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Posts Tagged ‘R&B’

“Nothing and no one goes unchanged.” If I wanted to write my life story through a music score, this R&B classic would feature prominently. There was a time in my life when this song played non-stop in my car’s tape deck. Written by Benard Ighner in 1974, it was first performed by Quincy Jones, then later in 1977 brilliantly, of course, by George Benson. I most likely was driving through tears over some broken promise – very Dustin Hoffman rushing over the Golden Gate to rescue his lost love.

The biggest recession I’ve lived through was that 70’s show. Post-college and divorce, I filled out the application to be a stewardess for TWA (remember them). My older sister, Kay, was a Lipstick Feminist – flying for National Airlines in the 60’s when she had to ‘make weight’ and could not be married with children. My French was good and I thought I had half-a-chance for an international dream job. But TWA was laying off its pilots and instituted a hiring freeze. People were lining up for gas by the order of numbers in their license plates…that was a pretty bleak time. The Vietnam War was ending, and OPEC decided to quadruple gas prices. It was called “stagflation,” because it was a long period of time (1973-75, and some would argue until 1980) when high unemployment coincided with high inflation. The jobless rate peaked at 9%.

If we compare that time to this prolonged recession, it’s not fair to compare job growth. According to most economists, that number is a “…lagging indicator, which reflects economic conditions in the past rather than pointing to future growth.” Supposedly we’ve come out of a recession in 2009, though you couldn’t tell by most personal narratives. And now we’re heading into a “double-dip” or off the “fiscal cliff!” http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2012/05/23/fiscal-cliff-recession-government-action-cbo_n_1537692.html And here’s the quote that hits home:

“$1.2 trillion in across-the-board reductions in spending on federal programs would begin to phase in as a result of Congress’ failure late last year to find a comprehensive deal to cut the budget deficit.” One point two TRILLION!

What kind of job did I get back then? I took a job that was funded by a government grant. There was a need for mental health day treatment centers when the flood gates opened from ancient, closing mental institutions. Patients were being returned to their communities, patients who had no idea how to function in society after so many years of institutionalization. And I was hired to actually drive a mini-bus and pick them up from their group homes, and design group activities for them in a an entry-level social work position. Less glamorous than flying to Paris, driving through hallucinations in Pequannock, NJ. But it gave me a start when I thought all was lost.

So go ahead and blame Obamacare if you must. Keep trying to repeal it, try 33 more times to vote for selfishness, and corporate greed. Waste another 50 Million taxpayer dollars. http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2012/07/11/health-care-law-repeal_n_1666917.html?ncid=edlinkusaolp00000009 We all know what has to change, and it’s this intransigent Tea Party Congress.

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