The Virtual Vitamin

A Daily Dose of Insight and Common Sense

In-N-Out vs. Sonic

The fast food philosophies couldn’t be farther apart.  It comes down to choice and whether or not you want to make one.  No one sits forever at In-N-Out unable to make a decision.  You can count the possible items on one hand.  Of course there are a few insider options for those who know the system, but their entire menu would be legible on a postage stamp.  Sonic’s menu could fill a billboard in 12 pt. font.  It has over 168,000 drink combinations, not including shakes and coffee drinks.  Breakfast is served all day and you can customize every combo, burger, coney, sandwich, wrap, salad, side order (way to many to list), or dessert.  You can run down a car battery with just the radio on well before you’ve read all the options (so there are lots of pictures).  This extraordinary country was founded on the principle of freedom.  Freedom comes from being able to make our own choices: on religion, political opinion, education, health care, and even what we eat.  Don’t get me wrong, I love In-N-Out, and would choose an In-N-Out burger over a Sonic burger every time, but I don’t always want a burger.  I’m glad I still live in a country where I have the power to make my own decisions, even if they are not always the best ones for me.  We need to encourage competition, reduce the red tape, and eliminate unconstitutional regulations that give preferences to or punish certain businesses or industries.  The consumer is smart enough to make the big (and little) decisions when given the choice.  Capitalism allows us to learn from our mistakes, rather than be restricted from making any.


January 25, 2011 Posted by | on Economics, on Government, on Life, on Society | , , , , , , | 1 Comment

Don Your Day Pack

Formal instruction warps the senses, such as an image refracted in water.  But much may be gleaned from another’s perspective.  There is a difference between being taught and learning, group think and being able to think for one’s self.  Learning must be viewed through the clarity of personal responsibility.  Good students are shaped in homes, not classrooms.  They understand earning their education, without the expectation of entitlement.  To respect the value of anything, one must be willing to work for it.  Students must grasp the importance of truth and have a personal quest for it.   The mind is independent; knowledge is a solo hike.

May 30, 2010 Posted by | on Life, on Society | , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

Wardrobe Malfunction

The content of my closet has altered over the years.  I have donated, sold, or tossed out items, that no longer fit my shape, size, taste, or lifestyle, and others have been purchased or handed down.  I am not the same person I was five, ten, or twenty years ago.  I have grown, changed roles, became a parent, and changed climates, but the reasons for what items hang in my closet have stayed constant.  I want to be comfortable, appropriate, confident, and not spend a fortune doing it.  My political viewpoint has shifted a lot like my wardrobe.  The more I learn, understand, and experience, the more I am forced to re-think my own position on issues.  The political realm also changes, the parties evolve, issues are re-prioritized, platforms shift.  It is imperative that we re-evaluate every now and then.  Doubt, debate, and deliberation clean out our mental closets.  It’s okay to admit you’ve grown, learned something, or started a new chapter in your life.  It may sound sacrilegious to most women, but to me political debate is like shopping.  I’m looking for what fits my beliefs, convictions, and intellect.  Most people probably spend more time contemplating what to wear than how to vote.  – So here is my political fashion advice: 

– The party line and straight tickets are never in style.  A one size fits all approach doesn’t work for clothes or ballots.

– Ask yourself, would you wear something just because it was in your parent’s or grandparent’s closet?

– Don’t invest a lot in trends, bank on your principles and convictions.

– Window shop, do a little research, know what you’re getting before you vote.  It is just as ridiculous and distasteful to show up at the polls naked as to cast an uninformed ballot.

May 9, 2010 Posted by | on Life, on Politics, on Society | , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

Uncle Sam now Sugar Daddy

The role government plays in our lives is becoming more parental.  The paternal nature that now governs us has taken on the responsibilities of protector and provider.  The current administration treats the masses like children that they can scold or discipline, saying, “This is for your own good”.   The entitlement programs that continue to expand have now spoiled the work ethic, self-reliance, and personal responsibility in this country.  So much of our potential is now like a 30-year-old still living on his parent’s sofa.  Government puts food on tables, roofs over heads, and takes care of you when you get older.  Depending on society for survival has led to the breakdown of the family.  The role of father belongs in our homes, not in Washington.

May 3, 2010 Posted by | on Family, on Government, on Life, on Society | , , , , , , | Leave a comment

Re-distribution Causes Regression

We are a middle class, middle-income family who works hard and volunteers often.  We are fortunate to be a one income family and spend generous time with our children.  In today’s economy we must consider what steps we would take if something were to happen, if the blue-collar job that supports us were no longer there.  It was disheartening to discover that the life we work so hard to provide would still exist.  Nothing would really change if our income were cut in half.  Our quality of life would remain even if our work ethic diminished, if we simply didn’t care about who was contributing to our well-being, if we let the state take of us.  We would be receiving tax credits instead of paying into the system.  Our medical expenses would be handled for us, instead of the $150 a month required for our employer based plan, along with the $400 a month we contribute to our personal Health Savings Account.  We would qualify for subsidized housing and not have a mortgage payment due every month, food stamps putting dinner on the table, and low-income priced services to reduce our utility bills.  Later in our lives, the government would pay for our children to go to college, senior assistance programs, and if we relied on Social Security we could stop paying into that 401k and afford to buy that 60” flat screen.  What incentives are left?  Self-respect, self-esteem, and personal pride remain, but they are fading fast in our entitlement society.  No wonder the middle class is diminishing.  Quality of life depends more on how you think, than what you make.

April 26, 2010 Posted by | on Family, on Government, on Life, on Society, on Taxes | , , , , , , , , , | 1 Comment

Leadership is Being Outsourced

The current era of the career politician has led to corruption and massive government spending.  People have become complacent, content to let others make decisions for them.  We are too comfortable, caught up in our own lives, to take the lead when it is necessary.  It is now necessary.  The taboo of political and religious conversation must be overcome.  It affects us much more than the weather.  We must re-examine our own opinions, party affiliations, and representation, and mark our ballots accordingly.  The government, “by the people”, has been shipped off to Wall Street, lobbyists, and political greed.  Groups like the Tea Parties and the 9-12 Project are just trying to bring those jobs home.

April 25, 2010 Posted by | on Government, on Life, on Politics, on Society | , , , , | Leave a comment