Confessions of a former liberal Democrat

As I get older I realize one strange oddity and that is how my much younger self would hate my older self. Things that seemed so dead set are on opposite ends now.

I look back to my early 20’s and how I would protest (yes protest)things I thought were wrong. I started an anti censorship group when I was 20 and fought for many things besides censorship like abortion, religious groups, welfare, affirmative action, and so many more. I was very far left, definitely close to communism and yes I called myself a socialist. I worked with the Democratic Party hoping they would become as far left as me. After all the Republicans were the enemy and they hated far lefties like me.

What happened? I slowly did a turn more right. I started to see things that bothered me. I lost a job due to affirmative action and realized that while people are discriminated against, that sometimes with affirmative action other people are discriminated as well. I started seeing people I know abuse the welfare system and my old belief that it’s fine to have kids out of wedlock and on welfare disappeared. I saw people abuse the abortion choice and while I support it I realize the pro life movement isn’t completely wrong either and that for me personally I would not do it. Not to mention taxes. In my early 20’s I was in college and didn’t pay a lot in taxes or it didn’t appear I did. However once I started going into the real world I saw I often paid taxes the more I worked.

While all of this started me turning right, the event that really switched my views on a lot was my long term unemployment. When I started unemployment I was so sure I would be employed eventually. 4 years and counting I am still unemployed and while I still apply for jobs and still get the random interview I know I am pretty much useless to a lot of employers. Anyway you would think this would turn me left but instead it opened my eyes and I saw that neither main party cared about us and in fact were in cahoots to kill the middle class. While I voted for Obama I woke up to the fact that he lied about his intentions. At least as awful that Bush was we knew he would be for the rich. Obama claimed to be for us and has proven he is not.

Finally another interesting twist to all of this and that is I went back to church. Yes remember in my early 20’s I hated religion? now I wish some religious aspects could come into play in politics. Now I am not saying I want a religious society but many aspects are ones that would help us, such as cut down on teen pregnancies, executions, and more family time and less work time. I came to a powerful realization a few years ago and that is I regret spending all this time being work obsessed when I could have had a family. Now at 41 I find myself unemployed with no end in sight and single and childless. The idea of me being a crazy cat lady living in my parents house when I get old scares me. What if it’s too late for me to have kids or find a husband? Scary and I blame the radical feminists for brainwashing me that to have a great career I needed to repress other needs. However I am not giving up on having a career again along with a husband and a family.

22 thoughts on “Confessions of a former liberal Democrat”

  1. You could look to Winston Churchill for support. I think that the quote is, “If you are not a liberal when you are 20, you have no heart. If you are not a conservative when you are 40, you have no head.”

    It is a natural thing for us to become more conservative, or perhaps just more risk averse, because in the normal course of life we begin to have things worth protecting. At least your parents have a house to bequeath to you undivided. Not that many people do that well. I just bought a house from three sisters, two of whom had gotten divorced.

    Religion is not the only path to better behavior. The involvement of parents in children’s lives is much more important in my view than sending them to whatever religious training that they might. Knowing that there are consequences to your actions does a lot to restrain you from potentially bad paths of action. For instance, my best friend in grade school became a hooker in Atlantic City. I went to engineering school.

    I think that what you are seeking are morals and ethics more than overt religious training/behavior, as well as what you would define as better behavior on the part of other people that would remove the need for a lot of welfare. Maybe anyone who gets welfare should have to wear a sweatshirt with a purple “W” on it where ever they go to attempt to re-stigmatize welfare, with bounties given to people who can spot known welfare recipients without their sweatshirt on in public. Give the first spotter a month of welfare and bar the person from receiving welfare for five years.

    I believe that we expect too much too soon, and lack the ability to defer gratification. Another thing is our tendency to think that the path not taken would have been better than where we are now. This isn’t necessarily the case.

  2. Well I wouldn’t want to stigmatize people on welfare because there are now(especially now with the economy)people who never used the program and have no choice. I’m just thinking of the people I knew who abused the system which clouds my judgement. Ironically the Catholic Church is one of the big supporters of helping others and I feel as Christians it is important to help those who need help. The problem comes when a state like Illinois has the majority of newborns being born on welfare to unwed mothers.

    We do expect instant gratification in this society which bothers me. I’ve always been told that I needed to work for what I receive and I always had. I know so many who bought houses or cars or anything else without the financial support. I have a friend like that who would buy things she couldn’t afford then complain when she lost them.

