Wednesday, February 3, 2010

3 February 1956 “Company Towns”

Though this very popular song by Ford was in fact a very real story seen in the 20’s and 30’s of poor workers struggling and trading at the ‘company store’, the young teens in 56 really had no idea what this sort of life meant, to them the world was lovely and growing lovelier for them.

I was amazed by this article in Time Magazine from 1956 (this is actually an April issue, so I shouldn’t be seeing it yet, but wanted to share). It is entitled “Company Towns”. It is amazing how, at this point, the growing company was an actual person who cared about a community as well as his growing business. Today, the top corporations are held by corporations. You do not see the names of actual people behind it, but rather names like Citicorp, Vanguard etc. This anonymity of the corporation getting to have itself be considered a ‘person’ makes it easier to be cruel and heartless. A building or a Stock symbol doesn’t care when a town literally closes down because all of its work is sent overseas to India or China. Once, however, it seems their was a face behind a corporation and it wanted not only profit for himself but a better life and happier worker.

Here is an excerpt:

To the jukebox generation the words were all but meaningless. Yet, as late as the 1920s, the ballad's bitter plaint was a real-life refrain to millions of U.S. workers from Georgia's green-roofed cotton villages to Oregon's bleak lumber settlements. Those workers had lived, like Composer Merle Travis' coalminer father, in company towns—drab, depressed communities where the worker traded at a company store,* rented a company house, was watched by company cops. Today company towns are still flourishing in the U.S. But the towns, and the tune, have changed.

Could it be there was a time when the corporation cared about its workers to this level?

Typical of today's company towns is New Cuyama, a California community that sprang up from the sagebrush after Richfield Oil Corp. made the state's biggest petroleum strike of the decade in a barren desert valley southwest of Bakersfield eight years ago. Determined to create a community that would match its underground wealth, Richfield sold 201 model homes at cost to employees, put up a handsome shopping center and leased it to independent merchants. The company also provided a $75,000 community hall, a $250,000 motel-restaurant, a $20,000 playground, plus land for two new churches and a $1,500,000 high school. Says a Richfield executive: "Most of these families never owned a home before. Now they are settling down to grow with the valley."

Treat People Like People.

This was really an amazing article and deserves a full read, so if you are so inclined go HERE.

So, really at this stage the Corporation almost becomes a ruling class where you must rely on the ‘goodness’ of who is in power. They build the town and decide the level of comfort of its people and workers. In a true Dictatorship or the Kingdoms of old, If one king is kind then he will care for and make good the world for his subjects, but if his son is self involved and cares less, than there goes the world of his subjects. In many ways, modern U.S.A. has become such a place. The corporation of today is not the corp. of 1956, when there was a face and a man who could want and give to his employees because he cared. Today it is overseas conglomerates and even the Government, for all intents and purposes, is part of the corporation.

That is why I think it silly, all this Republican and Democrat business. One side may say they want big government the other side big business but they are both right as the government and big business are almost not a separate entity. It is as long as they can keep us, the actual people of the country, separated by silly differences that they can continue to control and grow. We should not stand on different sides of a fence and toss mud at one another while the Corporation and the Gov pretend to be separate and smile down on our silliness as they grow richer without any care of it’s subjects.

We need to look around us and realize our community our individual help must come from one another. When we vote it should be for what is good for all of us and besides politics, just working together to help restore our towns and communities and for goodness sake, throw the stone at Goliath. If you don’t shop at Wal-Mart and Target and Old Navy and Starbucks, then joe’s  and ma and pa’s and sally’s store down the street can grow and another store can be made. We must realize WE are the people. We mustn't let talking pieces such as news papers and news channels drive a wedge between us. Gone are the old corporate heads making lovely towns for its workers, but if we start new and grow and support our own small businesses  then when and if any of us ever got to the corporate level, we COULD think with our hearts AND heads. Again, a quiet revolution of rational, calm realistic living and spending. Nothing would be easier than we merely living to be a better person and that means thinking of others first. So, what if it costs more to buy veg and meat from the local guy, get out the old 40’s cookbooks when we HAD to economize and start doing it, because this war is also worth fighting .The war to get the US back into our hands, WE THE PEOPLE, not Fox News, or CNN or Wal-Mart or any other corporate owned and run business without a human face or heart.

