Wednesday, May 4, 2011

Entitlement, Facts, Opinions, Respect, Gas

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While You Are Entitled To Your Own Opinions, You Are Not Entitled To Your Own Facts.

Whadda ya mean I'm not entitled to my own facts? I'm entitled to everything else, right? I certainly am entitled to gas below $4.03 a gallon.

Funny I happened upon the above article this morning. I had a friend on that face place post this in her her status:

Let's be clear on this: OBAMA did NOT kill Bin Laden. An American soldier, who Obama just a few weeks ago was debating on whether or not to PAY, did. Obama just happened to be the one in office when our soldiers finally found OBL and took him out. This is NOT an Obama victory, but an AMERICAN victory!! REPOST IF YOU AGREE!!!
I was pleasantly surprised that out of all my conservative or anti-Obama friends (for some reason, my circle seems to contain a lot of people with political views at the extreme opposite of mine), only one dear friend turned the death of Bin Laden into a political sideshow. I am very proud that 99% of the people I call friends, no matter what their personal beliefs, said thank god this is over, good job all and left it at that. (Of course my few zany liberal friends said 'take that birthers') Because I have a big mouth (or large fingers), I posted a rebuttal, using Rush Limbaugh's words as evidence that the 'don't credit Obama at all' thing was horse manure. The Big O, being the boss-man of the soon to be Call of Duty immortalized SEAL Team 6, deserves the appropriate amount of credit for saying "get 'em boys".

See, in the real world, when your employees do a great job they get some credit, but your boss- you know, the guy you answer to- gets some credit, too (and sometimes more credit than the staff). Same happens when you eff the hell up, except, as a boss, you get more credit for failure than the guys following your orders. Why on earth should it be any different for the Commander and Chief? What is wrong for telling people 'good job' even when you don't like them. Hell, I do it all the time! There are TONS of people I dislike, but if they do something pretty stellar and positive, I can swallow all those yucky feelings to say "You did great, congrats".

That's part what being an American is about. It's about putting aside all those ill-feelings we have for those we don't care for, approve of, or like to say "You know, we give credit where credit is due in this country". If we can't thank the Commander and Chief, we surely will forget all the other people in that room with him, the guys and gals supporting SEAL Team 6-- like the person at their home who told them "you can surely be a military dude that can change the world forever", the guy who feed them lunch or put together that package of MRE in a factory somewhere, the people who built the helicopters so you know, they didn't all break into 50 pieces en route to this compound, the first grade teachers who made all these future game changers believe in themselves enough to get this far... the list could go on for hours, I'm sure.

To that list, you could all us whiny Americans and even the one who said "This is not a victory for Obama." If something was ever Anti-American, that sentiment its that statement. We all celebrate, take credit, but we won't give the boss one iota of praise because. Because why? I hated G.W. Bush, but I had enough respect for the office of the president to say "Good job" after 9/11/01 was met with some bombs dropping on country du jour. As a patriot, it is my duty to have respect for whomever is in the White House, regardless of my feelings for them.

As a citizen with a child, it my obligation to teach my son how our democracy works, starting with respecting the positions of leaders and teaching him how to disagree with decorum and dignity. It's my job to teach him to respect the office of president, even when you don't agree with all the President's policies. It is my job to teach him that it's okay to give someone credit for a job well done even if you can't find any other redeeming quality about that person. It's also my job to explain the difference between fact and opinion.

The fact in this life lesson is that Obama holds the title of Commander and Chief with which comes credit for successes and failures. Stating that he doesn't deserve any credit is not an opinion nor a factual statement. It is a down-right fallacy. Those that teach that lie are those trying to destroy the very fabric of our country, are unpatriotic and do the work the terrorists set out to accomplish in the first place.

As for government shut-downs, we've been there, done that. I didn't happen; those leader people worked it out. Almost doesn't count and I'm pretty sure no one wanted to not pay the military. I'm certain that the whole subject is entirely too complex to explain in a facebook post. It was only used in this mass-repost-statusto bolster the argument (and lie that) Obama hates our troops. The concept and it's situation is so grossly misused that it doesn't even deserve more mention than this.

The gas thing is a favorite that ended up as comment in my spirited debate made by this particular friend, that I didn't even address it. The price of gas isn't Obama's fault. It's not the fault of Congress. Again, its complicated, but I get tired of people thinking the government has some sort of magical powers to change the cost of the goods we the people consume. Guess what, it hurts the government, too, when the cost of gas increases-- from the federal to the local levels. It is what is and there is no short term solution. End of story.

Here's the immediate solution: Change your effing budget so you can afford your commute to work. Then kick yourself for buying a gas guzzler. Five years ago, I had a choice-- gas guzzler or fuel efficient. I picked a car that gets 40 MPG on the highway. Then I realized that most everything I need can be found in a 10 mile radius from my house. Yeah, I'd love to go to Target every week, but I can't afford to spend the gas, so I don't. My husband commutes an hour to work, so he takes my fuel efficient car. We plan out our errands so no gas is wasted.

Save gas by thinking before you drive and save money by making a budget. Carpool. Don't continue your gas guzzling behavior and complain about how much money you spend. You are not entitled to 99 cent gas. No one promised that you, ever. What you are promised as an American is the ability to use your brain and mad skillz to overcome obstacles to live as you desire. So get out your amazing calculators, sit down with all your bills, calculate the amount of gas you use week and forecast your financial future on your current route and then start playing with changes.

UPS saved 29 million miles worth of gas last year by eliminating left turns from their routes and if they can figure it out, you can to. As an American, you are entitled to use your brain to find solutions to your problems.

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