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It’s time to get out

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The day after tomorrow is July 4th.  Independence Day in the USA.  It is with no pleasure that I write this article, but maybe it is time for Independence FROM the USA.

I try to be a well reasoned guy.  I try not to be reactionary.  Sometimes, though, things that we all say might come across as reactionary, or wild thoughts that are out of place.  I hope this post, while I acknowledge that it might sound that way, does not come across that way.

Visa Assistance

I left the United States nearly 15 years ago.  I have never looked back, or had doubts about whether I did the right thing.  My life has worked out well and I am happy with my decision.  For many of you reading this, I believe that now is the time that you need to make a move and get the heck out of the United States too!

Why?

Well, the answers are pretty obvious if you take a hard look at the country right now. The United States is falling apart.  I mean that both literally and figuratively.

Literally?

Bridge is falling apart, requiring protection below

Bridge is falling apart, requiring protection below

Yes.  The infrastructure is falling apart in the United States.  Back in November, I happened to catch an episode of the US TV show, 60 Minutes.  They had a feature regarding infrastructure in the United States and how it is not being maintained.  Do you remember a few years back there was a bridge on an Interstate Highway in Minnesota that collapsed?  As I recall, I believe that some people died when that happened.  Well, according to this 60 Minutes episode, there are literally thousands of bridges in the USA that are in shoddy condition and could collapse at any time.  The same show had information concerning an Interstate overpass in Pennsylvania that was in such a state of disrepair that they had to build a structure under it to stop the falling pieces of the overpass from hitting cars below!

In the USA, there is a gasoline tax that is supposed to pay for highway construction and upkeep.  It is fairly obvious that the money is being redirected to other things, probably paying for wars, foreign aid and interest on the huge debt.  If it were being spent on the highway system as it is supposed to be spent, we would not have pieces of highway overpass falling off and damaging cars below.

It was back in the 50s, under the Presidential administration of Dwight D. Eisenhower when the Interstate Highway System came into existence.  Those were simpler days when the country was not distracted with so many outside influences and the country could focus on it’s real needs.  These days, money is spent on so many things that really have nothing to do with the actual needs of the nation or its people.

Figuratively?

Again, yes.  There are so many very visible signs of American society crumbling that it should be obvious to anybody who cares to have a look.  American society is literally falling apart.  The middle class is disappearing.  Most of those in the middle class are not moving upward, they are falling down to the lower classes of society.  And, those people as well as the people who were already part of the lower classes, are getting restless.  Especially the minorities.  We are seeing the beginnings of race riots returning to the United States.  Killings of police officers.  Looting.  Destruction of businesses.  Generally, people showing their displeasure with the system.

I have watched this stuff on TV with disbelief.  I wonder what is going on in my former homeland.  But, as I watch and think about it, I believe the situation will only get worse.  At the very least, it will get much worse before it gets better.  I am not even sure it will get better, at least not for a long time.  I believe that a period is coming when race riots will be the norm.  Check that.  It might not be best to classify what is coming as “race riots” it might be more correct to say “class riots”.  The poor rioting against the rich.  Problem is that what I am seeing is that the poor are attacking those who are moderately more successful than them, not the true rich.  The truly rich are isolated and not easy to get to.  If a poor rioter wanted to burn down Bill Gates’ house, do you think he could do it?  It is doubtful because there would be security to stop the rioters long before they got close enough to Gates’ house to do any real damage.  But, “old Charlie” can’t afford the security to stand guard on his shoe store or auto parts store.  The rioters can and will burn those businesses down.  It makes no sense, because Charlie is not rich, just a little more successful than the rioters, and Charlie is employing 30 or 40 of the people who are rioting!  When things calm down those rioters will soon realize that they don’t have a job anymore.  They may or may not realize that it is their own fault because they destroyed Charlie’s business and killed off their own job.

What can you do?

Well, there are only two things to do from what I can see.

Stay and fight for change

When I say “fight” I don’t necessarily mean literal fighting – being out on the street with weapons, although it may come to that.  What I mostly mean is to push for change.  Push for improvements.  Lobby your government.  Do things to make life better for the lower classes of people, the ones who will be rioting.

