HomeLatest ThreadsGreatest ThreadsForums & GroupsMy SubscriptionsMy Posts
DU Home » Latest Threads » Forums & Groups » Main » General Discussion (Forum) » it's even worse than the ...
Introducing Discussionist: A new forum by the creators of DU

Wed Dec 19, 2012, 07:00 PM

it's even worse than the 37 reasons thread posted earlier

(have been reading "america the possible: a manifesto for a new economy" and found this extremely depressing list)



LIKE YOU AND OTHER AMERICANS, I love my country, its wonderful people, its boundless energy, its creativity in so many fields, its natural beauty, its many gifts to the world, and the freedom it has given us to express ourselves. So we should all be angry, profoundly angry, when we consider what has happened to our country and what that neglect could mean for our children and grandchildren.

How can we gauge what has happened to America in the past few decades and where we stand today? One way is to look at how America now compares with other countries in key areas. The group of twenty advanced democracies—the major countries of the Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development (OECD), including the United Kingdom, France, Germany, Japan, the Nordic countries, Canada, and others—can be thought of as our peer nations. Here’s what we see when we look at these countries. To our great shame, America now has

• the highest poverty rate, both generally and for children;
• the greatest inequality of incomes;
• the lowest social mobility;
• the lowest score on the UN’s index of “material well-being of children”;
• the worst score on the UN’s Gender Inequality Index;
• the highest expenditure on health care as a percentage of GDP, yet all this money accompanied by the highest infant mortality rate, the highest prevalence of mental health problems, the highest obesity rate, the highest percentage of people going without health care due to cost, the highest consumption of antidepressants per capita, and the shortest life expectancy at birth;
• the next-to-lowest score for student performance in math and middling performance in science and reading;
• the highest homicide rate;
• the largest prison population in absolute terms and per capita;
• the highest carbon dioxide emissions and the highest water consumption per capita;
• the lowest score on Yale’s Environmental Performance Index (except for Belgium) and the largest ecological footprint per capita (except for Denmark);
• the lowest spending on international development and humanitarian assistance as a percentage of national income (except for Japan and Italy);
• the highest military spending both in total and as a percentage of GDP; and
• the largest international arms sales.

Our politicians are constantly invoking America’s superiority and exceptionalism. True, the data is piling up to confirm that we’re Number One, but in exactly the way we don’t want to be—at the bottom.

These deplorable consequences are not just the result of economic and technological forces over which we have no control. They are the results of conscious political decisions made over several decades by both Democrats and Republicans who have had priorities other than strengthening the well-being of American society and our environment. Many countries, obviously, took a different path—one that was open to us as well.

. . . .

http://www.orionmagazine.org/index.php/articles/article/6681/

10 replies, 902 views

Reply to this thread

Back to top Alert abuse

Always highlight: 10 newest replies | Replies posted after I mark a forum
Replies to this discussion thread

Response to niyad (Original post)

Wed Dec 19, 2012, 07:03 PM

1. K&R'd.

Reply to this post

Back to top Alert abuse Link here Permalink


Response to niyad (Original post)

Wed Dec 19, 2012, 07:09 PM

2. So very very true.... thanks for this, will be emailed to people who don't quite have a

 

clear view of things such as they are.

Reply to this post

Back to top Alert abuse Link here Permalink


Response to 2on2u (Reply #2)

Wed Dec 19, 2012, 07:10 PM

3. you are welcome--this is certainly one of the clearest explanations I have seen.

Reply to this post

Back to top Alert abuse Link here Permalink


Response to niyad (Original post)

Wed Dec 19, 2012, 07:54 PM

4. "Bipartisan" games and politics

With the help of a few centrist think tanks providing our leaders with corporate money so they don't need the little people.

Reply to this post

Back to top Alert abuse Link here Permalink


Response to madfloridian (Reply #4)

Thu Dec 20, 2012, 12:31 AM

5. between this book, greg palast's "billionaires" and chomsky, it is hard to think we ever really

have a chance to get things going in the right direction.

