Monday, February 3, 2014

Myths we live by. Contradictory advertising.

Good sunny though cold Monday.  Sunny for now but snow is expected to come in later this afternoon and dump (perhaps--depending on the model the weather people use) ten inches more of snow on us by Wednesday.  That won't be good for some of the neighbors around here.  Our landlords provide a snow removal and lawn care service for which we are thankful.  It is one of the many reasons we haven't seriously considered finding another place.  Just across the street that borders the parking area not much snow removal is evident.  Different owners who seem to have left snow removal to the renters some of whom are physically and financially unable to accomplish the task.  I see an even bigger mess coming.

I rather like this take down on Tom Perkins ridiculous article.  You remember--the one which claimed the criticism of the 1% was approaching Kristalnacht proportions.  He later said he regretted the use of the word but stood by his contention that his class of people are being cruelly abused, verbally if not physically.  The truth so many don't want to recognize is that no one accomplishes anything entirely on their own.  I remember a few decades back reading the comments from a young woman who had just been awarded the first ever Rhodes Scholarship awarded to a woman who claimed she owed the Feminist Movement absolutely nothing because she won it on her own merit.  Well, yes--but just the year before her own merit would have got her squat because Rhodes Scholarships were restricted to men only.  Someone educates the workers businesses employ.  Someone builds the roads and other infrastructure they depend on.  And more than their taxes support schools, roads, courts, police and all of the other structures without which their endeavors would be thwarted before begun.  Yet we all pay homage to the "self-made man."

Two pieces of advertising came on in the same commercial break that tickled my contrary bones.  The first was from H&R Block telling the audience that Americans left a billion dollars on the table because they did their taxes wrong.  So all of us nincompoops should simply leave tax prep to the experts. "Nincompoops" is my word.  The ad didn't use it but the implication was clear.  We are all incompetent when it comes to getting our tax returns right.  The ad right after was from Quicken Books and assured the viewers that, of course, we are capable and fully intelligent enough to do our own taxes.  All we need is the right tool--Quicken Books.  So all we need to do is fork over the cash and we are fine.  Of course, the old fashioned pencil, tax form, puzzling out the instructions, and calculator simply aren't adequate to the task.

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