There is something very inspiring about an empty planter. Sometimes I leave planters unfilled for an entire season. This is disturbing to many and inspiring to others.I like the looks of this empty red planter because it looks as if it has been empty for a long time. This morning in the Times there is an article about the economy which suggests the stock market can be turned around by a national mental condition of positive thinking. That is, if a larger group of investors believes the market is on an upswing, it will be on one. I can understand this theory as it seems logical to me. However, I do not believe we should count on this theory to save our necks in todays economy. I do believe we are all still frightened about what is going on. We have never seen an unemployment rate as high as ours which is frightening. We have also never seen such a high rate of debt. I have no idea where to invest in the future nor in the present. Some say we should be investing at least 40% of our net worth outside the country. I believe that may be true but still have no idea where we should invest. Is China a good bet? Shall we bet on the future of Brasil or is India the place to look ? Scandinavia is also looking good to some. So back to the theory of stock market swings and the emotional state of investors. What if the emotional state of americans is positively affecting the market and causing the Dow to rise as it has over the past 6 months?Now it is winter and in winter the truth always comes out. There are still many foreclosures and in some state the rate is rising not falling. People are filling the malls and buying things they don’t need for holiday gifts. Credit card debt is rising rapidly. A friend of mine recently lost her line of credit as the issuing bank canceled it claiming she had not paid the monthly fee on time. She claimed she had and protested the decision but to no avail. In the paper this morning there is also an article about a bank that changed its billing envelope to one without any markings. It was thrown out by many customers and the bank then collected late fees for balances due that were not paid. What is going on now? Is there a kind of game happening in the world of banks and credit card companies where the point is to trick the consumer out of their money so you win more money? This is a really paranoid way to think but what if it is true? What role would the government play in such a game?
I am disturbed about the way things are going and worried about our country. I think many people want to recession to be over because they have no attention span for deprivation. It is much more fun to spend what you want on things you really don’t need. It is easier and faster to go out and buy things rather than to look inside yourself and discover what fills the void without spending money. That’s my task for today. I am heading out to the paths in our neighborhood to find beauty and serenity and see if it makes me happy. I am hoping glances at the beauty of California will make me deeply satisfied with my Sunday. I hope it works as I am no better than anyone else. A visit to Nordstroms is better than vanilla ice cream.