There is a recurring conversation that I keep having with the people at home in the United States. It has to do with the American Machine. These are talented, educated people who can’t find work that’s fulfilling for a decent wage. We cross paths with these people through our work or through projects that we do for fun. These see us traveling. They read about us and they wonder, how are we able to make money, work remotely, and have a life at the same time. Currently, the American Dream doesn’t include or make promises about such nonsense. You can have one or the other. You can either work for a wage just beneath what you’re worth, or you can have a life and a family, love, relationships, and a passion for what you do.
But you can’t have both.
We’re living in Mexico right now. When we travel we look back on the American Machine from a distance. We read the newspapers in foreign countries as outsiders. From the outside, the United States looks very scary. There are conversations among Japanese, U.S., and Canadian students at the Spanish langauge school here in Guanajuato about the “gun problem” in the United States. The United States is a hot topic among foreigners as well as citizens. We are a troubled country, and we bully other countries. But just like the children who grow up in troubled families, we hardly recognize the problems as Americans because we’ve grown used to them. We’re complacent about the abuses we suffer because for many of us, it’s all we’ve ever known.
Years ago, John and I could see Big Problems when we went through what we called Our Own Personal Great Depression. We were skilled and educated but unable to find good work. We had health problems, but were unable to find good doctors who cared enough or had the right kind of knowledge to help us. We bought a house and a car with loans we couldn’t afford to pay. At the time, we decided we couldn’t help other people. At best we could help ourselves.
“I can’t solve the problems for other people, but I can solve them for myself,” became my philosophy. I didn’t know precisely what was wrong or how to fix it, but I made it my primary goal in life to figure it out. I’m still untangling the details, but I know now that money can’t solve problems. Solving problems is about thinking and then acting on your thoughts. It’s about not following the herd or requiring the herd to follow you.
These two things can solve just about any problem. (But you can’t get thoughts from the Internet. You can’t ask your friends for their thoughts on your problem and then do what they tell you to do. Real thought happens when you have time off…whoops! Nevermind…Americans don’t ever get any of that!)
I believe there are few situations in life that people cannot find their way out of if they want to badly enough. Even during the
Holocaust, there were Jews who could see that things were going badly before they were herded into concentration camps. Despite the denial of their friends and relatives, these people left the country. They didn’t try to change the course of events using politics because they didn’t have the power to do so. They were THE OPPRESSED! Instead, these people solved the problem of oppression for themselves by recognizing that they were being oppressed and taking action to prevent it from continuing.
You can tell a child to change their family, but they can’t do it. Only the parents have the power to make the necessary changes. But a child’s life can be changed by a move to a new family. Then, a child could return to the family-of-origin and demand that changes be made and refuse to return to the original state of oppression.
Today, this is true in the United States.
This is not a political rant. I don’t really believe in the power of politics in the United States. I’ve never seen the political system work properly for the people. What I have seen that DOES work is individual people thinking for themselves about what they want and then insisting that they get it. What works is when people don’t allow the system to run them like puppets. What works is when people think and then follow through with behaviors and actions that lead to better health and happier lives.
It makes me sad that I am able to afford healthier, better tasting food in Mexico than I can in the farming community where I live in the United States. I could blame McDonald’s, Monsato, and the Food and Drug Administration for this problem, or I could blame every individual who buys the crap that’s sold in grocery stores when they could buy from farmers markets. I could blame the farmers themselves for not standing up for themselves and their businesses in the first place.
I could blame fast food, McDonald’s and Arbys and every other big chain restaurant for serving unhealthy food that kills people. Addictive, icky awful food. I could blame school systems for serving substandard crap to today’s kids and then teaching them falsities about food out of textbooks that do product placement for big, corrupt companies. But each individual who chooses to patronize Applebee’s or Chili’s is responsible for the health problems in the United States. Each parent who allows their child to learn false information is responsible for their child’s inability to defend themselves from the system.
Homeschool your children. Read their textbooks before they read them. Feed your family real, fresh food. Know where your food comes from. Demand change for yourself if you can’t do it for the masses. Do it quietly if you must, but do it, or nothing will change.
I am a 37 year old woman who has been “diagnosed” with various diseases and problems over the years. Some of them serious. I don’t share the labels…I don’t provide the names of these diseases to others because I don’t believe in them. They’re not real diseases. They’re nutritional deficiencies. I know that now that I eat better and they’re going away. I’ve been advised to take drugs that would have, by now incapacitated me. Drugs that would have been debilitating. I didn’t take those drugs. I don’t take birth control pills because birth control pills kill women and make them sick, overweight, and unhealthy (that’s right girls…being in a state where your body thinks that you’re pregnant your WHOLE LIFE isn’t healthy–See the Women’s Health Initiaitve). Instead, I stopped eating fast food. I stopped eating inorganic foods as much as possible. I stopped eating dairy products and sugar and wheat. It’s taken years, but I feel GOOD. I travel. I do work I enjoy. I walk up over 100 steps several times a day with groceries and books to my vacation rental in Mexico.