Reply to this post

Back to top Alert abuse Link here Permalink


Response to niyad (Original post)

Thu Dec 20, 2012, 10:53 AM

6. . . .

Reply to this post

Back to top Alert abuse Link here Permalink


Response to niyad (Original post)

Thu Dec 20, 2012, 11:10 AM

7. What's wrong with water consumption? It's renewable,

and the US has a lot of it.

Reply to this post

Back to top Alert abuse Link here Permalink


Response to closeupready (Reply #7)

Thu Dec 20, 2012, 11:47 AM

8. you forgot the sarcasm thingy, yes?. the links below should help a bit:

confronting a world freshwater crisis:
http://www.scientificamerican.com/report.cfm?id=water

wateraid america:
http://www.wateraidamerica.org/what_we_do/statistics.aspx?gclid=CPyOsfC1qbQCFYs7MgodOnwA0Q


water scarcity
http://thewaterproject.org/water_scarcity.php?gclid=CMzhj5S2qbQCFehDMgodWGYAlQ

15 depressing facts about the coming water crisis:



Americans care very little about water, because for most of our history water has been abundant and good. But problems with infrastructure and supply are growing.

Globally, the water crisis is much worse.

We are fast approaching a world in which the most hotly-contested resource for development and survival is not oil, but water.

This is also why investors have become crazy about it, pouring huge money into water rights, desalinization, and purification projects.
15 Facts About The Coming Water Crisis >

America must spend $255 billion in the next five years to prevent deterioration of water infrastructure. We plan to spend half that amount.
America must spend $255 billion in the next five years to prevent deterioration of water infrastructure. We plan to spend half that amount.

Source: American Society of Civil Engineers
Parts of America use up to 80% of their available freshwater resources. (That means a slight drought or increase in usage will cause a WATER SHORTAGE.)
Parts of America use up to 80% of their available freshwater resources. (That means a slight drought or increase in usage will cause a WATER SHORTAGE.)

Source: UNESCO
Californians look forward to a fourth straight year of serious drought.
Californians look forward to a fourth straight year of serious drought.

Source: California
Transporting water is impractical, even within the U.S. Just look at the cost of bottled water.
Transporting water is impractical, even within the U.S. Just look at the cost of bottled water.

A few exceptions to the economic limits on transporting water exist. Bottled water, for example, is sometimes consumed vast distances from where it was produced because it commands a premium far above normal costs. Growth in bottled water consumption may expand in some markets, but overall, long-distance transfers of bulk water are not likely to become a significant export in commercial markets.

Source: Pacific Institute
Globally, 1.2 billion people live in areas with inadequate water supply.

Read more: http://www.businessinsider.com/15-facts-about-the-coming-water-crisis-2010-3?op=1#ixzz2FbxGvK8y

freshwater crisis:
http://environment.nationalgeographic.com/environment/freshwater/freshwater-crisis/


on a very personal note, I live in an alpine desert (meaning no water) that has seen drought for the last several years (in addition to very warm temps), and now, our idiot city council is planning on allowing fracking within our city. where is the water coming from? you know, of course, that once water has been used for fracking, it can never be used for anything else.
millions upon millions of gallons of water are being destroyed by fracking.

Reply to this post

Back to top Alert abuse Link here Permalink


Response to niyad (Reply #8)

Thu Dec 20, 2012, 01:53 PM

9. But then the problem is fracking, not water consumption rates.

As to California, everyone there is from somewhere else - they can always move.

That's what I'm always told when I complain about the cost of living here in New York.

?

Reply to this post

Back to top Alert abuse Link here Permalink


Response to closeupready (Reply #9)

Thu Dec 20, 2012, 05:04 PM

10. no, the problem is water consumption rates. please read some of the links, it will help explain

things. and, by the way, fracking does, in fact, consume water. you might want to watch "gasland" if you have not already done so.

Reply to this post

Back to top Alert abuse Link here Permalink

Reply to this thread