Wow! I need to start a charity.

Like the title says… What a lucrative business. The information that I’m about to state is from each organizations website, collected from their tax form 990. The salaries are rounded to the nearest dollar and is either the from the year 2010 or 2011. If time allows I may add to the list later, but I’m definitely rethinking about who I donate to now!

All numbers are in thousands, ie. $450 is $450,000

Additionally at the very end of the list will be a number in (brackets) this number is the amount of employees who earned more than $100,000 for that year.

American Cancer Society
CEO $550 , employees initials- no titles listed: OB $391 , GB $471 , TM $345 , FH $258 , JC $372 ,
CM $325 , GD $251 , GJ $291 , LR $265 , VA $258
(166)

American Medical Association
CEO $737 , CFO $378 , corp sec $305 , CSO $447 , CMO $401 , CDO $351 , EVP $468 ,
EVP $456 , EVP $381 , EVP $443 , EVP $414 , EVP $319 , EVP $403 , EVP $301 , EVP $309 ,
EVP $288
(336)

American Red Cross
CEO $501 , Gen counsel/sec $372 , CFO $355 , CAE SVP $248 , CIO $323 , HR $306 , EVP $569,
(1078)

Goodwill
CEO $508 , VP retail $204 , COO $243 , CFO $172 , CCO $188 , VP member $315 , HR $165
(35)

March of Dimes
CEO $487 , employees initials-no titles listed: JM $347 , AF $300 , RM $224 , LB $230 , MK $301 ,
MW $264 , AK $234 , PH $208
(104)

Salvation Army
(they are exempt from the 990 form)
CEO $127

Susan G Komen Fund
CEO/founder $685 , pres $375 , EVP $319 , CFO $338 , sec $364 , asst sec $185 , CSA $211 , VP $230 , VP tech $220 , VP global $199 , VP RESP $171 , VP BDP $173
(52)

UNICEF
CEO $468 , CFO $368 , SVP $217 , VP $196 , SVP market $281 , SVP dev $318 , VP PA $238 ,
SVP part $234 , VP dev $210
(44)

United Way
CEO $763 , CFO $263 , COO $381 , com im $326 , inv real $284 , brand lead $325 , strat all $284
(77)

YMCA
CEO $357

Now while I understand this is a capitalist society and I agree with free enterprise, these are companies who’s employees are paid from donations. And again I’m not against people getting paid by donations because without donations the employees wouldn’t get paid, understandably! However, some of those salaries are exorbitant.

Guess I will have to find out what charities sit right with me now, and now I will look up a charities form 900 before I donate. Btw religious institutions and organizations do not have to file the form 900. If and when I get the chance and desire I may look into that further.

Learning, Dems vs. Reps

Well as some of you may know I’m not very politically correct. Nor am I even politically versed. Up until about 6 months, I didn’t know anything about the government aside from what I learned up and through middle school. Which really was not much. But really I had no desire or reason to know, so I thought. Life was plodding along, same old same. Then like a ton of bricks being dropped on my head an overwhelming sense of doom started looming over our nation. And here I was clueless as to how politics work(honestly, I still am-but I do know a lot more than I did).

So I needed to educate myself some what. I read the Bill of Rights, history of the very first settlers who came to find gold like the Spaniards through immigrated indentured servants to the Signing of the Declaration of Independence, salaries and employees of our elected officials and WH employees, budgets and numbers for the past 20 years, the slow but constant progression of our nations debt, the expansion of our governments agendas, and how we essentially are becoming the nation our founding fathers fought a war to separate themselves from. For as much as I never thought history was important, I now know I was eerily and totally wrong. For history contains valuable evidence to reveal the mistakes repeated throughout time. But for just as much as my ignorance of history is detrimental for myself, our nations power, greed and ego will be our ruin.

Though I agree capitalism is the foundation for a good economy, so is moderation. In a country where entertainers make more money than our educators, military, law enforcers, and yes even our politicians… To me seems very skewed. Now I know that’s not going to change, that’s free enterprise, and that’s the price we seem willing to pay. And unless we stop going to concerts, movies, and sports games they will continue to receive million dollar deals. But that’s not the main problem as I see it. The main problem seems to be how our president wants to equalize Americans.
I don’t mean equality, we are all humans and our physical differences do not warrant inequality. However, willingness to work, intelligence, ability and the like are factors that do make us unequal in regards to pay and the jobs we can do.

