Instead of growing up a child in a "roaring" economy, my father grew up faster than necessary, learning to live on less and less just as the Depression made life difficult for all average American families. Somehow, American survived those tough times, stronger than ever. My Dad survived that tough time with a sense of frugality and distrust for bankers and "shysters." Too young to fight in WWII and then married in 1950 to my mom, Phyllis Flamm from Eau Claire, Michigan, he suddenly became too old to fight in Korea. My Mom and Dad bought their first house in South Bend with a Federally insured home loan. In that house, he raised my brother, sister and me. When faced with the financial hardships of attending college, federally funded grants and loans enabled all three of us to obtain our college educations, and my brother and I our law degrees. For my Mom and Dad, having children with degrees from Indiana University, Purdue University, Washington University in St. Louis and Capital University, still brings great pride to them. And it continues today with their grandchildren having degrees from Yeshiva University, Einstein Medical College, Mercy College and Macalester College, all with some form of Federal assistance.
For the past 22 years, my Dad has been receiving Social Security, another Federal assistance program. For the past 19 years, my Dad has been receiving a socialized medical care in the form of Medicare. My Dad has enjoyed 84 years of an adventure through a lot of American history, and he is still standing and we pray will continue to stand for many, many more years to come. But where would he be today without the involvement of the Federal Government in his life? Happy Birthday Dad! Is government really so bad?