Put our minds and hearts together


English: Poverty Русский: Нищенство

Between Mass media and the world-wide web it seems we are becoming a global minded society. Nothing wrong with being global minded as long as we never forget we live in our own small community as well. If we keep our minds distracted with the news of overseas conflicts and international problems we tend to forget the problems we face in our home towns. We should start at home when it comes to helping the needy, impoverished and those who can not fend for themselves. Though I fully support helping the less fortunate on a global scale as well I believe our hometowns should be our first priority. There are hungry, homeless, handicapped and many who can not do for themselves in every town and city in our great nation. Food stamps, welfare are good as temporary solutions in helping those who are able to work and is the right idea for those who are truly physically or mentally incapable of working.

We need to focus on offering those able to work training to do jobs and also offer them state and/or federal jobs doing community service. At least they will be on the right track back to being independent and self efficient individual. Most of those who are on some kind of governmental assistance usually prefers to work for their living but find it hard to get a job which pays enough to support themselves or their family. So if we offered them training and/or a job with the government doing something constructive for their money they would gladly accept one if not both options.

In the Appalachian region a lot of coal miners are finding themselves unemployed due to the greener America movement and the lack of permits being issued for mining. The idea of greener technologies and alternative energies is a great idea, but if you get a greener America at the cost of the jobs of Americans then how will that be a better America? We need to bring in more industries and jobs into the region and retrain coal miners to do the new jobs before we start forcing coal mining to shut down.  It doesn’t only affect the coal miners and their families it affects the whole community and the communities surrounding it. Food stores, shopping malls, restaurants and many small business will get hit hard by the loss of coal mining jobs. They rely on the coal miners for their income and business.

This is just some of the issues happening here in our own back yard and for some their front yard as well. It is time for communities to start coming together as a community and start dealing with the problems here at home. Together we can overcome any challenge as long as we put our minds and hearts together . Turn off that television, radio, mp3 player and any  other time-consuming distraction device  and tune in to what is going on in your own town for a day. Take a little time to help out your neighbors and your fellow citizens and see how just a little help can go a long way.

Ray Barbier

People relied on themselves and each other to survive


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For the most of us the issue today is survival, how to survive on the income we have in an economy that is hostile to the working mans wallet. Food prices keep rising, the job market is pretty stagnant and business are cutting hours if not jobs. We can not rely on our government to save us or to fix the problems. Big business can only fix the employment issues and we are the only ones that will save our selves. We can learn how to make money stretch, grow our own food and trim the fat from our financial lives from our grandparents and great-grandparents. Some of them lived through the great depression and a world war, times were very tough back then and people relied on themselves and each other to survive.

Our economy is based on consumerism, yet the companies cut pay, jobs and send work over seas. How can Americans be consumers without money or a job? The corporations are cutting their nose off spite their face, they want to save money to make higher profits but they take away the consumers jobs and money that supply the profits. So I say lets start growing gardens, raising livestock and making due with less of the products from the companies that ship work across the oceans and who are cutting wages, benefits and jobs to Americans. I understand it is a global economy now days more so than just a national one, but if you neglect those whom helped you to get rich they will eventually wise up and stop supporting you and / or purchasing your products and services.

Maybe we need to start going back to a bartering system between us working folk and keep our unessential purchases to a minimum. Maybe then the big corporations will learn that the working class and the impoverished are not to be messed with or taken for granted.

Self-reliance, community and co-operation are the things that built the great cities and nations of our world.

Ray Barbier

This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution By license.

A Fork in the Road


Concept Lately the cycle of life has really sped  up around me, so many pregnancies and people either dying or getting life threatening diseases. This world is speeding up and we are heading towards a fork in the path we are going down. One of the paths ahead is to a dismal and foreboding future of selfishness, greed and eventual depletion of natural resources. The other path though will be rocky and hard to follow leads us as a species to a future of peace, equality and the saving of our wonderful planet and home called earth. We can not continue to walk through life with a selfish and/or apathetic heart, we have to become humble, compassionate and take care of this world we live in. We are all on this rock together and not one race, religion,country or individual has any more or less rights to live here. We are all equal and are equally responsible for our home and the life forms that live within it.

