Tuesday, January 27, 2009

Staggering to the library and back...

I had so many books to take back I could barely walk, and I hoped to have less when I returned, but I found so many I could not resist I staggered home with another giant load. It's a good time to check a lot out as we get to keep them 10 weeks because they are overhauling the computer system. I started reading a giant book called Searching for Bill Clinton by John Hopkins University psychologist, John Gartner. I knew it would be filled with information I did not know about Bill Clinton, and that is proving to be true. For example, I found out that he started reading when he was three years old! And was reading the newspaper by the time he was six. He reminds me a lot of Nelishia's grand daughter Katie who is proving to be so phenomonally gifted when it comes to her studies.
Bill, it was said by those around him, was usually always reading three books at a time. He along with Teddy Roosevelt were two of the readingest presidents of all time. Because their minds were such treasure troves of information they were also big talkers with knowledge about every subject that anybody brought up.
Gartner did research on the mystery that surrounds the identity of Bill's father. His mother claimed he was her husband's who was in the service, but Bill was not premature it was said but came 8 months after he returned from the service. And many said that Bill far more resembled a doctor that his mother interacted with as a nurse anthesiologist. Blythe, her husband, was killed in a car accident before Bill was ever born, but this researcher found out that when the doctor took his wife and family to the seashore, Bill was usually invited to go with them for the whole two weeks every summer, so Dr. Wright, if he was his father, managed to be close to him in ways.
He also talked to one of the doctor's sons who told him that his father was a phenomonal reader! While the intellects in his purported father's family appeared to be only average. This lends credence that Bill had inherited his brilliance from this man. A photo of his oldest son is placed along side Bill's around the same age, and they do look quite a bit alike, but I thought the phenomonal interest in reading was probably the biggest clue. His mother and her family did not have anything close to this level of intellect.
I was eager to find books on all the problems that are besetting us, including the economy. Every day more companies are down sizing, so the numbers who are being laid off are pretty frightening. I think we are all going to have to do a lot of helping in the years to come so that these people laid off will not suffer too much. I do not think we have begun to see the squeeze that will occur when the impact of all this downsizing will be most felt.
I am sure Obama is very nervous about what he will be able to do as president to address this big frightening happening.
I heard an analyst say tonight that we had become a consumer spending society and that China is now the saver and producing one that we once were. And now we are the ones in serious trouble. I think our presidents have quite insanely encouraged spending and buying because they feared to deal with just what has finally happened with all that spending. Up until just a few months ago Bush was oblivious to what was happening in the housing market with people who could not afford it buying new houses. He thought it was a good thing for all Americans to get in their own homes, not realizing that trying to have this American dream could lead to massive foreclosures. Houses have never been cheaper in Arizona which has now resulted in the sale of houses here rising again. People are buying these cheap houses as an investment. But a lot of money has been lost initially in the housing market, and housing starts have practically fallen to zero resulting in layoffs and bankruptcies in the building trades.
My father's thrifty ways kept me from ever having a credit card and buying on credit. He would not buy anything on credit, even a car. I was convinced that I needed to live within my small means even though others around me were buying and buying and did not think filing bankruptcy a bad thing at all. When you buy with the idea you will file bankruptcy I tend to think that is another way to steal. I have seen it happen too many times not to think these people had larceny in their hearts.
I have seen people on low incomes like mine wreck their lives with gambling, borrowing every single month to the max on their government checks from the bank with ruinous interest rates charged. Pierre, my last companion, had gotten to this point with his gambling and spending. Creditors were calling him all day long on his unpaid credit cards. I knew that he and his ex wife had planned to max out two or three credit cards and declare bankruptcy. I don't know if she declared bankruptcy, but he never got around to it before he died. I feel that his financially disastrous habits drove him to his death as much as his smoking and drinking did. He was on the verge of being taken to court by one company. I told him, when he found out he had terminal cancer, well, I guess dying is preferable to you than going to court. He still only had a green card so he was always afraid of being deported back to Canada. I thought he and his cousins were a bunch of thieves who took advantage of our system not to pay their bills and declare bankruptcy after making money a lot of money in construction and gambling and spending it away. They took pride in their building skills, but not in paying their bills!
I immediately tried to rein him in, saying that his attitude was draining the very life's blood out of him. Which is why I am so grateful to find such a frugal man in Doc. He is a different knd of drunk. He was raised by Lutherans who always paid their bills. I don't know what he did back in St. Louis but here he never spends a dime without squeezing it twice. In fact, he reminds me of my father, only he is not quite that unpleasantly stingy. I keep looking for him to go wild, but so far he has not done it. He has not made others pay with his excesses by spending irresponsibly.

2 comments:

sober white women said...

I for one am not spending any money that I don't have to. Then my girlfriends mom reminded me that it was the poor that survived the last depression.
I must say that Rusty and I are doing o.k. and I think it is because we have always been very cheap.
Kelli

LaRena said...

i could just see you staggering to the library and back,loaded with books both ways. It reminded me of when I first knew you and would go to the bookmobile in Boulder. Always met you coming out loaded to your chin. I would select my paltry two or three. Oh how we loved that bookmobile though. I don't think randy could have survived growing up in Boulder without it.

The Bill Clinton book sounds very interesting. I will have to get it. Hopefully my eyes will hold out until I give up the ghost. I don't cover nearly as much ground as I used to.

I think Obama feels quite over whelmed with all the financial woes. Also I believe the people of America are partially responsible for living so far beyond their means. I received an e-mail that said liquidity is when you look at your retirement account and wet your pants. I can relate.


Herrad

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