Archive for category Just Insane

The Haunted White House

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Rumor has it there’s more than one President that resides at 1600 Pennsylvania Avenue. But only one is alive.

It may seem like a ghost in the White House would be fictional nonsense, especially at such a serious place. But it’s difficult to disregard these ghost stories as folk lore or myths, when they came from some very reputable sources that include former and present White House staff, former First Ladies, visiting Heads of State, and former Presidents.

The White House is owned by the National Park Service. Technically the White House is one of America’s National Parks; the second most popular National Park with Yellowstone being the first. Construction began in October of 1792, and a lot of renovating took place to make the White House the modern structure it is today. Indoor plumbing and central heating were added in 1835, the East Wing was added in 1866, and the West Wing was added in 1902. White House renovations are actually a continuing process. The style of the interior is still pretty much the same since the White House was rebuilt after British Forces set it, and almost all of Washington DC, on fire on August 24, 1814.

Most of the people who visit the White House are amazed by how much smaller it is in person than it appears on TV. Almost every room has been the setting for many significant events that shaped American History. A visit to the White House is an inspiration for any American or foreign diplomat, as walk through the stark white finely appointed rooms that reflect a period when America was a developing country. Whether it’s for a tour, a legislative visit with White House staff, or even a meeting with the President, any American can’t help but amazed to be in the same place where so much history has taken place.

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In the East Room of the White House the crown molding designed by Dolly Madison remains the same till this day

While walking through the White House it seems like those scenes in that history book you studied in school come alive each time you enter a room. It’s as if you can almost imagine with vivid detail historical events happening right in front of you. Being in the same setting makes ir easy to picture in your mind what it was like when President Lincoln signed the Emancipation Proclamation, when President Nixon paced the White House halls with torment during Watergate, or when Jackie Kennedy mourned beside the casket of her husband as he lied in repose in the East Room. Could that same vivid recall of prior influences, combined with being in the actual place where many events occurred be a logical explanation for these ghost stories? Maybe the mind playing tricks? That certainly could be an explanation if there were no consistency to the stories. But may of these claims of ghost came from different people who never met. And each account had the same vivid detail

Hearing unexplained noises and feeling the presence of ghost are a common occurrence in the White House. Seeing actual apparitions have also happened on several occasions. There have been several reports of hearing President Andrew Jackson stomping and swearing throughout the presidential residence. In a letter to his wife Bess, President Truman made reference to ghost residing with him in the White House ghost; “I sit here in this old house and work on foreign affairs, read reports, and work on speeches, all the while listening to the ghost walk up and down the hallway and even right here in the study. The floors pop and the drapes move back and forth.”

At one time there were plans to move the Rose garden that was created by Dolly Madison. That was until gardeners claim they were chased off by Dolly, who was very upset and vehemently opposed the idea. The Rose Garden remains where it’s at with no future plans to move it. There have also been several reports of a demon cat that haunts the White House basement. It is alleged this cat will first appear as an adorable kitten, but will immediately glow in size and increase a demon like appearance. It appeared during two very sad times in American history; just before the stock market crash in 1929, and before the assassination of President Kennedy in 1963.

According to her blog featured on the website Huff Post 50 in October of 2013, Journalist Joan Gage chronicled a conversation with President Reagan during a state dinner at the White house in 1986. Reagan claimed one time their dog pointed his nose up in the air and stood on his hind legs, then began barking at the ceiling and continued to do this while walking around the room. On another occasion Reagan’s daughter Maureen and her husband were sleeping in the Lincoln bedroom during their visit her husband woke up and saw a transparent figure standing at the window looking out. His wife didn’t believe him, until she saw the same thing on a different night.

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The North Portico entrance to the White House where sightings of a British Soldier with a flame lit torch have taken place on several occasions

There have been several sightings of a British soldier wearing a red coat and carrying a flame lit torch while standing just outside of the North Portico. The East Room is where Abigail Adams has been seen hanging laundry to dry just as she did when she was alive. Its also alleged the ghost and a child in their preteens can be heard running up and down the central hallway on the State level. There have also been several reports of ushers and doormen who passed away several decades ago and still tending to their duties today. According to all accounts the most haunted room in the White House would be the Rose Room in the third floor Presidential Residence. The Ghost of both Andrew Jackson and Abraham Lincoln were both seen there.