Personally, though, I don’t think this solution will work.  For real change to happen it takes a lot of people fighting the good fight.  Every indication, though, is that the vast majority of Americans are tired of the fight.  At least at this time, the majority of people are just sitting back watching and not willing to stand up and demand change.  Even when it comes to elections, the American population seems content to just let things continue to go as they are.  I am not blaming one political party or the other.  There is blame for every politician to share.  But, every indication would tend to show, right now, that fighting for change is futile.

Pack up and move on

I packed up my stuff and left the USA some 15 years ago.  I did not leave for political reasons or societal issues.  I left because I wanted a change, and adventure. At this point, if I were still in the USA, though, I would have to be thinking about getting out while the getting is good.  It is possible to wait too long, and I believe that waiting much longer may be a mistake.

There is great living abroad.  Moving to a foreign country isolates you from the unrest in the USA.  It need not be any part of your life.

When you become an expat, you are kind of in the middle.  Living here in the Philippines, I don’t really get too involved in the Philippine political or governmental system.  I also have virtually no involvement in American politics or government.  In both cases I am more of an observer than anything else.  It leaves me free to just live my life and enjoy myself.  It gives me time to enjoy my family, and worry about things closer to my own life than things off in some government building thousands of miles away.  I used to be a real “political animal”.  I volunteered to work on political campaigns.  I was active in party politics.  I am so glad to be away from that.  I get much more enjoyment out of watching my kids grow up.  Interacting with family – immediate family and also extended family.  It gives my life purpose.

Take a look at your life

I see the signs on the wall.  They are clear to me.  It is time to move on.  It is time for others to follow the same path that I took 15 years back.  I already see signs that it is happening.  Here in the Philippines, where I live, there are more an more Americans moving in.  Back when I came here, you didn’t see many Americans around town.  Today, though, I can’t go to the City, to the Mall, or any other public place without seeing other Americans.  People, it would appear, are moving out of the USA.  It is only a trickle now, but the drips are becoming more frequent than they were when I moved out.

What about you?  Will you be joining me as an expat?  You don’t have to move to the Philippines like I did.  There are plenty of other choices that you can make.  The world is filled with perfectly good choices of places to live.  We grew up at a time when being born an American was considered a blessing.  I fear that those days have passed us by.  I think most Americans acknowledge that, but many say that the USA will come back and we are only in a temporary dip right now.  I fear that those people are wrong, but who knows?  My question for you is, whether it is a temporary dip or the new normal, why wait it out?  You can make a life change and start enjoying life now.  It’s all up to you!

Bob Martin

Bob Martin is the Publisher & Editor in Chief of the Live in the Philippines Web Magazine. Bob is an Internet Entrepreneur. Bob is an American who lived in Mindanao from 2000 until 2019. Bob has now relocated back to the USA.

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Dave Starr
Guest

Well put and Amen Bob, I am only a couple years behind you. I am in my 9th year living outside the US and at this point in time I don’t see myself ever moving back. I realize for me it may be age-related and maybe my impressions are just the ramblings of an old man (I’ll turn 70 this year, God willing), but America is no longer the America where I was born. I am very happy with my decision to expatriate … I think those sitting on the cusp these days ought to read and ponder less and… Read more »

Heinz Schirmaier
Guest
Heinz Schirmaier

Well said Dave!

BobM
Guest

Absolutely!

BobM
Guest

Hi Dave – Thanks. It feels sad to write much of what I wrote, but it is what is in my heart. Times have changed. I’m 53, I hate to think I am an old curmudgeon, but it seems that way, I guess. Like you, I am so happy with the decision that I made to make the move abroad. It’s a good life, and I am glad I made the move when I was still young enough to enjoy it for a long time!

Dave Starr
Guest

And that’s why maybe some people feel I “push” moving to the Philippines too much. People who wait 10 years, 20 years, 30 year or more and then make the move when they are already old will miss out on so much.

