Democratic Underground Latest Greatest Lobby Journals Search Options Help Login
Google

Bob Herbert, New York Times: "This is a society in deep, deep trouble ...."

Printer-friendly format Printer-friendly format
Printer-friendly format Email this thread to a friend
Printer-friendly format Bookmark this thread
This topic is archived.
Home » Discuss » Archives » General Discussion (1/22-2007 thru 12/14/2010) Donate to DU
 
Better Believe It Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Jan-05-10 11:34 AM
Original message
Bob Herbert, New York Times: "This is a society in deep, deep trouble ...."


Op-Ed Columnist
An Uneasy Feeling
By BOB HERBERT
January 4, 2010


This is a society in deep, deep trouble and the fixes currently in the works are in no way adequate to the enormous challenges were facing. For example, an end to the mantra of monthly job losses would undoubtedly be welcomed. But even if the economy manages to create a few hundred thousand new jobs a month, it would do little to haul us from the unemployment pit dug for us by the Great Recession. We need to create more than 10 million new jobs just to get us back to where we were when the recession began in December 2007.

Whats needed are big new innovative efforts to fashion an economy that creates jobs for all who want and need to work. Just getting us back in fits and starts over the next few years to where we were when the recession began should not be acceptable to anyone. We should be moving now to invest aggressively in a new, greener economy, leading the world in the development of alternative fuels, advanced transportation networks and the effort to restrain the poisoning of the planet. We should be developing an industrial policy that emphasizes the need for America to regain its manufacturing mojo, as tough as that might seem, and we need to rebuild our infrastructure.

Were not smart as a nation. We dont learn from the past, and we dont plan for the future. Weve spent a year turning ourselves inside out with arguments of every sort over health care reform only to come up with a bloated, Rube Goldberg legislative mess that protects the insurance and drug industries and does not rein in runaway health care costs.

The politicians will be back soon, trust me, screaming about the need to rein in health costs.

Oh, yes, and were fighting two wars.

If America cant change, then the current state of decline is bound to continue. You cant have a healthy economy with so many millions of people out of work, and there is no plan now that would result in the creation of millions of new jobs any time soon.

Voters were primed at the beginning of the Obama administration for fundamental changes that would have altered the trajectory of American life for the better. Politicians of all stripes, many of them catering to the nations moneyed interests, fouled that up to a fare-thee-well.

Now were escalating in Afghanistan, falling back into panic mode over an attempted act of terror and squandering a golden opportunity to build a better society.

Please read the full article at:

http://www.nytimes.com/2010/01/05/opinion/05herbert.htm...


Printer Friendly | Permalink |  | Top
kentuck Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Jan-05-10 11:36 AM
Response to Original message
1. Sounds a lot like what Hoover did in 1930.
Just give it a year a two and things will be better.

To which a Roosevelt confidante replied, "People don't eat every year or two, they eat every day."
Printer Friendly | Permalink |  | Top
 
joeybee12 Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Jan-05-10 11:52 AM
Response to Reply #1
8. I think Obama and his staff, as well as a lot of politicians, just think this is cyclical...
...and the past sort of justifies that, for a market-based economy does go in fits and starts...but this time is different, especially after an 8-year rape, and it can't just be business as usual.
Printer Friendly | Permalink |  | Top
 
Lost4words Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Jan-05-10 10:12 PM
Response to Reply #8
36. Its more like 28 years! We couldnt get where we are today in just 8 years.
Printer Friendly | Permalink |  | Top
 
Sherman A1 Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Jan-06-10 06:07 AM
Response to Reply #36
86. Agreed
You hit the nail on the head. This started with St. Ronnie and we need to undo all that nonsense.
Printer Friendly | Permalink |  | Top
 
laughingliberal Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Jan-05-10 11:44 PM
Response to Reply #8
52. Heavens to Betsy, they can't be that stupid. Please tell me they're not. nt
Printer Friendly | Permalink |  | Top
 
Enthusiast Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Jan-06-10 12:35 AM
Response to Reply #52
60. No way they are that stupid. nt
Printer Friendly | Permalink |  | Top
 
Hersheygirl Donating Member (353 posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Jan-06-10 09:04 AM
Response to Reply #52
91. Would you like to make a bet on that?
Printer Friendly | Permalink |  | Top
 
Jakes Progress Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Jan-06-10 12:09 AM
Response to Reply #8
56. It's easy to think it's cyclical when it doesn't affect you.
They are rich now. They will be rich when they leave office - probably even richer.
Printer Friendly | Permalink |  | Top
 
earth mom Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Jan-06-10 05:08 AM
Response to Reply #8
81. Obama & Co are playing politics as usual & could give a rats ass about the peons.
They prove this fact more and more with each passing day.
Printer Friendly | Permalink |  | Top
 
cliffordu Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Jan-05-10 12:08 PM
Response to Reply #1
13. That Obama = Hoover thingy?
Kinda ignorant. But don't let that stop you.
Printer Friendly | Permalink |  | Top
 
kentuck Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Jan-05-10 12:10 PM
Response to Reply #13
14. If you say so..
Everything is normal. No need to panic. As soon the banks start lending, we will all be OK. Hmmm..
Printer Friendly | Permalink |  | Top
 
cliffordu Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Jan-05-10 12:14 PM
Response to Reply #14
15. Hmmm..Now you're saying something else.
I was talking about the Obama/Hoover thing you like so much.

Tell the class what your evidence is for this comparison.

We'll take up your non sequitur another time.
Printer Friendly | Permalink |  | Top
 
kentuck Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Jan-05-10 12:24 PM
Response to Reply #15
17. Well, class....
If it seems that this Administration is not taking this economic collapse seriously, then you might think Obama is acting more like Hoover in 1930, rather than Roosevelt in 1932. We have heard over and over again that this is the worst economic downturn since the 1930's. If it is, make your own judgements. Do we need to take bold action or do we need to keep playing mumble-peg with the Republicans? Or maybe you think Obama is being very bold already?
Printer Friendly | Permalink |  | Top
 
laughingliberal Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Jan-05-10 11:45 PM
Response to Reply #17
53. +++1000
Printer Friendly | Permalink |  | Top
 
tblue Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Jan-06-10 01:04 AM
Response to Reply #53
69. +More than that!
Printer Friendly | Permalink |  | Top
 
Goldstein1984 Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Jan-06-10 12:52 AM
Response to Reply #17
65. Regardless of what we need, I suspect
we're going to keep playing mumble-peg with the Republicans.

I haven't seen anything approaching bold, and I'm not going to hold my breath waiting for it.
Printer Friendly | Permalink |  | Top
 
JDPriestly Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Jan-06-10 01:57 AM
Response to Reply #17
74. This economic downturn is possibly more serious than the
Edited on Wed Jan-06-10 02:03 AM by JDPriestly
downturn in the 1930s. We are less well poised to recover because of our debts to foreign nations, our reliance on imported energy and our lack of a manufacturing base that creates jobs here and keeps our money home.

Further, we were not fighting wars and spent far less on blowing things up back in the 1930s than we do today.

Wars are about blowing things up, not about making things.

I'm not criticizing Obama for increasing troup levels in Afghanistan or sending drones into Pakistan and Yemen (to name two countries in the news). I'm just saying that those activities cost us money and don't bring us anything. Nada. So, we are worse off than in the 1930s. It's just that the downturn has only just begun.

Another thing that was better in the 1930s was the fact that so many Americans were, in the early years, living on farms. Not only could they keep a few chickens and grow potatoes but, because they lived on farms, they knew how to live on very little, how to can and make their own clothes. Today, Americans do not have the skills to get by in tough times. So, Obama needs to lead us in a far more proactive way.

We need investment in microindustries just like in underdeveloped countries. Young people need work even if it is looking after national parks, fighting forest fires, helping teachers in classrooms or whatever. We need to get more people into the workforce before it is too late for them to return to productive lives.
Printer Friendly | Permalink |  | Top
 
TheWatcher Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Jan-06-10 02:36 AM
Response to Reply #74
79. Hmmmm.
"This economic downturn is possibly more serious than the downturn in the 1930s."

