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Wednesday, August 13 

The Things You Overhear

I was out to dinner last night, enjoying a large plate of sauerbraten, spätzle and rotkraut (basically, red cabbage) along with a Bitburger Pils*, when I happened to overhear part of the conversation at the table next to me. There were five or six white guys in their mid-60s enjoying a guy's night out. A couple of them spoke with pretty heavy German accents, and you can tell they have all known each other for quite a while. From their conversation, I assume they had all worked together and were now retired, meeting up monthly to reminisce and talk politics. Which brings us to the meat of the matter.

The first thing I overheard was that they were discussing a Republican senator from our state, and the fact that he was vulnerable this cycle. They spent quite a bit of time trying to come up with viable candidates who should be running against him, but never really found one. The the real fun began. Over the course of the next 45 minutes or so, they discussed all of the following topics.
  • We import too much oil and should be drilling here in America

  • Oil companies make too much money

  • CEOs in general make too much money, and there should be a cap on salaries. "Europe has the right answer to that. A CEO should never make more than 10 times the lowest wage in the company." I nearly spit out red cabbage when I heard that.

  • Obama is all but assured of a win in Novemeber. However, there are so many crazies out there with guns, they're sure he won't last long in office. "Not that I want anything to happen to the guy, but I really can't see him lasting out the first term."

  • There are too many guns in America, and too many people unfit to own guns. "That's why we have all these crazy school shootings." This was followed by, "What we really need to do is ban all guns in America. I just don't know how you could do it." It took everything in me to not turn around and say, "Are you fucking insane?" but I managed to keep my cool

I seriously had to keep eating to keep from jumping into this debate. You can tell they were nice old guys just trying to work through some big issues. The problem is that they use emotion instead of reason to tackle any of the problems.

I overheard them setting the date for their next get together. Maybe I'll just have to be there again so I can jump into this debate with them. They need some opposing viewpoints to get them to think.

*I love German food. And German bier. Ah, who am I kidding, I just love food.

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