Reclaiming the Family – Part 4 – Celebrating the Holidays Right

Thanksgiving and Christmas have always been a time when Americans get together with family and give thanks for the good things in their lives.  For Christians this is a holy season when they contemplate the beauty of the Holy Family and its Christmas story.  But even for non-Christians and even those with no faith there is a recognition by many that this celebration seems to radiate joy and hope to those involved.  I can remember a few truly awful human beings who, even if for a short period around the holidays, were noticeably better people because of Christmas.  Even scientists have lately come to think that belief in God is organically present in the human mind.  And for those of us who were brought up during the happier periods before the Progressives destroyed the culture, the celebration of Thanksgiving and Christmas brings back thoughts and feelings of happiness and a sense of community that even found its way into Hollywood films and television shows of the time.  But just because the culture has descended into a depravity that derides or ignores the true spirit of these holidays there’s no reason for us to go along with it.

Thanksgiving and Christmas are two of the biggest chances to reconnect with your family.  You’ve got at least a few days off and the kids and grandkids are off from school.  Here’s a chance to talk to the kids about things that are important to you and find out what’s going on in their lives.  And for you older folks like me I’m also talking about your grown children and their husbands and wives.  Ask them about their kids and what is going on in their lives.  And if you have the means, ask them if they could use a few bucks or even a hand with some problem they are having.

And turn off the damn phones and shut off the computers.  It won’t kill anybody to lose track of all the nonsense we are plugged into 24/7/365.  And turn off the television.  There’s literally nothing on that won’t damage your brain and soul.  The only exception I’ll make is if you will pick a good Christmas movie (preferably black and white) or two to watch with the kids.  But once it’s over shut the tv and hide the remote.

Have some fun things to do together.  One of the things we like to do is play cards.  The kids play war and Uno and the rest of us play penny ante poker.  It’s basically just an excuse to sit around a table together and talk and interact.  And, believe it or not, in my family the women even bond over the cooking and doing the dishes.  I’m not saying they enjoy the dishes but it’s something they complain about together and provides a stimulating male/female antagonism that everybody enjoys.  But maybe that’s just my family.  But at the very least show appreciation for the hard work that went into the dinner and praise it to the sky.  That’s a sacred duty.

Go to a Mass at your church if you’re religious and even if you’re not put on some good Christmas music but please try to avoid any of the current crop of pop celebrities.  If you have more than a day off then plan something bigger.  If you know of a holiday show or a good play look into it and see if anyone would like to go.  Go ice skating or skiing if that’s your thing.  Or go for a walk in the country if the weather permits.  Just make sure you talk with every single one in your family and make some kind of connection.  Make some memories.  Sure, you’ll get them their favorite toy or gadget but make it more than that.  Tell them what you like about the holidays and find out what would make it more fun for them.

And something that brings family together is stories about your extended family and the world that used to exist in the better times.  Sometimes old photographs and other memorabilia are interesting to the kids and grandkids.  Hearing about how their ancestors overcame the difficulties they experienced and how the families pulled together is a good example for the kids and encouraging even for us.  Celebrate these great holidays.  It’s your privilege and it’s your duty.

 

30NOV2019 – OCF Update

So we’ve survived Thanksgiving and have today and tomorrow to recover sufficiently to stagger back into work on Monday.  Bravo, congratulations!

Looking ahead, The British General Election is a week from Thursday (December 12th) and by all accounts Boris Johnson will get his majority and the Brexit that it’s based on.  Supposedly he has all the Tory candidates sworn to a blood oath to vote for Brexit when they are elected.  As always, wait for the outcome but there may be some very good news for the English people by Christmas.

My article  “Reclaiming the Family – Part 3 – Recruit Grandma and Grandpa” seems to have been well received when I posted it on Tuesday.  I take particular pleasure in this because, from my point of view, advocating for practical and constructive action is greatly preferable to just spouting anger and predicting gloom and doom.  Not that there isn’t plenty to be angry and worried about but if you’re not going to do anything about it then just dig a hole and jump in.  I’ll try to expand the series when I have something useful to add.

Like everyone else I’m waiting impatiently for Durham to show some progress on his investigation.  Your guess is as good as mine on this whole thing.  We’ll just have to wait.