Remove the "possibly" and you've got it.

"I'm not criticizing Obama for increasing troup levels in Afghanistan or sending drones into Pakistan and Yemen (to name two countries in the news)."

You should be. He should be ENDING the wars and not expanding them. You've been sold a Bill Of Goods. You should be pissed off. We ALL should be.


As for the rest of your Post.....Can't argue with you at all :thumbsup:

Printer Friendly | Permalink |  | Top
 
Wanet Donating Member (197 posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Jan-06-10 11:05 AM
Response to Reply #74
107. You expressed my thoughts
My parents grew up in the Great Depression on farms, and at least they had food, while city people starved. I also fear for our future, for all the reasons you mentioned. -- Wanet
Printer Friendly | Permalink |  | Top
 
deaniac21 Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Jan-06-10 12:45 PM
Response to Reply #74
117. Yep, those crops were absolutely abundant during the Dust Bowl.
Family farming was practiclly wiped out....never to return.
Printer Friendly | Permalink |  | Top
 
JDPriestly Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Jan-06-10 03:13 PM
Response to Reply #117
124. My mother was right smack dab in the middle of the dust bowl.
In the early years, farmers had so much production that they could not sell it.

There was a very wet period. Hoover was the president during final years of that period.

The dust bowl started in 1933.

On November 11, 1933, a very strong dust storm stripped topsoil from desiccated South Dakota farmlands in just one of a series of bad dust storms that year. Then, beginning on May 9, 1934, a strong two-day dust storm removed massive amounts of Great Plains topsoil in one of the worst such storms of the Dust Bowl. The dust clouds blew all the way to Chicago where dirt fell like snow. Two days later, the same storm reached cities in the east, such as Buffalo, Boston, New York City, and Washington, D.C.<10> That winter, red snow fell on New England.

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Dust_Bowl

Roosevelt was already president at that time.

The food surplus was so bad in some of the earlier years that farmers just piled their produce in the middle of the road in some areas. People did not have the money to buy it. My mother and her family traded food with neighbors. Apparently, they also used local scrip instead of US dollars to some extent.
Printer Friendly | Permalink |  | Top
 
deaniac21 Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Thu Jan-07-10 05:53 PM
Response to Reply #124
141. A virtual cornucopia.....




Printer Friendly | Permalink |  | Top
 
JDPriestly Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Thu Jan-07-10 09:50 PM
Response to Reply #141
144. Did you read my post and the link.
The Depression started before the Dust Bowl. The Depression started before 1932. The Dust Bowl started in 1933. My mother recalls that time as clearly as she recalls the events of yesterday. I have heard about the fact that at the very beginning of the Depression, there was actually a food glut all my life. This is a well known fact. Your pictures do not disprove my statements.
Printer Friendly | Permalink |  | Top
 
deaniac21 Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Fri Jan-08-10 10:32 AM
Response to Reply #144
145. I think I'll stick with the facts but bless your mother!
Printer Friendly | Permalink |  | Top
 
JDPriestly Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Fri Jan-08-10 03:02 PM
Response to Reply #145
146. So, according to your facts, in what year did the dust bowl begin?
Printer Friendly | Permalink |  | Top
 
fasttense Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Jan-06-10 07:04 AM
Response to Reply #17
89. I think in a way, it was inevitable that President Obama would act like Hoover.
When FDR took office in 1933, the 1st Republicon Great Depression had been in full swing for about 3 1/2 years. Hoover had passed a few ineffectual programs to deal with the catastrophic economy. Most were useless because like President Obama, he thought it was business as usual. Hoover used all the standard, status quo bad ideas available to him based on Laissez-faire economic theory (very similar to "free" trade, and neoliberal economic theory). When FDR became president, all the bad ideas had been used to no avail. FDR had no choice but to try all the untested, radically progressive ideas because all the bad ideas were already tried by Hoover.

One of Hoover's more useless programs was legislation creating the Reconstruction Finance Corporation (RFC) under the following terms:

Congress provided the agency with an initial capitalization in the amount of $500 million

The RFC was empowered to borrow up to $2 billion to assure the survival of large banks, railroads, farm mortgage associations, savings and loan associations and life insurance companies.

Sound familiar? It should, it's just what the TARP and the Fed did to avert the collapse of Wall Street/banks/Insurance corporations. The current TARP and Fed programs are merely the RFC on steroids. It didn't work then, it wont work now. Oh it did alleviate some of the worst of the crisis among the very rich. But it did nothing to improve unemployment and farmer's prices.

I'm saying that President Obama is going to implement all the status quo, conventional economic intervention ideas first. He's going to try all the bad ideas first, before he is convinced to actually implement real reform.

See, Hoover served a purpose, it was to totally discredit Laissez-faire economics - which was nothing more than "free" trade economics. President Obama will first have to totally discredit all Laissez-faire or "free" trade economic solutions before he can attempt real solutions.

That will probably take him about 4 years, maybe 8 years. Here's hoping Obama is a fast learner.

Printer Friendly | Permalink |  | Top
 
kentuck Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Jan-06-10 09:40 AM
Response to Reply #89
94. I think you are probably right...
but I don't think he will get 4 more years to attempt "real" solutions.
Printer Friendly | Permalink |  | Top
 
proudohioan Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Jan-06-10 10:44 AM
Response to Reply #89
101. Hmmm, the hope that I voted for
was not the hope that Obama would be a fast learner.
Printer Friendly | Permalink |  | Top
 
Jackpine Radical Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Jan-06-10 11:38 AM
Response to Reply #17
109. The problem is that it was the undisguised Right that got us into the hole in 1930.
This time, although the hole was largely dug by the Right between 1981 and 2009, the so-called Left is actively deepening the hole with "free-market," corporate-driven policies. Last time the voters turned to the Left, who then got us out via the New Deal. This time, if the nominal Left, in the form of the Obama administration, fails us, who are we going to call on?

There is still time for them to change, there is still time for them to hear the alarms & smell the smoke. But will they? Or will they keep blathering about us and our ponies while the horse barn burns down?
Printer Friendly | Permalink |  | Top
 
glitch Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Jan-06-10 11:52 AM
Response to Reply #109
114. The problem may be that they are actually following Milton Friedman, who every time his policies
were tried and inevitably failed he'd claim they weren't followed extremely enough. When the only option is to double-down on failure there is not much hope in alarms having an effect.

Especially when failure is so lucrative to the very few who apparently run the show.

Of course Friedman's dead now but he's no doubt still saying "Go for it!" from HELL.
Printer Friendly | Permalink |  | Top
 
Jackpine Radical Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Jan-06-10 12:01 PM
Response to Reply #114
115. Just what the world needs.
#@$&%#@ psychopathic Friedmanites running the show. And I use the term "psychopathic" both literally and with full knowledge of what it means. Robert Reich had me convinced last year at about this time that there was a strong dose of Keynesian sentiment in the Obama crowd. Every bit of evidence since then has served to dissuade me from that view.

We shoulda known better. Whaddya expect from the Chicago Boys except Chicago economics?
Printer Friendly | Permalink |  | Top
 
Ticonderoga Donating Member (489 posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Jan-06-10 10:36 AM
Response to Reply #15
99. Maybe the consensus should be on you
to explain to the class why an Obama/Hoover comparison is not on the mark. You have the mic, go ahead sir, make your case.
Printer Friendly | Permalink |  | Top
 
anonymous171 Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Jan-05-10 01:06 PM
Response to Reply #13
22. Yep. Hoover was more way more liberal than Obama.
Printer Friendly | Permalink |  | Top
 
GreenArrow Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Jan-05-10 01:13 PM
Response to Reply #13
23. If you like the Obama = Hoover thingy
wait till you get a load of the upcoming Palin/JEB! as FDR thingy.
Printer Friendly | Permalink |  | Top
 
CoffeeCat Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Jan-05-10 10:30 PM
Response to Reply #23
41. Who are we kidding here?
Edited on Tue Jan-05-10 10:33 PM by CoffeeCat
Both parties are owned by the corporations that buy legislation from our bribed and corrupt
politicians.