Let me ask you this… Do you really think that a person who takes your order at some fast-food chain should make the same as a teacher? I want an honest answer and your reason. Because that is where our fearless leader is leading us to, a socialized society where everyone deserves to have the same benefits as everyone else. I digressed, let me get back on point.

Next on my list was learning the difference between a democrat and a republican. And clearly I am a republican, here are the reasons I based my decision on:

*Abortion- against partial birth abortion(fetus up to 20weeks).
*Death penalty- for.
*Free enterprise- for. I don’t want the government regulating our economy.
*Affirmative action- against, but strongly in favor of EOE and heavily fining discrimination!
*Public school vs school vouchers- this is a difficult one solely for the fact that the dems were in favor of raising teachers salaries and lowering class sizes(both of which I’m for). Undecided, leaning towards dems.
*Embryonic stem cell research- creepy, but I guess what else are you going to do with all those democrat approved aborted fetus’! The republicans prefer Adult stem and umbilical cord cells, and with much better research results.
*Energy- though I am in favor of green energy, I am not keen on the government controlling our gas and electric companies. Nor do I think it’s the government job to fund green energy, based on the fact that numerous researches and hundreds of billions of US $ has been spent with very little advances in green energy. So sticking by the reps with let’s drill our own land for oil.
*Euthanasia- again on the cusp here, but I’m going to say against. Mainly because I foresee numerous problems if this became legal. Legalized murder is tricky stuff!
*Global warming- spend money to reduce carbon emissions, do not have enough information to be for or against. Neutral.
*Gun control- against. It’s been said a million times already… Criminals do not follow the laws.
Banning certain arms will only prevent law-abiding citizens from having them.
*Healthcare- against a socialize structure. I did a preliminary review of the worlds top healthcare systems and they are in the countries with some of the highest tax rates. Ours was not ranked that high, but neither are our taxes, comparatively speaking.
*Homeland security- for. Sorry if this offends anyone, but right now almost every day around the world Islam extremist cells are being found. If white middle aged women started bombing foreign countries, and I visited and was detained because I fit that “look”, I would not be happy but I’d understand.
*Immigration amnesty- against. It is a financial waste and drain, it nullifies the immigration laws we currently have, a spit in the face to every immigrant who went through the legal process. And we are one of the few(because I’ve yet to find out which other country does, but I’m sure there has to be at least one other) countries that allows immigrants to work, live, receive welfare and buy land without being a citizen, let alone being an illegal immigrant!
*Private property, eminent domain- against.
*Separation of church and state- against. In regards to displaying religious imagery or icons in government buildings or grounds.
*Gay marriage- against. Solely stated as such. Marriage is an institution created by God. After He created Eve He said “That is why a man leaves his father and mother and is united to his wife, and they become one flesh.” And later Paul says “since sexual immorality is occurring, each man should have sexual relations with his own wife, and each woman with her own husband. The husband should fulfill his marital duty to his wife, and likewise the wife to her husband”.
However being the liberal conservative I am… A gay legal union is fine with me. I think any committed couple should be entitled to the same benefits whether gay or straight, only if both parties are of human origin!
*Social security- something needs to be done, clueless as to what!
*Taxes- against. No I do not think the rich have to be taxed to the teeth to care for the poor. They should be taxed without loopholes, this I agree.
*United Nations- agree with the reps. The UN isn’t the end all be all of everything. So sometimes we need to over step our boundaries. And N. Korea just may be one of those examples, where we may need to ignore the UN.
*War/Terrorism- agree with the reps. Diplomacy does not work with terrorists and terrorists should by tried in military courts not civilian courts. Terrorism is a war not a civil disturbance(it’s not citizen against citizen). And I agree with torturing terrorists! To bad so sad! Guess what, it happens in every country, get over it.
*Welfare- only in the way it was supposed to be used. As far as the dems view to use as a lifetime entitlement-hell to the NO! As a stepping stone to assist through difficult times, absolutely.