MP900408941 Some of the rich and powerful believe they are superior or at least deserve a better life than the average and impoverished man. This is just plain selfish and heartless thinking and not true, it isn’t about wealth, power or even physical prowess but it is about the spirit and the heart. The common and impoverished are not as naïve or  as uninformed as the rich and powerful believe. We are waking up and seeing that we are not being treated equal in taxation and not being represented equally in our governments. Eventually the meek shall awaken out of their groggy state of mind and will help bring some of the change needed. Sometimes I see big business as a kind of bully, they raise prices to gain huge profits with no concern about if the average person can or can not afford it.  Nothing matters but the profit margin and the bonuses they get each year. They fill their banks with money that was earned by underpaid worker’s in both their home country and 3rd world countries .  I understand the need for profits, but to be too greedy and have no care about the workers or the consumers who helped build that wealth is just not a good business model. Eventual things will become so costly that only the rich will be able to afford to buy anything beyond just food. And since the rich are just a small percentage of the whole consumer base there will be a lot of businesses failing.

Human eye with the recycling emblem inside<br /><br />File contains gradientsThough not all of the current financial crises is the fault of big business a lot of it falls on the consumer as well by using credit to purchase items they can’t really afford to have as well as buying luxury items that they could have lived without. Then the credit card companies also have their part in the mess as well as the mortgage lenders. There is many reasons why our world is in such a financial mess and the blame falls all across the board. The solution will also have to come from each level of the financial pyramid in order to fix it all. Greed and Envy seem to be the root of most of the mess, the businesses want more money and the consumer wants to keep up with the people next door.

We better change direction and choose the better path in the fork ahead, if we don’t our children, grandchildren and the generations afterwards will be living in a very dark future. We need to take care of the imbalance of wealth and start taking care of our home.

Just a rant of a middle-aged man.

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Raymond Barbier

Those who could really make a difference


023 Is another Renaissance period upon us? Seems we are in need of a great change in our cultures as well as in our method of thinking. I think it would be a great thing to have the resurgence of the interest in the arts and sciences once again. Definitely we need a change in our world, too much imbalance of wealth and power. I am all for people making profits as long as they do it both responsibly and with some morality mixed in. Seems way to much power has been given to the few and not enough to those who could really make a difference. So many voices unheard and ideas left unexplored by those in power. The creative, imaginative and honest common people are usually ignored or looked upon as just as the taxpayers whom they need to pacify. For some reason many governments think the lower middle class and the poor are nothing more than the piggy bank for as taxes go. The rich get all the tax breaks and usually a lower tax rate while those struggling to make ends meet pay the highest tax rate possible. So much inequality in our present era and that is a sign that change is not only needed but is on the horizon.

 

Across the globe we are seeing the oppressed rising up to challenge their oppressive governments and even forcing a regime change in some cases. Unfortunately they become targets for violent crack downs in an attempt to squash the protests and civil unrest. So it seems change is already in motion, peaceful change it the right path but it seems sometimes those in charge force it to become violent. In a democratic republic such as The United States it will be a more peaceful change though there will be a lot of protests and probably confrontations between police and protestors but nothing on a grand scale. We have already experienced some of the confrontations with the Occupy movement across the U.S.

 

The demand for change by the working and lower class is the first sign of cultural change and it also shows that our mindset as people is changing along with the world. It is all going to take time to get the world to change and patience is something we all must have. Change brought about by a peaceful means usually is a long-lasting change unlike that brought by conflict which usually lasts until a new conflict arises. Time for change for the status quo is no longer acceptable to the working class, the backbone of the world’s economy.

If big business would listen to economists and try to work out a way


$620 in 31 twenty-dollar bills.

