Monthly Archives: October 2012

Standard of Living

Throughout this presidential campaign season all I hear over and over again is “the middle class.” In my mind I wanted to think that the middle class made up a large part of the population. I thought this because it seems to be what the President and his opponent to want to save, and accuse each other of trying to destroy.

I looked up the facts regarding class sizes.

In 2005 when the economy was booming and “things” were wonderful the class sizes were as follows:
Lower middle class was 30%
Working lower class made was 30%
Working poor was 13%

This leaves us with the upper middle class which was 15% then.
The capitalist were 1% and still are.

So what is the big fuss over this 15% of the population?

Well that was the question that I wanted to answer with my research, but I became curious over other facts. Once I saw the statistics I realized why the 1% doesn’t want to carry the tax burden. The lower middle class, the working lower class and the working poor make up 73% of the population.

Raising your standard of living has become the entire purpose for living. Mom works, grandma works, retired uncle works, disabled aunt works. Everyone has to work because we must meet our needs.

So back to the 1960’s when the per capita expenditures on recreation and meals rose by 40%, I asked how that could happen because in comparison to today’s standard of recreation it seemed to me that life was simpler then. There were no cell phones, no cable, no high speed internet and one car was enough for a family, and while they were working on it, there wasn’t a McDonald’s at every intersection.

In 1980, out of the 85 million households in the United States, 64% owned their own living quarters, 55% had at least two TV sets, and 51% had more than one vehicle.

What this says to me is that the standard of living index is measured by who has what and how much.

So when Westgate mogul David Siegel, which I consider in the 1% tells his sad tale of how he had to halt the construction of his 90,000 square foot home, not because his business is bad, but because “Obamacare” may cost him more to do business. Treating his employees fairly could cost him 20,000 square feet of living space. That would hurt a guy like David.

Most of us live within 1,500 square feet or less. Why is having 88,000 times more than the average person not enough? I’ve been asking this question over the years as I have watched more and more companies become detached from responsibility to employees. They offer part time work to folks who need to work full time, but they are afraid that they may have to give up a little more profit.

I’m all for profit. If you are going to have a business there would be no other goal. This profit margin got larger and larger for these capitalists. Again, 88,000 times more home than anyone. That is what the 1% is afraid of.

In an interview with Piers Morgan, Donald Trump was asked if we should all think big like him, and Donald answered:
“No, not everyone should think big, it would be too crowded up here and that wouldn’t be any fun.”

I rest my case.

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Posted by on October 20, 2012 in Uncategorized


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What melts the hardwire?

We all watched in horror as the twin towers collapsed before our very eyes. How could this happen? The towers were steel framed and what could melt the hardwire of this ginormous structure?

Well, we know that a couple of planes hit the towers. Which then doused the buildings with explosive jet fuel and while there are conspiracy theories by the dozens about that whole scene, the fact is that the steel melted.

This is the premise of my book.

What could be so warm? What could be so powerful? What could make the whole world watch?

You will have to read the book to hear the answer, although I think you already know..

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Posted by on October 14, 2012 in Uncategorized


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The infancy of religions

The Muslim religion is rocking the world right now. We like to call them “extremist” and “radicals.” We lack the understanding in the teachings that mislead some into horrific actions that kill, maim, and torture the infidels.

After years of turning on my radio and expecting to hear what the next attack that Islam would launch against the non-Islamic population would be, I decided to do a little research on religion in general. I wanted to compare other religions and how they responded to the non follower.

I could barely remember the facts behind the Spanish Inquisition. It had been years since I studied world history and even when I did attend class, I wasn’t exactly listening all the time.

I looked into the Spanish Inquisition and rather than bore you with the historically detailed blow by blow, I wanted to show some similarities to what is going on right now.

The Inquisitions began in medieval times. There were variations of what you could call local tribes of some form of Christianity. These series of Inquisitions took place from 1184 through 1230.

The Spanish Inquisition began in 1480 and was originally intended to ensure the orthodoxy of those that had converted from Judaism and Islam. This Inquisition was established by Catholic Monarchs, Ferdinand II of Aragon, and Isabella of Castile. Originally intended to concentrate on converts, this movement would increase its momentum to gain religious authority and reign.

While these Inquisitors did not walk into a crowd and set off an explosive vest, some of their actions can help explain the actions that Muslims take on the infidels today.

This movement which was originally meant to monitor converters eventually became a decree to convert or leave. Those that converted were then watched by neighbors to be sure that they were true converts. The absence of smoke in your chimney on a Saturday would indicate that you were secretly observing the Jewish Sabbath. The buying of many vegetables just before Passover or the buying of meat from a converted butcher could also be considered evidence that the convert was really a heretic. This evidence would be heard in a public court. The Jews could confess and do penance, but those that relapsed would be burned on the stake.

The age at which Christianity committed these offenses against Jews and Muslims was 1400 years old. There were inquisitions before the Spanish. The medieval inquisitions were more tribal in my opinion. Nevertheless, Christians in their infancy committed just as much torture and murder in the name of God.

