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eugene murphy

surely socsec is secure enuff to pay him till his passing. don't call me Shirley.

Fiddlin Bill

Good for you!

Barbara

I think you just gave up too soon. Keep at it, you'll get better at it. They are always rubbing our faces in their inanities, we need to stop being so passive.

I like to agree with 'em: "Yes, your taxes, my taxes, ARE too high (that always gets their attention), that's because really, really rich people and big corporations aren't paying their fair share and we middleclass folks get stuck picking up the slack." (Just did a variation on this with a friend having her first sticker shock over how expensive it was going to be to send her kid to college:"Did you know that (our local) University of Cincinnati used to be free?" Then when she was marveling over that, feeling wistful and envious, I explained how the state has been cutting back its support for years, leaving her and her husband to pay the difference; basically, they are about to have their own private, and massive, tax hike).

Or I tell 'em something like, "My religion teaches me we are all responsible for one another. I'm glad to be paying taxes that allows you to have the retirement you deserve, and I'm counting on others to pay it forward for me when my time comes. I think that is patriotic, Americans taking care of Americans, don't you?"

In the short run, I don't think I'm that much more successful than you were, but I like to think that every little bit of cognitive dissonance I can spark might led to something one day. Sometimes I can see the confusion in their face and that is very satisfying. They can't reconcile whatever empathy I've shown them with me disagreeing with them.

Experiencing cognitive dissonance is painful, that is why we humans are so defended against it. Most people don't have the ego strength to bear experiencing it, that is why you have to be gentle. But you are a college teacher, and your job is to create cognitive dissonance, so you already have tricks up your sleeve.

Michael Strickland

Interesting essay, and Barbara "experiencing cognitive dissonance is painful" is a wise goddess.

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