February 12, 2016

OPINION: Playing by the rules is for dolts

Danedri Thompson


A lifetime of playing by the rules just looks dumber and dumber every day.

The way to get ahead in America these days is to make terrible choices. That’s how you get your very own government bailout.

Instead of working hard, going to school, waiting to be married before I had children, paying my mortgage even when it meant putting other wants aside, I should’ve dropped out of high school, gotten pregnant by several different baby daddies, bought a house I couldn’t afford and quit paying for it.

Had I done those things: the government, through taxpayers, would be paying for healthcare and food for me and my children; my baby daddies, through child support, would likely be paying for my life style. And had I made those choices and just held on long enough, the government might force banks to forgive student loans and to lower the principle on my home mortgage.

Just yesterday, U.S. Housing and Urban Development Secretary Shaun Donovan said federal officials are pressuring banks to reduce the principle balances on their mortgages.

“Instead of saying, ‘We can assess billions of dollars of fines,’ (we’re saying,) ‘We want you to start reducing the principal balances well beyond what you would be willing to do otherwise, because it’s good for the country,’” Donovan said. “Our hope is, we could reach millions of borrowers with this settlement.”

Never mind the millions of Americans too stupid to continue paying their mortgages when the going got tough or the people who never sought home loans they couldn’t afford in the first place. Those dolts, and I’m one of them, get to pay twice – first for our own mortgages and then for everyone else’s in the form of taxes.

And down on Wall Street, a common occupier demand is that the banks forgive student loans. An online petition at signon.org has more than 300,000 signatures asking for student loan forgiveness. And at least one Congressman, Rep. Hansen Clark, R-Mich., is quoted as supporting such a plan.

The message is those who worked hard to pay off their student loans are idiots. They should’ve waited around for a government handout. And the kids who were smart enough to work their tails off in high school for scholarships so they didn’t need loans in the first place?  Their youth was wasted. They should’ve spent their formative years having fun and smoking dope in the high school parking lot, because their hard work is no longer to be lauded or rewarded by certain economic advantages.

Don’t even get me started on the baby boomers who struggled to get ahead by saving money, as they were encouraged to do in a 401k, only to have the bottom fall out of their investments. Or those who drank the housing koolaid and put their retirement funds in real estate.

There’s a quiet bailout afoot for the baby boomers who never saved a dime as well.

Last January, BusinessWeek reported that the Obama Administration was weighing the idea of “converting” 401ks in annuities. Essentially, the government would take retirement savings and promise to pay monthly benefits in retirement years. In the end game, the plan would “convert” your savings to the government to spend.

And in the end, that almost always means doling it out to people who didn’t play by the rules in the firstplace. Neat-o.

In high school, I was the geek who followed the rules. I didn’t drink. I kept my legs crossed. I studied (just) enough to make As and Bs. When I graduated, I went to college knowing a better job awaited me if I did. I paid off my student loan. My husband and I continue to pay the mortgage on a home that we no longer live in that is worth 10 percent less than what he originally paid for it years ago.

I’ve made plenty of mistakes, and suffering the consequences forced me to examine all of the decisions I’ve made and make better ones the next time.

Now government is telling people there’s no need to make good decisions, and I’m starting to get the message. If government officials continue to punish wise choices and reward failure, they can expect less responsibility and a lot more failures in the future, because following the rules looks dumber and dumber every day.



  1. Judith Rogers says:

    I certainly don’t blame the government only for the messes we are in – I blame it on the loss of moral values across society but even more so to the big money boys and the worthless politicians. Dear ole Chase didn’t hestitate to increase my credit card interest rate for no reason of my doing but said I had to “help” since so many are not paying their credit card bills and the American people have taken on trillions of dollars in debt that they cannot afford much like President Bush told them to spend, spend, spend to keep the economy going. I believe it was Bank of America who announced just yesterday they made something like $6.5 BILLION more than they did during the last year’s third quarter only while they raise every fee they can think of to line their pockets. You think the big money boys and corporate American are doing you any favors or if the the trickle down economics works, then I would say you need a brain transplant to one that has some reasoning and independent thinking powers.

    It certainly is not my desire to bankroll every thief that comes before my government entity in the back room and in open meetings and the worthless politicians can’t move fast enough to take care of the sorry rearends while giving the people the bill for the costs and the losses. If I got every tax elimination, tax credit, tax incentive, TIF, Star Bond, tax refund, sweet deal, that the special interests get then our country would be in even worse shape than it is in now – I just know all of the sweet deals are resulting in the average citizens having to pay more for these jerks who happily run to the bank with their bars of gold. Privatization of gains with socialization of costs and losses does not work for me and never will but I sure know who has a smile on their faces with this type of cronyism government.

    Due to my caring for my community and finding errors in tax billings to the thieves brings contempt and snide remarks rather than a thank you – that also tells you how sick our society is. Right along with individuals spreading lies and hate about long time citizens so they may get what they and their “anonymous” donors want . Enough slime and crime to go around to last for years and years but during the interim period a very high price is going to be paid by many – that is my opinion.

  2. ThePatriot says:

    Ms. Thompson is continuing her line of propaganda for the conservative cause. She keeps repeating “government is bad” mantra because that is what she and her narrow minded fellow minions want the American people to think. She will grasp at any straw to advance this lie. Notice the only people she blamed for mortgage fraud are the borrowers and government. The banks who thought up and executed the scheme to bundle fraudulent mortgages, paid rating agencies to fake their ratings, and hide all this in derivatives they sold to investors (which include Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac) are not even mentioned.

    These banks did this with premeditation and total disregard of the consequences to their victims and to our country. Yet Ms. Thompson has nothing to say against these thugs. I guess it is politically incorrect in her world to ever admit some businesses are bad. Instead that would require moral courage.

  3. Occupy Austin's says:


    Didn’t you already stop playing by the rules when you lived in Olathe, but used your parents’ address so you could vote in Gardner?

  4. Judith Rogers says:

    Occupy Austin’s sounds exactly like one of the original lowlifes of the Beasley Bunch. And he is still hanging out at Austin’s and not doing much else I would say.

  5. Isn’t it kind of creepy someone is checking out where Danedri lays her head? Kind of scary.

  6. Judith Rogers says:

    It is creepy and downright dishonorable all of the people who comment without taking ownership of their words.

  7. The Stalker says:

    It’s creepy to point out the hypocrisy of an editorial writer? OK, I guess I’m creepy. I’d rather be creepy than a hypocrite.

  8. That’s okay. Judith is hell on corruption and lowlifes except when it suits her purposes. Voter fraud? That’s okay for Danedri. Posting anonymously? It’s okay when SHE does it.

  9. Charlie K says:

    Well I’m not one for asking for hand outs but if the US government will bail out multi-million dollar banks why can’t the American people get some student loan forgiveness? I guarantee the tax bill for the bank bailout is a lot bigger than what it would be for the studen loan payment. It’s about time some of this money found it’s way back into the hands of America’s working class instead of in the hands of corrupt multi-million dollar corporations.

    Once again people blame the government and all these ‘liberal free-loaders’ while corporations make record profits and give their executives expensive vacations and bonuses bigger than what most of us make in 10 years time with our tax money. I have a wake up call for everyone in that ‘the job creators’ politicians like to talk about aren’t creating jobs, they are creating more money for their executives while they lay off the avenger working-class American.

  10. Occupy Austin’s — since my mail, driver’s license and possessions at that time were at my parents’ house (at the time, my house) I’m not sure it’s any of your business. No laws were broken. My voter registration is public record. You’re welcome to request it at the county election office. They’ll charge you 10 cents for a copy. Thanks for reading! Danedri

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