DON'T CARE, PAY NOW
Before I forget again, many profound thanks and obsequious bows of gratitude to E.A.B. for a very generous donation. Now I can pay for my inverter that cost far more than I thought ( I had fried the socket plug and the inverter, along with the batteries-although in my defense the batteries were five years old and thus my kinda sorta forgetting to water them didn't hasten their demise too badly ). A previous snail mail donation went towards paying for the twenty feet of heavy duty wire I took directly from the batteries ( I had two new ones I've been separately charging that took the place of the old dry ones ) to the inverter. When you send a donation I usually let it sit around until I need it for something critical, bike parts or off-grid equipment. No going out to dinner or the casino. If you would like to donate on a regular basis, a buck a month would be wonderful. I only need every single reader to sign up for that and then I don't have to work in town anymore. Send an e-mail, email@example.com , and in the body place your address and "monthly donation reminder". I put you on the PayPal mailing list and they send out a reminder that it is time to donate. This doesn't obligate you, it just reminds you. In three years my child support will be over and then only half of you need to donate. Hell, we won't even be around then, but long been eliminated from our neighbors digestive system. You might as well help a brother out until then.
I don't know if you've slept through the last decade, but economic times have grown a bit more difficult. As our economic pie has shrunk, more and more institutions are desperately fighting for survival. 90% of the time it means they screw you over to make it. The government is an obvious target, but all entrenched organizations do it. Corporations and non profits even take a page from the Roman Catholic playbook on how to fleece the sheep. This follows up on my comment yesterday that no one cares how little money they leave you to survive on. I don't care if you are on welfare, Social Security, work for a local government, work minimum wage or collect cans from the underpass. You will see your property tax quadrupled, sales tax doubled, income withholding tripled, Internet connections put on a toll, and all services drastically reduced before the city or state you are in will take a death cut in revenue. The Federal government will cause 1,000% inflation before they cut one department. Corporations will lay off the last worker and ship the last department to India before they cut one cent from their CEO bonuses. It isn't just naked greed, although that is rampant. It is regular positions of power and profit for the first time being threatened. Before, they survived on our surplus, but as that was eliminated they must start eating the seed corn.
Before, a lot of wealth redistribution was all about vote buying and more importantly part of the process of divide and conquer. It didn't cost politicians anything to double workers withholding and pay an additional 25% to retirees. They skim off the extra, workers hate retirees, retirees fear a worker revolt and thus feel vulnerable and thus hate the workers. Multiply that across the board for every tax and spend program. All of the drones hate or fear or are envious of each other and blame is deflected from the people in power living off the extra. I rag on Social Security recipients and welfare bitches, but I also understand the power and wealth behind it. Of course, I also like to hate just about anyone anyway. Give women the vote and make divorce a paying proposition and force employers to hire females even for jobs they are incapable of performing physically, and the genders hate each other. Make laws that allow executives to earn thousands of times a workers salary and the workers hate the business owners. Give blacks jobs they aren't qualified for and whites hate them. Etcetera.
Let me give my new favorite example of corporations screwing you. I used to love Wal-Mart. I sang their praises at every opportunity. I gave them plenty of endorsements to my limited circle of readers. I refused to buy property that wasn't within thirty miles of one of their Super Stores ( and I've bought six lots ). They were my only stop shopping for almost fifteen years ( other than books, which has always been Amazon, and who hasn't turned evil ). No, they are out to get me personally. I am convinced that my name actually comes up in board meetings. They are eliminating a lot of excess inventory, so that I am forced to stockpile items I normally wouldn't. They are eliminating most generic brands. Sure, they have the cheapest name brand, but I don't buy that crap. The name brands they do carry and I do buy are crap. Like the Bell brand in the bicycle department. Total worthless crap. Every item from them has disappointed me, from the guaranteed non flat inner tube that went flat to the $20 seat that had its cheek pads peel off in a few weeks. They no longer carry the cheap name brands, but the more expensive ones. Such as the Spam debacle. Virginia ham type for $1.18 was eliminated. Now you can have the $1.59 generic or the $2+ Spam. No thanks. The latest insult is the Cup Of Noodles. Nissan was a quarter. Manchurin was thirty eight cents. Now, no more Nissan. The price didn't go up, you just don't have the option to buy the cheaper brand. I could go on and on, but the short story is I have to go shopping in many different places now. Bastard Whores.
My property taxes just went up fifty percent. No big deal, it is now $10 instead of six. Although that does translate into nearly an once of silver rather than a half once. I'm sure you folks with houses are really getting screwed a lot worse than that. You are up side down on your house, yet your assessed value doubled. And the only excuse is that your county needs the money. Need, the last refuge of the welfare masses, the Post Office and other communists. They aren't obligating themselves to better service, just taking what they need. All levels of government will be acting the same. All corporations will be cutting choices and offering worse products. And this is just the beginning of the crash. What fun we have ahead of us.