The most popular ghost of all is that of Abraham Lincoln. Several of the people who once lived in the White House including First Ladies Grace Coolidge, Lady Bird Johnson, Eleanor Roosevelt, and President Ford’s daughter Susan have sensed or literally seen Lincoln’s Ghost. Lincoln has been seen in the Presidential Residence, the East Room, and the Oval Office. On one occasion Roosevelt’s valet ran screaming from the White House after seeing Lincoln’s ghost.

wh 2The most famous Lincoln sighting of all came from British Prime Minister Winston Churchill while he visited the White House during World War II. After taking a bath Churchill came from the bathroom and saw Lincoln sitting by the fireplace in his room. On subsequent visits Churchill refused to step foot in the Lincoln Bedroom. According to psychics, Lincoln hangs around the White House to help current Presidents when they’re facing difficult situations.

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Look Before You Share; some websites are not what they seem.

Social media has emerged as one of the most important tools of communication. What you communicate on social media says a lot about you. The things you share, your post, and even comments you make come together to create your digital personality. Any and all information posted or shared by you gives others a glimpse into who you are, what you do, what you stand for, and what you react to.

OuoteIf you think nobody’s looking at your profile, you better think again. In addition to your friends and family, others may also be reading your profile. Sometimes privacy settings aren’t that private, some agencies have authority to override them. You can also give access to your social media profile without even realizing it. When you sign on to a site using your profile; you also give that organization full access to everything about you. If you’ve applied for a job there may be a chance the employer you’ve applied to reviewed your profile during the employment screening process. Police can also access social media profiles. Evidence from social media has been used in court to prosecute criminal and civil cases. The internet in general does provide certain anonymity but social media does not.

What ever you say says a lot about you and where you get your information you share is key. This tells people what type of media outlets you go to for news, facts, and how you get the facts that help you form opinions about what is important to you. There are some questions you need to ask yourself when you see something you’re thinking about sharing. Is this information accurate? Who is saying this and are they a credible source? You have to do some filtering. This step can clarify information for you and possibly spare you embarrassment.

POST“Things are not always what they seem” is an old adage that has more meaning now than ever before. These words describe about 70 percent of content on the internet. You may see some slick websites or post that look legit, but it’s all smoke and mirrors. Anybody can say anything on the internet and look believable doing it; especially if they package themselves as an objective and reputable news organization. Often you will see zealous organizations that make false and outrageous claims, but they market that information as a news story and it looks creditable. All it takes are flashy headlines, some slick pictures, and information presented in a news format. The picture in the left margin is a perfect example; a ridiculous claim but packaged in a professional format.

While browsing websites we see things we laugh at, things we’re concerned about, and things that are important. You owe it to yourself to check that website for authenticity because once you gather facts they will become your knowledge. Closely examine who is giving you these facts. Who are the sources they cite? Are they good sources? Look at other articles or claims the website makes. Is this news or propaganda? Before you share from that website, especially if you’re a first time visitor, make sure what you share is true. When you do share, you’re telling people this is what you believe.

If you notice on most social media websites any article posted or shared has a website address in the lower left hand corner. This is where the filtering starts. That website address tells who is publishing this information. Before you share what they’re saying, go to that website and check it out to make sure what their saying is correct. Is this a place you want to get your information and how true is it? Keep in mind by and posting sharing information, you are giving information to others that will also have an opinion. You can spare some yourself some criticism if the information is the truth.

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Most Californians Don’t Know What a Water District is; as the drought gets worse they soon will.

Winter months are when California gets the majority of rainfall it needs to replenish the state’s water supply. That hasn’t happened this year. Both the State Water Project Resources and Colorado River Resources are reporting record low numbers of water for this current rain season. And there’s little hope of catching up as this rain season is coming to an end. The Northern Sierra Snowpack is at 4.30 inches, only 19 percent of what it should be.

