drill 'bama drill?
"Renaissance Thinking About the Issues of Our Day"
Plus...Have Americans become useful idiots for Koch Industries? Executive Director, Greenpeace Phil Radford www.greenpeace.org
Hour Two - "Everything You Know is Wrong" - David Kirby, his latest book is "Animal Factory: The Looming Threat of Industrial Pig, Dairy, and Poultry Farms to Humans and the Environment" www.animalfactorybook.com Is a giant poop bubble coming to eat your town?
Hour Three - What does a candidate have to do to make a tea partier say "you complete me?!" Pam Dahl, President, Tri-County Tea Party Florida www.tri-countyteaparty.org
“Empathy Entropy Paradox and how to break it”
The Gestalt Effect & Biosphere Politics.
"One may contemplate history from the point of view of happiness. But actually history is not the soil of happiness. The periods of happiness are blank pages in it." - Georg Wilhelm Friedrich Hegel
Jeremy Rifkin's talk at The American Academy in Berlin addresses the big picture issue of our corrupt culture. His talk about the Extension of Empathy in our society is a valuable listen. He is suggesting that we have to Begin to Empathize, on a more macro level, “As a Species.” He is asserting that the next progression in our evolution is a Distributed Economic Revolution and Lateral Capitalism. All of which requires a New Social Model. “Consciousness changes very quickly when energy and communication revolutions come in.” The goal should be an “Empathic Civilization.”
The Death Bed Test: Look back at life and see what parts really counted.
He calls the July of 2008 economic meltdown, “The end of the Industrial Revolution.” He says that was the earth quake and then the financial collapse was only an aftershock. So we are STILL not dealing with the crisis.
He also says not to confuse “Peak Oil Per Capita” with “Peak Oil Production.”
Peak Oil Per Capita has already peaked in 1979.
At $147 per barrel, purchasing power plummeted, and that was where “the engine of the Industrial Revolution shut off” world wide.
As we try to restart the global economy, and we do it with fossil fuels, we are limited by the inflation of oil prices and a ceiling of $147 per barrel. He say’s there is no way to get through that wall.
“We will be in very volatile times for many more decades”.... And then we’ll be extinct.
Please have him on.
Exemplified in symptoms that we recognize as current issues in our society (Global Warming, Poverty, Etc.), is a much larger problem and that is our culture. As such, I engage everyone I know on a daily basis with these issues and frame it in this big picture paradigm. My responses are usually that no one wants to hear it. This is because they feel overwhelmed and helpless in addressing such a momentous problem. How do we break through to the average, overwhelmed, disassociated, uneducated, miseducated, egocentric, ethnocentric, Self-Centered American? I need to know because I’m probably going to have to make new friends as a result of my current progressive world view. Thanks Thom.
Jerey Rifkin says that the temperature rising by 3% in the next century, now looks optimistic (which would still equal mass extinction).
A harbinger would be this one statistic: “One in Seven People in The World Go to Bed Without Access to Food.” That has never happened before. We have become the “Monster Species”
We are only 6.8 billion, yet we only make up half a per cent of the animal biomass on the earth. Unfortunately, we are currently using 24% of all the photosynthesis available on the earth.
Economists can sometimes seem like the two quacks in Hogarth’s “A Harlot’s Progress” arguing between themselves over whose potion is better while the patient dies. There seems to be as many theories as there are professional and amateur economists. Some of these people may claim to understand all the convolutions and obscurities of their trade. It is all so simple, they say. Back in the day, a man might take his stone ax into the forest, and cut down a tree for firewood. His neighbor down the cave doesn’t have a stone ax, and pays him to cut him some wood with a side of venison he carved out of a deer he killed with an arrow. One service exchanged for another with resources readily at hand, given the limitations of transport. With the development of large urban areas, resources to develop industries and feed people had to imported from the countryside, bartered for finished goods or coinage.
The more resources from the countryside was diminished, the further afield it had to be obtained, sometimes from other nations, who might demand some resource or goods that they lacked. In order for a society to advance, the more complex were the goods needed to accomplish this, and the greater reliance on imported technology and resources. Sometimes you couldn’t just take what you needed; the Roman’s discovered that the Celts in the wilds of the Baltic and North Sea coasts were not willing to just handover their amber. You had to make deals with other nations to get what you wanted. And that was just the trade part of a complex web; economics turned out to be not so simple after all.
Many people believe that simply focusing on the issue of trade will solve a multitude of problems. If it were only that simple. The United States itself is a “globalized” market comprised of 50 separate entities that are governed semi-autonomously. In order to maintain their economies, the parties in power must maintain a favorable climate for which business can prosper, and this includes barter with other states and even other nations. What is interesting here is that the U.S. has states large and small, some richer in resources and trade goods than others. There is unfettered free trade among states, and no state puts up trade barriers with another. Yet we don’t talk of trade deficits due to imbalances in interstate trade, or the fact that jobs move from state to state or region to region (mainly to the South). Why is this? Because at least it remains “in-country” even if different parts of the country are affected in different ways? Or because chaos would occur if every state put up trade barriers?
Most economists would say that the benefits of free trade outweigh the costs of implementing trade barriers in a complex economy, such as inefficient allocation of resources and reducing markets. There are even those who argue that high tariffs of the past had little or no value in creating or sustaining domestic industries or jobs; some even blame the Smoot-Hawley tariffs for much of effects that would cause the Great Depression, because in keeping prices artificially high it reduced the market both internally and externally for excess U.S. production. The fact is that there are just as many domestic industries that benefit by free trade as there are that are hurt by it, and this occurs in all countries, including that convenient scapegoat Mexico.
