– Rant Alert –

NBC Nightly News has been running a series this week on the care and independence of senior citizens in the US. Tonight, Tim Russert’s father was the principle subject. We heard how he is an independent senior living in Buffalo, NY and refused to go to as assisted living center. The only thing is, his daughter comes over to replace batteries, take care of technical needs and bring groceries. Another woman in the neighborhood stops by to fix meals. Yet another neighbor takes care of minor repairs, checks in when weather is bad and with all the snow this past week clears the driveway and sidewalk. So my question is, how independent is he?

I’m reminded of a George Carlin special when he was speaking about Americas constant need for help.

“If you’re looking for self-help, why would you read a book written by somebody else? That’s not self-help, that’s help! There’s no such thing as self-help. If you did it yourself, you didn’t need help.”

There is a significant decline in senior care in the US and everyone is asking why. There are reasons ranging from the drop in family dining, the fall of employment for life and trust in the employer relationship, ironically, even the independent spirit of our culture has been blamed. One thing is clear, if you have other people do it for you, you’re not independent!