State statsIt would be hard to find a climatologist or research scientist who would claim this drought is going away any time soon. According to recent studies published by Scientist at Stanford University, this drought will be around for a while and will get worse.

It’s not just a matter of no rain. Something else is happening in California that is not causing the drought, but will certainly contribute to it, and that’s the state’s increasing population.  The State of California already has the highest population of all western states and it’s increasing at a steady rate. According to California’s State Department of Finance the state’s population will increase in fifteen years by 14 percent to an estimated 44 million people. This increase in population will mean an even higher demand on an already dwindling water supply.

garden GraphicIf you did a poll and asked Californians what a water district is most wouldn’t know. But that’s about to change real fast. These agencies will soon be featured on evening news reports and documentaries. Many Californians will soon begin contacting or even protesting water districts.

A simple definition of a water district is a municipal organization that provides water to customers in a service area. With the exception of rain, water districts supply all water used in cities, on farms, in manufacturing, and water for residential use. This is why water districts may not have much significance to Californians now but they soon will; these are the agencies that control water and as that water becomes scarcer, these agencies will become more important to Californians.

car wash graphicAs the current drought situation worsens, and that’s inevitable, Californians are sure to be faced with things like statewide mandatory water conservation. If mandatory conservation doesn’t work these water districts, the municipal organizations that have jurisdiction over all water use, will have no choice but to start rationing water. This could mean that when Californians uses their rationed amount of water; they’ll turn on a facet and see nothing. Once this happens many will be forced to purchase bottled water for personal consumption, cooking, personal hygiene, even flushing a toilet. They’ll also be paying a premium price for that bottled water.

This scenario may sound like a script from a movie but the truth is; it could start happening very soon. The Metropolitan Water District of Southern California is already considering water rationing by the summer unless conditions improve. A recent Op-ed article in the Los Angeles Times calls for state wide water rationing because Californians have about one year of water left.

 

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In Plain Sight

ht3Victims of human trafficking are not always easy to identify. It is very possible you may have seen one cleaning tables in a restaurant, on a subway, or at a stop light. This is an issue that doesn’t get as much media attention as other topics, but human trafficking involves 800,000 victims worldwide each year. This includes many victims here in the United States, most are women and children.

Trafficking generates a profit of 32 billion dollars each year and is defined by an exploitation which comes in many forms. Only 19% of all trafficking involves labor exploitation. The most common form of exploitation is sexual.

The most common form of exploitation is sexual. Some runaway children will become sex workers at early as 12 years old.

The most common form of exploitation is sexual. Some runaway children will become sex workers at early as 12 years old.

According to the U S State Department, 80% of all trafficking involves sexual exploitation. This includes forcing victims into prostitution, sexual slavery, and forcing victims to commit sex acts to create pornography. Over 70% of trafficking victims in the United States are women and half are children.

In the United States the average teen will enter the sex trade industry between the ages of 12 to 14 years old. Many of these victims are runaway girls who have fled from sexual abuse. According to UNICEF the United States is considered a top destination for victims of child trafficking and exploitation. Cases of human trafficking have been reported in all 50 U.S. States; anyone can be trafficked regardless of race, class, education, gender, age, or citizenship when forcefully coerced or enticed by false promises.

There are ways to identify a trafficking victim. If you encounter a child or adult that is not sure of their whereabouts, exhibits fear or anxious behavior, or has inconsistencies in their story, these are conditions consistent with a trafficking victim. This person may also have unexplained injuries. If you suspect someone is a victim of trafficking, call the National Human Trafficking Hotline 1-888-373-7888

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Water; our new liquid gold

 

According to the United States Geological Survey a bathroom faucet that drips one drop of water per minute will waste 104 gallons of water per year

According to the United States Geological Survey a bathroom faucet that drips one drop of water per minute will waste 104 gallons of water per year

Water conservation is our new reality and we have no choice. Prior to California’s drought saving H2O was a green thing. It’s still a green thing but that green now stands for money. Here is a sobering fact that may bring things into perspective; according to the website quench.com, on a global scale only 1% of this planet’s water is drinkable. Of course we can clean and filter water through technology and nature, but we cannot replenish water at the rate we are consuming it.