Isn't this evident to everyone by now?

Forget about Obama being Hoover, FDR or Daffy Duck. Obama IS whatever the corporations want.

No President is allowed to have power any more. It's all decided at DC cocktail parties--where
the neocons, religious fanatics, lobbyists and elites mingle and determine how they will enrich
themselves and screw us over.

Printer Friendly | Permalink |  | Top
 
GreenArrow Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Jan-06-10 01:00 AM
Response to Reply #41
68. I don't necessarily disagree.
I was just delineating roles. At this point, it appears the cocktail crew has appointed Obama for the role of the hapless Hoover, this time in Democratic guise, later to be supplanted by the Republican version of FDR -- more properly an anti-FDR -- and if you think the last few Presidents have been relentless in excising the policies of the New Deal, just wait til the next Republican takes charge. It's the stereotypical "good cop, bad cop" modality.

>>"Both parties are owned by the corporations that buy legislation from our bribed and corrupt
politicians.

Isn't this evident to everyone by now?"<<

I don't think it is. Or it may be evident, but people don't really want to believe it.
Printer Friendly | Permalink |  | Top
 
Lilith Velkor Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Jan-06-10 12:32 PM
Response to Reply #68
116. Reagan was supposed to be their anti-FDR
Edited on Wed Jan-06-10 12:32 PM by Lilith Velkor
He was somewhat successful at busting the New Deal, but what was (is) more important to Republicans is that he was supposed to usher in 20+ years of uninterrupted Republican administrations, to punish the Democrats and the American working class for so utterly humiliating them in the '30s and '40s.

That's why they have been having nonstop tantrums since Bill Clinton was elected.
Printer Friendly | Permalink |  | Top
 
shanti Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Jan-06-10 02:19 AM
Response to Reply #41
75. and that's exactly why
kucinich, dean, etc. will never be president.
Printer Friendly | Permalink |  | Top
 
laughingliberal Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Jan-05-10 11:47 PM
Response to Reply #23
54. How 'bout we concentrate on the President we have now and how to get him to pay attention
After all, he's the one who said, "Make me do it." Any ideas how to "make him do it?"
Printer Friendly | Permalink |  | Top
 
GreenArrow Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Jan-06-10 01:07 AM
Response to Reply #54
70. He ain't gonna do shit for us.
If he's calling the shots, he's shown little to no inclination to act boldly, or with any kind of long term vision, acting instead with only the cheapest sort of political manipulation and expediency; if he's not calling the shots, the point is moot anyway.

He's still got at least three years to show something.
Printer Friendly | Permalink |  | Top
 
dgibby Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Jan-06-10 10:07 AM
Response to Reply #54
97. I don't think he was talking to us when he said that.
I think he was talking the Wall Street, not Main Street.
Printer Friendly | Permalink |  | Top
 
laughingliberal Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Jan-06-10 02:54 PM
Response to Reply #97
123. Certainly does seem that way nt
Printer Friendly | Permalink |  | Top
 
girl gone mad Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Jan-06-10 05:24 AM
Response to Reply #23
84. If Sarah Palin or Jeb Bush were anything like FDR..
I would be the first to jump on their bandwagon.

Unfortunately, this generation doesn't seem capable of producing leadership fit to mow FDR's grave, let alone carry his water.
Printer Friendly | Permalink |  | Top
 
GreenArrow Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Jan-06-10 10:31 AM
Response to Reply #84
98. what FDR was able to build up
a Palin or Jeb, Mitch Daniels, or one of their ilk, will tear down, with the same sort of scope. If Obama persists in his folly, the next Republican President, will be the anti-FDR.
Printer Friendly | Permalink |  | Top
 
JDPriestly Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Jan-06-10 01:55 AM
Response to Reply #13
73. What's so ignorant about it? Please explain.
Edited on Wed Jan-06-10 01:56 AM by JDPriestly
How much do you know about what Hoover did?

Obama bailed out the banks, but other than that, his actions have pretty much paralleled those of Hoover.

The main difference is that Hoover was the president of a country with a huge manufacturing base -- lots of factories that could have been easily tooled up again -- and a creditor nation. Obama is the president of a country with a manufacturing base that has dwindled to next to nothing and a debtor nation.

Obama needs to introduce solid economic development in this country, not just programs that maintain a few government jobs. What happened to the promises of broadband networks and energy independence through alternative energy? Why not spend more money on technological development here at home and less on killing people overseas?
Printer Friendly | Permalink |  | Top
 
girl gone mad Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Jan-06-10 05:50 AM
Response to Reply #73
85. Hoover bailed out the banks, too.
with the creation of the Reconstruction Finance Corporation. Many people have forgotten (or never learned).

I think the Hoover comparison is apt in many ways. Hoover's life story reads like an American fairy tale come true, much like Obama's. Hoover was the dream candidate: worldly, brilliant and self-made; He was a determined pragmatist who hoped to rise above the partisanship and achieve great things.

Printer Friendly | Permalink |  | Top
 
JDPriestly Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Jan-06-10 03:21 PM
Response to Reply #85
125. True. Hoover was very much like Obama.
He had great faith in a person's ability to pull himself up by his bootstraps. Hoover did it. Obama did it. Everyone can do it. Except -- not everyone can do it.

I always knew that Obama was more conservative politically than I am, that he, in fact, has little patience for the people who have lost their jobs, for the towns that used to have a factory and now have nothing. But I never realized to what extent his compassion for suffering is really just lip service. He is just too young and too inexperienced. It's not his age. It's what he is.

I'm still hoping, but only because I never give up hoping.
Printer Friendly | Permalink |  | Top
 
Ticonderoga Donating Member (489 posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Jan-06-10 10:50 AM
Response to Reply #73
104. It's simple,
the money is being spent to continue with the whack-a-mole policies in the middle east, and to keep the MIC flush with cash and power.
Printer Friendly | Permalink |  | Top
 
JDPriestly Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Jan-06-10 01:50 AM
Response to Reply #1
72. And it's going to be a lot tougher to recover this time than it was
after the crash of 1929. Back then, we had a huge manufacturing base. We were a creditor nation.

Today, we have no manufacturing base. We import everything or nearly everything. We are a debtor nation.

We face a much more difficult climb up the hill to prosperity than we did back then.

And worse yet, today, we are way behind in innovation. We do the fundamental science. But after the military gets its cut, big oil takes its chunk, insurance companies squeezes the very blood out of us and then Wall Street and the bankers demand their pound of flesh, there is no money to invest in jobs. The U.S. government has oodles of cash to throw at Wall Street and the defense contractors but very, very little to create jobs for working people or encourage the development of new technologies. As I said, the basic science is there, but manufacturing, creating products is outsourced -- just to shut out American workers and unions.

We have a lot of traitors in our country -- and they are often very wealthy and influential.
Printer Friendly | Permalink |  | Top
 
glitch Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Jan-06-10 11:42 AM
Response to Reply #72
110. We also had our own oil to squander and weren't facing eminent global climate change. nt
Printer Friendly | Permalink |  | Top
 
Flatulo Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Jan-06-10 11:55 PM
Response to Reply #72
140. A case in point... a solar power company in Mass took $68 mil from the state..
They hired 800 people with it, and then fired them and send the jobs to China.

Nice, huh?

The CEO makes $2 mil a year and the company hasn't turned a profit in its 14 year existence.
Printer Friendly | Permalink |  | Top
 
harkadog Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Fri Jan-08-10 03:18 PM
Response to Reply #1
147. Where is that quote from?
When it's goggled the only source is DU posts.
Printer Friendly | Permalink |  | Top
 
Subdivisions Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Jan-05-10 11:40 AM
Response to Original message
2. Growth and prosperity have their resource-based limits. Those limits have been met. There will
be no significant recovery.
Printer Friendly | Permalink |  | Top
 
Better Believe It Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Jan-05-10 11:49 AM
Response to Reply #2
5. This nation has the resouces. The problem is we don't control those resources.

