Saturday, April 4, 2009

Unemployment Reason

I have been following the recession news and the unemployment rates. The unemployment rates are huge in America primarily because we have been outsourcing jobs for years. I called Dell support for help with my computer a few years ago and reached a man in India that I could barely understand. I finally had to ask for another tech to help me. One that could speak English.

The unemployment rate is 4.5% for college grads. That's phenomenal! Most of these people have awful college loans to repay and now they cannot even find a job. That's not even to mention those without college degrees. Their jobs are the first to go. I expect unemployment to reach 10 - 15% by this time next year unless large companies stop outsourcing jobs. Cessna is sending their latest plane to China to be built. How does that help our economy?

When will these companies realize that when they outsource jobs, they cut the throats of their own people.

I was visiting with a Baxter Springs woman in the Tulsa airport this week and she and her daughter both work for IBM. IBM is now outsourcing accounting jobs and laying off American accountants.. That's really scary. How can a company that large outsource their accounting?

I think it is owed to American taxpayers to keep jobs in America...especially in a serious recession. Large companies especially can decide to do that. Companies like Dell and IBM are doing the country a disservice. They make huge profits anyway. They must. They pay enormous bonuses to their executives. Then they send their best paying jobs abroad to people who will work for cheap wages. Shame!

Saturday News

This morning I am going to take Juanita to Joplin to do some shopping. After the shopping we will have lunch at Olive Garden and then come back home. This afternoon, Bob and i will go out to see the progress on our son-in-law and daughter's new home. I will take my camera although she has several new photos that she has not sent to me.

Then tonight we will go back to Independence to a surprise birthday party for our grandson. His girlfriend, Cathy, has invited all his friends. It will be held at Southgate, a nice bar and grill there.

It will be a busy day.

I slept like a log last night. I went to bed at 8:00. I had only had 4 1/2 hours sleep the night before.

Friday, April 3, 2009

What a Day!

What a day my quieter day became. After the birthday dinner last night I took a look at my car's right front tire and it looked low. I had my son-in-law take a look at it and he said he thought it was too so we went over to a Casey's store and he put some air in it for my drive home last night. While there, he noticed a roofing nail stuck in it. So I left the car at home and took Bob's Ranger to Tulsa. Nothing like being a woman alone at midnight with a flat 93 miles from home.

I made the trip fine in his truck. He got there a little early and we drove home and got here a little after 1:00.

I left Slinky to sleep in the garage and he woke me up at 5:00.. cold and hungry....poor old dog. He also needed to go to the potty.

I fixed him a cup of food and some cinnamon toast and warmed his bedding in the dryer. He's napping over there by the dryer now. When Bob gets up later and I fix his breakfast, Slinky will want his bacon too. I will fix him a second cup of food, pour bacon grease over it and cut the piece of bacon up in small pieces for him. He thinks he's in heaven.

Back to the dinner last night. Jeromy's girl friend and her three year old, Priscella, came too.. so there were six of us. Cathy is very pretty and perky. Saturday night she is throwing a surprise birthday party for Jeromy at Southgate in Independence and Bob and I are invited to that too. We may go if Bob is up to it. He didn't get to see Jeromy last night. (Jeromy is our grandson)

They are moving the upstairs furniture in at the new house. They had to do that before the staircase is done. The builders didn't get much done this week either. They got the fireplace insert in. The carpet in the bedrooms is down but the store did that. The air conditioning is not yet installed. They worked on the staircase but didn't get it finished. They didn't get the light fixtures up, the doorknobs on or the outside painting finished. There's still some trim to go up in the upstairs. They also still have the inside of the garage to tape, mud and paint. They have the forms finished for the front and back steps but the concrete is not poured. The downstairs bathroom mirror needs to be hung. The shower curtain rod upstairs needs to be hung. All the closet rods but one have yet to be installed. The shutters are not yet on the house. There are a lot of odds and ends yet to be finished. I'll bet money they won't be finished in April. They started July 17th. What an ordeal this has been for the kids. Nine months and counting!

Today we will go take Leslie to lunch.

Thursday, April 2, 2009

A Quieter Day

This should be a quieter day. All I really have to do is attend Ministerial Alliance meeting at noon. I want to do laundry and clean house this morning. Tonight I will go to Independence to celebrate my grandson's 30th birthday with dinner at Uncle Jack's.