Now to bring this closer to home, we here in California are facing a serious situation when it comes to water and this is something we must come to terms with soon. When you conserve water you do your part to respect the environment. That’s all very nice but the hardcore truth is you can either start to conserve water or start paying even more of your hard-earned money. Money is a great motivator so keep in mind, when you conserve water

The Environmental Protection Agency reports that the average American Family consumes over 300 gallons of water a day. And that’s just for indoor use. About 30% of water consumed in America is for outdoor use. To break it down on an individual basis, the average person in America uses about 70 gallons a day. Here are some tips that could help you to cut down on an amount of water you consume in the course of a day that just might help you to save money:

  • Don’t let the water run while you brush your teeth. Just get the toothbrush wet then shut the water off. Then put it back on to rinse.
  • When shaving, fill the sink with water and swirl the razor in the water to rinse it.
  • Take a military shower, the water runs no longer than three minutes and that’s it. Yes this is possible; ask anyone who has served in the military.
  • When taking a bath do not let the water run until it reaches the desired temperature and then close the drain. Close the drain off first then get to the correct temperature while the water is running. And unless you’re a hippopotamus, you can use less water to take a bath.
  • Wait until you have a full load until you do the laundry.
  • Be diligent about looking for dripping faucets or leaks in the bathroom
  • When doing dishes, soak pots and pans in hot soapy water before washing them. This will also make it a lot easier to clean the stuck on food residue.

We have just scratched the surface of this issue. Unless California sees a lot of rain, enough to get Noah scrambling for wood, this problem is not gonna go away anytime soon. This is now a part of our new reality and we have no choice but to conform. Here is the best way to conserve water; every time you hear water running, just imagine your bank balance decreasing at an accelerated rate, because that is exactly what is happening.

 

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Homeless in America; we can fix this

The National Alliance to End Homelessness claims on any night in the United States 640,000 people experience homelessness. To better understand “Homeless” we must first define the term. That is not an easy task because homelessness is a complicated issue. Certain criteria must be met for a person to be considered homeless. To best define the term in simple words, homelessness means an individual or family must sleep in a structure not suitable for human habitation, such as cars, sidewalks, parks or abandoned buildings. This also includes individuals who are scheduled to be released from an intuition, treatment program, or hospital within 30 days and no plan for housing in place. This definition is brief at best. For a more information you can go to the US Department of Health and Human Services website.

Do these people look homeless? Actually some of them may be. A segment of America's homeless population are facing the challenge of not looking homeless

Do these people look homeless? Actually some of them may be. A growing segment of America’s homeless population are must face the challenge of not looking homeless while searching for employment.

We can’t talk about the topic of homelessness without first mentioning the Homeless American Veteran. The US Department of Housing and Urban Development reports close to 60,000 veterans are homeless. Nearly half of them served in Vietnam. Many other homeless veterans have served in World War II, the Korean War, Cold War, Vietnam War, Grenada, Panama, Lebanon, Persian Gulf War, Afghanistan and Iraq, and the military’s anti-drug cultivation efforts in South America. At this point in time, younger homeless veterans make up about eight per cent of the homeless veteran population, but that number is increasing.

There are several circumstances that cause homelessness, but those who become homeless fall into one of two categories; transitional and chronic. It’s estimated that the chronically homeless make up the largest portion of America’s homeless population. The majority of these individuals surfer from some type of mental health issue. Mental health also includes addiction.

Those who are transitional homeless are currently experiencing homelessness for the first time and make up smaller number of America’s homeless. On average, they can regain some type of suitable housing within 12 to 18 months. One of their biggest challenges is trying to not look homeless. It is typical for them to bathe in public restrooms to prepare for appointments and job interviews. This segment of America’s homeless population has the ability to be retrained and acquire marketable skills.

