Here's the Nonsense: Black Friday and the holiday season will push the economy into high gear and will give us confidence for the future.
Here's the Horse Sense: Anyone who believes that things are getting better had better watch out. Not only is the economy in trouble, but there are signs of far worse things happening.
Every year we hear the media claim that Black Friday is the kickoff to holiday shopping sure to boost the economy and unleash the robust economy America once knew. This year was not only bad, it is just another sign of the doom we are facing. Black Friday this year was not the day that businesses got financially into the black for the year, rather it truly was an example of how dark things are for our nation. But that isn't the worst part. Many, if not most Americans have such indifference to our situation that they, more than the economy or anything else, are the real danger to our future.
The New York Times reported that sales are down about 3% from last year. That's a huge number in business, especially in a fragile economy. Add to that things like 102 million Americans that are unemployed, employers cutting employees hours and reducing benefits, record numbers of Americans receiving government support, massive federal debt and unfunded liabilities that cannot be sustained by our nation, and politicians who not only won't quit spending, but a populace that won't demand accountability and you have a situation on the brink of disaster.
The media have been trying for years to convince us that the lackluster Obama economy is growing and bouncing back, but there isn't much that is further from the truth. Businesses are struggling to survive. Families are doing the same. With layoffs, lack of new hiring, cutback in hours and benefits, and the only true growth for jobs being part time entry level positions, the future for America and her economy is bleak. But what is most amazing to me is how indifferent Americans are to what we face.
Americans of generations past would have been doing everything from marching in the streets to spending every extra waking minute they have working to get good candidates into office to replace the pathetic excuse that we currently have for leadership. And that's leadership on every level. Whether it's your local school board, your mayor, your federal officials, or the presidency, Americans of past generations would not have stood for what is happening in our nation.
Then you look at the incredible amount of moral failure in our nation and there's no way to stop our downfall. Just in the last few days we've seen people stabbed over a disagreement about a parking space while shopping. Shoplifters dragging a police officer with their car, which resulted in a shooting. A brawl at another store resulted in a police officer in the hospital. And the list goes on and on.
Moral failure isn't just about someone stealing or lying or doing the obvious things we think of when the topic comes up. It is also about how our society is not civilized any longer. Violence in our country has taken on a new level that should concern all of us.
But today too many people are indifferent to what's happening. Virtually everyone knows someone who's been impacted by this economy. Unemployment, inflation, failure as a nation on the world's stage, constant lies from our leadership, scandals, an Executive Branch doing whatever it pleases with a Legislative Branch not holding them accountable as our Constitution created them to do, and the list goes on and on. Yet most people don't even bother to think about this stuff, let alone demand change.
This is not just about ignorance, this is about denial and self-centeredness. Most Americans are so consumed with their own lives, focusing on personal entertainment and selfish desires, that they've quit thinking about America and the importance of being involved to hold our government accountable. The result is that we now have a political class out of control and stealing our rights and freedoms a little more each day.
There was a day in the not so distant past when people would give of themselves and their time to make our nation a better place. That was a time when people didn't mind giving up things they may like to do in order to keep our nation strong. But today it's hard to get people to get involved in things that will make a difference.
We talk of the 2014 midterm elections potentially being another 2010 where a big shakeup would happen in Congress. While some people are concerned and working towards that end, far more are simply not paying attention. They are allowing people like Mitch McConnell, Republican minority leader of the senate, to get away with the view he expressed that it was time for the establishment GOP to stand up to the conservatives and Tea Party members. Instead of being willing to listen to the voters, he openly admits that he wants those who stand up for the voters to be silenced. Voters should be demanding a change in leadership instead of putting up with McConnell's comments.
These days when this kind of thing happens we're hearing too many crickets and not enough outraged citizens. It's time for America to wake up and take a stand before we are no longer allowed to do so.