By Dianne Linderman
I grew up in Ventura, Calif. I was a beach bum and a surfer chick, and if I was not looking for waves, riding the beach route on my old beach cruiser, rollerskating from one end of Ventura to the other, or searching for the most interesting vintage items at the best thrift stores on the West Coast, I was not happy. At a young age, I knew what real freedom was.
At 16 years of age, I opened my own vintage store on Main Street. I did very well, and when I was 17, I purchased my first Mercedes Benz. Of course, it was vintage, never new – everything in life was about investments, not fulfilling my own desires and whims. I was taught well by a master entrepreneur, my father. My four brothers and I understood that success was made of three things: real love for what you do, a complete Vision and consistent hard work with a good attitude. My dad never gave us a penny, and not for one moment did he allow us to feel entitled. My dad inspired my four brothers and me to go out in the world and find what we love and make it happen.
As a young woman, I loved how my dad did not let me feel that being a girl should make me anything less. He said this magical selection of words to me: “You’re not a man, you’re not a woman, you’re a human being, and there is nothing in life you can’t achieve if you just put your mind to it.” My dad then pointed to a tractor sitting in the field at our ranch and instructed me to start it up and pick up all of the bales of hay.I did, and it was a blast! From that day on, nothing has ever held me back.
Fast forward. It’s now 40 years later, and I still love vintage. My ideas have grown into million-dollar-plus companies. I make things happen every day – while others live off of my hard work, ideas, dreams, visions and income!
A great Army of the Entitled is taking shape in America. Something wicked this way comes, and its members are hungry, mean and believe the American makers are their servants! These are the very people who have learned and perfected the new American social economic system and who have even made careers out of being entitled. And the policies of the new government of the not-so-United States of America are making membership in this army almost mandatory in order to find security.
What we have done to our country’s youth is almost irreversible. Good habits, character and big dreams used to begin at home,with even a slightly positive parent or mentor. Being an employer, I have found that teaching the youth of today about a good work ethic would be much simpler if their parents were not involved in the entitlement society themselves.
Prompted by their parents, the first questions young people ask are about what benefits they will receive, how much will they earn, and at what point they get overtime. When they are let go, they are taught how to take full advantage of the unemployment and other welfare systems that we all know can last up to two years, or even forever. America’s youth don’t ask what is required of them for the job – they don’t express appreciation for the opportunity. Instead they show up in dirty, torn clothing displaying their multiple piercings and tattoos.
America’s principles and value system are not revered and honored today. Instead, billboards, TV, radio and Internet bombardments about how to get food stamps and enroll in other social programs, no matter how much you make, are teaching Americans how to become dependent, complacent, lazy, unprincipled and dull. No one is expected to have personal responsibility anymore. We degrade innovators and entrepreneurs as if they were the enemy, and we reward the complacent and the submissive, securing their loyalty for the government’s future needs. The hypocritical liberal movie heroes make millions of dollars in their shoot-’em-up movies, while law-abiding citizens are turned into criminals for owning a legal gun. The wealthy are looked down upon as if they were the reason for the downfall of America, while our president stands in front of us in his deceit, saying America is the land of opportunity and the greatest country on the earth, as he “fundamentally transforms America” into something else entirely.
America’s foundation is being swindled, stolen and seduced away from us. But it’s not our president’s fault. It is ours. America voted for him and his policies! Fifty-one percent of Americans receive some form of government check –a paid army of entitled zombies. They won’t devour each other; they like fresh, new blood, and so become part of the Army of the Entitled and the recruiters of tomorrow. Our country is at war with this Army of the Entitled. It is silent and seductive. It won’t disturb you until it starts to take from you and then offers you a way out: Because they have taken everything you work for, you justify your need and move into the entitled column.
Your only defense is to become a person who will stand up for what you know is right, be vocal, need nothing from the government, be smart with your money and investments, be prepared in every way, know your rights, learn to work hard at every trade you can, have a good attitude, love life and keep it very simple, love America with all your heart, and vote!
I am not sure if we can win the war against the Army of the Entitled. But I do believe that the authentic American Spirit is still powerful, and that America will grow from within, and that one principled person is worth a thousand unprincipled zombies.
Dianne Linderman hosts the nationally syndicated talk radio show “Everything That Matters.” A serial entrepreneur, having founded dozens of businesses from restaurants to retail stores to family entertainment, she has also been a successful mentor to troubled teens for over 30 years. Recently she launched the “Innovative Kids of America Project,” a campaign aimed at inspiring entrepreneurship in young people.