Dr. Seuss on Uncertain Times and Economic Unrest

Not unlike many other people I have spent copious amounts of time reading news stories about the economy and what is going on within the U.S. and around the world. If you take the stories at face value then you wind up with a very negative impression of the general state of affairs.

It is not unreasonable to say that these stories are not just sad but depressing. Doom and gloom are what we are being fed.

So I do what I normally do and I cruise through the blogosphere to see what other parties have to say about this. What do bloggers of all political bents think about the reports that are coming from the MSM and what do they think about things in general.

As I tooled on through I remembered a post I had done about Dr. Seuss and his positions on war and politics. And so I decided to go take a look again at the online catalog of his political cartoons.

So many of them are still applicable today. Here are some that caught my eye.

If you have never seen his work I urge you to spend some time sifting through it.

Crossposted on Yourish.

Top Vacations for the Newly Unemployed

Travel and Leisure has a slideshow here that you can use to find their list of the Top Vacations for the Newly Unemployed.

I am partial to the sailing and chef jobs.

CNN has a similar story in which they discuss whether post layoff is the right time to take a vacation.

“For those who buy a plane ticket before they get the ax, JetBlue is offering to refund fares. The JetBlue Promise promotion is good for customers laid off on or after February 17 and applies to ticket purchases made between February 1 and June 1.

The program is designed to appeal to people who haven’t been downsized but worry they might be, said Alison Croyle, a spokeswoman for the airline.

“It’s something that we felt would provide an advantage to customers who otherwise might be too stressed to book future travel plans,” she said.

Then there’s the already-laid-off demographic.

On some packages, Intrepid Travel is giving a 15 percent discount to people who’ve recently been let go.

The deal, with the tongue-in-cheek title, “Laid off? How about taking off?” has gotten a few dozen takers in the two months it’s been offered, said Leslie Cohen, spokeswoman for the travel company.

Cohen said the discount is designed to give people a chance to clear their heads during a tough transition. Some of the deals start at less than $1,000, she said.

The company is “not suggesting you use your life savings,” she said. “It’s really just a chance to catch your breath and see something else and come back in a little bit of a different frame of mind.”

For those looking to hit the skies on the job hunt rather than escape it, SkyRoll, maker of a $149.99 garment bag, says it’s giving a discount.

“If you recently lost your job and need to travel for an interview, we will take 50 percent off the price of a SkyRoll to help you arrive looking your best,” the company says on its Web site. To get the discount, SkyRoll requires customers to e-mail the company a layoff notice.

Travel discounts like the one from Intrepid may be great for unemployed people who have hefty savings accounts or large severance packages, but the program also could prey on the unemployed, said Madeline Hughes, who runs a consulting and outplacement group in Denver, Colorado.

The cost of a big trip “could be lunch money for somebody for the next six months,” she said. “

If You Could See The Future Would You Want To

In the midst of all of the current chaos I have heard a number of people say that they wish that they could see the future. It is kind of a nice dream. It sounds like the sort of thing that would be useful. It is a practical skill. See the future and you can be sure that you’ll always make the right decisions. At least that is the theory.

There was a time in my life that I used to be one of those people who wanted to know what was going to happen. I’d like to say that it was because I wanted to plan ahead. I’d like to say that it was because I wanted to stay a step ahead of the game. Those were certainly part of the reasons why I wanted that particular skill at that particular time.

But the rules of the blog dictate brutal honesty so I have to acknowledge that it was also because I was a 20 year-old kid who was heartbroken. A relationship had ended and I really wanted to know what was going to happen. Friends who tried to console me told me all sorts of good stories. I heard about their breakups and why they thought that splitting up had been a blessing in disguise.

The reasons varied. Sometimes it was because they led to new opportunities and sometimes it was because the couple had to have time apart so that they could grow and then come back together. But the common theme there was that splitting up was ultimately a good thing. There were one or two exceptions. I heard from a couple of people who said that breaking up had been the worst thing ever. I remember telling one of my friends that he should never consider being a therapist. I think that I said something to the effect of “you’d be the guy who handed the suicidal patient a gun.”

Anyhoo, I was like so many other people. I just wanted to know what was going to happen. Would the struggle be worth it. Was it going to lead to some incredible experience or relationship. Was the end really the beginning of something new. I remember looking up at the sky and saying that I was ready for the door to open. It was in reference to that line about one door closes and another opens.

If you ask me today if I’d like to be able to see the future I am not so sure that I would want to. I don’t really want to know when I am going to die. Sure you could make an argument that if we knew when we were going to die we’d live our lives differently. I already try to do that. I try not to make excuses to do certain things because you don’t know when the end is coming. Still, I don’t want to know the exact date. It is more interesting to me to wonder if I have another 200 years.

I am curious to see what sort of people my children are going to grow up to be. I wonder what sort of careers they’ll have and what they’ll be like. I wonder what my own life will look like in five years. What about ten or twenty or fifty years. What kinds of memories will I have. Will I have lived the life I wanted to live.

Foresight would be nice. It’d be useful to have some sense of things. I’d probably find it easier to relax. I wouldn’t worry about going bankrupt or dying of some dread disease because I’d already know about it and be prepared.

I am no different than anyone else. If I could change the past there are some things that I would have done differently. There are jobs that I wouldn’t have taken and relationships that never would have been. But I can’t help but wonder what I might have missed out upon. There are so many interconnected threads. If I don’t follow one path I’d never hit the fork in the road that led me to the other one that gave me that great whatever.

So I think that I am kind of glad that I can’t see the future. While I appreciate the thought of not suffering through some of the struggles in the same way I come back to the appreciation of surprises. I can’t and won’t say that they are all good, but there is something nice about not knowing. The uncertainty has its own rewards.

I suppose that it all helps to explain why sometimes I like to gamble and take a risk here and there.

What do you think?

My New Desk- I Have To Get One

I love this new desk from Details. Here is a short blurb about it.

“The Walkstation is the fully integrated combination of an electric height-adjustable worksurface with an exclusively engineered, low speed commercial grade treadmill. And it’s the first product in the entirely new FitWorkâ„¢ category of products from Details designed to bring healthy habits to sedentary workers while they are actually working.”

Seriously, this would be outstanding. A simple and effective way to stay in shape.

What is a Mother’s Love Worth?

Apparently not all that much.

BOSTON, Massachusetts (AP) — If a stay-at-home mom could be compensated in dollars rather than personal satisfaction and unconditional love, she’d rake in a nifty sum of nearly $117,000 a year.

That’s according to a pre-Mother’s Day study released in May by Salary.com, a Waltham, Massachusetts-based firm that studies workplace compensation.

The eighth annual survey calculated a mom’s market value by studying pay levels for 10 job titles with duties that a typical mom performs, ranging from housekeeper and day care center teacher to van driver, psychologist and chief executive officer.

This year, the annual salary for a stay-at-home mom would be $116,805, while a working mom who also juggles an outside job would get $68,405 for her motherly duties.

One stay-at-home mom said the six-figure salary sounds a little low.

Click here for the full story.