Shockley, now 67, is one of a growing number of retirees and other older Americans who enlist in the Peace Corps, which is celebrating its 45th anniversary this month. In 1966, 135 of 15,556 Peace Corps volunteers—less than 1 percent—were 50 years of age or older. As of September, 435 of its 7,810 volunteers—nearly 6 percent—were 50 or older. ...
While age is often seen as a drawback in U.S. workplaces, it can be a big plus in other countries, say David Arnoldy and Linda Lee, who returned home to St. Paul, Minn., in June after a two-year stint in Ukraine. "In their culture, as opposed to ours, people with gray hair are seen to be wise and more respected," Arnoldy says. At the time they volunteered, she was 52 and he 58. During Arnoldy's 20 years in the technology business, he had started and sold three companies—experience that proved valuable in teaching "Essentials of Entrepreneurship" in Ukraine. Lee, who'd retired early from a career in the corporate world, worked on a business management project sponsored by the U.S. Agency for International Development. ...
Since returning, Shockley has given speeches about her experiences in the Peace Corps. As for volunteering, "it's a good idea for people to do it after they retire," she says. "A lot of people especially are retiring earlier, and they have their health." Adds Arnoldy: "It was one of the most rewarding things we've done, and it gave us some very, very fresh perspectives to think about old things in a new way."
"But dependency on government has never been bad for the rich. The pretense of the laissez-faire people is that only the poor are dependent on government, while the rich take care of themselves. This argument manages to ignore all of modern history, which shows a consistent record of laissez-faire for the poor, but enormous government intervention for the rich." From Economic Justice: The American Class System, from the book Declarations of Independence by Howard Zinn.
Think how much better things would have gone for him had his name been Freddie Mac, Bear Stearns, or any of the other monikers of the high-flying Wall Street investment banks. These institutional street thugs have robbed the piggy banks of millions of American homeowners. Yet, only two days after Ryan Mueller's conviction, Treasury secretary Henry Paulson went running after the Wall Street Gang – not to arrest them, but to cover their wrongdoing with a $700-billion bailout.
That’s more than $2,000 for every man, woman, and child in our land – victims being forced to pay the perpetrators of a legalized theft that has wrecked the housing market, eliminated thousands of jobs, and sent our economy into a deep tailspin.
Paulson (formerly a Wall Street Banking honcho, himself) wanted what he called “a clean” bailout bill. In other words, an 11-or-12-figure transfer of wealth from us to them, with no strings attached – no punishment for the scofflaws who were in charge, no help for homeowners who got robbed, no protection for taxpayers, and no re-regulation to keep the kleptocrats from repeating their grand larceny.
Bush & Company has had to choke down a huge serving of ideological crow here. He and his laizzes-faire wrecking crew forced this jerry-rigged system of “Yee-Haw!” capitalism on America, and now they want socialism to clean up their disaster.
The Bushites tell us we have no choice, for these giants are “too big to fail.” Well – hello – if that’s so, it’s time to break them up, not make them even bigger and fewer. Let’s put a little competition in the system, so America does not remain at the mercy of a handful of financial greedheads and boneheads.
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