Take Responsibility

I created this blog to respond directly to those posting their personal stories who are taking part in the Occupy Wall Street protests or claiming to be 'the 99 percent'.
1percenters:

chipwillis:

wearethe99percent:

WE WERE TOLD
WE COULD BE ANYTHING
WHEN WE GREW UP.
WE’RE GROWN UP.
NOW WHAT?
OCCUPY WALL STREET
OCCUPY CHICAGO
WE ARE THE 99%.

I was told I could be anything when I grew up. I was black, my grandmother was on welfare. 
My grandmother told me I would have to work harder than everyone else. 
I took flying lessons in high school, from working a part time job. 
I worked to pay tuition for the Catholic school I went to. I got scholarships too. 
She said I could do what I wanted, but you don’t get anything for free.
She taught me not to have kids if I couldn’t afford them. She told me “If you make a baby, you take care of baby”
She told me to be responsible.
She passed on when I was old enough to make it on my own. 
A mortgage broker said I could afford a 350K house. I got one for 120K, because I knew their math was iffy.
We didn’t have a kid until we planned on it. We used birth control After we had one kid, we used birth control not to have more. 
He’s in College now. We have a ton of bills to pay. I knew that when I signed the dotted line. That means, our lifestyle would change, as we paid stuff back. It is no secret. 
Where has teaching responsibility gone?
Where has the notion “relying on the government is bad” gone. It’s a pretty sound idea. 
Where has the idea, that you have to start at the Bottom and Work your way up gone?
No one starts at the top. 
You can be anything you want. Probably should research what it pays and if you will be happy. You will probably have to work your ass off.
That’s what I did, and that is what I continue to teach my son. 
I left a well paying job for a dream two years ago. The future is uncertain. I spent 25 years in the Aviation Industry. I might have to go back to it one day, but don’t want to. 
I am going to make it and be happy. 
If you don’t make it, look in the mirror. Then ask yourself, “Why”
Your photograph made me angry. 
You are the 99 Percent of what?? Sit long and ponder this question. 
Did your parents fail or did you not listen? It is one of those two options, and neither is looking rather good right now. 
Go out, get some ambition and work your ass off. This is how it’s done. Not by holding up a piece of paper with words on it. 
EDIT - Yes, there is a greed problem in this country. There always has been a greed problem. If you spend all the time thinking what the CEOS make vs the average worker, yes, it is depressing. What can be done about it? Who knows. Should it be regulated? No. It will not work. I’d love to see more business stay here. But no one talks about the hard part - we want high wages. High wages means higher cost of goods we purchase. So when I charge more for a product, that someone else sells for a cheaper price, what is going to happen? We either accept lower wages, or we buy from cheaper sources. Basic economics. What is the solution? This isn’t part of my original post but needs mentioned because no one ever seems to want to talk about the economic reality facing the United States. The rest of the world is catching up. They pass eventually and what will we be left holding?
And to someone who asked was I worried about leaving my well paying job and going off into an uncharted future - It is uncharted, and I have a fall back plan. And I am working my fucking ass off at a dream. This is what the USA represents to me. This is why so many want to come here. 
I was lucky as hell to be raised by a great woman who went thru a tough period in American history. I have it so much better, but that does not mean, I am not going to work and make my dreams become reality. 
This is what I am talking about. 
I will not allow myself to fail. 

^ This guy is what America should really be about.

Exactly!

1percenters:

chipwillis:

wearethe99percent:

WE WERE TOLD

WE COULD BE ANYTHING

WHEN WE GREW UP.

WE’RE GROWN UP.

NOW WHAT?

OCCUPY WALL STREET

OCCUPY CHICAGO

WE ARE THE 99%.

I was told I could be anything when I grew up. I was black, my grandmother was on welfare. 

My grandmother told me I would have to work harder than everyone else. 

I took flying lessons in high school, from working a part time job. 

I worked to pay tuition for the Catholic school I went to. I got scholarships too. 

She said I could do what I wanted, but you don’t get anything for free.

She taught me not to have kids if I couldn’t afford them. She told me “If you make a baby, you take care of baby”

She told me to be responsible.

She passed on when I was old enough to make it on my own. 

A mortgage broker said I could afford a 350K house. I got one for 120K, because I knew their math was iffy.

We didn’t have a kid until we planned on it. We used birth control After we had one kid, we used birth control not to have more. 

He’s in College now. We have a ton of bills to pay. I knew that when I signed the dotted line. That means, our lifestyle would change, as we paid stuff back. It is no secret. 