Here is more from that same 56 article:

The big change in company towns stems from the social and economic maturity of U.S. industry. Community and employee relations are as important a factor in modern management as raw materials, markets and transportation. Most companies today bend over backward to be good neighbors in their communities.

There once was that time when the company and the community were a team. Now, there are ghost towns where once was production and all of that was left in the lurch.

This is just another case where I feel we were at the crux of making the Modern world a fine place where there was money to be made, but we could also be human beings who cared for one another. If this practice had continued, such things as environmental concerns, unfair labor treatment, overseas production might never have happened. IF those in charge had lead with their heart and head and not through a faceless stock symbol, we might be in a very different place today. And yet, we too are too blame, for business succeeds by our dollars and laws passed by our hands. We have allowed ourselves to be swayed when we, the people, should have paid better attention.

Paying attention and be aware of our politics and corporations/business  isn't’ easy and really that might be where our 50’s forefathers went wrong. They wanted to make it perfect and easy for their children. To come out of the war and make a new beautiful world for them free of the troubles of worry. But we must HAVE worry in that we must be aware and weary while not being frightened and suspicious. Even today such tools of fear, as ‘terrorist threats’ are used, I believe, to keep us in fear and to want to hoard and buy. We must be aware but not afraid, we must act with our heads but think with our hearts sometimes.

We must not let ourselves lose sight of “struggle and work”. It mustn't be something to rise above but to embrace and realize it will be very the thing that will not lead to complacency. The type of complacency that has lead to our living in a world where we are satiated sheep, watching our tv, and computers, buying up our cheap goods in heaps to make our lives seem to have meaning and purpose and to have the tv tell us which side we are one and whom to hate.

If we could do the 1950’s over again, we should and would teach the children to work harder and to work for one another to hold those around them accountable, even the businesses they shop at. If they to big for their breeches and DON’T care for people, then they will die by our not supporting them. It isn’t easy, but a life worth living shouldn’t only be easy. Even if you are fabulously wealthy, without a purpose and a struggle to achieve and overcome, you will feel pointless and become complacent. And COMPLACENCY is the surest way to forget HUMANITY. Only when we see and realize we are ALL in this together we all MUST work hard and sometimes we may not like the hard work but it is for the good of all of us. No big Government nor Big business, but towns and communities of and for the people run and cared for by its inhabitants.

What is oddly true and strangely real, is thae song, 16 TONS,  is rather fitting today:

 What do you get? another day older and deeper in Debt…I owe my soul to the company store.

In this case we own our souls to the corporation. It isn’t the free business and enterprise of the old U.S.A. We can have that back, but it’s easier to just go to BJ’s and Wal-Mart and save some pennies as we watch our country slide deeper into the oligarchy of Government/Corporate tyranny. Why worry of future generations, our grandchildren's future, I WANT TO PLAY WII AND SAVE MONEY AT OLD NAVY! and besides, my SHOWS are on. And I can’t work with THOSE people, I’m This and They are THAT.

It is silly, these sides, Republican and Democrat. We have Dick Cheney on one side on the Board of Halliburton while he sat in office making money off of the war. Putting money in HIS pocket without any moral fiber or concern for human life. Then we have the CLINTONS who sat on the Board of Wal-Mart and helped it to grow and it helped them to get into office. Hilary Clinton daring to say, “It takes a village” while she contributes to the very corporation that is destroying the villages and putting the small business out. There is no ‘right’ side only the ‘right way’ and that is to consider people first. We are people: our neighbors, our family, our future generations, we must come first. And that doesn’t mean a state controlled by a government nor does it mean a world where everything is privatized,including the military, because then we return to feudal warring states of the middle ages. Even I don’t want to live ‘My Year 1300’.

We must  not think “I am a Republican therefore I like this and I am a Democrat therefore I think that”. This is the very divide that can exist to keep us from really making a change. The only means to get business back in the hands of the middle class is to support that very class by our spending and by voting, when we can, for measures that support that despite what ‘side’ that vote may land.We have more power in the dollar we spend then the vote we cast now. For we spend daily and vote sparingly.