Wall Street financial interests and the corporate elite control them.
Printer Friendly | Permalink |  | Top
 
jwirr Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Jan-05-10 10:40 PM
Response to Reply #5
42. We as a nation reached oil peak in the 70s. Since then we have been
importing much of our oil. We do not have either the oil resources or the manufacturing capacity that we had back then. Not that we are totally without resources but we do not have the foundation that either Hoover or FDR had. I don't think that President Obama or the congress is dealing with that fact.
Printer Friendly | Permalink |  | Top
 
StreetKnowledge Donating Member (921 posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Jan-06-10 12:49 AM
Response to Reply #42
63. That can be fixed.
If the White House had the nuts to do it.

1 - The Oil Problem. Synthetic crude was a technology developed simultaneously in Germany and the United States in the 1930s and 1940s, turning coal into oil. It's called the Fischer-Tropsch process, and while the technology was mothballed after WWII - not needed in the era of cheap oil from the Middle East - it was dusted off and developed, quite vigorously, by the South Africans, who built the first such commercial plant in 1950, and built a new facility to make much more synthetic fuel in the 1980s. The technology is well-proven, and can be applied.

As for the coal needed, America is the owner of more than a quarter the world's coal reserves, which can be easily applied to this purpose - and that would also be much more effective than simply shipping it off to a coal-fired power station where it is burned to generate electricity - both awful for energy efficiency and pollution.

Then we move on to other ideas, such as biodiesel and cellulosic ethanol. Again, this technology exists, and applying on a massive scale would not be all that challenging - only requiring the investment. Since cellulose exists in virtually any plant life, figuring out a way to use this to fuel our world would make energy shortages ancient history. One could even considerably separate cellulose from compost material and use it to make fuel. Or for that matter, what about taking the leftovers from industries which use plant material - sawmills, paper mills, meat packing plants, farms, lumber yards, construction sites - and go that way.

How do you generate electrical power without burning coal? Using wind turbines and solar cells is in theory a good idea, but the sun doesn't always shine and the wind doesn't always blow, does it? Those options can be used (and should), but ignoring ideas such as hydroelectric dams and nuclear power is idiotic. Yes, nuclear power is not without its issues - the main problem is the waste, of course, which is not as dangerous as one thinks. (Spent nuclear fuel is mostly highly-irradiated uranium, and reactor-hot waste without any of the by-products decays to environmental radiation levels in about 600 years - a long time, but not the 500,000 that anti-nuclear protesters claim. Plutonium takes that long - but plutonium can be used a nuclear fuel itself. Hydroelectric dams can be pricey and environmentally destructive, but modern engineering can reduce the effects if attention is paid to these issues. There are tens of thousands of dams on rivers in the US already - how hard would it be to install generators on many of these that don't already have them?

And what about the idea of reducing the amount used in everyday life? Raising fuel economy standards by Washington again is a good idea in theory, but its also a problem in that Americans tend to not want fuel-efficient cars. Getting Americans to drive smaller cars would require raising the price of gasoline, period. That's the only way to ensure that people buy more fuel-efficient vehicles.

2 - The Manufacturing Problem. Hell, this one is easy. Rewrite America's trade laws, saying that import duties will be charged on goods imported from other nations which have wide differences in local conditions. For Canada, much of Europe, Japan, Australia, Korea and Israel, these tarriffs would be minimal because the local environmental and wage laws aren't terribly far apart from the US. From middle-income nations (Brazil, Argentina, South Africa, Turkey, parts of Eastern Europe, Malaysia and Mexico) these tarriffs would be low to medium, being adjusted regularly to level the playing field between them and American manufacturers. For the real cheap countries and major problem starters for America - China, India, Russia, the Middle East, Indonesia and other such low-wage nations) the import duties will be much higher. You bring these import duties up slowly over a few years to avoid causing inflation, and you provide loans and support to companies in America filling these markets.

This policy has many advantages. For High-dollar goods such as automobiles and their parts, aircraft, consumer electronics, machinery, capital goods, shipbuilding and the like, the tarriff levels will shift the price scales of imported goods, making it economically more viable to buy American. These probably won't stop trinkets from being made in China or clothes in India, but it will put said high-value industries back in business over here, and in doing so create tens of thousands if not hundreds of thousands of jobs.

As an added bonus, such industries tend to require skilled people - America isn't short of those, despite hacks to educational funding over and over again over the decades - and as such, these people will in themselves cultivate new skills and understand just as part of their work, keeping the West ahead of the curve with regards to science and technology.
Printer Friendly | Permalink |  | Top
 
Goldstein1984 Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Jan-06-10 01:15 AM
Response to Reply #63
71. I agree with you regarding the use of nuclear power and
certainly about energy conservation. Cellulosic ethanol is still an iffy proposition. I worked in the ethanol industry for a about a year, and most modern plants have been designed with the intention of taking advantage of the first bolt-on cellulosic technology available, the problem is the enzymes do not yet exist that can convert cellulosic materials into the smaller molecules that can be fed to the fermentation process. Believe me, they are looking. In the meantime, the corn ethanol process that is preferred in the U.S. has a net energy yield of only about 1.25, and that is highly exaggerated because the true energy input up to the point the corn enters the ethanol plant has been underreported in an effort to promote the technology. The company I worked for, VeraSun Energy, was for a short time among the three largest ethanol producers in the nation. They no longer exist. Only subsidies and mandated use of biofuel blends keep the ethanol industry afloat.

I have much higher hopes for biodiesel, but only from emerging algae technology, not from sources like soybeans and corn oil.

To do any of this the people are going to have to recreate representative government. The Oil Industry has far to much invested in the current business model and infrastructure. ExxonMobil just invested $600 million in Craig Venter's genetically engineered microbe process for creating biofuel. $600 million sounds like a lot of money to most people, but to ExxonMobil it's a small price to play for complete control of a potential competitor. I'm not speaking as an industry critic, but as an industry insider--including by brief stint in ethanol, I've either worked as a regulator or a safety/environmental professional in the oil industry since the Exxon-Valdez Oil Spill.

Nothing is going to happen until either it suddenly is in the interest of industry for something to happen, or until the people become so angry that our elected officials cannot survice without addressing the people's demands.
Printer Friendly | Permalink |  | Top
 
kenfrequed Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Jan-06-10 11:00 AM
Response to Reply #71
106. Corn makes terrible ethanol.
Switchgrass has nowhere near the energy inputs required of corn and most researchers seem to think it will be a far better source of cellulose to convert. Only the Corn maga-farm machine is trying to insist on this being the only way.
Printer Friendly | Permalink |  | Top
 
Goldstein1984 Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Jan-06-10 06:17 PM
Response to Reply #106
133. Ethanol from corn is starch-based
The rest of the kernel becomes "distillers grain" and is used as animal feed. Depending on the corn, about 50% of the kernel is starch.

Some corn ethanol plants intend to continue using corn once cellulosic technology is available, they'll just be turning more of the corn into fuel and less into feed.

Switch grass is basically pure cellulose, which is the tougher molecule to crack.

I've reviewed some very good literature that argues that just burning switchgrass directly and producing electricity is far more energy efficient than turning it into ethanol.

Right now, the ethanol industry is largely a product of aggressive lobbying by agriculture. I was in culture shock when I left the oil industry and found myself basically surrounded by farmers and speculators with very little knowledge of the energy industry. Basic safety problems regarding fall protection, confined space entry and industrial hygiene that had been solved decades ago were a complete mystery to them. Ethanol needs to be taken out of the hands of farmers, commodity brokers, opportunists and industry lobbyist and taken over by someone who understands energy markets.

Just my opinion, based on nine months of sitting through painful meetings before I bugged out. I still follow the industry because part of my job is tracking science and technology, and the main industry journals--"Biodiesel" and "Ethanol"--are nothing but marketing and promotion. From a science and engineering perspective, very poor reading.
Printer Friendly | Permalink |  | Top
 
kenfrequed Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Jan-06-10 10:45 AM
Response to Reply #63
103. A few problems

Both the mining and the processing of synthetic fuel in this manner does produce pollution and toxic wastes. Historically the chemical processes required produce a good deal of mercury pollution.