On the 2020 election things seem to be moving in the right direction.  The House is stuck with their impeachment fiasco.  Even the MSM has sort of gotten bored and wandered away from their freak show.  I don’t want to get too positive but it’s starting to look like the 2020 Democratic Presidential Candidate field is barren.  Even if Mrs. Clinton or Mrs. Obama “surprises” us by joining the race I don’t think that it will move the needle much at all.

So between now and Christmas there may be several very interesting stories developing.  Once I recover fully from the several hundred thousand calories I ingested this week I’ll diligently report on and bloviate about what I think they mean.

And of course I’ll faithfully update my Star Trek series.  The schlock shall not dry up.

Stay tuned.

Guest Contributor – War Pig – On Family

War Pig put up a comment on my Reclaiming the Family thread so I asked him if I could add it to his folder and so here it is for anyone who didn’t see it on the comments. – photog

We moved to California from Ohio in the 60s when dad got transferred from North American Aviation to Rockwell/Rocketdyne and went to supervise the making of the boosters for the space program. Mom took a fall at the ice-skating rink at the Topanga Plaza and had to have bone chips removed from her brain. Her father came out to stay with us kids until mom was back on her feet. Six months. Dad had to keep working to provide the health insurance and also to feed us and pay the rent (even back then California rents were horrible compared to Ohio). Since papaw was retired and his other daughter lived across the street from his home, he could leave mamaw there while he came out. He cooked, made us kids clean, took us to school functions and all the rest of the things mom would have done. He took us to visit mom at the hospital so she could remember us (she had temporary amnesia and did not know she was married or had kids, initially). She had lost twelve years or memory in the fall and skull fracture.

Papaw was always a hoot. He had a little larceny in his heart and was a lot more lenient than mom had been about what we did. He aided and abetted me and my brother’s carbide cannon incident, for instance. We had fruit trees in the yard and he’d go out and pick oranges and make fresh squeezed OJ for us at breakfast. He makes pancakes and biscuits using buckwheat flour.

Later, after the space program ended and massive layoffs happened in the aerospace industry, we moved back to Ohio. Dad got a supervisor job at a plant that made wheels for US military vehicles. We were close to both sets of grandparents. We kids worked on our paternal papaw’s farm and also rode with our maternal papaw when he delivered frozen chickens. Me and my brother loaded and unloaded chickens and papaw drove the truck. On the farm we drove tractors and other farm equipment and the pickup truck, too. We baled hay and straw and put it up in the barn. Me and my brother ate like starving Clydesdales but worked it all off on the farm or the chicken runs. Sis stayed with mamaw on the farm and helped her. At our other papaw’s house, she helped mamaw bake pies for the local restaurants while we helped papaw with the chickens.

Later, when I was a papaw, I took care of my grandson. My wife got to see and hold her grandson before she passed. Since I had no wife and was retired, I concentrated on being papaw for my grandson. I babysat while my daughter and her husband worked. They dropped him off for breakfast and picked him up after supper. All day we played and did things together. To the playground, fishing, walking in the woods. When he was school age, I picked him up from school and we goofed off or I helped him with homework and we had supper together. I would not trade my time with him for a billion dollars. This year he graduates college. Hopefully, I’ll live to see some great grandchildren.

 

Reclaiming the Family – Part 3 – Recruit Grandma and Grandpa

Reclaiming the Family – Part 1 – Bring Back the Dowry

Reclaiming the Family – Part 2 – The Family Business

At least going back a generation or more a pattern of behavior has become established in the colder areas of the country that once people reach retirement age they head south to Florida or Arizona and live out their days in a retirement community.  And I suppose if you are sufficiently wealthy this would not prevent you from supporting and staying in touch with your descendants back North.

But in today’s world of limited opportunities and constrained resources another choice is to use your retirement and the resources you have accrued to reinforce and enhance your family’s opportunities.  Think about how difficult it is for a family with two working parents to provide the opportunities and attention that their kids need to grow up right.  If they manage to check their kids’ homework and get them to sports practices and games that’s probably taking up their whole free time left over from work and sleep.