So, if you have read this far you are probably wondering, “what does this have to do with sewing dresses, making schedules, canning your own food, manners, hankies etc” Well, honestly, I believe in order for us to bring back the good ole’ days and to truly live a Vintage lifestyle, we MUST realize what it was to live then and what things went into making it a place we ‘yearn for’. To truly live it now, just a petticoat, some vintage kitchen canisters and some canned food in the pantry is not enough. If we don’t want to just live in a sort of ‘theatre production of a life’ but to have a true honest to goodness return to the old ways, we MUST be aware of all facets of our life. These things affect our community, our pay, our very way of thinking and acting towards one another. I don’t see learning to sew a darling vintage style dress and shopping locally not corporately, or voting for what is for the good of all as separate things. They are ALL puzzle pieces of a great jigsaw of yesteryear that we want to rebuild. We can do it. I know we can.

So, whether you get upset with what I have said, or think, “Here she goes again,” I really am just passionate about it because I know we can, we homemakers, use or skills and talents to build a new world outward. WE can make a wonderful home with hard work and expect it of our families and then out to our communities and outwards on. I am not Liberal nor Right wing, I am a person, a homemaker and a lady. And I think we should use our brains, know how, and skill to make our own lives and world structured and make choices for the good and it shall spill out. A ‘trickle upward’ if you will.

So, if you have made it this far, thanks for listening to my rant. I promise next post will have recipes, and household tips. But, sometimes a gal, when she gets out the soapbox to do the laundry, feels the need to get on it and Rant! Thank you for listening, if you have.

Here is how it once was:


  1. While I agree that large box store are ruining the small shopkeeper, it is important to remember that stores like Wal-mart are an example to the American dream on a large scale. Sam Walton was from a poor farming family and started his own store and 5 and 10 and eventually built up his empire from one single store. If we want our small businessmen to succeed, should we turn our back on them once they do? It is a bit of a cunundrum ...

  2. Well, I think when a store becomes, as has Walmart, so large that it puts profits BEFORE human condition, than we should say NO with our wallets. I don't think the Sam Walton who was a poor small town boy would want money in his pocket at the cost of others, not only is china and India production bad for the people in that country it is very bad for the people in our country. I would like to think that America could be a place for ALL entrepreneurs and not just those that get big enough to crush all. There is a DEFINITE point, I believe, that a person needs to say, profit is now ABOVE the good of the person. If only a few are allowed to succeed (and I don't mean necessarily government intervention because I feel that gov and big corp are in bed together) but we should say, do I want my community or the other small business to not have a chance while the big store is getting more while hurting others. There is a time when we must say people than profits, I believe, because it is the human thing to do. I think part of the lie we are fed is that to allow places as walmart to get big is American, is not true. America is a place for a free market of business, when places get that big and are PART OF the government, then it is almost a corporate tyranny or a corporate Communism-with the slogan:good prices for all' while the little man is left with no chance at his own business, only one place to shop and prices controlled by that business. is it fair to give up our towns and chance of small businesses, even farmers for that matter, so that a few can become richer? I am not sure that is the American dream.

  3. And, I want to point out that I am not saying Goverment rules against big business, because that is where they begin to get us with the 'divide between Dem and Rep" I am sayine we, the people, have a say in our towns BY the money we spend. And we don't need the government to tell us to be good people any more than we need a walmart commercial to tell us it is american and good for us to have a life BECAUSE they have cheap prodcuts. We need to say, why are they cheap? and if they are cheap at a cost to others (small farms, small production, small business, loss of us production, increase in child labor) then we say, NO I do not accept that behavior and spend elsewhere or help to support the idea of someone in the community startinga business that we woudl then shop at as it is the right HUMAN thing to do, not Rep or Dem or Any such thing, but because we know, in our hearts, that to help one another is to help ourselves.