The Uranium isotope with the shortest half life is Uranium-234 which is 2.48 x 10 to the fifth power or 245,000 years.


On point three I agree.
Printer Friendly | Permalink |  | Top
 
StreetKnowledge Donating Member (921 posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Jan-06-10 01:01 PM
Response to Reply #103
119. Fair points.
Controlling chemical waste isn't all that hard to do. You have to keep it out of the ecosystem, but there is already laws in the US that mandate that. Dumping mercury into the environment is a major no-no now, sites seriously contaminated with it go directly onto the Superfund list, and that for the polluters is BAD news, because the EPA can sue such polluters to recover costs. (And has in hundreds of cases, even against big-hitters like the oil industry.)

As for nuclear waste, separating the uranium out of it in the reprocessing process (which was developed simltaneously as the reactors were - getting plutonium for bombs was the goal then) could remove most or all of the isotopes which cause problems. Some of the isotopes, in addition, have other uses, such as cancer treatment and food irradiation. Transmutating waste could also be a possible solution, using it in reactors to mutate many of the elements into ones which have shorter half lifes.
Printer Friendly | Permalink |  | Top
 
wuushew Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Jan-06-10 12:50 PM
Response to Reply #63
118. If synthetic oil was so advantageous there would already be dozens of coal to oil plants in the U.S.


This graph shows a good chunk of years where oil was well above $40 a barrel. Despite what people claim the contribution of speculation is every car that hits the streets of India or China drives the true price higher and higher.

In addition coal and gas themselves are finite in quantity and carry there own environmental costs. Coal is a carbon nightmare regardless what you do with it.
Printer Friendly | Permalink |  | Top
 
StreetKnowledge Donating Member (921 posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Jan-06-10 01:04 PM
Response to Reply #118
120. Not saying I disagree, but......
America has to be powered in one form or another, and synthetic crude would be better than buying it from abroad, wouldn't it? If the projects are done correctly, the pollution of such plants can be contained.
Printer Friendly | Permalink |  | Top
 
JDPriestly Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Jan-06-10 03:26 PM
Response to Reply #63
126. Great post, Street Knowledge.
I must say, here in Southern California, we can pretty much count on the sun. It is unfortunate that we are using so little solar power. We use a lot of energy -- especially for air conditioning in the summer. But for ordinary people like me, putting solar panels on my house would be too expensive. I would have to switch to electricity for appliances and heat and rewire my house -- big bucks, unfortunately.

I disagree with you on nuclear energy. We have to solve the waste problem. Personally, I think that a way will be found to do that. But it is going to take time. We should not be using nuclear energy now but continue studying the nuclear waste problem. We may also find ways to combine small amounts of nuclear energy with other forms of energy to get a lot of energy. That would at least minimize the waste.

Printer Friendly | Permalink |  | Top
 
Romulox Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Jan-05-10 12:39 PM
Response to Reply #2
20. That only holds true if you are not a Wall Street banker
Edited on Tue Jan-05-10 12:40 PM by Romulox
For them, the monies come freely, and easily (even if they have to be diverted from the national treasury.)
Printer Friendly | Permalink |  | Top
 
closeupready Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Jan-05-10 01:18 PM
Response to Reply #20
25. That sad truth is that you're not even exaggerating - that is EXACTLY
what has happened. And life continues to decline for the average American.
Printer Friendly | Permalink |  | Top
 
shanti Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Jan-06-10 02:29 AM
Response to Reply #25
77. and when that happens
it's called civil war. :( you can already see it with the private vs. public employer situation. we are turning into a banana republic.
Printer Friendly | Permalink |  | Top
 
Odin2005 Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Jan-05-10 07:19 PM
Response to Reply #2
29. Oh look, a Zero-Summer.
:eyes:
Printer Friendly | Permalink |  | Top
 
pundaint Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Jan-06-10 12:47 AM
Response to Reply #29
62. Oh look an American Exceptionalist
Ok, we've handled the labels, carry on.
Printer Friendly | Permalink |  | Top
 
kenfrequed Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Jan-06-10 01:43 PM
Response to Reply #29
122. Err...
Most resources are kind of finite aren't they?
Printer Friendly | Permalink |  | Top
 
Romulox Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Thu Jan-07-10 05:56 PM
Response to Reply #29
142. Please name the last "miracle of fish and loaves" for American working people.
thanks! :hi:
Printer Friendly | Permalink |  | Top
 
Selatius Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Thu Jan-07-10 06:02 PM
Response to Reply #29
143. You can't invent wealth from nothing. Nobody has ever done that. Everything is finite.
Labor is finite. Capital is finite. The underlying raw resources that are transformed whenever labor and capital work their mojo is finite. Sure, the finished product is of more value to people, thus one could argue we're making wealth, but ultimately, the inputs into that process are all finite, exhaustible. This is why people talk about recycling and renewable energy and sustainable growth.
Printer Friendly | Permalink |  | Top
 
Flatulo Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Jan-05-10 09:57 PM
Response to Reply #2
31. Huh? Maybe for some commodities, but green energy is wide open.
I want to see wind turbines and solar farms everywhere. Why is the leader in wind power a small-ish Danish company (Vestas)? Why are (almost) all the world's solar cells being manufactured in China?

We have industrial giants like GE and Honeywell waiting on the sidelines. The government needs to provide tax incentives for these companies to invest in new technology (developed and built by American engineers and workers) until they can reach grid parity with gas/oil/coal.
Printer Friendly | Permalink |  | Top
 
amandabeech Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Jan-05-10 11:15 PM
Response to Reply #31
46. China has cheap labor and is refusing to sell the necessary ingredients to other countries.
Denmark is incredibly windy and Norwegian and Swedish hydropower are available to fill in when the wind dies down.

Printer Friendly | Permalink |  | Top
 
Flatulo Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Jan-05-10 11:21 PM
Response to Reply #46
48. Solar cells are made from solicon and boron, just like computer chips.
Wind turbines are made from aluminum for the masts, and iron and copper for the generators.

I'll grant you the labor advantage to China (hence the need for subsidies) but I find it hard to believe we can't find the raw materials.
Printer Friendly | Permalink |  | Top
 
amandabeech Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Jan-06-10 01:29 PM
Response to Reply #48
121. Check out the post in Editorials on rare earths.
Don't forget the total lack of environmental standards in China.
Printer Friendly | Permalink |  | Top
 
swilton Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Jan-06-10 05:05 PM
Response to Reply #31
130. The government is already subsidizing these crooks
Why do you think the green technologies haven't come online in the US already - these corporations have vested interests in the status quo

Printer Friendly | Permalink |  | Top
 
Flatulo Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Jan-06-10 09:58 PM
Response to Reply #130
139. I respectfully disagree - solar costs $8/watt, petro is only $3/watt.
Basic economics dictate that alternative sources won't come online in any scale until petro reaches $8/watt. By then it will be too late to deploy alternative sources without massive disruption, so we have to subsidize green power.
Printer Friendly | Permalink |  | Top
 
Mojorabbit Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Jan-06-10 12:10 AM
Response to Reply #2
57. I agree
There is a small window of time in which building a huge green infrastructure could really benefit us. It won't happen though.
Printer Friendly | Permalink |  | Top
 
Enthusiast Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Jan-06-10 12:42 AM
Response to Reply #57
61. It won't happen when
wealthy champions of the status quo have bought the legislative branch of government.
Printer Friendly | Permalink |  | Top
 
Goldstein1984 Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Jan-06-10 12:58 AM
Response to Reply #2
67. And even with zero job creation during the first decade of the
century, the economy we had was based on a housing bubble and credit spending in an economy based 70% on consumption. Unemployment, loss of middle class wealth, huge national deficits and debt, foreclosures, and energy prices that are going to go back through the roof once the global economy starts to recovery and demand for oil rebounds...

We are screwed.

