We were just a couple of pilots flying cross country in a private airplane. The takeoff, approach and landing portions of such flights are busy times. In fact, professional airline crews are enjoined to suppress any extraneous conversation, they call it a "sterile cockpit," and concentrate only on the business at hand during those critical phases of every flight. After climb out and level off with the autopilot capably handling the flying duties, the pilots relax and simply monitor progress. That quiet time is usually filled with friendly banter interspersed with the occasional short responses to air traffic controllers. The old adage applies "flying is hours of boredom interspersed with moments of sheer terror"!
My student pilot doing the flying that recent day also happens to be a banker from a really small town nearby. He spoke of real estate lending from his bank which amounts to four or five loans to local homebuyers annually. He told me that his bank would have to bow out because of all the new complex regulations. To continue he would have to hire a full-time person just to comply with those recently added regulations and that such a move is just not economically feasible.
Then this week, I happened to mention housing loans to the manager of a local savings and loan, now full-service bank, and she expressed the same concern. Securing a home loan for a customer is nigh unto impossible was her sentiment. Any housing loan application today involves way too much senseless regulation generating reams and reams of closely parsed paperwork.
Nationally we have a housing industry that is in dire straits and ham-fisted government regulatory agencies that just make the problem worse. Yet we have a president representing a political party that insists that the only way out of our current economic doldrums is to hire more government regulators. I see such little vignettes as all the more reason why your informed vote next November is so crucial.
That thought brings me to the endless Occupy Wall Street protests that seem to take up 99 percent of TV news time of late. No doubt a few of the jobless college graduates camping out have legitimate gripes but the vast majority of the unwashed seem to be irresponsible joiners-in out on a lark. I'm reminded of the '60s protestors driven by fear of a draft that would expose them to patriotic duty in Vietnam. Cowards!
They won, and millions of South Vietnamese people died as a result.
There always seems to be some selfish motive in such protests and today's Wall Street protesting vermin want their college loans forgiven.
When my own children went off to college it was dad that footed the bill for their education. My largess was not without stipulation: no break in enrollment, no getting married and no living with some boy/girl friend. Fortunately none of the three tested my resolve and no, there was never any consideration that they pay back any of the expense incurred. In my opinion paying for your kid's college education was just what parents did then and what parents should do now.
If the education loan protestors want to protest they, and their parents, should be protesting in front of college presidents with bloated administrative staffs that have raised college tuition out of sight. How about rallying in front of the White House and Congress?
The protestors are correct in seeing their economic future as grim. It is grim because our government has spent the future's money today.
Past and current administrations, aided and abetted by a liberal Congress have mortgaged the future by printing cash and borrowing against theirs and our own future.
The loosely organized Wall Street protests across the U.S. are technically a mob. So far their actions have been mostly peaceful but as with any mob, danger lurks beneath the surface. I recently read Ann Coulter's book "Demonic" where she explores how it was the mob mentality that spurred the atrocities of the French Revolution. It wasn't a pretty picture and our own future needs none of it. I have my doubts that the mob mentality of the Wall Street Protesting bunch will continue to be non-violent. As is currently taking place in Europe looting stores and burning cars in the street will likely soon be appearing on our TV screens. The cure to dispersing a mob includes eliminating the leaders but I fear our politically-correct bunch in charge will not have the courage that worked so well at Kent State.
The protest party scene makes me doubly happy to live in rural Nebraska far from the dingy occupier camps ranging from NYC to San Francisco and every blue dot in between.
In closing, I have to compliment Sen. Ben Nelson for his courage in helping defeat President Obama's latest attempt to raise taxes, increase the federal debt and create ever more government jobs.
Sen. Ben must be running for re-election.
That is the way I saw it.