  4. And, in the article in 1956 we see the big corporation CARING about its workers in building a school for the town, building and then selling houses to its workers at cost. This was not goverment aid but the help and aid of someone who had 'made it big' but didn't forget where he came from. I think that is the difference I see. If we do not want governement to be the power to help others, we should, in our way, do it ourselves, so that means when you do 'make it big' as walmart has, they should be doing their part to pay back that community. Instead they move produciton overseas. If walmart went into a town, built a new school, built an area of housing and helped their employees buy those houses, as they did in 56, then good for them. Those that get larger helper those below that is the American way. NOt forgetting that we came and had to work our way up and helping others to follow that dream, not: whoever gets to the top first wins and be damned those below, let them figure it out. I was just surprised that there was an actual IDEAL world where a big corporation actually BUILT A TOWN for its workers to live, pray love and contribute in a way that makes me proud to be an american. Seeing one person build a huge corporation that then goes into a town and stops all local business by its very presence and does not then HELP the town who supplies its labor force does NOT make me proud to be an American.

  5. We have started in a small way, buying meats from the local butcher and fish from the fishmarket. We also buy at the farmers market, and it's much more than just produce.

    Not only do we support local efforts, but we know the source of our foods. It's a win-win, and often, saves money in the end as well.

  6. 50s gal,
    Thank you for the trip down memory lane with "16 Tons". I remember my dad singing it and listening to it when I was young. There is an old Bendix washing machine commercial that used the tune to 16 tons. I tried to find it on you tube but I didn't see it.
    I have a question for you or anyone else that may be able to answer. I just bought a vintage toaster. It is so darling, but I am wondering about asbestos inside it. The panels inside do not look like they are made out of metal. More like a fibrous material. Do you know how to tell if your old toaster contains asbestos and is it dangerous to use if it does?
    Thank you
    Amy F.

  7. Amy-I just tried to do some research for you on the toaster question. I never thought about it, but it is true that they used asbestos in some old appliances like toasters. But I also found sites where many people still use their old toaster even from the 1920's (in fact my MIL uses that type where you have to manually flip the bread). This is the one appliance I have that is NOT vintage ( I have a three slice Dualit toaster, which I think looks vintage. IT was from my modern spending life and I don't want to tell you what a dualit toaster costs, it is too shocking)I think if you are not certain than don't use it. I found a site where someone mentioned taking it apart and replacing it with different material, but I don't know if you should risk it. I have an old waffle iron I use from the 30's and it may have that in it, but as it is sealed so tight, I don't worry about it, but a toaster, I am not sure if it is sealed the same way. It might be. I would research it yourself and find out. I'd hate to give bad advice. I know asbestos causes lung cancer and though I am not defending cigarettes in any way, I believe many old cases of lung cancer could have as easily been caused by the asbestos in homes, shingles, siding, flooring etc.

  8. I also want to make a point that I am not against business growth but I am FOR having a human soul and heart. When a business is large enough to afford, on its own goodwill, to give back to the community through aiding its workers and to help them feel that they 'can' pull themselves up by the bootstrap, own their own home, send their kids to a good school etc, that is more important that MORE profits. Isn't it better to have some profits but also be able to go to bed at night and look yourself in the mirror. That is also why I laugh when I see people defend the TYPE of corporation such as Walmart, with relgion. Really? If Jesus were here today, would he want the decisions made for profit over peoples welfare? I don't think so, but who am I? Walmart is not evil perse, but its actions are not good if it does not serve the very community and country from which it gets its employees and its profits. I want there to be corporation with heart, which there appeared to be in 1956 as this article pointed out. And not everyone WANTS to be sam walton , some would like a simple life of 9-5 home with family some money for kids education and family vacations. We CAN"T all be sam walton because it is impossible. I jsut feel the middle class and working class should have a fair chance THROUGH business itself (not the governemnt handout) to have a fair wage and feel proud to work FOR the corporation, because it keeps factories IN the country even if it means less money for the shareholders. There should not HAVE to be a governemnt rule for this on business, because if business remains run by people not just boards of people, than they can use their human heart to see it is only right to help those less fortunate and not by hand outs our gov. money, but by supplying them with a fair wage, moving prodcution back into the country working WITH farmers to support and supply local stores (not just shipping it in and then paying farmers to grow corn we don't need for ethanol). Why can't a person , who is a big business, be glad to help those who want to stay down there and aren't interested in becoming millionaires? It just makes me sad and feel bad about the overall human condition of how we treat one another, is all. That is why I get so passionate about it.