    I’m still no Republican at all either, as I feel they reward the rich while hurting the middle class. I don’t really fit anywhere because I am now among the poor myself but unable to receive assistance in this state.

  3. I’d expect an effort to make welfare recipients to wear a particular garment, like a sweatshirt with a “W” on it (to commemorate George W. Bush, maybe) to be immediately compared to the Nazis making the Jews wear the Star of David, and to have the proposal immediately shot down. In Virginia, they couldn’t even PAY women to take birth control. Okay, it was Norplant, which was taken off the market a couple of years later. I would have preferred incentives to give men vasectomies. Even so, the guy has to wait a while after the operation to have intercourse until his semen tests sperm-free.

    One thing that I am coming to understand is that a lot of people don’t like to be alone, but greatly underestimate the changes that they will have to make to stay in a relationship. How many cats DOES one have to have to qualify as a “crazy cat lady”? My maximum was two, and I’ve had one for the last 15 years.

  4. A woman I know worked for a very large telecom. You’d know the name if I mentioned it. It’s had several re-names and metamorphesies over the last couple dozen years.

    She was a software programmer there. She was outsourced due to a visaed worker. She got a chunk of severance pay and opened her own biz (an internet cafe) but it failed in under a year. After that, she got a real estate license and you know what happened to that field, also: went tits up.

    Hiring fails to be “affirmative action” when they start hiring their own people to fill the jobs that are available. Handy little loophole: filling the job from the inside. IT’s been done for years and if that’s how they find the qualified help that they need….what can one do?

  5. What really stinks is I know so many unqualified people with jobs, yet I am bypassed often. My alcoholic cousin who got fired due to drinking on the job at a hospital got ANOTHER hospital jobs due to connections. His job? he was a runner which is a low level job. Yet I can’t even get anything.

    In Virginia where they getting pregnant even after getting birth control? That is what is happening here. The amount of people having babies on welfare is out of hand and it frustrates me. I haven’t gone to a dentist in 2 years and a doctor in 4 yet I need to desperately. Meanwhile these freeloaders keep taking money and going to the doctor while I can not.

  6. My parents were diehard Democrats and I’ve been a registered Democrat all my life. They also instilled in me a sense of responsibility and self-reliance. Up until about ten years ago, when I would consider for whom I should vote, I found myself making the same decision fairly frequently: the candidates were pretty close on the issues, and while the Republican was a tad closer to my positions, the Democrat came across as a little more humble, and more trustworthy to hold the office. In those cases, I voted Democratic.
    Today, candidates on both sides are useless, and I find myself selecting the lesser of two evils, when I can bring myself to believe that it matters. I’m disgusted with the Democratic party, and I’ve thought of changing my party registration, but the Republicans are no better.
    When you’re in your 20s and haven’t had children, of course you think religion is useless: it isn’t doing anything for you at that point. But when you get older, especially when you have children, you begin to understand. Religion serves a practical purpose in human society: it’s how children learn moral values.
    There is such a thing as morality without religion, but I’m not sure how you’d teach it to children. The tale of the all-seeing Judge is much simpler for little minds to grasp.
    And since we’ve cast religion aside (a movement that got traction, not coincidentally, in the late 1960s, when the Baby Boomers were in their late teens and early twenties), we’ve had a spreading amorality that thinks it’s OK to get pregnant without being married and to destroy a functioning business in the name of today’s profits.

  7. That’s very true. The amount of immorality behavior I see now repulses me. When I say this people think I mean ot of wedlock or things like that but am also talking about how companies ruin entire families to send jobs overseas in the name of profit or how companies are ruining this economy. To me all of this plays a part because what we are seeing now in this country is very scary. Now to me the 50’s were a perfect time because you didn’t see family destruction and one kept the job forever and grew with it. I’m not forgetting the severe racism and sexism from that time and while I thinks things have gotten better we still have racism and sexism only now jobs that don’t pay enough (or ones that get sent overseas)or families with serious issues. I will state (and have on the other site)that I regret being obsessed with my job over everything else because I find myself childless, single and unemployed. I shudder to think what would happen if my parents weren’t around to help me (and I wish I didn’t need their assistance at my age).

    Years ago I worked for the Democratic Party and realized they too are concerned with class. I was told I couldn’t be in charge of a section on election day because I didn’t have the right degree (ie a law degree from an Ivy League). I started seeing how they treated the voters they wanted to get and yes some would make racist comments. Now I am not saying the Reps don’t do that too, I’m sure they do but I’ve never worked for them (and wouldn’t). It left a bitter taste in my mouth how these politicians would laugh about the suckers I mean voters who believed them.

