For all the complaining I hear around me, I see a disproportional amount of action being taken to offset what is going on all throughout the country. For example, everyone loves to moan about “high gas prices.”
While I will agree that gas prices are much higher than they were a few years (even months) ago, I really don’t see the problem. The higher prices are just a signal that we need to consume less gasoline. This can mean carpooling, riding a bike, walking, taking less trips out, or buying a more fuel efficient vehicle. It can also mean an investment in oil and/or gas companies such as Exxon may be called for, to hedge against higher prices at the pump.
But who among us is doing any such thing? All we get are excuses, such as “I just bought this new truck” or “I work too far away” or (although no one says this) “I’m lazy.”
There are consequences to every action we take. Buying a gas guzzling truck means you will pay more for gas. Taking a trip out to eat twice a week raises your gas consumption. I’m not trying to deny anyone that choice, but don’t come running for help when you can’t cut back on the non-necessities.
Also, I always wonder why people who complain about “price gouging” don’t get in on the alleged gouging. They can do this easily by purchasing Exxon stock, which is traded on the New York Stock Exchange (NYSE). That way, they can profit from everyone else’s gas purchases! Funny how, if anyone actually looked into this idea, they would find out that gasoline isn’t the exorbitant business proposition that it’s made out to be in the “Big Media.”
Gas companies such as Exxon only make around 8% on each dollar in sales as profit, which is well below many other industries. If there was “price gouging” going on, why wouldn’t people want to get in on it? You have the chance, go buy Exxon stock and let us know how much gouging you can do!
Then we have housing. There is word from Philadelphia that the mayor isn’t enforcing foreclosures. Basically, everyone is looking for a bailout because they couldn’t be bothered to read the “fine print” on their mortgage.
Either that or they agreed to an exotic loan that they didn’t understand, and now they need someone to help them sort it out. Funny how no one was complaining a few years ago when things were going well. Now that the tides have turned, people are outraged. That’s part of the price we pay for everything, from a car to a bagel to a house. If we are misinformed or simply ignorant about the product itself or its financing terms, we will lose in the long term and end up with a situation that we didn’t foresee.
In other words, do your homework before running to someone else for a bailout. This goes for businesses too, such as Bear Stearns. Get your act together before coming to us (the taxpayers) for help.
What’s worse than people looking for help out of a tough situation is the fact that those same people will gladly fork over $1 or more for a bottle of water, $5+ for a pack of cigarettes, and who knows how much for unnecessary extra clothing and knick knacks such as toys, dolls, cell phones and basically anything else.
If you can’t budget your own money, you don’t deserve to run to anyone else for help. Stop smoking 3 packs a day. Start drinking tap water, or at least buy pitcher with a filter for much cheaper than $1/ bottle. You would be amazed at how much money you can save by foregoing dessert and brewing your own coffee. Check your cable bill, maybe you can cut back there.
After you have done your own due diligence, then you might be in need and can look to other individuals for guidance and perhaps a helping hand. But too many in this country are simply looking to “big brother” to help us with all of our shortcomings, regardless of who caused them. It’s time to look within to fix some (if not all) of our everyday problems.
We can do this by being more sensible. Who can support a smaller government while blowing their entire budget on Starbucks, needless trips to the mall, and other non-essentials? If you can’t save for yourself, don’t expect the government to do it for you.
Also, educate yourself. Read political and historical books and other publications. Browse the Internet and get your news from various sources. Basically, be well read and always skeptical towards what you are reading.
I’m all for freedom, and that’s why we need to either tailor our actions to line up with the expected consequences, or continue to face problems with basics such as filling up our gas tank or making our mortgage payment. Government intervention cannot be relied upon to “bail out” anyone who ignores the consequences of their actions.