Another tidbit of info on the parties… Never knew that it was the reps that were against slavery! Yup they left the Democratic Party to form the republic party. And in the beginning the dems were very pro “Constitution”. What happened? Idk?! Obviously many changes over the years, and I can’t say as a nation we’re any better for it. Yes, abolished slavery, end of segregation, equal rights, women voting all great strides in our country in regards to freedom, but where did it go astray?

Since when did being a democrat entitle one to earn a days pay on someone else’s back?
The republican’s mentality is “self-reliance”. You work, save, earn and learn your way to success. No one has the right to anything if they have the ability to accomplish it on their own.
I tend to be digressing again. So I shall stop and I’ll have to do a separate op-ed on welfare.

Lost? What do I do now?

Have you ever felt lost? Alone? Empty? Well I have a solution and NO it is not going to cost you anything. There are no hidden charges or admission fees. It’s free, well sort of… Someone already paid the price for you and pretty much everyone. Generous?! I think so too.

No gimmicks, risk free. However, there is no “money back guarantee” as you didn’t give any money.
No background check required nor a physical, you won’t be denied for any reason. Approval is as easy as asking, with 100% acceptance level, you ask, you are approved.

Coverage includes but not limited to: 24/7 service, answers(though response time varies), guidance, a companion manual(purchase separately), unsurpassed understanding and forgiveness (for whatever life throws your way), available in every language, there are 10 basic covenants(widely used and accepted), membership length is solely up to you but is available indefinitely, there are an innumerable amount of satellite sites available world wide, many options to chose from which may take some time to find the “right fit”, members vastly vary but are generally accepting, kind, generous, and understanding.

Since I mentioned members, if you chose to become a member, know this, they are our greatest resource. Now I can’t say with certainty that you’ll fit right in the first time around, however I can say with full assurance that the Boss/CEO will love you. Are you still interested? I hope so. All you have to do ask God to come into your life and let Him know you need Him in control of your life. See I told you it was free! That was easy wasn’t it?

About that manual, you may know it by the title “The Holy Bible” or sometimes just “The Bible”. They can be found everywhere, they are even available online, for downloads, audio, Braille, at a local church, bookstores, etc… Also I mentioned the 24/7 service- God doesn’t take breaks anymore, He took one once eons ago. So now He is just a whisper away. You can communicate with Him in your head, yelling out loud, speak in a normal volume, singing, whatever you’re comfortable with, He’s flexible.

Okay switching gears. Hopefully I’ve entertained and allured you a bit, reeled you in so to speak, now for some seriousness. All the above is still viable and true but there is more to know. And I don’t want to mislead you or cause you unnecessary concern.

First let me dispel any notion of “good” or “readiness/ready”. That is to say, to accept God into your life you don’t need to be “good” or that you have to be “ready” to change who you are. These are false notions, God accepts everyone “as is”, you don’t have to be good or change or become better. False. False. False. We are all sinners until the day we die, He is 100% aware of everything we do and say at all times. It’s not your job to change you, that’s something that may or may not happen later, if that’s God’s plan. So get rid of that thought and commit your life to God. You can ask or present it to Him in whatever feels right to you, but for those of you who may want a prayer to help you get started…
“God, please hear me. I am lost and alone. I have no idea what to ask for or what I want or need. So I am here reading these words looking for guidance to commit my life to You, if You would Lord please take control of my life and help me find my way in whatever it is You want for me. Thank you, in Jesus’ name. Amen”

The next step after committing your life to God, is to read “The Bible”. “Committing your life” was just that prayer or plea that is written above. Or whatever words you said. That’s it, nothing more. So step 2 comes quickly, but it’s the foundation for the rest of your relationship with God. Just open The Bible and read. I started with the New Testament, it’s less historic and full of hope, wisdom and an amazing resource for God’s love. For those that don’t know it is also the beginning of Christianity, starting with occurrences just prior to Jesus’ conception.

