Saturday, October 8, 2011

It Starts with Cookies

There's a lot of things wrong in our world right now.  We just rolled over the 7 billion population number ... three times what the population was in 1950, financial uncertainty is global, and climate change is remaking the very face of the planet.  It all seems overwhelming so I was happy to see AARP print a list of things we as individuals can do ... starting with:  Skip the cookies!

Their point, of course, is that health care costs are at the heart of our fiscal problems and almost 100 million of us in the US are diabetic or prediabetic so cutting cookies, losing weight and getting healthier could help the national financial situation. The problem is that we LIKE cookies; they are quick, convenient and portable; and they are comfort food that reminds us of childhood and mother's love.  

This made me think about things in general.  The protestors in NY put out a Declaration listing some very valid points, all starting with "They ... " (if you haven't seen it, click here

However, is there really a "they?"  if we can't give up cookies, can we really expect bankers to give up greed, politicians to give up power, or CEOs to forego a multi-million dollar bonus even if they didn't earn it?  It reminds me of Walt Kelly's famous Pogo cartoon where he says, "We have met the enemy and he is us."

In case you're interested, AARP's other recommendations are also pretty simple (which is not the same as easy):
  • Cut 150 calories a day (the cookie thing to reduce diabetes related health care costs)
  • Pay your debts. (reduce pressure on the national debt)
  • Walk a mile a day. (reduce heart disease and health care costs)
  • Plan to work an extra year or two. (bolster Social Security)
  • Give Uncle Sam a gift.  (So far this year, over $2 million has been given in gifts to the Treasury)

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