Tomorrow noon I will go back to Independence to take our daughter to lunch. I am anxious to hear what they have done on their house this week. I called night before last and they were moving some furniture upstairs so the builder could put the staircase up. She couldn't talk much as she was very busy. I will go out there Saturday afternoon and see the progress. Saturday morning I will take Juanita to Joplin to do some shopping. We will eat at Olive Garden before we come back home.

It's supposed to rain today so it will be a good day to clean. I cleaned last Thursday after Bob left on Wednesday. The place still looks spic and span but with the animals in and dust and all, I know it isn't. It will be good to have it shining.

Bob may come home soon. The danger of flood seems to have abated in Fargo and Red Cross is sending their people home. He has a meeting at 10:00 this morning to learn when he will be coming. I am concerned about his shingles. I hope they will dry up all right. I have such a busy week, I hope I can work in going to the airport in Tulsa to pick him up.

Scott will be coming on Monday and I will be taking him to the airport in Tulsa then. He is flying out to California to ride back with Ashley to Tyler, Texas, to pick up her things. From there, they will come here on Wednesday or Thursday to pick up his truck. Then Friday they will drive to Memphis. Scott will go that far following her. He will stay and visit his girlfriend there while she goes on to Savannah alone. She is moving to Savannah to go back to college. I hope that works out. Her life has been in such turmoil the past few years.

During her junior year in high school, her mother moved in with a boyfriend while Scott was in Afghanistan. The army sent him home after he fell apart. Ashley moved in with friends while he was gone and failed her junior year. Then that summer, she came here to be with me and go to summer school to make up her lost classes. After that, she moved in with my daughter and her husband (a teacher) and attended Caney where he taught for her senior year. She graduated and then she chose to go to Tyler, Texas to live with her mother and attend college there. She stayed one semester. Then her mother, a traveling nurse, moved out to California with her work. Ashley completed one semester and then joined her mother to try to get into TV or the movies. She got into two episodes of Brothers and Sisters in a walk on part and tried out for the last episode of ER but didn't get the part. Her mother and her father started paying for modeling lessons but then she met a boy from Savannah who is attending school in Savannah. So she is moving back to stay at his house with his parents and him while she attends the college at Savannah. We'll see how that goes. She doesn't have much stick-to-it-ness.

Following the meeting, I came home to do my minutes and found that Bob is coming home at 11:25 PM tonight. I will have to drive to Tulsa, Oklahoma at 10:00 PM this evening. That's an hour and a half drive.

Surprises never cease. It's also raining.

Wednesday, April 1, 2009

Busy Day

It's been a very busy day. It started at 8:00 this morning with my hair appointment. Then I met Juanita for breakfast. After that, I went out to the Independence High School and picked up the list of graduating seniors and talked to the music teacher about his musical group singing for baccalaureate next month. He agreed.

Then I went to buy stationary and matching envelopes for the invitations.

Then I stopped at my church and made copies of the agenda and minutes for tomorrow's CMA meeting. There should be 16 there for lunch tomorrow.

When I got home I typed the 115 student's names into my computer so I can print off their invitations and also print off the envelopes That done, I went down to Sonic and bought a child's chicken strip supper for my dinner.

A friend called and is having computer problems. Her e-mail program is showing only one message at a time and only shows one deleted message at a time too. Evidently, the program became corrupted when the power suddenly went off. I couldn't help her.

Tomorrow will be busy too. I have Coffeyville Ministerial Alliance at noon and then I will get the minutes in the e-mail in the afternoon. It's supposed to rain tomorrow and it should be cold again. I will let Slinky sleep in the kitchen again tonight.

Bob called last night and he has shingles now. He didn't know what he had but the minute he told me about his symptoms, I knew exactly what it was. He went to a doctor and sure enough it was shingles. They wanted him to take a prescription that cost $365. He was shocked and asked them if they didn't have a generic. They didn't but they sent him to Wal Mart. There it cost $69. They even gave him card that made it $29. Anyway he takes the meds five times a day. Hopefully they won't last long.

Tuesday, March 31, 2009

Long Time Coming

This financial mess has been a long time coming. Some of us recall when the Dow was at 803 in 1982. Before the stock market fell apart in the fall of 2007, it was up to 14,165. All kinds of bells should have gone off. Between those periods, the share of disposable income each homeowner spent on mortgage and consumer debt increased by 35%. In 1982 the average household saved 11% of their disposable income. In 2007 that was down to less then 1%.

Each year since the turn of the century the US economy has grown more slowly than the global economy. That too should have been a red flag.

It's true...everything suddenly has changed. More than a year into this recession, we still aren't sure if the end is in sight. Most of us have lost 30% of our retirement income. Jobs are hard to come by. There are thirty people applying for each available position.