I think of "leaders" know we are screwed, but their only hope of any sort of recovery at all, and possibly their only hope of keeping control of the nation, depend on hiding the fact that we are screwed from the public.
Printer Friendly | Permalink |  | Top
 
krabigirl Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Jan-06-10 06:19 PM
Response to Reply #2
135. Agreed to a point...unless we find better ways of doing things. I am not holding my breath.
Printer Friendly | Permalink |  | Top
 
rurallib Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Jan-05-10 11:40 AM
Response to Original message
3. rather than face real problems the media focuses on
Edited on Tue Jan-05-10 11:40 AM by rurallib
bullshit 'problems' like the balloon boy.
Printer Friendly | Permalink |  | Top
 
Ron Green Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Jan-05-10 11:41 AM
Response to Original message
4. Obama's "business as usual" shows how broken the system truly is.
He's a smart guy, and a good man, and all that, but the bedfellows have been too strange for too long, and we've been successfully converted, over the decades, from citizens to consumers.

We're just too comfortable to reclaim our citizenship.
Printer Friendly | Permalink |  | Top
 
whatchamacallit Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Jan-05-10 12:00 PM
Response to Reply #4
10. Yep nt
Printer Friendly | Permalink |  | Top
 
joeunderdog Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Jan-06-10 06:06 PM
Response to Reply #4
132. He's got no problem with outsourcing either.
Not on his "to do" list to address it.
Printer Friendly | Permalink |  | Top
 
ProSense Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Jan-05-10 11:49 AM
Response to Original message
6. Lots of good is being done
Edited on Tue Jan-05-10 11:50 AM by ProSense
State-Level Data Show Recovery Act Protecting Millions From Poverty

The really good thing about Obama's election is the media's collective focus on American homelessness, hunger and poverty. Obama pledged to address hunger.




Printer Friendly | Permalink |  | Top
 
dionysus Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Jan-05-10 12:01 PM
Response to Reply #6
11. don't waste your breath. this fail pushing is like porn or a drug to them.
Printer Friendly | Permalink |  | Top
 
Skittles Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Jan-05-10 06:55 PM
Response to Reply #6
27. Obama is applying bandaids to deep cuts
we need REAL CHANGE
Printer Friendly | Permalink |  | Top
 
Lorien Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Jan-06-10 09:53 AM
Response to Reply #6
96. They get trillions while the rest of us get the "change"
sorry, but throwing the people a few crumbs so that you have a handful of feel good stories to use as political fodder doesn't address the cause of our troubles. Homelessness, poverty and hunger and STILL on the rise. Are you honestly trying to convince us that Obama cares about the middle or working classes as much as he does the elite? He's not putting our money where his mouth is, if so.
Printer Friendly | Permalink |  | Top
 
Little Star Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Jan-05-10 11:49 AM
Response to Original message
7. k&r n/t
Printer Friendly | Permalink |  | Top
 
Vinnie From Indy Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Jan-05-10 11:58 AM
Response to Original message
9. Bob Herbert gets it!
We have gotten here because a certain strata of our society has purchased our government to a degree not seen in over a century.

One thing is certain, as times get worse, the lies about the health of America become less and less believable for the suffering. It will be very difficult to control a population that has had it's future so blatantly stolen.
Printer Friendly | Permalink |  | Top
 
RaleighNCDUer Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Jan-05-10 12:20 PM
Response to Reply #9
16. As he said, we don't learn from our own history.
The reforms of FDRs administration only came about because we were, very literally, on the brink of revolution. Both the communists and the fascists had never been stronger, and it we hadn't gotten some kind of fixes we could have degenerated into a new civil war - only this would have been an ideological class war, rather than a regional war.

If we go another couple years without seeing real results, it could well happen again.
Printer Friendly | Permalink |  | Top
 
laughingliberal Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Jan-05-10 11:52 PM
Response to Reply #16
55. Disturbing, but we might see change, then. Or not. nt
What's it gonna take for people to wake up?
Printer Friendly | Permalink |  | Top
 
Lydia Leftcoast Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Jan-05-10 11:17 PM
Response to Reply #9
47. He's the only NY Times columnist who does get it, the only one who
seems to notice what is going on with ordinary people.
Printer Friendly | Permalink |  | Top
 
L0oniX Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Jan-05-10 12:07 PM
Response to Original message
12. Temp ban all imports then create manufacturing to make up for what's been banned.
We should be using our food production as leverage. Want our food, then you better deal with us how ever we want it. Just an idea.
Printer Friendly | Permalink |  | Top
 
DJ13 Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Jan-05-10 12:24 PM
Response to Original message
18. K&R
Printer Friendly | Permalink |  | Top
 
City Lights Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Jan-05-10 12:32 PM
Response to Original message
19. K&R nt
Printer Friendly | Permalink |  | Top
 
Greyhound Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Jan-05-10 01:04 PM
Response to Original message
21. And "our leaders" keep pretending that the fix is some deep mystery.
Of course as long as they can find enough dupes to buy their BS to repackage and resell it, why would they change? After all, "this is really working out very well for them".


Printer Friendly | Permalink |  | Top
 
closeupready Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Jan-05-10 01:16 PM
Response to Original message
24. K&R
n/t
Printer Friendly | Permalink |  | Top
 
chimpymustgo Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Jan-05-10 06:48 PM
Response to Original message
26. This is a great column, filled with deep sadness.
Printer Friendly | Permalink |  | Top
 
BrklynLiberal Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Jan-05-10 10:17 PM
Response to Reply #26
39. That is exactly how he sounded on the radio this AM
Printer Friendly | Permalink |  | Top
 
Odin2005 Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Jan-05-10 07:19 PM
Response to Original message
28. K&R
Printer Friendly | Permalink |  | Top
 
Name removed Donating Member (0 posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Jan-05-10 09:52 PM
Response to Original message
30. Deleted message
Message removed by moderator. Click here to review the message board rules.
 
Flatulo Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Jan-05-10 09:59 PM
Response to Original message
32. Herbert has his finger on the pulse of American society. nt
Printer Friendly | Permalink |  | Top
 
change_notfinetuning Donating Member (750 posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Jan-05-10 10:02 PM
Response to Original message
33. Obama went to Washington to change it. Too bad it changed him. n/t
Printer Friendly | Permalink |  | Top
 
Skittles Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Jan-06-10 02:31 AM
Response to Reply #33
78. it didn't change him
he is what he was
Printer Friendly | Permalink |  | Top
 
ProgressIn2008 Donating Member (848 posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Jan-06-10 03:37 PM
Response to Reply #78
128. Agreed. This is exactly what he was. nt
Printer Friendly | Permalink |  | Top
 
scentopine Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Jan-05-10 10:04 PM
Response to Original message
34. LOL! I guess this means he's off the bus? That's OK
there's several million of us who have been tossed off the bus by the centrists and realists and moderates.

He'll find great company here.

I think the NYTimes is right - first they rightly accused Obama of continuing to justify torture, lately Herbert and Krugman is on his ass.

Maybe NYT finally feels bad about kissing Bushes ass. It's going to take more than a few editorials to win me back as a subscriber, though this is a good start. We need pressure on these blood sucking politicians, whether they are republican or more republican.

Obama's stimulus was filled with tax cuts and credits, stop gaps for state budgets, and little left over for real work. And wall street's bailout was a feast of neo-con trickle down bullshit.

I believe Afghanistan is supposed to be the real stimulus for the rest of us.

Like they always say, when times are bad, start a war.

How's that for change?

Printer Friendly | Permalink |  | Top
 
highplainsdem Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Jan-05-10 10:07 PM
Response to Original message
35. K&R
Printer Friendly | Permalink |  | Top
 
BrklynLiberal Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Jan-05-10 10:16 PM
Response to Original message
37. Heard him on NPR this AM. Some very interesting insights here.
Printer Friendly | Permalink |  | Top
 
Bluebear Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Jan-05-10 10:17 PM
Response to Original message
38. O-man looks sexay sexay in his swimsuit though!
So shut up, haterz.

:silly:
Printer Friendly | Permalink |  | Top
 
EmeraldCityGrl Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Jan-05-10 10:18 PM
Response to Original message
40. Our economy is fueled by wars.
Until this changes we will never be able to make the transition to a green economy.
Everything we have of value is being squandered in another part of the world that honestly
most people don't care about. That we are allowing this to continue says a great deal
about us as a people. We are no longer the home of the free and the brave, but of a frightened
compromising people to afraid of the world and willing to trade our young men, women,
resources, and future for vague assurances of safety. We're constantly yelling for the Dems
to grow a pair when it's us that need to do so.