I don’t want to get to far ahead and overwhelm anyone, but I don’t want to leaving you hanging with what comes next either. Most likely you’ll remain in step 2 for quite a while. There is no time constraint. And to call them steps is a misnomer, I’m using the term more as a guide. Since everyone is different you will get different things from your relationship in the beginning than someone else. Because God will be directing you in the direction you need to go. Many things start to happen as you read the word(Bible). Subtle things: your eyes awaken to view life with a slightly different outlook, your heart begins to fill with joy, and you undoubtably will have questions. Some may be answered quickly others tend to get answered when we are ready to understand the answer, which can take years. Continue daily in prayer and reading from the Bible as your source for strength and encouragement.

Now I’m going to end it here and I will create a follow-up post to this one. One that will explain a little more to assist you on your walk with Christ. So take comfort in your new life with the Comforter, Counselor, Savior. May God bless you and guide you and give you peace, in Jesus’ holy name. Amen.

What you really deserve

I could quote so many adages right now, but I’m not. Because I’m sure you’ve heard them all and probably numerous times from your own parents/guardians, I know I did. Truth is what we deserve isn’t necessarily what we get, and what we get isn’t necessarily what we deserve.

Life has definitely afforded the people of America many luxuries, ones that make our poor appear rich in comparison to billions across the world. Yet our poor complain about our rich, our rich complain about the poor, both which will never cease to exist independently of each other. Why? Because the rich need the poor to work and the poor need to work. So why the complaints? Well the only things I can think of are jealousy, ignorance, and greed.

Being rich is not necessarily a self-sustaining entity, there is work in maintaining wealth. There is work in becoming well-off. And once a certain status-quo is met, you don’t want to just turn around and give your money away to someone who does not have the same values and work ethics you do. I’ll use myself as an example: raised by a single working mom, lived in apartments, moved frequently, attended public schools and dropped out at 16. Nice beginning, obviously destined for greatness. But somewhere within me there was a drive or gnawing that made me believe that I needed more from life. Got a GED, enrolled in community college, got a degree, worked, saved, moved 3000 miles, took a cut in pay by half, worked more, more school, saved, bought a house, got married and the rest is history.

So when I hear people complain about how hard life is and how living in a particular place is holding them back and they don’t have the same opportunities as “rich” folks, yeah I get a little bent. If your only reason for remaining oppressed is blame against those who have better opportunities and that’s what’s keeping you down, then your blame is misplaced. You are not entitled to anything, you can however work to rise above the mire and filth. Now I do have to say that having God first and foremost in your life is key. And I’ll leave it at that.

But monetary wealth is an illusion of happiness, so please realize that the real value here is not being rich or poor with things. Life is really about being happy with what you have, and who you are. Things do not define you, rather they confine you. Look past the illusion of financial standing and find what makes you happy and let that be your path to riches. And you may be surprised in the end when you will be both content and financially stable.

What you really deserve, is to know the truth. And the truth is… work for what you want, abide by the laws inasmuch as possible, trust in God for all your needs.

God, government- in whom do you trust

Still doing some research on this one. Early on the Bible tells us how the Hebrews cried out for a ruler and even after understanding their work made the king rich, they insisted they wanted a king, and so it was. But almost(if not) every country, town, village has some type of rule. Whether a monarch, government, chief, sheriff, etc… So why is this? My thought is people just need to be governed, the collective masses aren’t competent enough to govern themselves. This is not an attack on intelligence but an observation, intelligence is not needed to control people. Charisma, confidence and a strong character, those qualities that most leaders have, are what attracts followers. Now intelligence or wisdom is an added plus, but many people have been led to their demise from savvy speakers, not wise leaders.

We are not all leaders, and that is good to a point. But we all can not be followers as well, someone needs to lead. Now since the world we live in is almost entirely inhabited and has some kind of rule, along with laws making immigration lengthy and tedious, chances are you are going to live in the country your were born in. That means we need to accept the leaders who are in charge of the nation, or start the process of immigration, defect, or illegally immigrate or whatever desperate people do to escape their countries. But even so you will still be subject to someone’s rule.