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It seems if a big business or a congressman / congresswoman commit crimes they get a slap on the wrist or a fine when if either you or I were to commit the same crimes we would wind up in jail or at least on probation. So many businesses are using unethical and underhanded ways to cause price hikes so they can get record high profits. Believe me they will go as far as breaking the law if not bending it to make their all mighty dollar. Especially the oil companies, they buy oil when its cheap and hold it till prices soar to sell it to make profit instead of using it to keep cost low. Its bad enough OPEC plays tricks to keep oil prices high and add the Oil companies both American and internationally owned joining in on the game. Seems there is little to no accountability in big business now days and that is one reason our economy is in such bad shape. We need big business for our economy to throve but if they keep raising prices then the major contributor to the American economy is going to dry up. That contributor is you and me A.K.A.  the consumer. If we can’t afford to buy luxury items or gas for travel we will just save our money and shop less. This will set off a domino effect of more rising prices and that will bring less consumer spending. The thing is the big businesses can afford to have fewer profits easier than the average person can afford the skyrocketing costs.

We need more regulation to make sure that big businesses can make profits at a reasonable rate and so they will do so ethically. Some argue regulation hurts the economy, well sure it hurts the CEO’s economy and the board members along with the share holders but they will pass that buck down to their hourly employees and some of it to the consumer. The problem is I am for less government control but I am also for the ethical practice of business. So which is the lesser evil government regulation or allowing big business to continue making soaring profits while causing skyrocketing prices.  If big business would listen to economists and try to work out a way to lower prices and still make a profit then there is no need for any type of government regulations. So the ball is in their court for now, but if they don’t get their act together soon consumers (the Voters) of America will get tired of it and demand the government to do something. Which has already started with such moments as occupy wall street.  I am no Economist nor do I claim to know the solution, but I do see the problem and feel it is something that must be dealt with soon or the economy will just get worse and might even go into another great depression. I am not anti big business but i am definitely anti bad business.

Well right or wrong that is my opinion

Raymond Barbier

Our world may be a mess and in dire need of changes


IMG_1078fbI am but a dreamer, Dreaming of a better world and of more of a compassionate humanity.Though I may dream of better things I live in this nightmare we call modern society. A society were money is more important than the ecology and in some cases our own families. A society where drug companies rather treat a symptom than cure the disease so they can have record high profits. A world were the oil is slowly running out but no one is really trying to get off of the carbon based fuel addiction. Too much money to be made in the oil industry to make alternative fuels and / or energy a high priority.

A society where scientists can not seem to make up their minds on anything. Sometimes it makes you wonder how several research teams can come up with such conflicting results. I do not know if the scientists are on the take or just try for the results that will get them more grant money or what. I really hope it is just incomplete data or something not so sinister. Then here in the U.S. we have a congress that reminds me of grade school kids arguing over a ball in the school playground. Sticking to ones convictions may be a virtue but the well-being of our country and the citizens that elected them should be first priority.

In this country alone the big business has had a 40% profit increase but yet they had no growth new employment. So much money flowing in you would think they would hire on more employees and or offer better benefits. Don’t get me wrong I am all for them making profits, that is what they are in business to do. I just think if they made the money here in the U.S. they should reinvest it here by hiring on American workers and paying their fair share of taxes. The present tax code leaves way too many loopholes for the big businesses to use in avoiding paying their full share of taxes.

So much is changing in the world, yet too many of us just sit by and say or do nothing about it. We just watch it change and let those in power make all the choices for us. Our governmental system is one of the best in the world if we exercise all of our rights and get our voices heard by congress. But they can not hear our voices if we choose not to speak. It is the American people who made this one of the greatest nations in the world and we can do it once again if we choose to act. We have seen in the news how citizens can make a change, though they had to go to extremes that are not necessary in a democratic republic as ours.

Our world may be a mess and in dire need of changes that luckily we can make if we decide to do so. The nations of the world need to pull together and make the changes necessary to make a better world for our children. The children are our future, that is if we leave them a future they can survive in. The choice has always been ours to make, Lets hope we make the right one for both ourselves and our children.

God Bless Our Children and may he lead us to the right choices to be made.
Peace
Raymond Barbier

Just a Afternoon Rant.


