Monday, January 28, 2013

Thinking Sideways For The Future

I've spoken of thinking sideways and I want to elaborate on that fact. I listen to talk radio when I travel, I read articles on the Internet each day, and I listen to agricultural news now and then and I've got to tell you, I'm really worried about America.

 I'm not happy with this let's tell the people what they want to hear congress and Presidential administration. I don't like the let's skip congress and I don't care if it is unconstitutional just as long as I can get away with it attitude of Obama. 

The Constitution is not an instrument for the government to restrain the people, it is an instrument for the people to restrain the government." - Patrick Henry

Hardly a one of our leaders has the gumption to make hard, unpopular decisions because the people don't want to hear it and elected officials want to get elected for another term. Let's instead forfeit our future for a comfortable today they say. I don't believe I'm a dooms dayer. I believe I'm a realist. If you know your history, you know what courses lead to what end. We are on a disastrous course
. The simple fact is. You can't keep functioning in the red and stay in business. You can't train up a nation of people who look to the government as their salvation and not elect a Hitler. Warning bells are going off that we are following in the footsteps of Greece and worst --but it is full steam ahead.

I was just reading about Obama Care and about the extra charges to an employer per family member covered on their insurance plan, $68 dollars per person. Five people in a family times 500 workers equals $170,000 dollars a year. That has to come from somewhere. I hear daily of more and more companies shifting full time workers to part time to come up with funds for in part this higher costs of doing business. Taxes are increasing. The new farm bill is scary, scary and very Russian style. The Ag news on the radio Friday said under this new proposed farm bill, one of the three fiscal cliff bills waiting on congress to act, will require farmers to submit a plan to the government. The government then can approve or disapprove of what the farmer will grow and do with HIS land. Large farms will pay around $30,000 a year for this so called privelage to be told what to do. You know who will have to pay that bill, yes, the consumer. Food prices will rise and rise and rise. You can bet that smaller farms will call it quits and fold. The economic facts being already very difficult for them and they are on the edge as it is.

"I think we have more machinery of government than is necessary, too many parasites living on the labor of the industrious." - Thomas Jefferson

Self-sufficiency is not going to be a choice but a survival have to.  On Jul 07, 2009 · Margaret Thatcher said that 'The trouble with socialism is that eventually you run out of other people's money'?. I'd say this hits it right on the head. Redistribution leaves no incentive to produce extra because it is just taken away. That is what happened in Soviet Russian and where I see America headed today. Hourly wage workers already don't work lots of overtime if they've paid close attention to their pay checks because of the increased taxes on the extra income.  Who wants to do more if we are going to make less on that increased labor?

The democracy will cease to exist when you take away from those who are willing to work and give to those who would not." - Thomas Jefferson

A government gives what it has first taken. You want more from the US government. Somebody is first going to have less. That somebody is going to be your fellow neighbors to whom I doubt most people would have the guts to take from them themselves, yet vast amounts of citizens ask the government to do so by force. And we will all being paying bureaucracy to manage it. The proven worst mangers. The problem is Americans don't care as long it's them in the hand out line. We have become a very self-centered nation. What a contrast to many of our fore fathers who gave everything. Their fortunes, time, and talents to create this country. They knew tyranny. Will we have to know it again, to change? What are we willing to give to insure a better world for our posterity. From my view, nothing. There are few true patriots left. It is put off for tomorrow what you don't absolutely have to face today. Our government is a product of its people. It is NOT government that is the root of the problem but the people who voted them in because otherwise they wouldn't be there. There isn't many good canidates in a corrupt society. That means the cure has to start at home. At the root.

At home we can decide to form a self-sufficient center where we don't ask another for that which we can do ourselves. Don't give me the if we did that then people wouldn't be employed. People for centuries lived this way. Kirk and I with our ever increasing talents and skills still have many things we don't do. Things we can't do. For example, engines and I are not a good combination. It's hereditary. Seriously, my dad can talk his way all around an engine but don't ask him to actually do it. My brother doesn't do mechanics either. He is a good carpenter though. If it weren't for Kirk we'd have to have someone else do all the mechanical work. Yet, many times we choose to hire a mechanic. Some because the equipment required to do the job is just too expensive and therefore best to hire it out. Some things we don't have time to do. Somethings we don't have the knowledge to do and not enought time to gain it. Other times it is just nice to have a craftsman do the job far better than we could. People would have employment as they always have. The huge benefit to this self-sufficiency is people would be too busy taking care of themselves to meddle in others business. Thus greatly lowering regulation.  We as a nation would be producing more of our own products. We might just have greater employment opportunities looking inward instead of outward.

On a personal level, as we journey down this path of self-sufficiency I see a real need to be flexible. I know people who go to the store every time they don't have an ingredient in a recipe rather than substituting something else already in the cupboard. I understand that first you have to have something to choose from but you also have to have the knowledge to make a substitute work. You need to have experimented and learned to add more or less liquid maybe. As with honey versus granulated sugar, you use less honey than the recipe calls for white sugar.  

I once had a gentlemen write me furious because my pumpkin/ squash waffle recipe was all wrong.  He said how much he was looking forward to using this fresh ingredient from his garden to surprise his wife. He did not say what kind of squash he had used. Sugar pie or Rouge vif de tampe for example require very different handling in the same recipe. Don't make the changes and yes, it won't turn out. Fresh and store packaged items are different. The factory's goal is to come out with a fairly consistent product. Fresh opens up lots of possibilities. This year, I had a bad winter squash crop for lack of watering and care in part, drought being the other factor. The squash was fit only for chickens and the like because it was dry and flavorless. I still have a good supply from the year before in bottles and the freezer so I'm good. Had I had to use these poor quality squash, I'd need a bit of knowledge and changes to make them work in the same recipe the squash from the year before was used.

My daughter was very disappointed in the corn she froze from a neighboring farm. It was slightly older and she didn't know to add more sugar to compensate. She brought it home to feed to the chickens. It was by then old having sat in her freezer for a few years. I use this type of corn in different recipes than I use the premium quality.

I keep my hens through their second year and disposing of them because the meat is tough stewed or baked, I bottle them for chicken noodle soup and the like. I made some soup with bottle of their meat just yesterday. Knowledge and experience is a powerful ally.

As you know this year it is meat where we are thinking particuliarly sideways, exploring new avenues. Success comes with experience and experience gives you choices. In an ever increasingly difficult outlook, I want shocks on my vehicle to give me a smoother ride over the rocky terrain. People don't plan to fail, they just fail to plan. I'm making plans and learning as much as I can while I have the option of failure without disasterous results. Join me, and we'll ride along together.

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