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NOT FOR NUTHIN’ - Pearls of wisdom from my father

The other morning, while sipping on a hot cup of coffee and enjoying a family breakfast moment, my husband turned to my daughter and said, “You know, you should never chew food when you have to sneeze.”

Aside from it being good advice, I thought, “What the heck did that have to do with the price of rice in China?” Realizing that this is a father thing, I didn’t say a word. I let my husband bask in the light of enlightenment and I took off on my own journey of remembering the pearls that my own father passed down to me:

– Don’t bite the finger that pokes you. If the horse kicks you, can you cut off his leg? Appeasement just cancels out a good fight. To be too good is not so good and to be a little bad is not so bad. Don’t think it because it’s already done. And, my all-time favorite – You got yourself into this mess, don’t look at me.

As I pondered these wisdoms of the ages, and choked on a roll -- I just had to sneeze -- it occurred to me that many of the above can be applied to the country’s current fiscal woes.

After all Wall Street got itself in this mess, why can’t they get themselves out of it? When I came home and said, “Dad, I can’t pay my bills and have enough money to go out tonight.” He answered, “You got yourself into this mess, don’t look at me.” “But Dad, How can I go out tonight without any money?” He replied, “Don’t go out.” Simple and to the point. If you don’t have it – don’t spend it.

Did Wall Street listen? No. They didn’t have it, they haven’t had it for a long time and yet they still kept spending it. Now they want Dad to bail them out of a hole.

Let’s see, they’ve bitten the finger that poked them, they cut off the horse’s leg that kicked them and they were far too bad to do anybody any good and now they expect us to throw them a lifeline. Like the fool that is soon parted with his money, we bailed them out.

Here was the Prez’s chance. Bush and Congress could have been good parents and let Wall Street pull itself up by its own bootstraps, learning an invaluable lesson. But instead Bush decided to take the road of appeasement, avoided a good fight and just bailed them out.

Now these self-same CEOs that lost billions of our money are basking in hot tubs in Colorado and rejuvenating themselves while wrapping themselves in those expensive ‘golden parachutes,’ and sipping a good Merlot.

Not for nuthin’, but my Dad would have coined it differently. “They got the golden parachute, all right,” he would say. “But we sure got the royal shaft.”

E-mail “Not for Nuthin’” at JoannaD@courierlife.net. All letters become the property of Courier-Life Publications and are subject to publication unless otherwise specified; please include your name, address and daytime telephone number for verification

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