Where has teaching responsibility gone?

Where has the notion “relying on the government is bad” gone. It’s a pretty sound idea. 

Where has the idea, that you have to start at the Bottom and Work your way up gone?

No one starts at the top. 

You can be anything you want. Probably should research what it pays and if you will be happy. You will probably have to work your ass off.

That’s what I did, and that is what I continue to teach my son. 

I left a well paying job for a dream two years ago. The future is uncertain. I spent 25 years in the Aviation Industry. I might have to go back to it one day, but don’t want to. 

I am going to make it and be happy. 

If you don’t make it, look in the mirror. Then ask yourself, “Why”

Your photograph made me angry. 

You are the 99 Percent of what?? Sit long and ponder this question. 

Did your parents fail or did you not listen? It is one of those two options, and neither is looking rather good right now. 

Go out, get some ambition and work your ass off. This is how it’s done. Not by holding up a piece of paper with words on it. 

EDIT - Yes, there is a greed problem in this country. There always has been a greed problem. If you spend all the time thinking what the CEOS make vs the average worker, yes, it is depressing. What can be done about it? Who knows. Should it be regulated? No. It will not work. I’d love to see more business stay here. But no one talks about the hard part - we want high wages. High wages means higher cost of goods we purchase. So when I charge more for a product, that someone else sells for a cheaper price, what is going to happen? We either accept lower wages, or we buy from cheaper sources. Basic economics. What is the solution? This isn’t part of my original post but needs mentioned because no one ever seems to want to talk about the economic reality facing the United States. The rest of the world is catching up. They pass eventually and what will we be left holding?

And to someone who asked was I worried about leaving my well paying job and going off into an uncharted future - It is uncharted, and I have a fall back plan. And I am working my fucking ass off at a dream. This is what the USA represents to me. This is why so many want to come here. 

I was lucky as hell to be raised by a great woman who went thru a tough period in American history. I have it so much better, but that does not mean, I am not going to work and make my dreams become reality. 

This is what I am talking about. 

I will not allow myself to fail. 

^ This guy is what America should really be about.

Exactly!

1percenters:

Corporations are destroying America?? So who built your 15 cars? Who made the camera that you took this photo with? Who made the computer that you put this on? Who made the internet available to you to send this photo out? Who made that shirt that you’re wearing? Who made that large piece of paper? Who made the markers you used to write on it? I highly doubt it was any one of your 100 people. Unless you’re Amish, you are a part of the corporations.

Could not have said it any better myself.

1percenters:

Corporations are destroying America?? So who built your 15 cars? Who made the camera that you took this photo with? Who made the computer that you put this on? Who made the internet available to you to send this photo out? Who made that shirt that you’re wearing? Who made that large piece of paper? Who made the markers you used to write on it? I highly doubt it was any one of your 100 people. Unless you’re Amish, you are a part of the corporations.

Could not have said it any better myself.

1percenters:

See? These are the stories that really deserve to be highlighted. This poor family requires medical treatment and nobody is helping them. Meanwhile the rest of you guys are partying at colleges while majoring at useless majors, and then trying to get your student loans paid off with a handout. I rather pay for this guy’s medicine than your useless degrees. And my advice for you, sir, is to find a better health insurance company as well as a part time job to pay for your own medicine. I’m sure your dad can help you get a job at his McDonald’s. There’s nothing wrong with working there. There’s no job that’s too beneath anyone!

Bingo…no job is beneath anyone!

1percenters:

See? These are the stories that really deserve to be highlighted. This poor family requires medical treatment and nobody is helping them. Meanwhile the rest of you guys are partying at colleges while majoring at useless majors, and then trying to get your student loans paid off with a handout. I rather pay for this guy’s medicine than your useless degrees. And my advice for you, sir, is to find a better health insurance company as well as a part time job to pay for your own medicine. I’m sure your dad can help you get a job at his McDonald’s. There’s nothing wrong with working there. There’s no job that’s too beneath anyone!

Bingo…no job is beneath anyone!

healthcarereformnow asked: in response to would you like some cheese with that wine? I am guessing you were never laid off before right? I am guessing you never had trouble finding a job, correct? I am also going to guess that mommy and daddy had the money to fork over for you to have your college education paid for, correct? It's funny. Close-minded people like you are what makes this country go sour. My dad has no money left to start a new business out of thin air. It never hurt to support people who justwant to make it

If you guessed that you would be wrong. I have indeed been laid off before  but no, I have not ever had trouble finding a job because I always took ANY job I could find (there are tons of jobs everywhere if you are willing to do them). From there I would continue to search for something better. Never would I pass on something because it wasn’t what I “wanted” or “studied” to do. Fact is people need income and it doesn’t matter what the job is. Get something and then work your way up from that point. People these days are far too selective. Again, this does not apply to all but it does the majority, I’d bet my life savings on it.

