Five Things That Happened In 2015 To Make Us All Thankful

Another Thanksgiving is here and another year is almost over.  The holiday season is officially in full swing today as we visit with our families, and friends, and enjoy a day of togetherness and unity.  In a time when the world is crumbling all around us, and our culture is increasingly ungrateful and demanding, it’s important to stop, reflect, and be grateful for some of the good things that have happened to us all in 2015.

1) Low gas prices

Gas prices this Thanksgiving are the lowest they have been in seven years.  Just three Thanksgivings ago, Americans were paying record prices at the pump, nearing $4 a gallon in some places.  Some families made alternate holiday plans in years past because the price of travel was just too costly.

This year, AAA estimates that almost 47 million people are traveling over the Thanksgiving holiday, 89% of those journeys being taken on the road.  That’s a lot of money saved this year between us all!

2) Economic improvements

Do we have a long way to go?  Absolutely.  But the economy has shown progress this year, and although slow, progress is progress.  Kiplinger predicts a 3% growth in the last quarter of the year, with an overall growth of 2.5% for 2015.   Just four years ago, the GDP growth rate was 1.6%, and in 2009 it was an abysmal -2.8%.

Consumer spending is up, which is only expected to increase with Black Friday and holiday shopping.  The housing market is only getting stronger, and interest rates are as low as 2.3%.

These are all muted, but welcome signs of economic improvement in 2015.

3) The 2015 off year election

Last year during the midterm elections, Republicans crushed the Democrat party and overtook the Senate, taking full control of Congress. It sent a clear message to President Obama that the voters were not happy with the projected course.

Apparently, the voters didn’t have buyers’ remorse from last year.  The off year elections earlier this month showed that voters are still somewhat awake (there is that whole Trump thing), and still pissed at President Obama.

Kentucky voted into office their second Republican governor in the past 40 years, Matt Bevin.  Social issues such as marijuana and anti-LGBT discrimination were rejected by voters.  All in all, November 2015 was another decisive victory for Republicans.

4) Hillary Clinton’s email scandal

I don’t want to make light of someone getting investigated by the FBI for a felony (okay, maybe that’s not entirely true).  But really, with all the awful things she’s done in her past, isn’t it time the media/government take her to task on something?  In the past, she’s certainly been untouchable.

Hillary is more unfavorable than ever, as evidenced by the Colorado poll showing a whopping two thirds of those polled do not find her trustworthy or honest.  I never thought I’d have a reason to be impressed with Colorado voters, but here we are.

It is past time the American people, namely the Independents and lite Democrats (there’s no hope for the radical liberals), had a good look at exactly who they could be voting for in 2016.  However that happens, I’m thankful.

5) The new Star Wars movie

Unless you live under a rock, you should know that Star Wars: The Force Awakens is hitting the big screen in December 2015.  Disney has also confirmed a plan to expand the franchise, effectively pledging one Star Wars movie per year until 2020.  The trilogy begins December 18th, with spinoffs in the years between the films to hold fans over.

JJ Abrams, producer of LOST and the new Star Trek movies, has proven to be more than capable of re-creating old franchises and breathing life into them.  I have faith he will do right by George Lucas.  Any good American should be excited to see this movie.

I’m going to be blunt, you don’t have to look very far to find reasons to worry about the state of our country these days, and even the world.  It’s a terrifying place out there.

Let’s not forget to be thankful for the recent events, big or small, that enrich our lives daily.  We forget how much we have, and how fortunate we are to live here.  Happy Thanksgiving, everyone!