This has become quite a difficult subject for me. I have done some reading into history and laws and different governments, etc. And still not any closer to solving, nor understanding our nations problems(not that I really expected too). However I did come across a blog, which I believe I shared on FB and possibly on here?, that gave me something to think about and that is God. God has not intended for us to live out our lives on earth forever, but to live in accordance to His ways, trusting in Him for all things. He also tells us to abide by the laws of our government. And to pray for those in charge. Another difficult area, but that is what The Bible says(Jer 29:7 seek the peace and prosperity of the city to which I have carried you into exile. Pray to the Lord for it, because if it prospers, you too will prosper. & 1Tim 2:1&2 I urge, then, first of all, that petitions, prayers, intercession and thanksgiving be made for all people—for kings and all those in authority, that we may live peaceful and quiet lives in all godliness and holiness) So, I will pray for Obama and the leaders of our country, because my trust in God and His faithfulness is the only thing I have in what looks like uncertainty, entitlement, injustice, and numerous lies.

When the time comes who can I really depend on for food, water, shelter? Myself, yes God does provide and will provide, but He gives us knowledge and abilities. Ok let me rephrase, because I should never list myself first. God first, then myself (the blessings God has given me to fend provide and learn in order to survive). In a failed government where wealth begins to dwindle do you think they will continue to dole out food, money and take care of all your needs? God warns us to not be lazy for the lazy wont eat( 2Thes 3:10 For even when we were with you, we commanded you this:
“If anyone will not work, neither let him eat.” & Prov 21:25 The craving of a sluggard will be the death of him, because his hands refuse to work.)

So while our earthly future is uncertain as it always is, our heavenly end is secured. I know where my allegiance lies, first in God then somewhere down the line my country. Now if I could just convince everyone to do the same! Lol.

Depression

Depression can be intrinsic or extrinsic in nature. The intrinsic cause is believed to be a imbalance of chemicals in the brain and maybe genetically linked as well. The extrinsic is caused by any number of problems or situations that a person has to deal with in life. Since the latter is caused by external factors rather than internal imbalances, I would say it is easier to deal with. However since I have the former, I may be biased in my view.

Having the intrinsic depression doesn’t mean I don’t get depressed for extrinsic reasons, it means I may at some point suffer with both. Whereas someone with just an external reason doesn’t automatically develop a chemical imbalance causing cyclic mood swings. Understandably, both can be debilitating and tragic, that is why I am writing on this subject. Only the person who is suffering with depression knows the extent of their anguish. And for those people, sharing or opening up or discussing that pain may not be within their comfort zone. That creates a process by which the depression becomes more severe and profound, usually complicated by drugs, drinking, isolation, pity and hopelessness. A vicious cycle that needs to be broken. So how then is that achieved?

Well first, acknowledging that there is depression. Whether you or a someone else sees it. Next make a choice to do something about it. Now since I am NOT a counselor, doctor, or therapist only a patient of depression, I can not tell you if you have depression. I can tell you, if you think you have depression, see a professional and seek help and if your thoughts are severe as in suicidal thoughts call you local 800# or 911 if you are that desperate. CYA(covering my tookus)

Anyway, depression can be managed with medication, and sometimes with just counseling. So if you need some one to talk too, I’d be more than happy to help if I can. It took about 3-4 years before I found the right medicine for me. Since we all have different chemical make ups don’t lose hope if it takes some time before you find the right medicinal match. Now for those of you who may not like the “pill” route, well idk for sure but supposedly exercise and eating healthy can help, but not certain for those with true chemical imbalances. Guess that’s why doctors exist 🙂

I’ve found that my depression before being medicated was extreme, some months were better, some worse, with near tragic results. And in the pit of my despair I did not reach out to anyone. Though I had numerous people who were always there for me, I wouldn’t and still to this day wouldn’t reach out to them. Why? Well I don’t think I have any logical reason, just a thought of not wanting to burden anyone with my seemingly petty depression. Because somewhere in my psyche I know I have no logical reason to be depressed, other than its a supposed physiological imbalance, so that causes a conflict within me. Besides, trying to rationalize with me while I’m in a state of profound depression is nearly useless, because I’m not logical, I’m completely emotional. Full of unexplained sorrow and emptiness, but now, because of years of living with depression do I finally understand and accept that this is part of me and it does pass. My depression is cyclic, directly connected to a set number of days where it peaks then wanes, lasting for about a week when it’s at it’s most profound. However, with medication the extremeness of the depression is much less noticeable than without.

