Tuesday, November 01, 2011

Rich? poor?

The old saying was the rich get richer and the poor get more children…
I don’t know.. I guess I am an old ball.. because I never minded the people
who were rich.. they had their lives and I had mine. Kind of it is what it is type of deal.
Now those of you who are screaming and starting to pull your hair out… I don’t consider the rich lumped in with bankers… and I don’t compare those with the CEO’s who get huge bonuses. Those huge bonuses never made sense to me.. why would anyone get a bonus of more that 8 times the working man’s wages? Never understood that. They already got a huge wage, so why the bonus? But that is for another day.

I was raised in Middletown, R.I. and we had quite an arc on incomes in our county. We had the farmers who if they had a good year, broke a little more than
even.. We had the people who lived in a place called Park Holm, and they were
low end wage earners or welfare for what ever reason.. We had Tomney Hill, which had the poorer Naval families.

And then we had just a mere 4 miles away.. Newport Ocean Drive and Belleville Avenue. . The home of the Vanderbilts, Belmonts, Wetmore, Berwind and Morris families… to name a few.. A lot of them, I never heard of while I was growing up.
Vanderbilts were probably the only one I was aware of at the time.. We kind of didn’t run in the same circle, you might say. While they flaunt some of their things…it was mostly their crowd was aware of it.. Once in a while stories would leak out… like in the 1920’s and Mrs. V wanted the U.S.Navy to paint their ships
white and moor them on the sea area view from her house.. for her WHITE PARTY.. that was where everyone dress in white with white wigs and etc. And
of course the USN decline her invitation… And then there is the one who built their own Japanese house for a Japanese party she had. But again these were before my time… I had a neighbor girl friend whose father was the gardener from one of the rich people, but not a big name one.. We got to go there while the family was gone and went swimming off of the pier… and I almost drown. She
grabbed my hair and saved me. We had a good laugh the following year when I graduated from the 8th grade and it was in my future to be a swimming guard.

But the rest of our county was middle of the road wage earners. My father worked civil service for over 35 years. So I guess we were in the middle.
He had good benefits and a slightly better wage than the farmers, gas station people and etc. But I can also remember my mother figuring out what groceries she was going to buy with her food budget of $10. And they never bought on time payments.. their only monthly payment was the house mortgage at the bank.

So you see, those of us in the middle wage families, didn’t see any big deal that some were richer than we were.. Like I said, most of them didn’t flaunt it. So it was never in our faces. So some in my class went to college, some join the service, some went to the work force.. And knew there was two ways to get
rich. One you were born into it and worked for your father, or you worked really hard to become an owner of your own business. Hard work was the name of the game. The rest of us.. well, we would work hard, but also had families, so that is where our money went. Still never feeling a big difference. Even if you had a wealthy friend, it wasn’t a big deal.

We knew if we worked hard, we could save for something.. as there wasn’t any credit cards then. There was lay-a-ways at the local clothing stores. That is where you put down some money on your purchases, and you were given a time limit of when you had it paid off. They kept the merchandise in the back room until you had it paid for. The only payment plan was your house.. and then cars
also came to play but that was thru a bank. And you had to have really good job to be even considered.

So where am I going with all of this? I guess it is that I don’t understand the 1% against the 99%. For one thing the numbers are all wrong. There are a lot more than 1%.. you take in sports stars, movie stars, music stars, the computer whiz kids like Gates, and etc.. and add them to the CEO’s with the big bonuses, and who ever else there are.. it has to be more than the 1%. After all the computers and video games, and etc. made millionaires out of thousands or millions in the 1980 to 90’s.

While there are some who have foreclosures because companies lay off the people… and I feel bad for that… but there are others, who were so far out of their range. So it is a toss up, the bank or the people who knew they were not able to pay… I had a measure when I bought.. could I afford this on unemployment… if not, then I didn’t buy. So shame on both sides… and the payments of $1,500 a month, some of them more, is insane…

Sorry, but that is just how I feel… I always figured out if I can pay what ever I was pay for… and thought of the worse scenario. So I guess I just don’t understand.
And yes, I have been poor… yes, I have been single mother, and poor… even been married and poor… where the kids had oatmeal to eat 3 times a day for 4 days.. and my husband and I ate popcorn… and only afford hamburg meat and pasta for weeks on end.

So if someone is rich because they worked hard, or had an idea and that made them lots of money…. Good for them… it just didn’t work out that way for me. And I don’t begrudge them, their money… from what I have read and heard..a lot of them are like the Gates and have helped others.

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