And like all other unnnecessary, social mind-killers, it's beginning to erode away the fabric of this country.
I feel we can end it. We can end it with a trip back to fiscal responsibility and by adopting a mindset of not being "ashamed" of not having as much "stuff" as Billy and Betty down the street.
This mentality will be difficult to ingest for many people, but if we fail to eat... we might fail to eat.
Yes, the underlying problem we face is greed. But greed begins with a lifestyle ensconced with entitlement. Correct me if I'm wrong. Please?
How else can we explain statistics reflecting the average American citizen's savings rate at a negative 20%. That's crazy folks. For every dollar we earn, we spend a buck twenty. Insane. (Keep in mind this is an average and not everyone is sitting in the same boat)
As long as there are imperfect people wandering around a perfect (in design) world, we're going to have problems.
How did secretary Paulson call it recently, America has been humbled and embarrassed.
Gee, what a profound insight.
In my book, America hasn't been humbled. We've been humiliated, scorned, bruised, battered, kicked on our rears, and embarrassed.
And what's worse? There could be more to come. I HOPE not, but it's possible.
There's a good chance many of the other, ready-to-implode mortgages will kick up their heels and spoil our current, soon-to-be-bucketed-out, economy.
If all the Alt-As and 125 mortgages decide to join the default ball, gosh darn it'll be a grand ole' time.
I HOPE NOT. But if so, hitch the wagons honey, we're moving on up... or I mean, out.
A Final Call...
There's no doubt our nation has been wounded... we've been there before... we've always fought back.
My prayers are for the well-being of this country and for the non-political ability of our new administration to make wise, and well-stewarded, decisions for this land.
Time is truly of the essence. We have to stop the greed, the corruption, and bring back meaningful living to our families.
A bankrupt and weakened US is not only a threat to the us, but the world as well.
I don't know about you, but I want my children to grow up in a country where they won't have to be burdened with the mess we shoveled them.
Common sense goes a long way in my book and common sense tells me we cannot continue to purchase beyond our means, borrow from our next two generations to pay for our greed and sense of non-contentment today, and in general, practice the financial irresponsibility we have now.
It won't work people. It never has...It never will.
I'm a firm believer all we have is not ours anyway. God has STEWARDED all to us. And there will be a day when we have to hold court and account for what was provided to us.
Live within your means. Save 10% of what you earn. Give away 10% of what you earn.
We're on our way... The game is not over... We can still win... It will take time... And it might hurt a little. But as my coaches used to tell me: NO PAIN, NO GAIN.
Pain on the road to fiscal responsibility is real and not an option.
Greed vs. Contentment: We need to choose... or the world will choose for us.
I feel this is the only way.
Please pray for this country and our next administration... We, and they need it.
"Honey seems tasteless to a person who is full, but even bitter food tastes sweet to the hungry." Proverbs 27:7 NLT