The time to make the move is when you are young and energetic and “flexible” in both mind and body. And if you have children, so much the better … that way they can experience it too.

“Waiting” forever until everything is “right” can often be the kiss of death for your dreams.

BobM
Guest

As you know, Dave… I couldn’t agree more!

Serge P-Homme
Guest
Serge P-Homme

Hi Bob, Since yesterday i started reading your articles about the USA and i say i big Amen and Alleluia. As a retired radio reporter, i used to travel to the Philippines since 1995, and now i decide to stay for good as i am sick and thank God i could have my disability due to sickness. When i left 3 weeks ago, i told my son and i quote: Son , don’t expect to see me if you don’t come to the Philippines and i told him what’s gonna be happening, similar to your predictions. Now i am here,… Read more »

MindanaoBob
Guest

Hi Serge – Thank you so much for your kind words, and good luck with your new life. I hope everything works out well for you!

Rusty Bowers
Guest
Rusty Bowers

Very true. But doesn’t one have to wait until they are financially stable? Maybe some of your advice on getting financially stable, at a young age, is needed.

ROBERT BURKE
Guest
ROBERT BURKE

Wow.

Rusty Bowers
Guest
Rusty Bowers

True the U.S. is, structurally falling apart. However, could the poor countries thrive without help from the other powerful nations? No, they couldn’t. How could they?

Rusty

MindanaoBob
Guest

Hi Rusty – Maybe I am missing something, but I don’t understand how your comment connects to my article. I was writing today about the USA, not whether other countries need help.

Rusty Bowers
Guest
Rusty Bowers

Yes, I guess you right, Bob. I guess I jumped to conclusions. I thought you’d indicated the US was going down the tubes. Nope, won’t ever happen, right? As I posted the US is down but will come back stronger.

Rusty

Heinz Schirmaier
Guest

I agree Bob Martin, I’m soooo out of here this year!

Heinz Schirmaier
Guest
Heinz Schirmaier

Bob! I’m here and I see it and can’t wait to get the hell out of here which USED to be my beloved Country. Once the Minorities became the Majorities this country went to Hell and Nothing will bring it back!
Leaving for the Philippines for good this year!

BobM
Guest

Yes, Heinz, I believe the time has come. Sadly, I think that the USA is beyond recovery now. The way of life is gone. For younger people, they don’t remember the America of before, but for those of us who lived it, it just is not the place it used to be.

Rusty Bowers
Guest
Rusty Bowers

Yes, Bob the younger generation won’t realize how good the U. S. was. But that is true of every generation. They all say the same thing. My parent’s said it and their parents and so on.

The U. s. will recover and it will be stronger. Different but stronger.

Rusty

MindanaoBob
Guest

I hope you are right, Rusty. So far though, there is no recovery to be seen, and it is a long time coming. Nothing would make me happier, but I feel the country is beyond repair at this point.

Rusty Bowers
Guest
Rusty Bowers

There just isn’t another country out there that can take the place of the US. As I said if there is then take control. Take the UN, and the cost, etc.

Rusty

Rusty Bowers
Guest
Rusty Bowers

This is great site, Bob.

Rusty

MindanaoBob
Guest

Thank you for your kind words, Rusty.

Mohamed Almerbati
Guest
Mohamed Almerbati

This’s racism which is not acceptable at this time & age. The great majority of the “minorities” in the US’re descendants of slaves brought forcibly & unfortunately against their well. You yourself will become a minority in the country you chose to live in instead of the US. JUST LIVE & LET LIVE.

Mohamed Almerbati
Guest
Mohamed Almerbati

My comment is to Heinz Schirmaier & not to Bob Martin

MindanaoBob
Guest

Understood, Mohammed, thank you.