The underpants bomber should keep us all shaking in our boots until Spring. The wars will
escalate, poverty will engulf more families but technology that could be growing the green
movement will instead be focused on a new arsenal of war toys and airport security.


Printer Friendly | Permalink |  | Top
 
Robeson Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Jan-05-10 11:37 PM
Response to Reply #40
51. What can I say.....
...when you're right, you're right.
Printer Friendly | Permalink |  | Top
 
pundaint Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Jan-06-10 12:53 AM
Response to Reply #40
66. It's not our economy being fueled. Taking the Defense budget and throwing into the street would
have a much larger economic impact. Rebuilding our Commons would be a far better way of reviving our economy than building stuff to blow up other stuff in foreign countries where we end up building up their Commons, all the while keeping hundreds of thousands of men in their peak consuming years stationed out of the country, and supporting them with foreign-sourced consumables. War is a lousy investment for the war makers.
Printer Friendly | Permalink |  | Top
 
EmeraldCityGrl Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Jan-06-10 02:20 AM
Response to Reply #66
76. Yes, fueling might be a poor choice of words.
Although there are many military bases in my area. If the wars were to end, if we were to see a reduction in military
spending, locally there would be an impact. On the other hand a green economy could easily pick up the slack and
eventually create a much healthier and sustainable economy. I'm referring more to the percentage of GDP spent on
the military opposed to infrastructure, education, research and development, all the things that lead to a better quality
of life for citizens. The MIC supported by a strong lobby prospers but it would be unfair to suggest that trickles down to
the rest of us. I'm also discouraged by the number of young people enlisting due to the lack of job opportunities
in the civilian sector. If all these troops were to return, I can't imagine without a new economy how high the unemployment
rate would be. War may benefit a few, but those few become filthy rich.
Printer Friendly | Permalink |  | Top
 
krabigirl Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Jan-06-10 06:21 PM
Response to Reply #40
136. I agree. And the "defense" industry is so powerful.
So many jobs are provided by these wars, that I think those in power are scared to pull the plug.
Printer Friendly | Permalink |  | Top
 
WillyT Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Jan-05-10 10:48 PM
Response to Original message
43. That's About The Size Of It !!! - K & R !!!
:kick:
Printer Friendly | Permalink |  | Top
 
UrbScotty Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Jan-05-10 10:56 PM
Response to Original message
44. It's amazing what gets rec'd here (nt)
Printer Friendly | Permalink |  | Top
 
Raster Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Jan-05-10 11:13 PM
Response to Reply #44
45. And thank Gawd it does!
Printer Friendly | Permalink |  | Top
 
debbierlus Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Jan-05-10 11:32 PM
Response to Original message
49. Excellent analysis -

Good show, Bob!
Printer Friendly | Permalink |  | Top
 
defendandprotect Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Jan-05-10 11:36 PM
Response to Original message
50. kicking to read tomorrow --- ugh!
Printer Friendly | Permalink |  | Top
 
Jakes Progress Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Jan-06-10 12:13 AM
Response to Original message
58. "golden opportunity to build a better society"
That used to be what the Democratic party was all about.

I really wish I could believe that the administration would read and heed this column. Herbert has described perfectly what America is feeling. Not only do we feel that we have missed that golden opportunity, but we can't even imagine that it will get better. It takes rich people who truly have no imagination to not realize this.
Printer Friendly | Permalink |  | Top
 
bridgit Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Jan-06-10 12:16 AM
Response to Original message
59. Yup, fuckered up sideways and very, very proud of it without any doubts whatsoever!
Printer Friendly | Permalink |  | Top
 
DeSwiss Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Jan-06-10 12:51 AM
Response to Original message
64. 
Edited on Wed Jan-06-10 12:55 AM by DeSwiss
...to fashion an economy that creates jobs for all who want and need to work."

- And the people we have sent there, are incapable of seeing this and/or doing a damned thing about it....

Printer Friendly | Permalink |  | Top
 
Joe the Liberal Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Jan-06-10 03:43 AM
Response to Original message
80. This guy always writes good articles k&r n/t
Printer Friendly | Permalink |  | Top
 
earth mom Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Jan-06-10 05:17 AM
Response to Original message
82. K & R!
:kick:
Printer Friendly | Permalink |  | Top
 
OneBlueSky Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Jan-06-10 05:19 AM
Response to Original message
83. I feel the same way . . . basically, everything is fucked up and no one is doing anything . . .
to fix any of the problems facing the nation and the planet . . . we vote for change, and what we get is more of the same . . . we know that the corporations are the root cause of most of the problems, yet no one has the balls to stand up to them and say "Enough!" . . . our "representatives" (HA!) would rather just take their campaign contributions and vote the way they're told to . . . the illegal and immoral wars go on and on and on, we pay upteen billions of dollars to prosecute them, but we can't come up with the funds to pay for healthcare for everyone . . . we continue to foul our own nest by destroying the planet that supports all life, polluting the air, water, and land, altering the climate, and watching as species become extinct (no problem -- we didn't need those fish anyway) . . .

it's true . . . the human race seems to "prefer necrophilia (love of death) over biophilia (love of life)," as a wise man once said . . . and we prove it every day in the way we live our lives and "govern" ourselves . . . and that's a recipe for real disaster down the road -- and not all that far down the road, either . . .

frankly, I'm glad that I'm in the latter part of my time here on planet earth . . . I'm pretty sure I don't want to be around to witness the ultimate outcome of our greed, our negligence, and our stupidity . . . it ain't gonna be pretty . . .



Printer Friendly | Permalink |  | Top
 
sam sarrha Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Jan-06-10 06:19 AM
Response to Original message
87. bottom 80% pocesses 7% of wealth, 74% of debt.. ...it's rigged, it'll never end..>Link>>
Edited on Wed Jan-06-10 06:25 AM by sam sarrha
http://sociology.ucsc.edu/whorulesamerica/power/wealth....
"...The Wealth Distribution
In the United States, wealth is highly concentrated in a relatively few hands. As of 2007, the top 1% of households (the upper class) owned 34.6% of all privately held wealth, and the next 19% (the managerial, professional, and small business stratum) had 50.5%, which means that just 20% of the people owned a remarkable 85%, leaving only 15% of the wealth for the bottom 80% (wage and salary workers). In terms of financial wealth (total net worth minus the value of one's home), the top 1% of households had an even greater share: 42.7%. Table 1 and Figure 1 present further details drawn from the careful work of economist Edward N. Wolff at New York University (2009)..."

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=woIkIph5xcU

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=8VHNXTBwj80&NR=1

this is the problem ..Socialism is the cure.. that is why they hate it/fear it..

GOP is a Cargo Cult of OCD Wealth Hoarders, they believe that wealth is the Measure of gODs favor of a man, therefore it is a sin to tax a Rich Man/Corporation. the poor are being punished by gOD, therefore it is a sin to help them. and they use Mafia tactics to enforce their ideology to keep the money/power coming. they are Psychotic, out of control and manipulate any criticism as a conspiracy theory insanity. they don't like the French simply because they were the first to come up with an effective means of dealing with the Wealth Hoarding Psychotic cult Oligarchs.. they F'n removed them from the Gene Pool. i believe the success of France's socialist government has been due to their early Revolution's Eugenics program.

we need to spread this message and reveal the truth to the people they've conned into supporting this insanity. Psychotic Oligarchs think anything they do to horde more wealth is ordained by gOD, anyone they hurt deserves it..

the GOP is a Psychotic Cult.. they Kill People, men women children in their quest to Horde more and more needless Wealth/Power
40,000 a year with no health care, half a million supporting the Tobacco industry...1200 people die every day from Tobacco addiction. 1080 of those were addicted as children, 540 of the 1080 were addicted under the age of 12.!!! no one cry's louder about regulation of tobacco than a Republican. :rant:
Printer Friendly | Permalink |  | Top
 
mmonk Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Jan-06-10 07:00 AM
Response to Original message
88. Spot on.
Printer Friendly | Permalink |  | Top
 
democrank Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Jan-06-10 07:14 AM
Response to Original message
90. Anyone who thinks this country isn`t in "deep, deep trouble"
is comfortable with willful ignorance.
Printer Friendly | Permalink |  | Top
 
katkat Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Jan-06-10 09:27 AM
Response to Original message
92. Duplicate thread
Printer Friendly | Permalink |  | Top
 
Better Believe It Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Jan-06-10 03:48 PM
Response to Reply #92
129. No it isn't. That's a different discussion board. It wasn't posted here.
Printer Friendly | Permalink |  | Top
 
defendandprotect Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Jan-06-10 09:39 AM
Response to Original message
93. Trade agreements have to be overturned . . . or we're just kidding ourselves . . .
or letting the DLC kid us -- !! Which is it?

