Wednesday, February 10, 2016

Time and time again. Did I say that already?

I have been reading Ronni Bennett's blog this morning and the one I'm reading is the Monday blog. Perhaps, Ronni doesn't get up as early as I do?

That aside, the blog is focused on SSI. I don't know about you, but I think about SSI quite often. That's our Social Security investment. At the age of 16 I was washing dishes at Tai Song, a local Chinese restaurant. That is the first place where I was paid weekly. A real job. It's also the first place where I saw the letters 'SSI' and a dollar figure after it. I knew I had earned that money and now the government (you and I) was taking a portion of it to keep, for safety's sake, until the day I retired. I certainly didn't think that my retirement, at that time, was 48 years ahead of me.

Over the years, the SSI amount changed. I no longer worked at a Chinese restaurant. I worked at a gas station and I worked at a liquor store. The government (you and I) kept taking out that money even when I worked directly for the country. I was in the Navy and at the time, SSI was a bigger part of my wages because the government (you and I) paid me so very little. A large amount or not, I knew the money was mine and it was an investment. An investment in my future.

By now you must know that I believe the government to be controlled by the citizens. I don't believe it to be part of a grand conspiracy to control the citizens. I don't believe in 'grand conspiracies'. Every conspiracy has a weak point and that's one of its members. Or two. Show me evidence of a grand conspiracy that worked. They all fail because no one can keep a secret.

My retirement age was 9 years ago and one thing we have learned during those 9 years was that we need that money. And we are very lucky elders. We both worked for a union construction company. I was in the Carpenter's Union for 25+ years and my pension money was guaranteed.  It still is. The last 20 years in my working life I worked in management for a construction company. I had a 401(k) and a pension. No one ever told me what to do with my 401(k) and so I did nothing with it. At my core, I was still a carpenter and not a financier. I suppose that if someone had said that the 401(k) was important, I might have made some learned investments and we would be multi- millionaires now. But no one did and I didn't and here we are.

We are living comfortably but we keep an eye on our investments. We have a financial planner. That's all they do. They don't sell insurance or anything else out of their offices. It's a father and son team and they have two offices. They are conservative by nature but will invest in any manner that you wish. I've been a customer for over 10 years and we seem to be quite comfortable with each other.

oh, seems like I'm going astray. I was going to stay on the subject of SSI and I've begun to wander away. It's the drugs that make writing such a chore. I have an IQ that's into the 140's, very low 140's, but I can't remember common words. I start to write and my mind drifts away. Pretty soon I'm talking to myself. The words 'doddering old fool' come to mind. Maybe I will try this again when I'm thinking a little more coherently...

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