Thursday, February 26, 2009

Writer's Block is Temporarily Suspended

The world has not been making much sense to me lately.

A good friend from the ambulance corps - a very talented and gentle man in his prime - has got sick. I feel powerless and sad. I believe God seldom intervenes in the world, but there are times when I sure do pray for some special consideration.

The economy is really in a mess. The big problem is that so many people are so much "poorer" than they were a year ago. It's not real estate price declines in most places; its the value of long term savings. My IRA is down more than the value of the home I live in. Who can expect me to run around buying stuff? It doesn't matter that the economy won't recover unless people like me start making purchases again. It's a vicious spiral.

More and more investment cheats are being surfaced. Madoff, Stanford Financial, and others. Don't ever forget that our conservative Republican friends thought regulation was bad for business! What they meant was that regulation was bad for their cheating buddies. I can't wait to see who shows up on the list of tax cheats provided by UBS, the Swiss bank of choice for cheaters. Somebody needs to check their party registrations.

I don't want to get started on the bankers and investment brokers. Many of them should be in jail. Yet we still have lots of healthy smaller banks in Western New York...banks where the managers actually had some integrity. Perhaps those guys and gals should be promoted and the Big Apple wise guys given pushbrooms on the night shift and hovels to sleep in during the day.

It's Lent. Time for more ardent prayer and more intentional self-denial. You know, we humans have really not been too bright about managing our society. The world could be a lot better if we paid more attention to the tenets of our faiths and less attention to figuring out new ways to kill each other or get each other's stuff. There would be more than enough for everyone if we got our act together. Unfortunately, the Bible doesn't seem to think we ever will. We can chat more about this, some day on the other side.

In spite of all the bad news, I have to keep remembering that life here in U.S. is still pretty good, relatively speaking. Let's share our blessings and enjoy the things money can't buy.


Emily said...

my banker was just saying to me recently how angry he is about how this is making bankers look. the honest ones are getting a bad rap.

Dave K said...

Glad you are writing again. :)

The economic downturn (and related scandals) are hitting Cambodia hard, as well. It is often hard to watch and feels even harder to do something about it.

But I share the feeling that life is still full of goodness. Permanence was always an illusion, anyway. Waking up (again and again) to the joy of life is worth more than all the money I'll never make.... :)

Ron Davison said...

About once per generation, bankers and policy makers seem to conspire to wipe out savings. I sure hope that this is not our turn again and this is, instead, just a really wretched down turn. It's funny that money - whether in excess or shortfall - can distract us from things that could make us happy.