Instead of blaming the usual suspects for job losses, we should ask why a net 22 million jobs were created during the Clinton years and only a net 2 million during the Bush years. One reason is because the Bush tax cuts benefited the people least likely to drive the consumer economy beyond their current spending. The rich already have enough of what they want; it is the middle and lower income levels that have unfulfilled consumer needs. Lower-income consumers ability to sustain real job creation has also been stymied by the failure in almost a decade to reshape the earned income tax credit to fit the times, which is one of the few genuine anti-poverty mechanisms that has actual value.
Trade deficits are only a symptom of the failings on the macroeconomic level. Reducing trade deficits, and by doing so believing that this will cure a multitude of social, political and economic ills, is now commonplace now amongst “populist” and tea party-types. This allows people to engage in scapegoating “foreigners,” and this is at best simplistic. This is no more factually-based now during the “Great Recession” than it was during the Great Depression. Garment production is virtually non-existent in this country, so it is pointless, for example, to continue to blame that sector for depressed wages. Debt has been rising at or near record rates in every sector of the economy, not just in trade. Manufacturing jobs in this country were actually stable until the Bush years, because new, although perhaps less robust, industries were replacing those that were lost; but in the last decade, 3 million manufacturing jobs have been lost. Why? Because, in part, economic “growth” during this period was due almost wholly to unsustainable sectors like the housing market and financial transactions relating to it; tax cuts for the wealthy created a risk market not in sustainable, long-term job creation, but gambling in phony money for quick pay-outs.
The bottom line is that there is no convenient “fix-all” for the economy; we can even “thank” China for bankrolling our debt and investing in U.S. market with their excess trade dollars (because they have to do something with that $1.7 trillion in foreign currency reserves that has increasingly diminished value), but like the housing market, that is another unsustainable avenue of “growth.” Instead of whining about free trade and searching for foreign scapegoats, the U.S. has to expand its own job growth horizons in new industries capable of sustained growth, like green energy and the products that grow from it.
Oh My. I just realized that as a retiree and long term disability beneficary from my previous employeer my benefits are connected to Koch industries. So far I can't complain as they have taken care of by benefits until now. But somehow I feel like I need to go take a shower, even though I just took one.
Thom maybe right about Obama's ability to win political points, but I'm still concerned about what those wins mean. Sure I'm happy that health insurance reform was passed, and its great that the Republicans are crapping themselves over it, but in the long run what do we have? I'm wondering what the unintended consequences will be.
Tom just asked his caller from California,"If she would rather have GWBush or Ronney"
I say yes I would rather have GWBush or Ronney implementing GOP policies rather than a Prez who says he is a Dem implementing GOP policies.
We saw this before with BClinton and here we are again,with "progressives" defending Obama who is implementing GOP policies.
Just what do progressives stand for again ?
The referenced ADP National Employment Report of 23K jobs lost does not tell the whole story.
Goods producing = -51K
Service providing = +28K
We are still on the path of becoming a service-based economy.
Thom is not crazy about the Aikido. When I worked on the Obama campaign, I mentioned to a fellow worker that I had heard Barack had indeed studied Aikido. I was quickly told to shhhhh- because there was no way to disclose this to the American public and to be sure they could comprehend what Aikido was and that it was something that Obama's team could explain without any back lash from the other side of the aisle.
The Bloom Box may be an important future source of clean energy. This story was featured on the Sunday show “60 Minutes.” A shorter story was highlighted on MSNBC. Fascinating (video): [When you begin playing the video, a short story that is not related will begin playing, it will only take a moment to wait for that to finish. Hang in there and watch the segment about The Bloom Box. ]
I wrote Thom earlier today regarding an Alaskan Pipeline Oil spill and I apologize foe getting some of my facts wrong. This took place in March of 2006. It seems that the leaking pipeline was responsible for much less oil on the ground than I remembered. “Alaska's Department of Environmental Conservation increased its estimate of the size of the spill, the latest estimate putting it at around 265,000 gallons.” Not the 500,000 barrels I had recalled. Still it was the largest pipeline oil spill ever recorded in the U.S. and it was as recent as four years ago.
This was in response to Thom's statement that the oil companies claim that they have significantly cleaned up their act and are much safer in their delivery of offshore oil.
Please see the article from The Independent, UK at the following URL:
Given the fact that this story was held so close to the vest, only one news cycle scroll bar, and the fact that one mistake can be so environmentally devastating, I do not wish to see any additional offshore leases opened up. If we truly need a transitional oil supply, why don’t we mandate that the oil companies drill and use the offshore leases they already have. Why do they need more?
Too true Nels... I know that the individual health care mandate was a Republicant idea and the corporations drool at the prospect of this kind of 'managed' economy where we the people are all forced into contractual agreements to pay that corps(e). But I am pretty sure that the mandate will generate unintended consequences even tho' it has no teeth (at present) - the Democrats have tried to make it seem kind and safe. But the fact that it is a corporate Republicant idea that will not stop the right from blasting out ads against it from now until the mid-terms. We 'll see, but the Republicants usually can't pass up that kind of opportunistic doublespeak.