Homeless graphWhile those who are transitional homeless make every attempt to not look homeless, those who are chronically homeless are highly visible on American streets and present with the biggest challenge in attempting to overcome homelessness. These individuals need additional resources that would include some form of treatment to address issues that made them homeless. It is important that our society address the issue of the chronically homeless, but if we also turn attention to the transitional homeless with a different goal in mind, we could reduce homeless statistics and better improve America’s standing in the world in manufacturing and technology.

Children homelessThere is no doubt the United States needs to retrain its workforce. Once a world leader in manufacturing, America now trails behind several other countries. It doesn’t take a rocket scientist to figure out that America imports more than it exports. America needs to develop and manufacture products the world needs and we have the potential to do that.

Here is just one example of an opportunity the United States has to increase manufacturing and technology within its own borders; Rare Earth Metals are used for making anything electronic from cell phones to TVs. The continental United States has about 14 rare earth mines, some of the largest deposits of rare earth metals in the world are right here. Once we mine rare earth metals, the United States has to ship them to China to be manufactured because we don’t know how. Yet we have so many people who have the ability and desperately want to be retrained and gain long-term employment.

Shelter useAddressing the Homeless issue in America will require more than a quick fix because it is a complicated issue. However, it is possible to significantly reduce homeless statistics in general if we create resources for those who have the ability to be retained. We can’t expect the government to do all of the work; we must also look to American corporations to institute programs, maybe even with tax incentives, which will hire and re-train the American worker. “Investing in America” is not just a cliché. It appears we have not been doing that lately and look where we are.

This proposal of identifying the employable segment of our population and retraining them with marketable skills is not a new concept; America has done this before with a high degree of success. We must look at our history and examine those programs that did work to re-employ people, update them and make them adoptable to the needs of a modern-day economy, and reinstitute them. When we Americans reduce our homeless population, we will strengthen our middle class and enhance our own sustainably.

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The Demise of an embattled Mayor

DSCF2127San Diego, CA – Network news crews set up early Tuesday morning August 20th, outside of San Diego City Hall while Mayor Bob Filner, shrouded in controversy after several charges of sexual harassment, starts a second day of mediation.

DSCF2026Currently, over seventy per cent of the registered voters in San Diego want Mayor Filner to resign and those numbers are growing. Over a thousand people turned out Sunday, August 18th, at San Diego’s Civic Center Plaza afternoon to call for the resignation or the recall of San Diego Mayor Bob Filner, who by his own admission, has sexually assaulted several women during his term as Congressman and Mayor. So far, 18 women have come forward with stories of Filner’s groping, sexual innuendos, and sloppy kisses. The number of women who have been sexually assaulted and harassed by Filner is expected to grow with each passing day.

DSCF2065While the locks have been changed at the San Diego Mayor’s office,  Filner is not allowed to be alone in the same room with women. After admitting his guilt Filner spent two weeks in therapy to overcome his self-described illness. famed attorney Gloria Alred is representing one of the victims in a sexual harassment lawsuit. Filner’s attorneys claim the City of San Diego should be liable for the cost of the litigation because Filner did not receive sexual harassment training from the city after he was elected mayor. According to speculation, Filner’s resignation is inevitable. City Council President Todd Gloria will soon become Mayor.

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Nature’s devastating force is a real threat; will you be prepared?

English: Map of regions of the Federal Emergen...

English: Map of regions of the Federal Emergency Management Agency (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

It’s often been said, “It’s not a question of if, but a question of when.” Never before has this adage been more appropriate when referring to a natural disaster.  No matter where you live in the United States, it is likely you will endure the fury of nature. Different regions of our country must contend with the threat of potential catastrophes that are very real possibilities but rarely considered. The wrath of nature may come in the form of a hurricane in the Southeast, a tornado or flood in the Midwest, or an earthquake in the Southwest. Whatever the threat may be; knowledge, preparation, and a plan of action are paramount in terms of your survival.