Now as touched on earlier in this series it is much to be preferred that children have a stay at home mom to take care of them and make sure they’re staying out of trouble but even then, kids should have a lot more of their family’s time and attention.  For instance, who says a father is the only one who can bring the kids to a baseball game or a museum or a movie.  Why can’t grandpa do that?  And grandma is about a million times better at babysitting babies than a 15-year-old girl who will spend all her time on the phone while the baby sits glued to Sesame Street.

With respect to school work many of the baby boomers are STEM professionals and can not only help out with homework but can provide real world insights to children on what career paths make sense and which are dead ends.  For instance, if one of my grandsons asked me whether he should major in computer science or intersectional gender studies I think I’d be able to give him a very clear answer!

But this is just the tip of the iceberg.  Even the tradition of having the Sunday dinner at Grandma’s house does more for bonding the family than an occasional phone call to Florida provides.  And it may provide the opportunity for a request for financial or other help that otherwise wouldn’t happen.

And what are you sacrificing if you forego the condo in Florida.  Playing shuffleboard with other old people that you don’t even know?  Missing out on skin cancer?  Sure, maybe your arthritis won’t hurt quite as much but don’t forget those alligators that are waiting to pick you off at the mail box.  And how does that stack up against teaching your grandkids how to fly a kite or telling them about the time their great-great grandfather shot it out with armed robbers from the running board of a car.

And there may even be a payback for you besides satisfaction.  When the day comes when you are against it and your time is up maybe there will be someone to shed a tear and say a kind word at your bedside instead of just a text message from up North to say goodbye.

 

Reclaiming the Family – Part 2 – The Family Business

Reclaiming the Family – Part 1 – Bring Back the Dowry

 

Back in the 1960s when I was a kid.  My father told me that the key to success was getting as much education as I could in a technical field and working for private industry.  In my own lazy and wayward manner, I took his advice and on the whole the advice was actually very sound.  I ended up in engineering, supported my family through their college years and lived a reasonably comfortable existence at a step beyond what my parents had.

Fast forward to 2019.  I have grandsons who will be coming of age in the next five to ten years.  Would my father’s advice be as good for them as it was for me?  Maybe, maybe not.  Let’s look at some of the factors that have changed.

Back when I was young, the American economy was the engine of world economic growth.  Technical innovation in almost every field occurred primarily here.  Computer science was the greatest innovation but advances in materials science, chemistry, medicine and electronics were remarkable.  Jobs in all fields went through booms and busts in synchrony with the business cycles but people raised families, bought houses and sent their kids to college on the strength of American industry employing them consistently.  And this was at all levels.  They needed production personnel, tradesmen, maintenance workers, support staff, along with scientists, engineers, accountants, lawyers and business managers.  America worked.

But starting in the early 1990s American business got the bright idea that American business didn’t need American workers.  First slowly then rapidly, jobs were shifted from where labor was expensive to where it was dirt cheap.  NAFTA was the beginning of this.  A factory across the border in Juarez could build automotive parts for a fraction of what it would cost in El Paso right across the border in Texas.  But things really got out of hand when the globalists shifted whole industries to China.  I personally saw the beginning of the export of polystyrene manufacturing to China in the 1990s and assume that the wholesale loss of intellectual property happened in just the same way with all the other industries that were sent there to avoid the environmental regulations and the normal labor costs in the United States.  And with those industries went all the manufacturing jobs that had existed with them here.  In my later career I was in an industry that was relatively immune to this devastation but lately between off-shoring and the importation of Indian and Chinese scientists and engineers the same kind of fate awaits these higher-level jobs and the kids coming out of school hoping for them.

For now, the crème de la crème of the best professional schools can hope to find good jobs in the legacy industries remaining in the United States.  But for everyone else it is an uncertain and changeable environment.

Recently what I’ve been thinking about is small business ownership.  If you can select an industry that is relatively hard to replace by cheap overseas labor, owning your own business can both help someone raising a family and also provide jobs for family that will be needing them as they reach maturity.

What kinds of businesses could these be?  Obvious ones are the building and business trades.  Electricians, carpenters, plumbers, HVAC installers, roofers, mechanics, IT technicians and repairmen.  Of course, there are all kinds of businesses that haven’t been completely devastated by cheap Chinese crap from Amazon.com.  Custom manufacturers and specialty equipment manufacturers, specialty metal workers and welders all provide products and services for businesses that still exist in the US.  Someone who is good at orbital sanitary welding and is conscientious about the paperwork that goes along with it can make a good living servicing the needs of microelectronics and pharmaceutical customers.

