All of the noise and hoopla about the economy, the state of the world, politics, blah, blah, blah, how are we doing in terms of quality of life. After all, this is where the reality of all the events around us comes to sit on couch and becomes a part of us and our families. On one hand, the PTB, the banksters, and the governments of the world count on us being asleep to what is really going on. Keep the sheeple asleep. What they fear most is a mass awakening. So, first agenda item is to keep us burdened with day-to-day survival with our noses to the grind stone. Check the box. Secondly, give us the minimal in “things” so we will at least be satisfied that our lives are “as good as it gets” or at least we accept we are OK. All of this is really how we perceive the quality of our lives.
So lets look at what we should be measuring as the quality of our lives. These are things I am suggesting we look at and evaluate. Think about these things, score your own life experiences against these suggested parameters, and finally ask yourself the questions of whether you see the quality of your life improving, staying the same or declining.
Achieving Educational Excellence, Growing a Vibrant Economy, Preserving the Natural Environment, Promoting Social Wellbeing and Harmony, Enjoying Arts, Culture, and Recreation, Sustaining a Healthy Community, Maintaining Responsive Government, Moving Around Efficiently and Safely, Keeping the Community Safe are how I think we ought to be evaluating our lives. When we start evaluating our lives from these perspectives is when we can develop a clear idea of how we are ALL doing collectively. When I perform these self assessments, it is also clear to me that we are definitely going the wrong direction. I think we all “sense” things aren’t right, but until we can actually pinpoint why they aren’t good, there is nothing we can do as individuals to change our lives.
Achieving Educational Excellence – reading levels at both the 3rd and 12th grade levels are declining. High school graduations rates are declining. Absentism exceeding 21 days per school term is increasing and college graduation rates are about the same over the last three years. School safety issues have improved somewhat when looking at injuries reported from school incidents. So for the most part, I give this a rating of declining quality. The “dumbing” down of America continues and will have a profound effect on our quality of life in the future as related to income, job opportunities, and ability to move about in an ever increasing global community.
Growing a Vibrant Economy – DUH! I don’t think I need to discuss much here except to say that there are some really scary numbers relating to the number of households paying more than 30% for housing, the total family indebtness (including what our governments have “obligated on our behalf”), the number of permanently unemployed or under employed, and the growing number of homeless families. This quality element is RED flagged from my perspective.
Preserving the Natural Environment – I really have only one comment here. water,water, and not a drop to drink. The degradation of the environment continues, but we are reaching a critical point of sustainability. Wars over water are already underway and one only needs to look at the recent events in Haiti to see how perilously close we are to not having the environment sustain us. This is another RED flag plus for me as it relates to the threats to my quality of life. We seem to have governments world-wide dominated by corporate interests that are only interested in exploiting the environment, but the ironic part is they are exploiting the environment in the name of business and if there are no customers there is no business. Excuse me, I need another drink to go on.
Promoting Social Wellbeing and Harmony – Again, I don’t think I need to elaborate on this obvious situation. However, what I think most people do not understand who are sitting on their couches watching these tragedies unfold is people are going to start migrating en masse toward your little corner of Mayberry real soon. Are you ready for that? If we can not collectively deal with these issues, they will deal us all some nasty repercussions. It is OUR responsibility to act toward all humanity as our family in absentia.
Enjoying Arts, Culture, and Recreation – This element of how we measure the quality of our lives has always been viewed by all civilizations as the benchmarks of their achievements. One only has to look at the “boob tube” with its thousand channel wasteland or the current state of our libraries to know we aren’t doing well at all in this category. But to hit closer to home, how many parks, ball fields, tennis courts, etc. in your town have been closed over the last two years?
Sustaining a Healthy Community – Cancer rates, HIV rates, STD rates, and suicide rates are climbing at alarming rates across the board in America. MSM media is silent. Our recent debates over health care reforms clearly demonstrates that our government is NOT going to be responsive to this issue. Again, though, it is ironic that this lack of response is clearly grounded in the influence of companies wishing to preserve their incomes, but if everybody dies, where is the profit?
Maintaining Responsive Government – Ha Ha Ha, I am not even going to waste my breath on this one. However, I would suggest that while the federal and state governments go bankrupt both financially and morally, there emerges an opportunity to strengthen local governments, and we, as individuals have a great ability to influence that process. When was the last time you sat in on a city council meeting?
Moving Around Efficiently and Safely – Between the economic decline and the deteriorating infrastructure, airline miles traveled and vehicle miles traveled are rapidly declining. The good news here is the number of traffic related deaths and injuries are declining as well.
Keeping the Community Safe – This is probably the bright spot of all the indicators. Crime is down in most communities. Police response time is up and people generally are less victimized by crime. These indicators are somewhat contradictory to what we might expect in an economy of higher unemployment. Partly this is related to the reason we have equipped most police forces to become almost paramilitary in nature and we have brought our law enforcement back on the street where it belongs. This has been aided by people in local communities getting involved and most importantly insuring that funding for police and fire are protected from the draconian cuts of other services faced by cities and counties as they deal with the financial realities of running a city or local government.
So, in summary, from my perspective the score card reflects a D- or F. How will you score your card. I suspect not much better. It is time to wake up, speak up, and take control of our collective destinies. Not revolution, as is ever increasingly be slung about, but by involvement of us all in our local, state, and federal governments by way of the ballot box and our physical presences at the “open” meetings of our government officials. Let them know we are coming, we mad, and we aren’t going to go back asleep. That is the ONLY thing that really scares the hell out of them.
Here’s Uncle Willie’s thoughts for the day.