I live in places for significant portions of the year where there are healthy foods and healthy people with relatively healthy lives. Healthier lives than what’s possible in the United States. Americans today are known for being fat and violent.
I’m watching my Facebook friends embracing and revolting against the fact that many companies this year won’t be giving their employees a day off during Thanksgiving or Christmas. I can’t help but just shake my head at the way that Americans just accept their pathetic fate. They CHOOSE to live this way. We are free to CHOOSE our way of life in the United States, but people don’t choose. They do what they’re told to do by advertisers and credit card companies (Chase Happiness…What’s in Your Wallet?) They allow big companies to choose for them. They allow the government to choose for them. We’re a closed-minded group of people who can’t fathom another way of life. We’ve been brainwashed to believe our way of life is the best. Our way of life is the easiest. We’ve been brainwashed to believe that we’re lucky to work 52 weeks a year for more than 40 hours a week and get paid just under what we need for the basics of survival.
In Mexico and Latin American countries, there are regular holidays and celebrations. In the United States, we have almost none that allow everyone to congregate together at the same time. Everything in the United States is geared at dividing the masses, mostly through the expert manipulation of our paychecks and overbooked schedules. When is enough going to be enough?
I’ve solved the problem for myself, but more and more people want to know how. It isn’t complicated. It’s about taking responsibility for changing your life into what YOU want to be. It’s about thinking carefully about what you want and not just wanting what the guy next door has. Fashion your own destiny. Design your own life. Decide what you want and then go get it. No one else is going to do that for you. We’ve been taught to accept our current lot in life under the auspices that if we just stick with it and keep doing what we’re doing that we’ll be rewarded in some way. But it isn’t true. There is no such thing as upward mobility in the United States. Wake up folks! The only country that statistically has fewer citizens that do better financially than their parents is the United Kingdom. The illusion of upward mobility is just that: an illusion.
You’ll have to think in terms other than money if you want to get what you want. If you dream of traveling after you make that first $100,000 or whatever, it’ll likely never happen. You don’t need a lot of money to do what you want to do. Be creative and figure out how to travel without having a lot of money if this is your current lot in life. Figure out how to buy a big house with very little money. The dream of good health isn’t as elusive as some people think either. Instead of running to your doctor every time something goes wrong with your health, consider the possibility that your diet is hurting you. Instead of popping pills, eat healthy foods. Get rid of gluten in your diet (yes, GLUTEN! Read the book Wheat Belly). Get rid of dairy (it causes cancer for Christ’s sake…see the China Study). And stop eating at restaurants with unhealthy things like trans fats and MSG in their foods. So you suffer from diabetes? migraines? arthritis? The diseases that plague the citizens of our country are due to chronic inflammation caused by eating foods that are toxic for us.
Guess what…those foods are designed to be toxic. Toxic foods will make you sick. When you’re sick, you go to the doctor. When you go to the doctor, the doctor prescribes drugs. Ever notice all those fancy pens and paraphernalia at the doctor’s office advertising different drugs? These advertisements are for you AND your doctor. Doctors often don’t know anything about the drugs they’re prescribing except what they’ve been told by drug marketing representatives. Don’t trust your doctor. They’re part of the Food Chain…and you ARE PREY.
The Food and Drug Administration is in charge of regulating FOOD and DRUGS. If you’ve never thought about it before, consider the intimate relationships between the FOOD and PHARMACEUTICAL industries. The health care industry only makes money when you’re sick. Any health care system designed to profit from sick patients is bound to get corrupt. If you trust your doctor, you’re an idiot and you deserve whatever happens to you. Go to your doctor. Listen to their opinion, but never follow it blindly. Always, Always, ALWAYS think first about what you might be consuming that’s making you sick. Think about whether the lawn next door was sprayed with chemicals. What drugs are you taking? What foods are you eating? These are the things that are making people sick in our country.
And consider the possibility that though you may feel okay today or even GREAT, perhaps the way you feel isn’t as good as how I feel. Maybe when I feel GOOD I feel a lot better than you do because I EAT better than you do. I take care of my own health as much as I possibly can. Consider the possibility that FEELING GOOD makes it possible for me to pursue my dreams. I feel good enough to be able to think clearly. I’m not achy. I’m not in any kind of pain. My stomach isn’t upset and I don’t have allergies.
Is it because I’m lucky or is it because I exercise and I am very VERY careful about what I eat and what drugs I put into my body?
No matter what it is you want, start by getting healthy. Then demand to have what it is you really desire. Otherwise, you deserve what you get. After all, it’s your life.