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Some more learnings to share

POSTED: April 3, 2013 4:00 a.m.

In my last column, I shared some observations about current happenings and promised some more. So here they are.

As Christians observed Holy Week leading to Easter, one of the emphases has been on service and sacrifice.

Many eulogized Senior Center Director Margie Weaver in exactly those terms. If ever there was one who unselfishly served others and sacrificed her time and efforts (and perhaps her health) in so doing, it was our dear friend Margie.

If we needed to learn this, we now certainly know that an unassuming, humble servant can command the love and respect of her peers and her superiors. We are grateful for her and we will miss her.

I had alluded, in that last column, to the question of who is/are paying the bills. As taxpayers attempt to stretch bank accounts, we often complain that we are the ones.

There's no denying that the funds for governmental programs, such as food stamps and Medicaid, come from taxes.

Then a newspaper analysis about raising the minimum wage reminded me that if more people earned more wages, some of those programs could be greatly diminished. And who would pay?

Well, we consumers would, because the prices of many items and services would be raised. Producers and retailers would necessarily and naturally pass the cost of higher wages on to customers.

Which, however, would be better?

I believe that most people would prefer to earn enough money to pay their bills for food, medical care and other necessities than to need to apply for help from the government. Then your tax money would not need to.

It will take time for that turnaround to take effect, and I am not an economist who can set the wheels in motion to make that happen. But I should be willing to pay a little more for "Made in America" shoes or for a hamburger if that would help give livable wages to workers who now must depend upon income supplements.

How can we make that happen?

I also have learned that it is not average NRA members whose dues pay the salaries for spokesmen who loudly declare that our government is plotting to take away your 2nd Amendment rights. It's gun manufacturers.

Just as it was the tobacco industry who knowingly and purposefully withheld information about addictiveness and health problems caused by their products.

If we take the advice of "following the money," we can learn who pays the bills as well as who makes the most profit.

For example, it is not the gas station owner who gets richer as prices fluctuate so much, it is the supplier.

We may also learn more about motives and more about the truth behind those motives.

We are aware that most advertising and much of the commentary we hear and read are all propaganda - that is, it is designed to influence decisions and actions.

The question we must ask is "Who/what is that particular information designed to benefit?"

Helen Taylor's column appears periodically in the Dawson Community News.

 

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