So how is this supposed to help you? Well I hope that you see that you are not alone in your thoughts of despair and loneliness. That with the right medicine or counseling, depression can be tolerable. And that it is not a made up disease for the weak minded and we are somehow less of a person because of our depression. No. It’s a real problem, and yes we must go on living and learn how to live with it. Learn to understand and control it rather than let it control us. A fight I battle with every month.

However, for those whose suffering is one influenced by an external factor, yours is one I’m reluctant to comment on. That is an area outside my experience, I’d be only guessing to say the sadness and hopelessness is similar and trying to reason with you would be equally as lost. But all the same, there is hope, there are medicines that are short term use to help you understand your reason for your depression. Counseling would probably be the biggest help. Or maybe even a journal to write your thoughts, get them out of your head, reduce the noise in your brain. And though I’m crossing some type of boundary here, I’m compelled to say prayer. Pray. Yes, pray. God is more aware of your problems and needs than you are. And if you don’t know what to ask God for, I’m going to give you the prayer to say. It is a Bible verse that I use in times like those when I’m overwhelmed…

In the same way, the Spirit helps us in our weakness. We do not know what we ought to pray for, but the Spirit himself intercedes for us through wordless groans. And he who searches our hearts knows the mind of the Spirit, because the Spirit intercedes for God’s people in accordance with the will of God. (Romans 8:26,27)

Well idk about you but I feel better. I hope this will be a help for many or even if just one, my heart will be happy. And if no one, well I’ll have to take comfort that my heart was in the right place 🙂

I love me

Wow, am I in love with myself or what? Every blog seems to revolve around me. What I think, where I’ve been, what I’ve done, who I am, egocentric much? And this one is no different, though I’m going to try to use it as a base to understanding why I’m so focused on myself.

Now idk if everyone feels the same about themselves, that they know better than everyone else, or their experiences or opinions are more valid than others, but I find myself thinking these thoughts, but at the same time chastising myself for feeling that way, because I know that is NOT the truth. However the battle remains within me. The questions continually bombard my thoughts:
How can people be so stupid?
Are people really that ignorant?
Why are people so greedy?
Don’t people see the obvious?
Why am I surrounded by morons?

Now I don’t feel this way about the people who are directly in my life, because I’m blessed that I have a wonderful family that includes blood, marital, church and friends, so I don’t include them in my frustration with the general populous.

Even so what gives me such an arrogant perspective? I am not highly educated, nor born of aristocracy or wealth, I haven’t traversed the planet with unending tales of experiences, yet I put myself on such a platform as a well-versed sage. To what end I ask myself? Is it really about me and my self-professed wisdom, or do I really think I can help and encourage others, or is it a way to weed through my thoughts and validate or dispel fact from fiction? Or maybe a combination of them all. So do I really think I am the most level-headed, intelligent, knowledgable, informed and experienced person on the planet? No, I do not. Nor do I even come close. So what compels me to feel like I am better than those people who I view as clueless? I’m searching my mind for an answer even as I write this. Ugh! I can not think of a valid reason other than I am some self-absorbed egocentric deluded fool. Yes a fool for thinking I’m better & smarter.

However as frustrating as I find ignorance and stupidity, there will always be someone who views me in the same light and rightfully so. Well then, I think I’ve found my answer. It’s not to judge, condemn or ridicule anyone for any reason. It’s to understand that the world is filled with billions of people each with their own limits; intellectually, socially, economically, physically, psychologically and so forth. And I am not called to be their judge or accuser but to be a beacon of hope, a path of light, an example of Christ’s love. So yes my blogs are filled with me for I can only call on my experiences as references for my life. And I hope that my blogs reflect the side of me that is Christian, as I continue to grow in Christ’s love. Hopefully I will continue to understand my faults and shortcomings, learn from them and adjust them to better serve God.

And I do love me, not because I am better than everyone else, but because God loves me just the way I am. He has given me hope and comfort. And at times when I feel alone, lost, confused, desperate, angry, that my faith is fleeting, there’s nothing to look forward to, the world is in turmoil, and I’m surrounded by people in need, there is God in all His glory to remind me that He is in control. Not me. He knows all. Not me. He loves me and I love Him.

It is in Him that we are made complete. God is love. My lesson is complete. Thank You Lord for teaching me once again.