Mommy and Daddy had some of the money to pay for some of my school, not all. They wanted to pay because I was not going to spend money on school or take out loans…PERIOD. But you know what, I didn’t want them paying, so I do not have a degree. No diploma. Instead I worked my ass off, put business theory I already knew to practice and made it work! You do not NEED a college education to be successful and thrive. In many cases it does more harm than good. This is indoctrination and brainwashing in it’s purest form I think. Again, people should be taking a much closer look at Universities and protesting there!

Close minded? You are the close minded one here looking for excuses or for not accepting responsibility. I’m open minded to all options and possibilities, just not complaining or having a pity party, trying to blame others or get a handout. Tell me how I am close minded? I’m honestly telling you to get out there and get a job. Is spending 14 hours a day job hunting too hard for you? If so then you are not nearly desperate enough. That or too lazy, or too selective in what jobs you will do. People who refuse to do the hard work involved to LIVE the American Dream are the people who make this country go sour, not people willing to put in that effort.

Your Dad should not need a bunch of cash to start a business. Tons of businesses are started with a few hundred bucks if that. You have to start somewhere. He has the knowledge and skill apparently to make it work and know what not to do. Should be a great challenge and very empowering! Get rid of some assets to get cash if necessary. Sell a car, sell some furniture…in fact, sell just about everything!

And I’m absolutely supporting people who want to make it. They just need to put forth some strong effort first and I will do everything I can to possibly help any day and anytime. But I will never support these people in their quest to take even more from hardworking citizens who took the ultimate risk in many cases and made it big. It is NOT their responsibility to take care of you, especially if you won’t do anything and everything to help yourself first.

Don’t get mad at me because I’m not feeling “sorry” for you. I don’t. It’s unfortunate yes but you can change this anytime. What can I do to help? Would you go to Financial Peace University if I paid for your class in your local area? I’d love to do this for you if you promise to go!

wearethe99percent:

I am so close to a college degree, but it won’t be enough to get a job when I’m done. I have to take loans for a Masters Program, and hope for the best when that’s done. Meanwhile, the government is protecting the rich and lazy. Shame.

Um, no, that would be STUPID. Do not take out any more debt to get a Masters Degree right now because that guarantees you nothing! You need to wrap up your BA and hit the pavement and find a job. Degrees do not guarantee you jobs. You know what goes much further in terms of landing a job? Personality, the ability to learn and adapt, perseverance, attitude, showing an employer WHY they should hire you not just asking for a job, etc. You are not going to come away with much of anything more marketable with a Masters. Start building some experience in the real world and drop this excuse to keep from working and to take out more debt.
Debt = BAD if you haven’t noticed. Do not use debt to finance school. Don’t use it for anything except maybe a house once you’ve put 20% down on a 15-yr fixed. 

wearethe99percent:

I am so close to a college degree, but it won’t be enough to get a job when I’m done. I have to take loans for a Masters Program, and hope for the best when that’s done. Meanwhile, the government is protecting the rich and lazy. Shame.

Um, no, that would be STUPID. Do not take out any more debt to get a Masters Degree right now because that guarantees you nothing! You need to wrap up your BA and hit the pavement and find a job. Degrees do not guarantee you jobs. You know what goes much further in terms of landing a job? Personality, the ability to learn and adapt, perseverance, attitude, showing an employer WHY they should hire you not just asking for a job, etc. You are not going to come away with much of anything more marketable with a Masters. Start building some experience in the real world and drop this excuse to keep from working and to take out more debt.

Debt = BAD if you haven’t noticed. Do not use debt to finance school. Don’t use it for anything except maybe a house once you’ve put 20% down on a 15-yr fixed. 

harviknives asked: I just saw your tumblr and I have to say you are offering very vague and repetitive advice to these people. I'm lucky I have a job and I am using every penny to pay off my school loans. You come across as very cynical towards these people.I don't think that they are whining I think they are on their last leg. It's very easy to respond if you haven't been where they are. I challenge you to at least live with these ppl for a week and see how they live from day to day. I'm sure you won't accept.