For years, greedy capitalists and even he past president and at least one political candidate for president insisted that the economy was strong and healthy. But now we have to endure the shocking and terrible pain of realizing we were just fooling ourselves and being fooled.

We'll soon see how well the new president copes. One thing is sure. Long before he was elected he clearly sensed the nature of the historic moment.

We have brought on this crisis by going through a quarter century of self destructive financial excesses. We have been overly dependent on credit and dependence on oil, both as a nation and as individuals.

China, on the other hand is the one economy that has saved money. And that is a good thing because now we are dependent on borrowing from them to run our economy.

On the other hand, we can have universal health care and public schools that succeed. But we must tax fossil fuels and develop the power of wind and sun to do it. We must impose sensible regulatory mechanisms on banks and markets again and yet also promote free markets and free trade. We have to grow our military to protect ourselves and others on the globe without fighting needless wars but as a powerful deterrent. But we also have to eliminate pork barrel weapon systems that do not work but waste billions of taxpayer dollars.

Congress must pass some kind of carbon taxing bill that can help pay for the alternative energies. The infrastructure, which has been deteriorating for years needs revamping and needs to be restructured and rebuilt.

Right now we are all still in a state of shock. Half the stock market is gone and half of all wall street wheeler dealers are gone. It's a terrible time and yet it is a time of opportunity if we learn something from the experience. Yes, we must spend money to pull ourselves out of this predicament yet we must not overuse credit to do it. We must get ourselves back on a basically cash basis as families and individuals and begin saving again.

Let's not panic but work together for the recovery. Let's give the president a chance to let his program work. It won't recover overnight. He's only been in office less then 90 days.

Monday, March 30, 2009

Normal Monday

It was cold last night and there was still some snow on the ground so I let Slinky sleep in the kitchen. He slept comfortably all night. I give him two old rag rugs and two old towels and he makes a "nest" of sorts out of those towels. At 6:00 or so, he began whining to let me know he needed to get out so I got up and let him out. Then I just stayed up. I fixed him his cinnamon toast and he seemed happy to have things back to normal. He began looking at the stove awhile ago and I knew he was wanting his bacon. I know bacon isn't good for him but he's an old dog so why not make him happy in the time he has left. I put a piece of bacon on a cup of his dog food and pour the bacon grease over it. He absolutely loves it! He is patiently waiting now for his bacon to cook.

Missy still hates him. It is so funny to see how she hisses at him if he even looks at her or comes her way. Poor dog! Back in Georgia, before the divorce, they had a cat that looked just like Missy, just a little larger because he was a male...a tom...and they were great friends and even slept together. He probably can't figure out why Missy is so hostile. But she is hostile to everyone..except me. She even hissed at Karan when she came to feed her.

Bob called last night and talked briefly, about ten minutes ..until he lost the signal. He is doing pretty well. One day last week he took his glucose reading and it was 265. I was horrified! But he said the next day it was 145 and the following day it was 123. So, who knows what's going on with his diabetes. Anyhow, he said he did get to stay in the motel after all. I knew he wouldn't be able to sleep at all in a shelter. But the man is almost 79 years old. I don't know how much longer he can do disasters....especially with diabetes.

But, whatever makes him happy. Certainly no one is going to tell me what I can or cannot do and I have told my children that whichever one of them puts me in a nursing home will be cut out of my will. I want to die in my own home...when my time comes.

Oh well, enough of that! I am 73 and in perfect health. I have plenty of energy. I don't even take any meds. So I could live to be 93 like my aunt Flossie. Who knows... But I mean it about the nursing home. To me that would be hell on earth.

Sunday, March 29, 2009

Three Day Weekend Retreat

It was a huge weekend. I left here Friday morning for Joplin. I shopped for a coverlet for my son, Scott. I couldn't find the one I was looking for. Later I went out to the campgrounds and helped them register and make name tags. Later the weekend events began.

One of the presidents of our church was there with us. Her name is Becky Savage. She told us about the newer emphasis of the church...a kind of friendship evangelism. Our people are not too good at inviting folks to church. We need to change that and begin inviting folks to church.

It was a very good weekend even though it snowed Saturday. Here at the church, they got eight inches and had to cancel church. We are in the country and cannot get in and out of our driveway.

I got home around 1:00 PM and found a very sad Shar Pei. He had been put in the garage by my friends who fed him and my cat, Missy. The hot water tank is in there and keeps the garage relatively warm. But he hates it. It is isolation. He hates to be isolated.