Islam dates to the 600’s. This puts it right where the Christians were when they savagely attacked Jews and Muslims, in its infancy.

I’m not agreeing with Muslims in their pursuit to eliminate the infidels from the face of the earth, but I do understand that they are a young religion that needs time to grow in order to achieve the spiritual plane they seek. They are answering to their god in a way that is taught by man. Just like all other religions out there, once they eliminate the “man” and allow spirit to really guide them we will witness a pivotal transformation that will allow us to all live in peace.

All this says is that we are not finished here. The unrest between religions must end before there is peace on earth. Especially with the mentality that only one religion can inherit the earth. When these religions mature, all of them, we will transform ourselves, which in turn will transform the earth.

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Posted by on October 13, 2012 in Uncategorized


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School daze

As the start to a new school year is well underway, and we are preparing for Halloween I found myself reminiscing with the memory of my first day in school.

I’ll never forget the weeks that led up to this magnificent day. We went shopping for clothes, a lunch box, new shoes and the rain gear. I remember the rain gear the most vividly. Just like everyone else mine was bright yellow and it reeked of plastic. I had the whole set up with the latching boots and the rain hat. My umbrella was candy apple red. I just knew that I could weather anything in this outfit.

The only thing that made my preparation for the first day of school different than other kids was that I had to learn my new age. I was 5 years old and you had to be 6 to start first grade. My mother worked full time and the kindergarten class let out at noon. This was 1967 when 5 year olds were sent home for a nap and they were done with school for the day.

My mother rehearsed with me over and over. “How old are you?” she would ask me spontaneously. I got it wrong a few times, but eventually I answered “six” consistently.

The other change would be to my name. I knew my name was Ramona, but at the age of five I didn’t know my last name. I had never used a last name at this point. So Ramona Johnson would be the name that I would start my life with.

No one in my whole family had the last name Johnson. My mother at the time was Socarras. I think that my mother was trying to pass me off as an American. Again, it’s 1967 and creating your own documents was pretty easy.

Which brings me to the language barrier, I didn’t speak English. The only thing I knew was “what is your name, and how old are you?” That was due to the weeks of training with my mom.

We practiced walking to school and home again because she would leave before I went to school and would not return until dinner. We must have walked the path twenty times in the last few weeks.

I was very well prepared to enter into the world on my own with a fake name and a fake date of birth.
The Tuesday after Labor Day 1967 I woke up early with my parents for this exciting day. We had breakfast together and they left for work. I was to watch out of the window for when the kids began walking to school and that’s how I knew that it was time to leave. I couldn’t read a clock yet.

So off I went in the direction of all the other children from the apartment complex where we lived at the time. I didn’t talk to anyone. I just followed the crowd until I arrived in school. My mother and I had come the week before to register and although they showed me how to get to class, with the crowded halls I became confused and lost. I didn’t know how to ask for help so I wondered the halls until the bell rang and the halls were empty.

The hall monitor discovered me and got me to class. I passed the first test as he walked me to my classroom. “What’s your name? How old are you?”

When I opened the door and quickly scanned the class of about twenty kids, all older than me, they were a little bigger than me and I was now the center of attention for everyone in the room. I was late and so I got the big entrance.

“What’s your name?” The young teacher asked me. “Ramona Johnson.” I said just as I had practiced over and over.

“Ramona the pest!” One kid yelled from the back of the room causing the entire room to burst out in laughter.

I broke out in a wail of tears that I could not control. The teacher walked up to me and pulled me to her chair which was at the front of the classroom. She sat down before pulling me up into her lap.

“Why are you crying?” she asked. I barely understood her question.

“Are you five or are you six?” she asked while her eyes scanned the class. Everyone waited for my answer. I was still whimpering.

“Six.” That is what I was supposed to say no matter how many times I was asked.

“Well you are in first grade now. Kindergarteners cry. First graders don’t cry.” She explained to a degree that I could somewhat understand.

The class broke out in laughter and I was the Kindergartener/pest for the rest of the day. I had no idea what was said for most of the day. I mostly sat at my desk and did nothing because I didn’t understand a single direction. I wondered if I should follow what others were doing, but none of it made sense enough to pull off imitating.

I made it through the day and as I walked home in the rain, I knew that I never wanted to go back. I arrived where I had to cross the street to my apartment complex and I could not cross. The curb on the other side was a storm drain and it was sucking water from the street creating what looked to me a river.

I was afraid to cross because I thought that the water was going to suck me into the drain and kill me.
Again, I was crying today. Just stood there in the rain crying. Kids passed me by and didn’t get sucked in, but I still didn’t trust it. I couldn’t cross anywhere else because this is what I practiced.

Finally an older man came out of his apartment, crossed the street, picked me up and set me back down on the sidewalk that led to my home.

I never shared this story with my mom. I would have gotten in trouble for letting a stranger help me.
The years that followed would be marked by this very first day. I would always hate school. It took until third grade to get my name right, correct my age and learn English.

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Posted by on October 2, 2012 in Uncategorized


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