  9. I was also thinking, when Sam Walton started his business, he gave back. He made it so workers were share holders etc. But, now it is NOT sam walton. It is a conglomerate of companies that own many parts of what makes up the world and that is a scary thing. That would be the 'person' you would feel you were 'turning your back on'. The idea that the person Sam Walton, in now walmart is a way for us to feel lured into saving money for ourselves. Okay, I have said enough. I just feel that once people felt on their own (without the need of the government) to fell for their fellow man, so when they made 'it big' they still felt that need. Now, I feel as if we, as a people, are so "ME ME " that when we DO make it big, we might just be another walmart and say, who cares, move that plant to china, I don't care about the families in that town, or the business there. That's what I don't want, I suppose. But, maybe some people don't care, I don't know. I don't want to hurt peoples feelings but I also want people to want to help others, silly maybe.

  10. Ah! All I can say is, preach it, sister!
    (I shop and am a member at the co-op and hit the farmers' markets (one right outside the co-op!) during growing season)

  11. I would like to share a little information someone told me about Sam Walton. I am NOT a WalMart devotee. A few years ago, I met someone who knew Sam Walton. An older man who was friends with Walton; they had worked together on various charity events or programs (don't remember what). Walton would stay at this gentleman's house when he was in this person's city. The discussion started when my daughter was on her own "rant" about Wal-Mart. That gentlemen then started on his long list of complaints re Wal-Mart. He was adamant that Walton would be enraged and furious regarding Wal-Mart's direction. He was very much an admirer of Walton and had endless positive things to say about him as a human being and working with him. Also, anyone who is interested in a great example of a wonderful businessman, read all about Milton Hershey and the town he built and the school he funded (and still funds) for orphans of any creed or race (LONG before civil rights). He died many years ago, but personally made certain the school would continue. Reading about that school and all they accomplish is uplifting; it shows you what can be done. ...........Dianne

  12. Dianne-oh, if only MODERN corporations would do such things. I would think, when making so much money and having so much, making a wonderful world and town for your employees, country, would also be considered a profit, don't you? I guess, maybe that corporations are now so far removed from the indiviual that they don't feel, as they are not on a more face to face basis. I actually heard that the distance the present corporation , say GM is, from actual people is nothing like the 1950s when you could trace the 'owners ' of gm to a person, now you find it'owned' by Citicorp, Vanguard etc, so the further we removed the human animal FROM the corporation, the less it seems to want to do for its people. Sam Walton, actually, as I said I do not hate the man, was great to his employees and gave them shares in his company in the beginning and many of them became wealthy because of it, but THAT is exactly what is NOT happening today and I wonder if Sam were alive today, would he be sadenned that his company, built by a 'local boy' has done so much to ruin 'local towns AND even local Farms) And why can't walmart when it goes into a small town get its supplies FROM THAT TOWN? encourage the local farmers to grow for them, help a production to grow so some of the products are made and sold there. BUt part of walmart, as it is now owned by corp. is the other co I always rally againt, Monsanto. They pay farmers to grow their own corn (as they now hold the patents on many seeds) and have genetically altered some of their corn to the point that it has no nurtional value until AFTER it is processed a certain way. That means there are fields of corn in this country that, if taken as they were, would go though your system and not supplly you anything. That is scary to me. Just think how much more fulfilling a large corporation could be in our lives if, when it came to a small town, it grew and encouraged that town in production and farming and sellinga and buying. They would make money and the town would grow and be happy. I know, that in the 1950s such companies existed, so I just wish we could, 'start again' so start supporting your local guy and maybe one of we apronites will be one of the 'make it big' corporations that will end up re-creating a town as part of what it sees as its "PROFIT MARGIN" there has to be an answer, don't you think? And one that can be made by US with our dollars spent and how we live and create our communities, we do have THAT power at least, don't we?!
    Oh, I fogot to sign in , this is 50sgal, as if you didn't know right?

  13. Yes 50sgal we must be aware of all facets of our life. We are intelligent, well-rounded, vibrant, thinking ladies and us homemakers can affect the world from inside(our families, homes) to outward(our communities and beyond...)