Unfortunately I cannot give more specific advice if I don’t know even more details about their situation. The specific advice I am giving is repetitive however and that is to man (or woman) up and do something proactive about your situation instead of having a pity party or wasting time participating in events like Occupy Wall Street, etc that are not going to do anything to help their situation at all. Everyone feels down or defeated sometimes but if you stay in this rut you will never get anywhere and the only person who can really help someone is themselves.

You are right about me being cynical about *most* of these individuals. I am this way because I’ve either met thousands and tried to help maybe hundreds but with rare exception I find that many do not want help (they want handouts) OR they are not willing to work hard enough to change something about their situation. This job or that job is just too hard, it’s not what I went to school for, I don’t want to work outside, this job is beneath me, I don’t like the hours, etc, etc. No one in these situations has any business spewing excuses like this and should take ANY job they can get, but again *most* do not.

Also, many are on their last leg because of their own actions. This is exactly what I’m trying to call out. I understand that you are in a bad place and I’m sorry. It is unfortunate and many are willing or trying to help, but DO NOT shift blame to someone else because you made bad decisions. This does not apply to all but I would argue it does to the majority. If you cannot afford a car without debt or school, too bad, don’t use debt for things like this. Take responsibility for your actions or the part you played and start to DO something about it instead of just complaining. Try listening to Dave Ramsey’s radio show or podcast and hear the countless individuals and families who make next to nothing change their lives and still get out of debt somehow. Or people who make nothing that realize they have to be the ones that empower themselves to change something about their situation. No one else is going to help you (unless you’re really lucky). So get off your butt and DO something about it. This does not mean surfing Monster.com or careerbuilder.com all day, that is flat out LAZY. Go cut someones grass, deliver pizzas, do handy work, etc, etc…anything in the mean time to keep incoming coming in.

And I’ll let your last point slide since I don’t have an about page up but yes I have been in this situation before. I’ve been unemployed with > $20k in CC debt! I was lucky not to have any student loan debt but damn, if there is one thing that is worse it’s bad consumer debt. I was STUPID, I was a MORON but I sure as hell didn’t go complain about banks doing their thing, CEOs making big time money or Government regulations. I busted my ass literally 3/4 of every day until I found a job and then I proceeded to go WITHOUT almost everything for a long time until I cleaned up my mess. If you go into debt and cannot pay, it is YOUR mess. I don’t care if it’s credit cards, school loan debt, mortgage debt, medical debt, etc…that is on YOU. I drove around my old truck, did without TV for long while, didn’t go out, etc. I just worked doing anything I could until I did find a steady job and then paid down all my debts at record speed. No one “deserves” a car, TV, cable, internet, phones, nice clothes, food to go out to eat with, “good” health insurance, etc. Nothing in life is free, you have to earn it somehow. And yes, sometimes life is unfair but you as an individual can change this at any point. All options always have to be on the table, and I mean ALL. This includes moving if you cannot find work somewhere else. Doesn’t matter if you grew up somewhere or if your family is there. Get up and move to where the work is! In fact, come on down to Texas and we’ll help anyone who has fallen on hard times. PLENTY of jobs here and low cost of living. You don’t want to move? Well too bad, I don’t feel sorry for you and that is YOUR choice.

And lastly, I can live with just about anyone without being surprised, even if that means I sleep under a bridge for the night or in a shelter. You think I haven’t seen this before? The difference between many of those people and me personally is I will do anything to ensure that never happens to me or my family. Again, all options are on the table if it gets to that point.

I’m not being trying to just be an asshole for no reason. I want to be as blunt as possible because a lot of people in this country need a wake up call. This is the land of opportunity and you can do and achieve anything. It is so sad that foreigners come to this country every day with something NOTHING in their pockets and just the clothes on their back and somehow make it because they embrace the American Dream and what can be achieved but our own damn citizens feel too entitled to put in the hard work it takes to achieve this. And then want to bitch and moan about how much money those people to sacrificed it ALL are making. Too bad, they did the work to get there and you didn’t so they get to reap the rewards and guess what, you don’t until you do something similar. Nothing is stoping you but YOURSELF. Take some responsibility and take charge of your life.

wearethe99percent:
Want some cheese with that whine?
No one forced you and your husband to take out massive student loans to go to school. This is unfortunate but it is not Wall Street’s or even the Governments fault, it is your choice and your responsibility. Go protest at the Universities and ask why college tuition has risen more than healthcare in the past decade!
If your Dad has been successful in business before he should start another venture. He can be successful again…NO DEGREE NEEDED. Your Mom may have a disability but are you saying she cannot do a desk job? I find this hard to believe for almost everyone who is “disabled”.
Your younger brother *IS NOT* a genius if he is taking out loans to go to school and done so much that he cannot even get anymore…wow. You have let yourself be brainwashed by society that you have to have a degree to be successful…WRONG, totally wrong. And going into massive debt to get one, especially right now is just stupid. Boy genius needs to apply his talent to a job now, the experienced gained will likely take him further is he is truly a genius. Waste of talent is refusing to do anything because you couldn’t keep taking out loans to go to school.
Get on a plan and start paying down that debt ASAP and stay away from it in the future…always.

wearethe99percent:

Want some cheese with that whine?