  8. It’s freeloading plain and simple.

    They come here for a handout — and push out an anchor kiddo so that they get to stay here on our dime.

    And we get to inherit all their problems: they’re not pro education, they have arrived here with no trade and nothing to bring to our table, they are draining our charity care system dry, it’s the factioning with cultural differences, there is gang activity and we get to add more classrooms to our schools to accommodate this hot mess.

    And not to mention every other job you see in the paper is “must be bilingual.”

    Another dandy little bugaboo: they have no desire to learn English. It’s cater to them and their language — this is dividing a country, not uniting it.

    You don’t even see them shortening their names/Americanizing their names like immigrants did a few generations ago. That was the first thing that was done: you shortened your name and blended in like an American.

  9. That is very true. In Illinois we have a serious illegal problem and people are waking up to it. Our lovely Democratic governor is carrying on what our previous now in prison liberal governor started and that was to allow the parents of illegals regardless of immigration status get welfare and medicaid. As a result 54% of all births in Illinois are on Medicaid and 75% on the program are illegals. They are such a problem that to work at a government job like public aid you must speak Spanish and there are more growing bilingual classes than any other ones. They refuse to speak English and the politicians here are catering to them. Doesn’t take a genius to figure out why and that is so those who can vote will vote for them. Unlike in many states in Illinois the Republicans are sane moderates who are socially liberal to moderate and fiscal conservatives. This is why many voted for Republicans for the financial jobs. I certainly did and am a fan of the comptroller who is a Republican woman (and an animal lover).

  10. Fun stuff in Maryland, a former home state of mine: they want to raise the age at which children can drop out of high school from 16 to 18. My guess is that there is an exception for students who graduate before the age of 18.

    What is this other than subsidized child care for teens and a way to keep them off the street?

    As far as bilingual education goes, I like the German solution: learn the language or get nothing.

  11. For what I understand in many states minorities tend to drop out early. Not all minorities of course, because Asians have one of the highest rates of graduation but rather African American and Hispanics. I graduated from a majority African American high school and at the time had a high graduation rate, but this was a middle to upper middle class school and middle class students tend to graduate more. Now it’s mostly low income and the rates are low. Why is this happening to low income students? many reasons and some make sense and others don’t. I graduated at 17 (mid year)and never not considered graduating. My parents would have made me go back and get my diploma and would have shamed me into it so it was never an option.

  12. I read some more on the issue, and 12 other states have a minimum dropout age of 18. If one has graduated, they haven’t dropped out by definition, but you never know with Maryland laws. As I told my friend in Maryland, if it keeps people out of jail, it’s worth it, because jail is more expensive.

    If we stop social promotions along with raising the dropout age, we will have a few very tall eighth graders. I’d like to stop bilingual education after about fourth grade and go to English-only education. If we can mainstream the developmentally disabled, the Mexicans can be forced into the mainstream.

  13. I don’t know how it is, but in Illinois they used to have a maximum 21 age of graduating, meaning if you were still in school at that age you automatically graduated. I knew a few who fell into that situation but they were mostly disabled students. A few others were students who kept dropping out and returning or failed many years. I don’t know the answer to this problem because it never affected me. I do remember though in high school there were remedial classes for the lower academic students and it allowed them to graduate. Here’s the problem though and it’s how colleges are seeking these students out. It used to be they graduated high school and got job training. Now though they are attending college and instead of remedial classes are ending up in the same classes with other students, and they drag down the classes.

    As for the bilingual classes there are so many changes we need to make as society for change these. For one really get serious about the immigration policies and deportations. Second, change laws so that the illegals can’t get welfare. If the laws were changed we would see less illegals coming here. Third, penalize employers for hiring illegals. I’ve worked in many restaurants as a waitress where I was the only English speaker, except for perhaps the manager. The amounts that these workers were paid were slave labor wages, sometimes as low as $1 hour. Fourth, don’t cater to them at all. Want assistance? learn English. I shouldn’t have to speak Spanish to you because you are too lazy to learn English.

  14. A century ago, the US was awash in immigrants. People came here from all over the world, and as we still had wide open spaces, immigration was pretty open. And generally, the children of immigrants went to English-only schools and managed to pick up the language fairly quickly. Indeed, it was one of the things that made the US great.

    Now we have bilingual education, and it doesn’t seem to work. But I tend to believe that the blame lies more with our educators: it’s only one among many failures in education over the last 50 years.