The way I think about it, if you’ve spent your life building up an expertise maybe you can use some of these skills to start or buy a business that you can work your children into.  Giving your children a leg up in the kind of world we live in today sounds like something that make sense.  Schooling will still have its value but instead of spending hundreds of thousands of dollars to got to Stanford you could go to State Tech and then go to work for the family business.

I’m still working on my own version of this plan but I throw it out there as an idea.

Of course, it’s not a panacea.  There’s no guarantee that your kids will be interested in the field you start a business in.  After all, if your kid wants to be an astrophysicist chances are, he won’t want to be a plumber.  And it’s not uncommon that family members cannot work together because of differences in temperament.

But there are advantages to working for family that are unique.  Transitioning a business from a father to his sons provides a flexible environment for on the job training, reasonable terms for both sides of the ownership transition and the possibility for someone even beyond normal retirement age to provide real value to the business on a part time basis.  It might even make long term health care more affordable for the older generation.

Obviously, many people aren’t in a position to start a small business, especially while raising a family.  It might even be more applicable to grandfathers but I think it’s another way to try to protect your family from the negative changes that the American business world has seen in the last generation.  Something to consider.

 

Reclaiming the Family – Part 3 – Recruit Grandma and Grandpa

 

11SEP2019 – OCF Update

Looking back eighteen years to that horrifying day it’s remarkable to think of how much courage and patriotism was squandered and how the enemies of this country both domestic and foreign have capitalized on the truly awful leadership that Bush and Obama provided.  I guess I should be grateful that we didn’t end up with the trifecta by way of Hillary but the bitterness of those wasted years is discouraging.

The lesson I’ll take away from all that is never assume the war is won.  It’s never over.  Complacency is fatal.  If you are not attacking the enemy then your are retreating.  Every institution that they’ve undermined and subverted is a battle that still needs to be fought, another hill to take.  Every RINO in Congress or running for President is a roadblock to rolling back the insanity that’s been imposed.  Make sure your leaders are actually on your side.  Check their bona fides.

President Trump and the Brexit movement in England and some of the other Nationalist leaders in Italy, Poland, Hungary and elsewhere give me hope that we still have time to scramble back from the edge of the abyss and straighten out the world we will leave our children and grandchildren.  I hope it’s not too late.

I’ll continue on some practical things I can think of for people to do in their own lives with their own loved ones to avoid the damage that our culture does to us, especially the young people.  I’ll add additional parts to the “Reclaiming the Family” series.  I think that is useful.

There are fifty days left until the Halloween deadline that Boris Johnson set for Brexit.  I am very excited to see if Boris can outmaneuver his foes and either let the date pass without any extension or force a General election.  I think between Farage and Johnson they can secure an actual working majority of real conservatives to pass the Brexit and any other British legislation that’s been held captive by the Tory globalists.  I hope he gets both those results.

Well, even though today broke eighty degrees New England summer is done.  The leaves are starting to drop and the butterflies and dragonflies are retreating.  Soon fall foliage will be going on and considering my red-green color blindness the results will definitely be hit or miss.  The NY Yankees look to win the AL East division and surprisingly it looks like the Boston Red Sox and their rabid fans will be missing the playoffs this year.  New York’s pitching is barely so-so but the hitting is phenomenal.  Which means they’ll probably be knocked out in the AL Championship game.  But Camera Girl is very excited to see them play and even I have dropped my perennial cynicism and have the boys of summer on several times.  Go Yanks!

And finally I have managed to hold onto my Biden prediction.  I’m ride’n with Biden.  I think Creepy Joe will be the nominee and President Trump’s punching bag.  Blood filled eye, advanced senile dementia or even occasional bouts of priapism should not stop Joe.  He’s a man on a mission.  And when he declares Spartacus or Fauxcahantas his running mate the signs in Revelations will be consummated.

Looks to be a busy fall.  Stay tuned.