    I love your passion. It's contagious. Linda

  14. 50s gal,
    Thank you for the info on the toaster. Do you remember the website address where they were talking about replacing parts in the toaster? If not that is okay. Thanks again.
    Amy F.(and sorry to be off the topic of the day.)

  15. Amy F-this site talks about asbestos, what it is and when it is dangerous
    the site I found basically just said to take it apart and then check which I did, but it didn't specifically mention replacing the asbestos insulation panel. It might not even have asbestos, If you take the outer metal panel off, there is where you will see the heating elements which are wrapped in the insulation. I guess asbestos is usally white. I wonder, though, if you removed the insulation (with gloves and a face mask) if you could just then toss it away and have the coils without the insulation and just be careful not to touch the sides. SOme older models may not even have the insulation anyway. Here is the link to the how a toaster works. you can see the one in the example is modern as it is wired to a little green termial, as you see in everything from computers, cell phones etc. I hope this helps you.

  16. I absolutely concur 50's Gal, we may not get to vote on much here in Canada, but I chose to vote with my dollars and cents (sense) :)

    My money has power in and of itself, I chose to spend it wisely on locally owned businesses as much as possible.

    For example, we purchased a flat screen last year when my parent's old tv started to hum (very loudly), did we hop into a car and drive to the dreaded Walmart, no we went to a local TV and vacuum store that has been open in this area since the 50's, same store and when you walk in it's like walking into another era.

    And imagine this, they actually service what they sell, and you are able to barter for a cheaper price on the goods, so the deals are much better at the local store then a big box.

    I could start a rant myself on the big box stores, but I won't :)

    All I know is that even here, Walmart moves in just a little bit out of town, the downtown slowly disintegrates, it's stores shutter and becomes a wasteland to consumer neglect. So the people have no other place to shop but there.

    It's sad, it really is. I may enter a Walmart store like once a year if that, it does not impress me in the least.

    In the summer, I try to shop locally at a nearby farm for fresh veggies and fruit, I do what I can, I found a discount Canadian store called Giant Tiger where (gasp), I can buy Canadian made shirts and such, now that was a shocker for me.

    I try to buy goods made in North America, including amish made tables for my livingroom, to my bedroom set, even my kitchen table and retro 50s chairs were made locally.

    I am such a small voice in this vast wilderness, but this voice does have a power to choose where to buy my goods, so I do the little bit I can to promote this local economy that is suffering from this recession.

    Mom in Canada

  17. I am sorry, I have a splitting headache, so I didn't read everything, so forgive me if I repeat anything here.

    Sam Walton was a product of the American dream, and a BIG believer in it. So much so, that until his death, Wal-Mart would purchase AMERICAN MADE products over foreign made if there was opportunity. Even should they cost more. Then Mr. Walton died and his children sold out their stock to corporate controllers, and THEY started purchasing everything from China and India.

    I am sure poor old Sam is spinning in his grave looking down as to what has been done to his store and all the hard work he put into it.


  18. Lori-Yeah, that is what we were saying. That there was once a breed of capitalists who felt it their DUTY to be true to the country that made them. NOW, the companies are just owned by other companies. It's funny in SciFI there is alwasy some Robto revolt where the mahcines don't care about us, when really a very REAL revolt is happening now where the faces 'corporate' personage (which is just a colleciton of corporations owning other corporations)is the true unfeeling faceless machine. Sad, sad indeed. We just let it all go. I just get so mad when I see the modern walmart (not Sam waltons walmart)still using the american flag usa values to trick us into buying goods made in china! I mean a communist country, not sure how much MORE unamerican you can be than that!
    Now I am feeling sad. I better get to some other busy work so I don't dwell. this is 50s gal by the way, for some reason in Ubuntu when I write a comment then realize I am not signed in I cannot highlight cut and paste what I have written to a new window, even hubby can't figure it out. Oh well.

  19. Interesting article! I think, however, that you are incorrect in ascribing the actions of that oil company to the goodness of its owners or board. Whoever made that decision about the town made a brilliant hr, pr, and marketing move. For a relatively minor investment, considering the value of their product, they secured not only committed employees and low turnover, but a long and effective advertisement in Time (and probably elsewhere, as well), employees and their families who will also be loyal customers, and a physical manifestation of their success to show stock holders regardless of the real performance of the company. To a lesser extent, corporations do that today (ADM has many ads about its social responsibility, for example), but companies still build towns to house and attract employees, and those companies are mostly white collar today.

