To be, or not to be, that is the question:
Whether ’tis Nobler in the mind to suffer
The Slings and Arrows of outrageous Fortune,
Or to take Arms against a Sea of troubles,
And by opposing end them: to die, to sleep …
Periodically, I get so busy working, and trying to stay on top of what I need to do to fend for my family, that I forget that Obama and the American Left have declared war on me. I have to be reminded from time to time by a mortar round to my front door in the form of, say, his new budget and tax policy. These are like delayed explosives. They don’t explode right away; they quietly tick away until “taking effect” in say 2013 or 2015. Obamacare is one such ticking time bomb. After the smoke cleared at the end of 2009 it was pretty much business as usual, I swallowed my despair and went back to work. The course of the pending storm is evident but the problem, for most of us in the beleaguered middle class, is that today’s bills have to be paid, and we have to worry about this year’s home budget and what is going on with our jobs.
I am self-employed as a real estate agent. I got into real estate after my company closed down due to consolidation in 2003. My company was a middleman, and our customers went “farm direct”, which cut us out of the picture. This was back in the days before bailouts. I didn’t know I was a victim back then. I didn’t know that I should whine and cry about my lot. Instead I did what nearly all Americans do when faced with a setback. I picked myself up, dusted myself off and figured it out. My income dropped 80% the first year, and I had just about scrambled back to where I was 3 years later, when the housing market collapsed. Again, my income dropped about 80%. Now, 4 years later it’s almost recovered, but not quite.
Regardless, I consider myself very fortunate. I am crowding my 50’s and don’t have a big enough time horizon remaining for another 80% haircut. For most of my working life, I have saved between 5 and 10% of what I’ve earned. Needless to say, that helped a good deal when my career took a pounding. It’s not a fortune, but it’s the product of a lifetime of habit.
That’s why I am so angry with Obama and his minions. (I did mention I was angry didn’t I?) Instead of encouraging young people to save their money and take responsibility for themselves. Instead of encouraging them to be independent of the institutions that will inevitably fail them (government, corporations, banks), he tells them that they “deserve” free health care, a free education, a job, and housing. (To be “fair”, he didn’t say free on the housing, just that they “deserve” it.) He also says that the “rich” should pay their “fair share”. This is my favorite piece of fantasy. Their “fair share.” Really? My wife and I both work, and we paid about $27,000 in federal taxes last year. We are in the 3%. We haven’t made the 1% yet. But it doesn’t matter, those of us in the 3%, pay about 97% of the taxes. Mr. Obama doesn’t think that’s enough. I have words for him, but they aren’t printable here.
I am working my rear end off to recover from a housing crisis created by a government which forced banks to make loans for folk that could not pay them back. These were members of his entitlement class. It is the same people who now vote for him while paying “nothing” in taxes. I estimate that his new budget will cost my family about $50,000 in additional taxes, just from capital gains taxes. You see, we are borrowing to buy rental homes as investments to make up for what we lost in our 401k’s and to try and provide a retirement for ourselves. It will take years for us to pay off these investments, and when we do, we will face DOUBLE the tax bill on the profits instead of what we pay now. In the meantime, we take all the risk, vacancies, repairs, liabilities and work required to maintain these properties, and we pay interest on the loans. In short, we take all the risk, and at the end of the day, we may not even see a dime of profit, because the only way we benefit is if the value increases. And for all those years of work and risk, we get to pay 30% if we are successful. It is now quite possible that it is not worth that risk. Given the way things are going, those investments may even decline more in value. They have already lost 50% of their value from the peak of the market. We took a calculated risk when we borrowed to buy them, assuming that the market had hit bottom. What if it did not? What if we were wrong? Will Mr. Obama pay us 30% on the loss? I didn’t think so. You pays your money to the government and you takes all the risk.
That’s the reality that the freeloaders from the Occupy movement refuse to acknowledge. They are nothing but envious dupes. Here is the rest of the story. Once there are no more incentives to take risks and work hard, those of us in the 3% will no longer be able to foot the bill for their lazy pathetic lives. No more free education, free healthcare, and free retirement, food stamps, and rent subsidies; nothing, because there won’t be anything to give. These same have-nots will hit the streets like the mobs in Greece and burn down their own neighborhoods, reducing themselves further to barbarians without self respect and dignity.
That’s the future and the hope and change promised by Mr. Obama, the stalwart defender of the middle class. He lies. He wants to destroy the middle class, because he can’t control them. The so-called 99%, he can control. He buys them off everyday with promises of the money he will take from us and give to them.
He labels people like us the “rich”. Not to confuse the issues with the facts, but if the government were to take every dime from the 1%, it would still not be enough to pay for all the money this government owes. Not even close. That is the biggest lie of all! He has to get into our pockets, because that is where the money is.
Have you ever noticed that there is no middle class in Venezuela, Cuba or the other third world “utopian” Marxist governments? Did you ever stop to think why?