Reclaiming the Family – Part 1 – Bring Back the Dowry

One of my guilty pleasures every week is listening to the Voice of Saruman on his Friday morning podcast.  I refer of course to the mellifluous musings of the ZMan on his on his Z Blog’s Power Hour.  As with others on the Far Right, I find it easier to agree with his analysis of the modern world’s dysfunction than with his solutions to these problems.  So back on Friday I listened as he regaled us with the tragicomic details of the War of the Sexes or, as he called it, “Wammin’s World”.  And after enjoying the mockery of the absurd antics of the feminists I reflected on the takeaway message that the speaker was making;

The thing about the war of the sexes is that it is really a war on normal women. When you examine the arguments from the Left and from feminists, not a lot of it is aimed at changing male behavior that is beneficial to women. Mostly it is aimed at eliminating the protections a healthy society has for its women. The resulting social breakdown creates more unhappy women, who can then be recruited into the coven of feminism.

With that analysis I agree wholeheartedly.  But the ZMan doesn’t specify how this lunacy can be ended.  Being the pragmatic fellow that I am I tried to think what practical changes could be made that might move us in the right direction.

And the first thing that came to mind was something else that the ZMan touches on often; that the way that our civilization cannibalizes its less affluent members is by setting up institutions that monetize the social capital of the family in ways that end up destroying the family.  So, for example, parents bankrupt themselves to send their daughters to expensive colleges and this ensures that the daughters will attempt to recoup that investment by entering the economy as corporate drones.  And during their time in both college and the corporate world it will be drummed into them that their real value and their happiness is as drones, busily making up power point slides and decorating their cubicles with colorful diversity slogans.  And so, between working in the corporate environment and drinking the Kool-Aid of female empowerment they either never get around to marriage and children or they raise their one or two children by proxy with nannies and daycare.  And the next generation doesn’t even know what a normal family life even is.  This is social capital (families trying to do the right thing) being monetized by the colleges and corporations.  The schools and the corporations that use these women profit immensely from the process.  But the families that underwrite the whole thing are basically cutting their own throats by doing it.  And flooding the labor force with women depresses the value of labor for the men trying to find a place in the world too.  This along with the rampant female affirmative action makes it more than likely that a man will find his wife making more money than him.  This further degrades the likelihood of a normal happy family relationship for all involved.  Society might as well just turn us into Soylent Green and save the time.

So, the practical changes should be a way to avoid this whole family destroying cycle.  And the first change would be, Don’t send your daughters to college.  I could expand it to don’t send any of your kids to college but let’s start small.  As the father of daughters who went to expensive colleges, I can tell you that not doing this would first of all restore solvency to many an American family and also allow families to provide much needed help to their daughters when they want to get married.  In other words, reinstitute the dowry.  This might sound almost medieval but can you imagine if the money that a father spends on his daughter’s college education could be diverted to a down payment on a house?  That could be enough to allow his son-in-law to support his new family with just his own salary.  In other words, letting a woman stay home to raise her kids.  Additionally, if parents don’t have to bankrupt themselves to turn their daughters into childless drones then those parents will have the wherewithal to help the young married couples when the pitfalls of life intrude on their world; illness, unemployment and Acts of God.

And a non-financial benefit of this arrangement would be the restoration of the normal relationships within the extended family.  Parents would be respected and appreciated for the financial and familial leadership they would represent when decisions like home purchasing occurred.  Husbands as the primary bread winners would be appreciated by their wives and this would give the men the psychological reinforcement to value their roles that they currently lack.  But most importantly, it would allow young women to fulfill their most valuable roles in our world.  They would be the mothers that every child needs and deserves.  Modern society has denigrated and devalued the role stay at home mothers play in producing happy and sane children.  Anyone who has seen how children are raised today knows that it is a miracle that any of them avoid becoming psychopaths.  This alone would justify any productivity to our economy associated with women withdrawing from the workplace during their childbearing and childrearing years.  But another facet that people rarely discuss is the satisfaction that a woman gains from being a mom.  Now granted there are some women who are unsuited for motherhood.  I wish there were a blood test that could identify these poor things and redirect them to something where they’ll do less harm like loan sharking.  But for the majority of healthy well-adjusted women motherhood is fulfilling as well as extremely valuable to society.

 

Reclaiming the Family – Part 2 – The Family Business