Those two words accurately describe how I feel about living in this country.
I watched a report last night on Denmark, how the government pays for health care, education (through college). How there is very little disparity in income levels, very few who live in poverty. The citizens are much more laid back. Employees receive 6 weeks of vacation per year. The work week isn't as long and afternoon breaks are the norm. Oh yeah, and the people are happier, according to surveys and studies. Their advice for Americans? Lighten up and let go of the illusion that is the American Dream. Excellent advice, considering the "dream" was never meant to be open to us all, but only to the few while the rest of us work for the man (or woman).
While Americans claim to be intrigued by such findings, most refuse to pay the necessary 40-50% of their income in taxes in order to afford the above. However, when one thinks about it, we already pay close to that already. We're taxed up the ass here and there and it adds up. Phone usage, water, electricity, cable, gas, hotels. There are taxes and things called "fees" that get tossed into our monthly expenses. And need I mention health insurance? Our premium consists of 25% of our income and without the subsidy we receive, we would be paying approximately 65% of our income. On health insurance alone!
How often do we read about some country being p'd off at Denmark? How many nations have these folks invaded? Do they force their political agenda onto other nations? Do they subscribe to the "our way is best" mentality?
Folks, what is so wrong with a government that actually takes care of its citizens, from birth to death? What is so flipping wrong with that? What is so flipping wrong with a government that uses the people's tax dollars to ensure they have health insurance, education, adaquate housing? In other words, we see an example of a government that actually is a government for and of the people.
I read an article the other day on Rense.com. The author, obviously an uptight Puritan-like individualist, was talking about "bad" Democrat policy, including things like Pro-Union Laws, help for the poor/social welfare, higher taxes on the wealthy. I cannot stomach or fathom anyone who would look at such things in a negative light. What the fuck is going on with such a mentality, with such callousness, with such a cold, detached way of looking at life, at people? Who put into his head such things?
What are we supposed to do? Ignore the realities of poverty? Ignore the realities of slave labor? Ignore the effects of NAFTA?
This author went on to say that businesses run things better than the government. I had to shake off the brain fuzziness that followed after reading such an outrageous statement. How can anyone really look at our current state and say that, since the massive deregulation in recent history, our people and our environment are better off? Poverty is up. Wages have stagnated. Pollution in our soil and waterways has increased. And yet, businesses continue to see their profits skyrocket. Yep, leave big brother business alone and things run swimmingly. For them, that is.
I'm just sickened by this uptight, Puritan, individualistic, insane go go go consume consume consume lifestyle. It isn't me. It never has been and never will be. I talk with people about this wherever I go. I'm certainly not the only one who wishes things were different. And yet, I'm tired of talking about it. Rather than hanging around, I have a growing longing to move to another country whose values are more in tune with my own. I'm simply too fucking tired to fight for a change here at home. Besides, that fight will likely end in futility. For as long as people continue to vote for the lesser of some group of appointed thugs, we'll continue to see the same results.
I'm ready to live the way I want NOW. I'm ready to live in a place where I don't have to worry about health insurance, where I can go back to school and not let $$ be a factor. I'm ready to live in a place where employees aren't cattle, where fair living wages are not only provided but ensured. A place where people ENJOY life because they take the time to do so. A place where quality AND quantity are of equal value. In short, I'm ready to breath that sigh of relief and say "yes, at last I am home."