No one forced you and your husband to take out massive student loans to go to school. This is unfortunate but it is not Wall Street’s or even the Governments fault, it is your choice and your responsibility. Go protest at the Universities and ask why college tuition has risen more than healthcare in the past decade!

If your Dad has been successful in business before he should start another venture. He can be successful again…NO DEGREE NEEDED. Your Mom may have a disability but are you saying she cannot do a desk job? I find this hard to believe for almost everyone who is “disabled”.

Your younger brother *IS NOT* a genius if he is taking out loans to go to school and done so much that he cannot even get anymore…wow. You have let yourself be brainwashed by society that you have to have a degree to be successful…WRONG, totally wrong. And going into massive debt to get one, especially right now is just stupid. Boy genius needs to apply his talent to a job now, the experienced gained will likely take him further is he is truly a genius. Waste of talent is refusing to do anything because you couldn’t keep taking out loans to go to school.

Get on a plan and start paying down that debt ASAP and stay away from it in the future…always.

wearethe99percent:
Have you entertained moving to another job market? Most people do not but the reality is that you might have to whether you want to or not. If you refuse to do so you don’t get to complain.
Not a single job in food service? You must be doing something wrong. McDonald’s will hire ANYONE. In time you will get to do what you studied to do but it may take some time and sacrifice in the mean time. $92k student loans? Ouch…not the smartest idea…get on a plan to get out of debt ASAP.
P.S. A Master’s degree does not mean ANYTHING. Never ever assume this will get you somewhere or ahead of someone. It “could” but that is not something you can rely on. Tons of people have Master’s degrees, this is not how to market yourself. I sense a little entitlement here.

wearethe99percent:

Have you entertained moving to another job market? Most people do not but the reality is that you might have to whether you want to or not. If you refuse to do so you don’t get to complain.

Not a single job in food service? You must be doing something wrong. McDonald’s will hire ANYONE. In time you will get to do what you studied to do but it may take some time and sacrifice in the mean time. $92k student loans? Ouch…not the smartest idea…get on a plan to get out of debt ASAP.

P.S. A Master’s degree does not mean ANYTHING. Never ever assume this will get you somewhere or ahead of someone. It “could” but that is not something you can rely on. Tons of people have Master’s degrees, this is not how to market yourself. I sense a little entitlement here.

wearethe99percent:

Maybe there will be jobs on Mars -____-

Quit complaining and try something else if what you’ve been doing isn’t working. You don’t always need a car and you DO NOT need CREDIT. You have no job but you took out loans to go to school?? No one’s fault but your own. That is YOUR debt to pay off and live with and there is no guarantee of a job, ever, even in a better economy. Whose fault is it that you are in this situation? Certainly not yours at all right?
And sell your eggs, seriously? Stop being dramatic and do something like start your own business. Find something that adds value to peoples or businesses lives and go do it. Don’t sit around all day having a pity party!
THE AMERICAN DREAM IS NOT HANDED TO YOU! You have to want it enough to sweat blood and tears for it. You make the American Dream for yourself. Only you can do this, no one else. Get to work!

wearethe99percent:

Maybe there will be jobs on Mars -____-

Quit complaining and try something else if what you’ve been doing isn’t working. You don’t always need a car and you DO NOT need CREDIT. You have no job but you took out loans to go to school?? No one’s fault but your own. That is YOUR debt to pay off and live with and there is no guarantee of a job, ever, even in a better economy. Whose fault is it that you are in this situation? Certainly not yours at all right?

And sell your eggs, seriously? Stop being dramatic and do something like start your own business. Find something that adds value to peoples or businesses lives and go do it. Don’t sit around all day having a pity party!

THE AMERICAN DREAM IS NOT HANDED TO YOU! You have to want it enough to sweat blood and tears for it. You make the American Dream for yourself. Only you can do this, no one else. Get to work!