November is a fun month for me. Movember (Moustache November), otherwise known as No-Shave-November, happens this month, and of course I use it as an excuse to lock away my razor and clippers and just let my facial hair go. We’re only 9 days in, and I’m looking very Brett Keisel-like already. What do you think?
November is also NaNoWriMo, otherwise known as National Novel Writing Month. It’s a time for all writers to sit down and attempt to pound out a 60,000 word novel in a month. You can sign up for free on their website, www.nanowrimo.org, and from there you can track your progress, participate in group write-ins, find support, etc. Last year I started my last novel, Terminal Restraint, as a NaNoWriMo book, and while I didn’t get it finished until the spring of 2012, it was a great way to kick off and get those creative juices flowing. If you are a new writer or are just looking for some advice, check it out.
I’m not really participating in NaNoWriMo this year, only because I’m about 40% of the way through my next novel, and I know I won’t have the time to get it finished by the end of the month. I also have this idea for a new novel floating around in my head, which can be very distracting for a writer, because I’ve wanted to take a break from my current one and start working on this new idea. I did that very same thing last year and the year before, and having all of these half-completed novels floating around isn’t really conducive to being an author. So for now I plan on finishing the one I’m working on and then moving on to the next. Hopefully you’ll like both of them!
November also marks the end of election season. I still keep reading about Romney supporters griping about the election results. Nothing will assuage their angst at having lost the election, but I’m surprised by some who continue to point out the flaws of the Obama administration. And now that we have a very real “fiscal cliff” issue looming, I’m still amazed by the number of conservatives and Republicans who are unwilling to bend on allowing the Bush-era tax breaks for the wealthy to end. These tax breaks were put in place after Clinton’s years, and it’s not like these wealthy Americans need them or are going to be taxed any more than they were in the 90s. For example, if you are single and make over $203,000, your tax rate is going to go from 33% to 36% (see here: http://taxfoundation.org/article/next-years-tax-brackets). So you’d pay about $6000 more per year in taxes if you made $203,000. Look, if you make that much money, you can afford to pay that much more to help reduce the deficit.
I know, I know. Why should I pay more of MY money when others are getting free government handouts? Because, unfortunately, there are far fewer people with your abilities and skills and years of service out there that can make over $203,000, and there are far more people who LEGITIMATELY need things like Social Security and Medicare and Medicaid and food stamps. And it's not like your entire $6000 is going to pay for some lazy person's delivery pizza and marijuana habit. A portion of that is going to the military and homeland security, some is going to infrastructure, some is going to education and space programs, etc.
And let’s face it, if you make that much money, chances are very high that you didn’t grow up with many disadvantages in your life. Bill Gates wasn’t a poor boy who scavenged around for computer parts to learn his trade. His father was a wealthy lawyer and his mother was a board member of First Interstate BankSystem and the United Way. Donald Trump’s parents could afford to send him to the New York Military Academy where he got his start, earning honors and then moving on to Fordham University and then the University of Pennsylvania, an Ivy League school with a steep tuition. While Trump's road wasn’t quite as laid out for him as Gates’, not many families earning less than $40,000/year can afford to send their kids off to military school. Right?
I’ve heard others say that Obama wants to do away with the upper class. Now how exactly is he going to do that? Employers can’t start giving everyone $100,000+ salaries. And government handouts are rather piddly. People on social security and food stamps don’t make that much. Most make between $5000 and $15,000/year. Even for single mothers with five kids, the government isn’t just forking over huge amounts of money. Nobody is ever going to become rich off of the government, and no rich person is ever going to become poor because the government taxes them too much. So it’s not like any government program can wipe out the upper class and turn everyone into middle class citizens. It just doesn’t work that way.
I didn’t mean to go into a political rant with this post, but I did have to get that out there in light of the naysayers and people who are still upset over Obama’s reelection. I’ve got news for the Republican party though—this election brought out a ton of minority support for the other side, and I’m thinking it may be a growing trend in many elections to come. So for all of you who support the extreme, right-wing, TEA party conservatives, your days of power could be over, and you really need to look at moderating some of your views.
Back to November, the one thing I love most about the month is that it contains that lovely little holiday known as Thanksgiving. Halloween is great with the scares and parades and the dressing up and the candy, and of course Christmas (the commercialized version) is fun because of gifts and Santa and Christmas lights and all that jazz. But Thanksgiving is downright awesome. It’s the only day of the year where we don’t have to work in the middle of a week, can eat a ton of great food, and can sit around watching football all day. It’s a glutton’s paradise. Now who can argue with a day like that??