Invitation to Reality

invitation-3

Two to the right, two to the left, one to the right, one to the left…repeat.

Every 4 or 8 years we change directions and with that, we change the way we offend each other. For the next four years, the word LIBERAL will be used to downgrade a beaten opponent, after that, we will most likely go back, and we will make fun of our fellow sisters and brothers who we then will call CONSERVATIVE and we laugh at them the same way. Divided we seem to be. Two to the right, two to the left..repeat.

It’s the same thing over and over. We are being pushed into a drawer, sadly there are only two drawers available, and so we bite the bullet and jump right in -even if we often feel we don’t belong.

218 Million people here in the U.S. are eligible to vote

146 Million are registered to vote

What about the rest? What about the 72 Million people who don’t even bother to register or vote and the ones who are registered but didn’t vote in this election? “Oh, they don’t care,” that’s what we assume but I don’t think that’s necessarily the truth. Perhaps they are just tired of dancing to the left and to the right.

There are many who don’t belong, the so-called middle, the independent voter, the tired citizen. There are many -too many- who don’t’ feel engaged anymore.

Politics -left or right- is a business. Our electoral system is rigged, it’s rigged against third parties. I yearn for a third party, a drawer that would make me feel more comfortable.

I long for reality. Wouldn’t that be nice?

This world has changed, it has changed without asking for our permission. Many old certainties have faded. It just happened, and now many of us want the old world back. I understand. I wish there would be time machine where we all could go back in time -just a little bit. Maybe to the year 2000 when we all were so optimistic about the new millennium.

The optimism has faded away, and it left many of us with fear. The years 2015 and 2016 have been brutal; war and terror came too close. All of a sudden there were hundred thousands of refugees from Syria and Afghanistan asking for a new home. The European Union seems to be crumbling after the British Brexit vote and could quickly fall apart if anti-EU activists in the Netherlands and in France should win the election. The United States voted to go back in time and be great again, while at the same time Vladimir Putin in Russia is pulling his strings, mostly against Europe and he is looking for a new puppet.

Times are uncertain. Our usual order seems to crumble – politically, socially and economically.

  • Prosperity has hardly increased at all.
  • Productivity growth is nearly zero.
  • The World Trade is stagnating.
  • The boom in the new, emerging markets is over.
  • The global debt is at a record high.
  • Demographic crises are on the rise

Pessimism fosters cynicism and fear. Some politicians paint a picture of hopelessness, which promoted a radicalization that hinders a sensible debate. Other’s tried to sound upbeat and hopeful. Real problems are rarely being discussed -realistic solutions are hardly achievable. Two to the right…two to the left…repeat.

It is indeed time for a serious reality check? It’s time to accept that things have changed and maybe we have to adjust instead of fighting it? It’s time to accept each other and work on solutions that will work for all.

Take immigration for example and lets fast forward 14 years, to the year 2031, when I will retire -if retirement will still be an option.

I am a Baby Boomer child, there are 76 Million in the United States alone. 76 million children who were born between 1946 and 1964 and they will ask for their well-earned retirement. Right now we have around 40 Million retired people here in the United States, and we can hardly take care of them. They don’t just go away, they get older and older.

Perhaps it would be realistic to sit down and figure out the workforce we will need in 10-15 years to afford all that? Today there are just 2.9 workers per retiree -and this amount is expected to drop to two workers per retiree by 2030. Goodness, maybe we should start building a golden gate and invite immigrants into the  United States instead of trying to deport them? Is it too realistic to say we need not just jobs but also the workforce?

Factory jobs will disappear more and more and the manufacturing jobs will not come back. The automatization will continue, technology will me more and more integrated into our everyday life. Robot voices will take our orders in fast food restaurants, and I will continue to check myself out in the grocery stores -or I will order online, and an Amazone or drone will deliver my products.

We need to focus on education. People without a college degree won’t stand a chance in the future. Knowledge and skills and the willingness to learn will be the key to future success. Right now our educational performance sucks. We are 14th in a list of 40 countries. Sorry, but that’s not good enough! Education has to be affordable and accessible to all.

A healthy sense of reality I would like that. I would like that a lot.

You may say I’m a dreamer. But I’m not the only one.

 

 

 

 

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12 thoughts on “Invitation to Reality

  1. We have the same left right problem and this is upheld by the first-past-the-post electoral system… however, the party that has changed that is the one that chose and campaigned on a single subject (membership of the EU). This has broken the system because both left and right were split on this one subject. For the moment the right has won out and the left is in total disarray – but the right is STILL split and if a suitable leader rolled up wanting to rejoin the EU, uphold the NHS, give teachers support and self-respect, and help independent businesses, I think they’d walk in. So I will hang on to this dream.

    Liked by 1 person

  2. Yes, the world has changed tremendously since I was born. I won’t be around ib 2030. Those lost jobs are gone and we must face facts. Mankind has to learn to live in his environment not changed it. When I was growing up. When you brought someting, you had the say. Today, if you buy something , you do what the seller wants and it is streamlined to a so called normal. I am praying that the country gets through the inauguration and the Woman’s March with out a major violence activity. Think Positive!

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  3. Bridget, change always comes in fits and starts. I honestly think the world has changed in certain areas for the better. So many more people seem to really care about the planet and its citizens. That being said though, I, too, yearn for a representative that I could put my arms around. Anymore I put my arms around my country and my planet and do my best. But then that is all anyone of us can do.

    Liked by 1 person

  4. I feel your misery, Bridget. I know that a lot of people don’t vote because they are disgusted with the system, but not voting doesn’t fix anything. Some of the people protesting after the election didn’t vote at all – a little late to make their voices heard, when perhaps engaging in the process could have resulted in an entirely different outcome, from local government right up to POTUS.

    I think that capitalism and the worship of money is eventually going to turn on its head. Perpetual growth is unsustainable except for a very few at the expense of everyone else. I think the answer is going to have to be a change in values – caring for each other, compassion, generosity. One’s status and worth will be measured by how they contribute to the welfare of others rather than by the size of their bank account. It’s just going to be very painful to get there. 😀

    Liked by 1 person

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