Recent video footage from Walmart stores in two Louisiana cities showed empty shelves and aisles filled with overloaded grocery carts.The chaos occurred when EBT (Electronic Benefit Transfer) cardholders decided to take advantage of a system malfunction.
The EBT card in Louisiana is called the Louisiana Purchase Card. Benefits are deposited in each recipient’s account on a monthly basis. The card works like a bank debit card. When the card is used, the cardholder receives a receipt showing the available balance.
When available balances were not displayed, cardholders pounced on the opportunity to fill their carts with extra groceries. After a couple of hours the problem was resolved, and many customers deserted their carts, leaving behind a huge pile of abandoned merchandise.
As some of you may have noticed, I've been off the radar for a while. This included not writing any articles for SGP over the past few weeks. It's okay, you can dry your tears, I'm back on the radar. The reason I've been on the down-low is because my company transferred me. So, I'm no longer a resident of the great state of Arizona. Now, brace yourselves, I'm a Texan. I am in the Plano/Northwest Dallas area. So far, I'm really enjoying it.
But, you can imagine my dismay when, shortly after my arrival, Wendy Davis announced her candidacy for Governor of my new home state. I had to quickly unpack and assemble my office furniture so I could #headdesk.
I was completely unaware that filibustering qualified one to run for governor. I once performed a monologue about street sweepers, perhaps this qualifies me to run for Senate. If you think I'm being unfair as to her qualifications, google her. The articles returned, for the most part, have titles that describe her as "Wendy Davis of Filibuster Fame." She is not described with things like "Wendy Davis, Champion of Economic Freedom," or "Wendy Davis, Warrior for Women in the Workplace," or "Wendy Davis, Crusader for Minority Rights" (and the abortion access she favors would probably lead to there being less minorities in the world.).
As Congress and the President seal their deal to raise the debt ceiling and end the government shutdown, the establishment of both parties is loudly, audibly relieved – including Tea Party basher extraordinaire, South Carolina senator Lindsey Graham. In response to the actions of conservative Senate Republicans that Democrats claim led to the shutdown, Senator Graham says “This has been a very bad two weeks for the Republican brand.” Did you hear that? Never mind our liberties; never mind our economic prosperity; never mind the principles that made our nation great being chucked out the window. The Republican brand is at stake. As if these shut down and debt ceiling battles are focus groups to decide between Coke and Pepsi.
I do agree with Senator Graham that the debacles in Washington and branding strategies in the corporate world are very similar in this respect: they are both designed to separate consumers (or taxpayers) from their money in the most effective way possible. We didn’t get to $17 trillion in debt overnight, and Barack Obama didn’t do it himself. We got to $17 trillion in debt through waste, patronage, earmarks, refusing to eliminate programs that didn’t work, refusing to reform entitlement programs in need of reform and just plain refusing to live within a budget - because it is easier not to when you can use those funds, and what those funds buy, to ensure a comfortable re-election. And make no mistake, members of both parties – including Senator Graham - have lined up at the trough for years. I once worked for a congressman who pointed out that when times were “fat and sassy”, no one worried about the debt, and avoidedmaking the tough decisions necessary to keep us in the black. Well, if this were a game of Musical Chairs, the music has stopped, and more than one chair has been pulled from the floor. Not everyone is going to get to sit. It certainly isn’t as fun to be a member of Congress as it used to be, but it’s not too much to expect that folks elected to office as Republicans make the best effort they can to espouse fiscal responsibility and pro growth policies. Because ultimately, as many marketing professionals know, it’s not good enough to have a solid brand if the product is fake.
“It is easier to build strong children, than to repair broken men.” –Fredrick Douglass
It takes a majority of self-reliant and hard working individuals to maintain a strong and prosperous nation. In order for America to remain a beacon of freedom, the values our country was founded upon must be instilled in our children. We should be teaching our rich and tumultuous history in order to illustrate why these principles are so important.
But according to a recent article by Callista Gingrich, we’re not. She references survey results from the National Assessment of Educational Progress which unveiled many disturbing findings.
The study revealed that only one in three fourth-graders could identify the purpose of the Declaration of Independence. Less than half understood why George Washington was an important leader. And a majority of fourth-graders didn't know why the Pilgrims left England.
Mrs. Gingrich, author of 3 children’s books, goes on to say “with education surveys showing dismal results, we must find creative ways to teach our children American history.”
And I couldn't agree more.
Social media has become a hot bed of debate, as well as an exchange of ideas. It can be a wonderful tool to meet others and learn. It can also become a nasty battle ground for those who disagree with you. We talk to our children about bullying on social media, but apparently we need to have this discussion with the adults as well.
Last week I was involved in a discussion with several people who were attacking a fellow Twitter follower. Not debating, but attacking. I stated a fact and the immediate response was to call me a name beginning with a C. I was also called ignorant and stupid, for having a different opinion and different beliefs. As my husband put it, this is what the Miley Cyrus culture has done to us.