By Tom Holmes
Willingness to sacrifice
I got to thinking about what I'm willing to sacrifice for the good of the country. The occasion was Paul Ryan's insistence that we have to get our national house in fiscal order by sacrificing now in order to avoid a real catastrophe down the road.
In other words—you think stopping to change the tire now will delay you. Wait until the thing blows ten miles down the road and you swerve into the other lane of traffic!
As someone who is on Medicare and has a limited income, I don't like his contention that my benefits would be cut.
Would I be willing to sacrifice for the good of the country? I realized eventually that I would be willing to give up some of my income. . .IF EVERYONE ELSE SHARED MY SACRIFICE.
In my condo building, for example, we spent something like $120,000 recently on a new elevator, fire alarm upgrades, painting, etc. The board decided to increase the assessments instead of drawing down our reserves. At the open meeting at which the board laid out its plan, there was a lot of grumbling, but in the end everyone got on board with the plan, because of two things. 1) They came to believe that the increase in assessments was necessary, and 2) they saw that everyone was sharing the hardship more or less equally.
My religious faith tells me that sometimes I have to sacrifice some of what's good for me for the good of the whole. My sense of fairness says, "But let's make sure everyone steps into the harness and does what they can to pull the load."
That's what I'm looking for from Governor Romney and President Obama all the way down to our village officials. Convince me that the cuts in my benefits are necessary and show me that everyone is sacrificing with me.