 

The first thing you can do in preparation for when nature unleashes a violent fury is to learn specific details about whatever peril you could possibly face. Each emergency is unique and knowing what you should do will chart the course of action you can take. It is recommended that you must have an emergency action plan that you and other members of your family can implement after the event occurs. Then prepare by gathering food, water, a first aid kit, medications, and other things you and your family will need to survive for at least 72 hours. This is very important because it may take three days before emergency rescue personnel can get to you.

 

There are some simple guidelines that can help to gather the necessary emergency supplies you will need for you and your family. According to the web site ready.gov, they recommend one gallon of water per person each day for drinking and sanitation. This may vary depending on the climate where you live, warmer climates may require you have more than one gallon per person. Also, children, nursing mothers and people with chronic illnesses may require more water.

 

If the electricity is out it is important that you reduce the number of times you open you refrigerator door. The general rule is the food in your fridge will be the first to spoil, so it should be eaten first. Things in your freezer will have a longer period of time because their frozen. However unless you have additional ice you can pack food in, you should probably eat the food in your fridge first, then the food that was in the freezer.

 

The  non-perishable foods that you should include in your emergency preparedness kit should be easy to eat foods that do not require cooking. Ideal food choices should include salt-free crackers, whole grain cereals and canned foods with high liquid content. Avoid foods that will make you thirsty like salted nuts and potato chips. Snack bars that are high in protein, and fruits you must peel and good choices.

 

Supplies that include tools will be very helpful in the event of a disaster. You may want to include screw drivers, a hammer, handsaw that doesn’t require electricity, a flashlight with batteries, and a transistor radio. It air quality is compromised due to dust; you may want to include plastic sheets and duct tape. With no water you will not be able to flush your toilet. It is recommended you have moist towelettes and kitchen sized plastic bags with twist ties for personal sanitation.

 

FEMA seal before 2003

Keep in mind during a natural disaster, communication will be compromised not just because of electrical outages. Phone lines will become overloaded with those calling out of the area and those calling into the area to check on loved ones. The Federal Emergency Management Agency recommends people text loved ones to let them know you’re ok instead of trying to call. With land lines down cell phones will be overwhelmed with the volume of calls. Texts require less space than phone calls do. This will also free phone lines for law enforcement.

 

No matter where you live in the United States, odds are, at some point, you and your family could be in an emergency situation due to the forces of nature.  Understanding, preparation, and a plan for the worse possible scenario during a natural disaster could be lifesaving measures you can take now.

 

 

 

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Employers fear “Grey Hair” even though we’re living longer and more active lives.

Employment Exhibition

Employment Exhibitions like this may be the best bet for the “over 50” job seeker. They give a face-to-face opportunity to show prospective employers even though you’re older, you’re productive and in good health..

You may have heard the term recently, “50 is the new 40.” Although this may be a humorous antidote to comfort those who are getting older, there is a great deal of validity to that statement. The fact is; thanks to the efforts of medical science, we have extended the span of human life. However its apparent most corporations and employers that are hiring are reluctant to accept this fact. You want proof; ask anyone over 50 who is looking for a job.

The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention recently published the latest statistics in regards to how long we live. Their findings yielded some really good news “The life expectancy of Americans is higher than ever, at almost 78.” This presents a new challenge for the medical community; that is to improve the quality of extended lives. According to a recent report in the September 14 issue of Archives of Internal Medicine, one of the JAMA/Archives journals, it looks like Medical science is meeting that challenge. “The clinical ramifications are far-reaching,” this JAMA report claimed. “As this rapidly growing sector of the population assumes a prominent position in preventive and public health measures, our findings clearly support the continued encouragement of physical activity, even among the oldest old. Indeed, it seems that it is never too late to start.”

There are several more statistics that prove we’re living longer, healthier, and more active lives. Yet, it’s a well known fact that most employers are very reluctant to hire a qualified individual with years of experience for fear that they do not have that many “good years” left to be productive in the workforce.