Social Security Poster: old man

Change is something that no matter how hard you try you can only slow down but not totally avoid. This is being discovered on many levels by citizens and governments across the globe. Some change is good and some change is negative or retroactive, though no change is avoidable the end destination of change can be redirected. Even change that has been orchestrated runs its own course and usually will never come out exactly as planed.

So now the middle east and north African countries are going through a political change that has yet to reach its end. It will be many years after the dust settles before the end results will be known. The only thing predictable about the circumstances the world is facing in this unrest is that more than likely that no one will head the warnings of being dependent on oil and not having a fair economical and civilian minded government. It will shock me immensely if any Oil consuming nation and their government even thinks twice about getting off the oil addiction. It will shock me even more if any nation ever puts the citizens before the government officials or the big businesses.

I have a lot of faith in mankind just not very much in the select few who rule by government or from their corporate towers. They have all the money and power and they surely don’t want to share it or even allow others to reach their status level because less competition equals more control and wealth. To be fair there has to be some in government and in big business that do care and try to do good with what they have, Just seems there is more of them that are greedy and power hungry than compassionate and humane. So being out numbered by their peers they have a lot to overcome to make any difference in the world.

I just think it is time for businesses to get their act together and realize crude oil is eventually either going to run out or become too costly to sustain any industry that requires it to operate. I also think it is time for governments to see that the citizens are the ones paying their paychecks and taking care of all the bills / loan payments the government has. So if you don’t keep the working man and the consumers employed, healthy and somewhat happy that the economy is going to either become stagnant or head into a downward spiral.

Invest in small business and help the innovative people of your nation so new technologies and new sources of income can be created. Keep them healthy so they can be productive and keep the economy strong and for gods sake listen to the public, they are getting tired of their words falling on deaf ears. And here in the U.S. the political parties need to grow up and get over their differences and be grown up enough to face and tackle the problems facing the country from the federal government down to the back streets of America.

And for as the national debt is concerned, Stop borrowing money as much, cut foreign aid a bit and maybe take a pay cut up their in congress. Most Americans are forced to survive on 20k if not less and rank-and-file members of the House and Senate is $174,000 per year. Far as Social security, leave it alone for most of us middle class and below the social security benefits is all we have to retire on and due to the cost of healthcare most of us wont be able to live to see much past 60 years of age.

O.K. Enough Ranting for now,

Peace

Ray Barbier

Congress and Change


"The Third-Term Panic", by Thomas Na...

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Will the congress keep being partisan and make a congress that is in permanent gridlock or will they man-up and work together for the good of our country? Will party and personal agendas stand in the way of the changes in policy that is needed to further and maintain this country’s well being? Will big business and lobbyists control the direction our country is heading in or will the congress finally listen to we the people? Only time will tell, but if they keep with status Quo then they will ignore the pleas of the citizens and bow to big business or lobbyist like always. They will be more interested in the agendas and the status of their own party than the well being of our country.

  For change to happen it takes the development of the minds and hearts of those in power. They need to wake up to see that the true agenda of a government should be the wellbeing of both the citizens and of the country itself. Businesses will be born and shall go bankrupt that is a part of the free enterprise system. Not to say I am totally against bailouts, but how many mom and pop small business failed since the beginning of this recession and how many could have thrived if they too were considered for bailouts. Mom and pop businesses are the true backbone of America, unfortunately the government does not recognize them as small businesses because they do not make enough money to qualify.

  Congress needs to grow up and stop bickering amongst each other and see they are all one family in the scheme of things. They all represent us and should stop making decisions based on party bias and more on if it would help both the citizens and the country grow. They may be Republicans and Democrats, But they are servants to the public and government first and foremost.

The Constitution of The United States

“We the People of the United States, in Order to form a
more perfect Union, establish Justice, insure domestic Tranquility,
provide for the common defense, promote the general
Welfare, and secure the Blessings of Liberty to ourselves and
our Posterity, do ordain and establish this Constitution for the
United States of America.”