Final USA Observations On The Way Out The Door.
(Updated 6 November 2018)
Regular readers will recall I just published an article recently detailing some of my thoughts on staying here in the Philippines or going back to the USA.
You can read it here, and I feel you ought to if you are anywhere near as conflicted as I am over the “move back/Don’t move back” question. Go ahead, I’ll wait for you here….
Land Of Plenty
One thing which both my wife and I have a lot of trouble getting used to in the USA is the absolutely HUGE quantities of food served there.
And, as a logical consequence, Americans are HUGE.
Of course, I have to include myself in this, because over the past few years I have really let myself go.
I’m happy to report though that thanks to some good coaching from my friend Bob and applying some good common Keto sense I’ve been able to lose close to 20 pounds this past month, despite eating way too much food.
Aside from the waste and consumptive excesses, the larger than reality food portions just aren’t that good. I had a whole list of American foods I was missing when we went to the USA and I sampled almost all of them. Many were a disappointment.
Wendy’s is one good example. We have Wendy’s here in the Philippines. They serve nearly the same menu as most US Wendys but the meat patties in the hamburgers are roughly 1/2 the USA size. Being massively bigger doesn’t really mean tastier.
On a side trip we made to Key West, a 6-hour drive, I treated myself to a “Dave’s Double” Wendy’s hamburger and OMG was there a lot of it. Not all that tasty and way, way too much. For 4 hours my stomach felt as if I had swallowed a 2-pound or so stone. Not enjoyable at all.
I could go on, but you know what I am saying. Quantity doesn’t substitute for quality, and especially adding piles and more piles of empty carbs to a meal doesn’t do the diner any favors.
Ridiculous Insurance Obsession.
I spent quite a bit of time watching US TV for the first time in many years. I found the number of ads for insurance companies amazing. Americans need insurance for their insurance these days it seems.
Running hand in hand with all the insurance ads were (no surprise here) an obscene number of advertisements for
ambulance chasers Oops, I mean “personal injury attornies”.
Slip and fall, we’ll get you millions.” or “Attorney Joe got me $400,00, thanks Joe” or “I’ve been on your side for 50 years of accident claims experience”, and on and on they go.
In print, on billboards virtually everywhere and on TV, even inexpensive time slots, like during World Series games.
America has become the sue-happiest nation on earth. I was told during my trip that the smart people visit Disney world, do a convincing phony pratfall and then a Disney on-site attorney will give them a check for $10,000 if they agree not to sue.
Ridiculous Drug Obsession
After a month in Florida (admittedly a retirement haven) I was flabbergasted by the number of drugs and the scope of issues these drugs are supposed to cure. If you read the fine print, half of these medicines seem to damn risky to take.
You know, when you get old, things wear out. You can’t cure every ailment known to man and you can’t ‘feel good” all the time, either. (unless you are addicted to opioids, which is America’s current drug problem which makes heroin look like a minor issue.
Feel sad? Pop a pill, “you deserve it”.
Ridiculous Political Obsession
A quote from my colleague “Sovereign Man’s” blog kind of sums up my political feelings about the swamp the USA has allowed itself to become.
I’m writing this on the eve of election day and one thing I can be sure of is that come to the end of this day a bunch of totally self-centered empty suits owned by big pharma and big insurance in the USA will have been elected to office, yet again.
“Between now and November 6, you better put a catcher’s mask on your face because I’m going to stomp all over your face with golf spikes.”
Unfortunately, this isn’t trash talk from some middle school bully… it’s a public threat made by a Pennsylvania gubernatorial candidate to his incumbent opponent.
With the midterm elections tomorrow, I wanted to take some time today to remind you who your vote actually supports.
Politics has likely never been more divisive in the US… and the politicians continually stoke this flame, often times, like with the quote above, inciting their constituents to carry out violent acts against the opposing party.
It’s completely despicable that this has become the state of government in the land of the free… instead of focusing the public’s attention on solving the big problems the US faces (like debt), politicians continue to advance a partisan agenda.
And they encourage outright violence. One congresswoman encouraged supporters to attack members of the Cabinet if they saw them in public…
“If you see anybody from that Cabinet in a restaurant, in a department store, at a gasoline station, you get out and you create a crowd and you push back on them, and you tell them they’re not welcome anymore, anywhere.”
Calling for violence because you don’t agree with the opposing party is totally pathetic. It’s something I’d expect to see in a third-world country, not the world’s leading economic power.
And it’s one of the many, many reasons I don’t vote.
I certainly second that emotion. My fellow Americans seem addicted to violence, mayhem and hurting people … often for the most trivial of reasons. I hate it.
You know a major reason I live in the Philippines? Life is way, way less violent here.
It is peaceful in the vocal sense and it’s peaceful in the physical violence since … particularly in the area of gun violence.
Many Americans ask me about the supposed number of drug-related shootings here in the Philippines. Well, basically, that just is not happening. Biased news media, looking for any chance to discredit the president exaggerates and prevaricates.
In the US, though, at the tie of writing this, there have been more than 48,000 gun violence incidents (so far this year alone)more than 560 children un age 12 killed by guns, more than 350 police officers shot and/or killed on the job and at least 306 “mass shooting” incidents.
Frankly, I feel glad to get out of the USA alive.
One Last Item … Airports
You know how for years now everyone in the SA and even many Filipinos have complained about Manila’s NAIA airport? Well if you haven’t been there lately, better take another look. My wife and I flew out of NAIA Terminal and came back the same way.
Clean, well maintained (extensively updated), courteous, helpful staff and even smiling, cooperative Immigration Officers.
Now on the US side, we flew into and out of JFK. The place is filthy enough to gag a maggot. Dirty, hasn’t been updated in years, rude, slovenly and discourteous Immigration Officers and perhaps the most overpriced food in the world.
A sad destination for first-time visitors, that’s for sure.
So that’s about the end of my praises and bitches, let’s hear about yours.
Final USA Observations On The Way Out The Door