According to the U. S. Equal Employment Opportunity Commission (EEOC), the definition of Age Discrimination is very clear cut and simply stated. “Age discrimination involves treating someone (an applicant or employee) less favorably because of his or her age.’ In accordance with the Age Discrimination Employment Act (ADEA), federal laws clearly state “it is illegal to discriminate on the basis of age when it comes to any aspect of employment, including hiring, firing, pay, job assignments, promotions, layoff, training, fringe benefits, and any other term or condition of employment.”

It is very easy for corporations and employees to ignore the ADEA and federal laws that prohibit age discrimination. There is proof they often do. Age discrimination cases have shown a steady increase of almost 40 per cent and continue to increase. According to statistics from the EEOC website; Age discrimination charges have increased from 15,785 in 1997 to 23,465 in 2011.

A significant percentage of the population in the United States has reached, and is over the age of 50, especially when you include “Baby Boomers”. These people, whether they’re unemployed or wish to change careers, have tremendous difficulty finding employment despite years of experience. Currently, this is a problem for job seekers over 50, but this will soon present a bigger problem for all Americans.

The average age of retirement is 64.6 for men, and 62.3 for women. Chances are that’s about to change, with little choice in the matter. Many individuals who are members of the “Baby Boomer” generation are now reaching the age to become eligible for Social Security benefits. This is going to place even more of a burden on an already struggling Social Security system. In the years to come, we may have no choice but to extend the retirement age for two reasons; Americans are living longer, healthier, and more productive lives, combined with the fact that many can’t afford to retire.

Given the present mind-set of most employers and corporations, it will be even harder for those over 50 who are seeking employment, and those at retirement age who wish to keep working. Many older Americans, still active and in good health, have years of experience and dependability to offer companies. Yet this resource is literally ignored because employers accepted the accomplishments of medical science and still harbor a fear of “Grey Hair”.

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Is the Economy Recovering?

united states currency seal - IMG_7366_web

united states currency seal – IMG_7366_web (Photo credit: kevindean)

Prior to 2008, everything seemed ok. Everyone I know had a job and was doing well. The majority of people I knew took vacations and drove new cars. Then came the economic downturn and things have not been the same since. Currently, many Americans are wondering how long is this economic climate going to last? Some of the leading economists have said we’ll soon see light at the end of the tunnel. According to Jan Hatzius, a Chief Economist at Goldman Sachs, “We do expect another relatively weak year for growth in the global economy. But I think there are, underneath the surface, some important reasons why 2013 might feel a little friendlier than 2012.”

How ironic Hatzius would use the term “friendly” in that same sentence about the economy. Americans have been through a lot and I hardly think the term “Friendly” could be used to describe it. It’s now been five years, and here are some facts that can indicate just how slow our recovery is;

• There are about 400 million people living in the United States. 46 million of them are on food stamps.

• One out of every four children in the United States are living on food stamps.

• According to author Paul Osterman, about 20 per cent of all U.S. adults are currently working jobs that

pay poverty level wages.

• Approximately 48 percent of all Americans are currently considered to be low-income or living in

poverty.

• Today, approximately 25 million American adults are living with their parents.

• In the middle of the last century, the United States was #1 in the world in GDP per capita.  Today, the

United States is #13 in GDP per capita.

• The median price of a home in the city of Detroit is now about $6,000.

• The U. S. national debt is now more than 22 times larger than it was when Jimmy Carter was president.

• According to the Federal Reserve Bank of New York, approximately 167,000 Americans have more

than $200,000 of student loan debt.

Throughout this entire economic crisis not one economist used the term “depression”, while it felt like one to many people who lost houses, jobs, and most of what they had. According to behavioral scientist, it’s human nature to acclimate and accept things even during the worst of times. Humans also have the ability to be resilient. Maybe there are some benefits to the conditions we’ve had to endure in the last five-year. Now many are less wasteful, recycle instead of buying new, and operate in a leaner fashion.

Still, the question remains; is there light at the end of the tunnel? If economist claim we are in an economic “recovery” its quite obvious that “recovery” seems to be moving at a snail’s pace, if at all.

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