  20. Harper-I felt that it was a sort of 'lesser' of two evils. I could very well see that the Time article was as much Marketing as it was Kindness, but I DON"T see that happening today at all! I guess "better the Devil you know..."But, I would love examples of companies today building towns to bring in employees and then building them rec centers and schools, so please let me know. IT might make me feel better! I jsut see Walmart going in, taking all the customers, then all those employees at the closed down stores have to workthere and then none of the products they sell at walmart come from or have anything to do with the actual town it was in.
    Do you have specific town/corp circumstances you could point us to, I'd appreciate it, jut to feel a little better

  21. "So, what if it costs more to buy veg and meat from the local guy, get out the old 40’s cookbooks when we HAD to economize and start doing it, because this war is also worth fighting .The war to get the US back into our hands, WE THE PEOPLE..."

    I LOVE this post, 50sgal! This one thing that you said stuck out more than any thing else that you said. This "war" is worth fighting, and we should have the pride, integrity and backbone that past generation had in doing all they could to support the war efforts. You managed to get into my mind and get me past my current thinking. Before I said that I didn't think it was bad to shop at larger stores from time to time because there is always someone/store that's going to be larger than another, and that it's our responsibility to keep that balance by shopping locally more often, etc. I'm beginning to see from this post, that's there's more to it than that. These corporations are so large that it will be hard to turn the tide unless we make a more drastic effort to shop locally, or from mom and pop places on the internet if we have to, in order for our "voices" to be heard by how we spend our money. Heartless companies (obviously, not the ones who are doing it right) don't care, and won't change if the pressure is so little that they can ignore it. And, maybe they'll never change, but if more people can come to realize and understand just what you've said here, then they will at least stop supporting unethical companies, and that will make an impact whether or not the companies/owners of those companies never change their thinking, because they won't be getting our money, thus becoming smaller and having less power over society as a whole.

    You've now convinced me that I literally need to stop shopping at large corporations, not simply shop local as much as possible. This will take some work in order for me to find new sources for some of my shopping. It seems that there are some things that only Target, Walmart, or the like carries. This will take some creativity, but this also shows how these stores have taken up too much space in our towns that we literally can't think of where else we could buy some of our things from.

    Geez! You always stretch me in ways that are so uncomfortable, but I appreciate it. I would like to imagine that I am tough enough to handle this "war" like those before me who made it through wars that were much larger, and life threatening, and doing so with such dignity and strength. I feel the need to rent the 1940s house again.

  22. PL-I am so glad this touched you, especially now, as I have just sat down and had a good cry because of a comment left on the blog of the video from Redbook. I am too 'touchy' perhaps, but I hate when I have seemed to offend. But, we cannot all agree. It is harder to shop locally at first because we think, "oh I can only get it at walmart/ etc" but then we do have to stop and think, "well, wait a minute before wall mart and target WHO was selling this or that? was it my neighbor's dad or the local guy?" It really is a war. It was easy to get behind the meaness of one man such as Hitler, but when the tyranny is woven into the ease and luxery of what we have come to think of as our 'RIGHT' to get things cheap at any cost, it is another question. But, we do need to make a change. I am so glad you feel this way. We shall all try harder and maybe we could, in time, learn to help one antoher in our communities to encourage a business to supply that whcih we usually get at walmart. WHo knows, we might just grow stronger as small communiites alongside the growth of the big chains until the don't know what hit them!

  23. I'm so sorry, 50sgal, for the unpleasant comment. Try to remember that there are some people out there who do say negative things simply because they enjoy getting a rise out of somebody, when they really don't care about what it is they are commenting about. They just see an opportunity and jump on it. When that happens again, just assume that it really is nothing personal and that the person is just a random, heartless person trying to mess with your mind, and ignore them. I know this can be hard at first, but it will get easier with time.

  24. This is what I love about your blog - it is not JUST about recipes and sewing. You show us the whole palette. :)


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