I must say I listened to conservative talk radio today and the tone in the nation seems ready to explode with opposing views on how government is supposed to uphold rule of law. One term that peeked my interest was "authority" and who has the privilege to use it. The word "authority" is one I understand. In order to be effective, authority has to come from the right source. (Trying to power a gas lawnmower with an electric cord doesn't work.) I believe that the answers to the nation's greatest dilemmas lie in each person recognizing that it is the people - each of us that has the authority to govern our lives. We have agency. We can chose who is going to be responsible for our health, our need for food and shelter, the use of our resources. If we live a healthy lifestyle, we will not need nor choose universal healthcare. If we have food in our homes, we will not need nor choose welfare. If we live providently, we will not need nor choose bankruptcy protection. We have the power to govern ourselves. No government will succeed in governing a people that has relinquished all personal responsibility.
The oil spill may be bad but if personally affected, I would hope that rather than take a handout, I would opt to start over. I would ignite the American spirit that drew the revolutionaries, the early immigrants, and still draws the world's most talented minds to come to the United States. The ideology that teaches "Give me nothing and I will make something of my life" is still the strength of this great nation. The belief that each person has God given authority to claim life, liberty and the pursuit of happiness. I heard the Constitution is no more a governing document. On a national front it appears so to me. But on a personal front I can live those laws that give me authority to govern myself and teach my children likewise.
In application, this food challenge is at a critical two weeks. I cannot afford to buy the 25 pound sack of fruit drink. I will pay for the 6 gallons of orange drink as if I had purchased a crystal light or other fruit drink mix. This should cost $3.50 or so. That frees $20.00 to use for milk over the next 13 days. My husband also forbid the use of baking soda dish washer soap. So rather than give in and buy $3.00 worth of dishwashing soap, I opted to wash by hand. I have plenty of Palmolive from the register rewards cash purchase. I can choose to conserve my cash for milk and fresh produce. I can stay in budget. My husband said, "It is only two dollars!" And it is only $2.00 but that represents .4% of my grocery budget. Yesterday the front page of the paper disclosed a family declaring bankruptcy because of 15 million dollars of debt. The monthly overage on their personal expenses was $3,000. If I did the math right, that means that $3,000 represents .02% of the total corporate debt declared. If .02% can make an impact, one purchase of dish detergent representing .4% of the budget, can make a difference. Somehow if a person is making a sacrifice in the food he eats, it is easier to save on the things that really cost more and have fare greater impact on the financial health of a family. (Changing insurance deductibles and being wise in the purchase of cars and homes affects more dollars than deciding to have homemade tortillas or commercially made tortillas.)
I am not going to buy anything I can do without for 13 days.
Breakfast: Whole wheat pancakes again with grape syrup. The eight year old was pleased to tell me she could do the syrup - she acquired another skill this morning.
Lunch: Two fresh cantalope. Bread and butter and leftover fish for those who wanted.
Dinner: Birthday Dinner of baked BBQ chicken and mashed potatoes with more cantaloupe and a TALL chocolate cake with SPRINKlES. I made a spumonie filling to top the cake instead of traditional frosting. Recipes in the morning.