Chris S
Guest
Chris S

Slaves were brought her by force your right but they were also slaves in their native countries as well, not kings and such as some want you to believe. Also, the majority of slaves were treated very well since the slave master relied on them for their crops and money. Yes some slaves which caused problems were dealt with severely and made and example of to quash behaviors which they displayed from taking hold amount the rest of the workers. Not only this but those were the times, and up until Mr. O got into office the racial issues in… Read more »

Chris S
Guest
Chris S

Not only that but our society is based on a majority rule. But lately that has not been the case and you can now see the results of this not being adhered to… If you come to the country do so legally, learn English, pay taxes, and stay off gov’t assistance!

David
Guest
David

“Not only that but our society is based on a majority rule.” No, it’s based on Democracy, where individual’s rights are protected regardless of what the majority want. If 90% of voting Amercians said women shouldn’t vote, that wouldn’t make it Constitutional. About 100 years that’s what 90% of votes (only men) wanted, but it’s wrong.

Scott D
Guest
Scott D

David and Chris please go back and take High School civics. First of all a Democracy is majority rules. The United States is not a Democracy, it is a Constitutional Republic. In a Republic everyone, including the government, must follow the law. Nowhere in the Constitution is the word Democracy mentioned.

Andreas Steger
Guest

you could copy and paste this story for most European countries

Bob Martin
Guest

I can’t blame you, Heinz! When I made the move, it wasn’t so much about getting away from the USA , but I’m afraid that day has arrived now.

Bob Martin
Guest

Doesn’t surprise me, Andreas Steger!

Geri Oredroc
Guest

It won’t be long until we move back home! Bob, you can’t fix stupid and there are more & more stupid Americans. I can go on & on,… but it won’t do any good. You already know what I’ll be ranting about. See you & Feyma and the kids soon! INgat lagi. 🙂

Bob Martin
Guest

For sure, Geri! Stupid is a bad thing, and it is worse when the people don’t realize how stupid they are. It is a disease that is spreading across America. Sad.

Neil
Guest
Neil

Bob, check this link. I wrote this song. Thanks. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=qUfNqwMicyg

MindanaoBob
Guest

Hi Neil – Thanks for sharing your link. I am listening to the song right now. Congratulations on your song writing and singing talent!

LB
Guest
LB

Hi Neil,
your song is a fountain of truth and i wish that many people will drink from that fountain and see the light.
Peace,
LB.

Roger
Guest
Roger

Bob, I can see where it seems that it is gone to far but i dont think we as a country have reached that point yet. Yes there is a lot of problems but because i still live half of the year in the US i see a lot of new infrastructure going in and major improvements being done. Politically there is no doubt it is a mess but at the same time i dont see a country where there is not a political mes. Yes i guess to some degree living outside we can isolate ourselves from the problems… Read more »

BobM
Guest

Hi Roger – I understand that different people have different levels of tolerance, and different degrees of acceptance of change. For me, if I were still in the US, I would be gathering my suitcases. It’s that bad, looking in from the outside. Yes, many countries, may all, have their political problems. One of the things I like about living in the Philippines, though, is that while there is plenty of political crap, I can pretty easily ignore it and live my life. I don’t think I could do that in the States. I am not saying it can’t be… Read more »

Chris S
Guest
Chris S

That’s right Bob, Freedom is an illusion in the US and also a political power tool.

MindanaoBob
Guest

Freedome is certainly not what it once was!

Louie
Guest
Louie

Thanks for the input Roger, I too live in the Philippines and back in the states. I have not committed to a full time stay due to children and one precious grandchild back in California. The decision to live abroad should be made out of your commitment to something. For Us, it is not the current state of the condition of the USA.. You hit the nail on the head in clarifying that the conditions of a place are governed by the people. The United States will rebound but is in no way a reason to leave when we have… Read more »

Geri Oredroc
Guest

Bob, I think aside from stupidity, a lot of Americans glorify “thugness”… no feeling, no compassion, no kindness, the meaner you are, the more you’re praised. No understanding… it’ has become an “in your face” type of a culture. “Get out of my way or I’ll shoot you ” type of mentality… “mine, mine, mine and I don’t care if you die I won’t even dial 911″… type of a mentality. It has become VERY scary. I live in one of the most expensive places in America where a 75sqm studio rents for $4000 or P176,000 a month and it’s… Read more »

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