    I like the ‘German solution:’ there was a time when it was the American solution, as well.

  15. I think the problem is partly with the immigrants we get now. Back then we got mostly European countries with a standard of living and culture close to ours. Now we get mostly uneducated third world immigrant who barely know their language. Many years ago there were jobs for the uneducated but not so much now. Also, back then we got immigrants who wanted to make a better life for themselves but now we get so many wanting to sponge off the system.

  16. <p>And in my neck of the woods, there is a high school with freshman that are well over the age of 15. There are high school seniors that are 21.</p>
    <p>If you can’t make the grade as a junior and be at least 18 years of age when you reach your junior year, I suggest that we take the “advanced age” students, get them out of the public high school system and get them into a GED program. Train them for a trade.</p>
    <p>Send them into college and waste a seat on these deadweights? Forget it.</p>

  17. I think the problem is partly with the immigrants we get now. Back then we got mostly European countries with a standard of living and culture close to ours. Now we get mostly uneducated third world immigrant who barely know their language.

    This is the story in Paterson, NJ.

    There is a big influx of Bengalis. They cannot read or write their own language and same goes for their kids.

    What grade do you put a 15 year old in who has never seen the inside of a classroom anywhere?

    The parents outwardly lie and say their kid reads/writes on grade level.

    What do we do with this bunch?

    What do we do with a 15 year old? Retain them in high school until the 15 year old reads and writes enough English to pass and graduate? How much of a waste of the taxpayer’s dollar do we need?

    It’s the same thing with the Central and South American bunch; same situation, different language.

    And there are Central and South Americans that do not speak English or Spanish; they speak a very indigenous dialect.

    It’s time to close our doors.

  18. There should be a lot more “training for trades” than there is. Unfortunately, the people who need training for trades most are the stupidest. The mismatch between skills desired and skills that they are capable of learning is pretty broad.

    One reason that vo-tech schooling fell out of favor is that they cost a lot more to run than your standard classroom, and there are liability issues with letting teenagers operate heavy equipment. There needs to be a return to the old “two-track” system where not everyone was college-bound, if only to cut off the opportunity to defer training into the college years.

  19. That’s exactly the problem, too many kids are going to college and not only does it dumb down the degree many people don’t learn a skill. Those who son’t have the skills to go to college should be encouraged to learn a trade. It’s a win win for everyone.

  20. On the other side of the issue, I’ve always been annoyed by the cost and difficulty of getting academic or work experience credit for things that I learned on my own. Suppose that one takes every AP exam and gets sufficiently high scores for the college of their choice to grant them credit in every subject. Odds are that they will run into a policy limiting them to credit in 2-3 courses.

    Much of elementary and secondary education is state and local-paid child care. How long does it take to teach people to read and write adequately? I’d guess that it is less than four years, but that presumes motivation on the part of the student.

    I taught at the junior college level about 20 years ago. The course that I taught was marketing, and it was at a for-profit school. I wanted the students to present how they planned to find a job in their field upon graduation, or as graduation approached, as theri course project. The wakeup call for them was that they weren’t going to be found a job by the school’s outplacement services, but they would have to interview. They were well-groomed, but had severe difficulty reading, writing, and speaking. I fear for what I call “Generation Text”.

  21. I do too because they aren’t learning what I feel they should. Even when I was in school every year we often learned the same thing, why? Even into high school in English was had spelling tests every week and no idea why. These weren’t remedial English classes at all, but yet sometimes I question why these spelling tests. Or math, even into college I was required to take algebra, trig and geometry. My college had a lot of worthless classes like one class where we sat in class and talked about our fears and complaints about life. I mean, why talk about your problems to people you see 3 hours a week for 16 weeks and likely will never see again? I have yet to see any of them and highly doubt all these years later I ever will.

  22. Dude, you are right, we need to close our doors. What is happening is we are getting immigrants who refuse to learn our language or our culture. At least illegals from Mexico have a culture like outs (and so much Mexican culture has come into American culture)but other cultures are so different, like Indians and Middle Eastern. I have mentioned many times how I am no fan of Indians but what I rarely say is why outside of outsourcing and visaed workers they bother me. The reason is I have dealt with them in businesses and the ones I have dealt with really don’t like American women. Indian culture is very male dominated and while they are becoming more modernized (like women being educated)they still hold unto several sexist views. A few months ago I went for an interview with an Indian managed company and all they kept asking me is if I smoked or had kids because they don’t hire smokers or moms. Years ago I worked with a few and the way they talked down to me was horrendous.

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