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Saturday, September 7, 2013

What Are the Odds?

Can we beat the odds?
People much wiser than I have been saying for as long as I can remember:  Our goal in life (future) should be that our children will have a better life than the one we as parents had.  For the longest time that has been an integral part of the American Dream.  The American Dream as I understand it, is to be able to achieve to our maximum ability (be all we can be).  Get as much education as we want, get our desired job, have a successful business, have a spouse and as many kids as we want and can afford.  Have a dream house and a car or boat if that is what we want.  I would hope that is your dream, with slight variation for the varying personal goals.
My parents strived to have the American Dream, and they did (even if they were divorced they each succeeded in their own way).  My father provided his family with a very comfortable home and even a vacation home in a resort town by the Pacific Ocean.  My mother and step-father owned and lived in a large farm that had grape vineyards.  My parents early on, and before the divorce, made sacrifices and calculated moves (physical moves- one country to another) so that I could have every possibility of a better education and thus a better future.  I am very grateful for the sacrifices, I have enjoyed a very blessed life that includes education, family, career, retirement, and everything I could possibly want (within reason and through hard work). 
I am not writing this to brag, I am addressing the subject because as the titles would indicate; What Are the Odds, that our grandchildren will have a better life than the one their parents or grandparents are enjoying.
Here is some food for thought: In my late teens, I could buy a 1965 Chevrolet Impala SS for about $5,000.00.  I know that you can argue that wages were low back then, but I was making close to $400 per month (That gross income per year is close to the cost of the car) while working on the farm.  The new car was attainable.  I just checked out the price of a 2014 Chevrolet Impala SS, the window sticker price was over $54,000 not including the dealership add-ons, and sales tax plus financing (most young adults today can only imagine what making 60K per year might be like).  The way jobs have gone from nice paying fulltime jobs to minimum wage and part time jobs, my grandchildren won’t be able to own the nice cars that his/her granddaddy drove (especially the classic version).  I recently had a conversation about a young lady (family friend) that recently moved to southern California to further her modeling career.  She lives a few miles north of San Diego and lives in close proximity to the beach her lease for a 400 square foot studio apartment is $1200 per month not including utilities.
Another family friend recently started his career in dentistry, and while he is earning good money he is facing student loans of over $200,000.  I have great faith in America and our way of life, however, our government is not even making it from paycheck to paycheck. There are more headlines about government shut downs due to budget problems than great economic headlines.  There is the problems in the horizon with rogue countries, nuclear, and chemical weapons, war on terrorism, taxes, on and on. Despite all, that I pointed out, we must keep the faith, and resolve to make adjustments to our present course.  I don’t claim to know the answer, but even a person that is sight challenged can see the problems we are headed for.  The best is yet to come…

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