As a kid, my dad taught me lots of lessons. And one lesson he taught me over and over was to avoid putting my pride or ego so close to a decision I had made or was making that it became difficult or impossible to change my mind without hurting my pride. Think about it…Pride is an emotion and it gets in the way of many things. Emotions cloud judgement and prevent reason and logic from prevailing and thus, we as humans make poor decisions with lasting consequences.
If that was the lesson my father taught me, my wife and her family have taught me a much lighter point. That is, if there is anyone more proud of their heritage and culture than a Greek (me) it’s a Puerto Rican (her). And interestingly enough, we look at the global economy today in 2015 and realize that both prideful countries have been adversely impacted by overly nationalistic decisions that have desecrated their economies and in the case of Greece, left a people in the balance.
In both situations, a significant dependency on the government through welfare and social programs as well as employment and benefits has created a deficit that now has both countries on the brink. Albeit, Greece is closer to, if not teetering on the edge. Let’s face it, California is in pretty bad shape as a State and yet we are much better off than Greece and Puerto Rico. However, it is important for Californians to realize what can happen if and when welfare, pensions and the like get out of control.
The takeaway? Learn from Greece and Puerto Rico. Pension reform in California…NOW!