If Obama is listening "only to Rahm" then he's not going to do what should be

done on the trade agreements which is the way to replace our jobs.

Global Warming is always the first issue --

We can no longer burn fossil fuels --

We need an entire change in our culture and those who control the wealth and

natural resources of the nation don't want that!

Our battle is with patriarchy/capitalism -- both of which are suicidal.

Printer Friendly | Permalink |  | Top
 
Lorien Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Jan-06-10 09:46 AM
Response to Original message
95. Somebody tell me; what ever happened to the green energy jobs and high speed rail?
It seems like those two projects would jump start the economy and be a benefit to everyone. Building a National high speed Mag lev system with light rail connectors would not only put thousands back to work, but ease highway congestion, curb pollution, and enable qualified job seekers to easily commute to jobs in areas that they couldn't afford to live. And with two wars and peak oil just around the corner, developing green renewable energy should be our new Apollo project. Why are we buying solar panels from China? We should be innovating better tech here ourselves! How about a project to create and install solar panels on the roofs of every government building and school in California, Florida, Arizona and Texas just for starters. Bailouts for banksters, more war, handouts to big pharma and the insurance companies....trillions that could be spent on more "socialist" programs that actually give America a chance at HAVING a future.
Printer Friendly | Permalink |  | Top
 
Sunnyshine Donating Member (698 posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Jan-06-10 11:46 AM
Response to Reply #95
111. All of that would make deep cuts into the profit margins of our status quo giants. Old money wins.
Edited on Wed Jan-06-10 11:55 AM by Sunnyshine
Again. Van Jones conveniently got nixed after only 7 months in office, which was the one chance we had for major green projects.

/to add last sentence
Printer Friendly | Permalink |  | Top
 
Lorien Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Jan-06-10 07:02 PM
Response to Reply #111
138. That's what it all boils down to, doesn't it? We all get poorer, sicker and our future
gets bleaker just so that a tiny handful of the wealthy elite (a.k.a -short sighted greedy assholes) can get a tiny bit wealthier next quarter.They never think BEYOND next quarter. That's clear enough. :grr:
Printer Friendly | Permalink |  | Top
 
valerief Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Jan-06-10 10:41 AM
Response to Original message
100. Hey, the rich have to get richer somehow. That's all that matters. Nothing else matters. Nothing.
It's been proven over and over and over and over and over and over again all around the world. We don't matter.
Printer Friendly | Permalink |  | Top
 
go west young man Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Jan-06-10 10:44 AM
Response to Original message
102. The truth is that the great capitalist experiment that is America has failed.
The rich are still draining the swamp. The war machine is still pumping out death. The corporations have hijacked the government and the pious religious hypocrites have way too much power. The country is screwed with the system the way it is. The people will never wrestle control back from the corporations while they still believe in the falsehood of the American dream. They need to start anew with a new progressive government. King George has brought the decline. It will be decades before America is believed in again. If ever. America has to start by returning back to domestic manufacturing. You have to build from the ground up. The bank bailout was a top down approach as is the new health care policy. The little guy is still screwed.
Printer Friendly | Permalink |  | Top
 
4dsc Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Jan-06-10 10:52 AM
Response to Original message
105. Consumerism is dead
Until you recognize the fact that our current economic model is based on a non sustainable consumption of resources that are limited, you will believe that a recovery is somehow possible.

Printer Friendly | Permalink |  | Top
 
Bragi Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Jan-06-10 11:23 AM
Response to Original message
108. Why is America failing? Because of its deep and worsening inequalities
Edited on Wed Jan-06-10 11:23 AM by Bragi
I think the increasingly evident ongoing decline of America is principally rooted in its refusal to even acknowledge, let alone address, the permanent and growing economic inequalities that underlie just about every problem in America, and that precludes adoption of almost every available solution.

I have no fix for this malaise. Realistically, America lacks the political institutions, the public information systems, and the social cohesion and resilience which would be needed to reverse this decline.
Printer Friendly | Permalink |  | Top
 
swilton Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Jan-06-10 11:47 AM
Response to Original message
112. Reganomics put an end to American forecasting
after he criticized Jimmy Carter for using the word 'malaise' to characterize American society and for asking Americans to conserve energy....(anyone out there remember the oil crisis of the early 70s). It was Ronald Reagan who took the solar pannels off the White House and expected Americans to spend their way to happiness. Thus forecasts and evidence were out - letting 'the market' take care of everything from the energy crisis to jobs was in. Unfortunately, Americans are now being asked to pay for squandering their economic heritage through military imperialism.
Printer Friendly | Permalink |  | Top
 
h9socialist Donating Member (584 posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Jan-06-10 11:48 AM
Response to Original message
113. History ain't always the most attractive traveling companion . . .
Obama is trying to deal with problems that the Republicans let fester. The Republicans neither had nor have any solutions. They only know how to bring together a cryin' bunch of hillbillies to cry about the fact that the president isn't white anymore (ooops! Too much truth! I meant to say "rising taxes" -- that haven't risen much anyway).
Give Obama his due! He's going after the problems like no one else has. But the system is resistant to change, and the changes that get instituted need time to bear fruit. If we don't hang together with this President, the right wing will punish our lack of solidarity at every bend.
Printer Friendly | Permalink |  | Top
 
Better Believe It Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Jan-06-10 05:38 PM
Response to Reply #113
131. "the system is resistant to change" True. And so is President Obama.
Edited on Wed Jan-06-10 05:39 PM by Better Believe It
President Obama is the CEO of that economic system.

Wall Street and corporate America like what they see so far.
Printer Friendly | Permalink |  | Top
 
ProgressIn2008 Donating Member (848 posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Jan-06-10 03:32 PM
Response to Original message
127. At least some o' the folks in high places are saying the words. The pretending burned. nt
Printer Friendly | Permalink |  | Top
 
krabigirl Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Jan-06-10 06:18 PM
Response to Original message
134. America is and has been in a permanent state of decline. It is what it is.
Printer Friendly | Permalink |  | Top
 
alfredo Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Jan-06-10 06:24 PM
Response to Original message
137. GWB Hoovered us.
Printer Friendly | Permalink |  | Top
 
DU AdBot (1000+ posts) Click to send private message to this author Click to view 
this author's profile Click to add 
this author to your buddy list Click to add 
this author to your Ignore list Tue Feb 25th 2020, 06:08 PM
Response to Original message
Advertisements [?]
 Top

Home » Discuss » Archives » General Discussion (1/22-2007 thru 12/14/2010) Donate to DU

Powered by DCForum+ Version 1.1 Copyright 1997-2002 DCScripts.com
Software has been extensively modified by the DU administrators


Important Notices: By participating on this discussion board, visitors agree to abide by the rules outlined on our Rules page. Messages posted on the Democratic Underground Discussion Forums are the opinions of the individuals who post them, and do not necessarily represent the opinions of Democratic Underground, LLC.

Home  |  Discussion Forums  |  Journals |  Store  |  Donate

About DU  |  Contact Us  |  Privacy Policy

Got a message for Democratic Underground? Click here to send us a message.

© 2001 - 2011 Democratic Underground, LLC