I understand exactly where you are coming from, Kay. I look at the mess in Washington and worry. I am one of the majority of Social Security recipients who depends entirely on that check every month. My mother is 95% dependent on hers. The only reason we are reasonably comfortable is because we share the expenses. Neither of us would be at all comfortable if we were doing this alone. We have seen the cost of her medicines quadruple in the last four years, thanks in large part to that little piece of corporate welfare--the Affordable Care Act. And every year the Medicare premium has increased although the COLAs have been negligible or non-existent. If the past hasn't been kind, the future looks worse. It looks very likely that the government will implement that damned 'chained-CPI' as the measure of inflation that will determine how much, if any, cost of living increases we will get. Many of us have noted that the current CPI measures are exercises in statistical lying that allows the Fed to pretend they are meeting their legal responsibility to control inflation. For our siblings who are just behind us, the picture looks worse yet. I have a brother and a sister who are just under 55 and, if the age for full social security and Medicare is raised, they are screwed. Neither one has the time or the flexibility to recoup what they will lose.
I just came back to this after one of the idiot Tea Party Congresscritters drove me away from the news with his inanity. He claimed that raising the taxes on the rich would cost jobs. Oh, my!! How horrible. But the estimate for job losses if they fail to raise the debt ceiling--640k. Why don't those losses register on that guy's radar. I am trying real hard here not to swear and call him obscene names.
The early local news had a segment that illustrates very clearly why we have the impasse. We have seen national polls which say that a sizable majority want a combination of tax hikes and spending cuts with no cuts to Social Security, Medicare and Medicaid. But outside the local (Chicago) Congressman's office--dueling demonstrations with one group supporting a hardline of deep unspecified spending cuts and no revenue increases while the other insisted on unspecified compromise. Each legislator can listen to the side he most wants to hear and tune out the other. And as far as claiming that the American People want this or that--they essentially decide those whose opinions they don't want respect aren't Real American People.
Well, I guess I didn't lose out on the blueberries after all. We just got back from our favorite year-round farmer's market where they still had the 5 pound box for 13.99 and sweet corn for 3.99 the dozen. The prices most places have been jaw-dropping to be kind.