Skip to main content

View Diary: White House Meeting on Arctic Media Blackout (143 comments)

Comment Preferences

  •  Not sure I agree (13+ / 0-)

    The financial and economic programs of the 1790's, road and canal projects of the early 19th century, transcontinental railroads and Homestead and Morrill Acts of the 1860's, etc., were all the results of long-term thinking and planning, and very successful ones at that. Of course, that was when we were still an emerging power that embraced big things, not an ossified one that resists them. We've become much more conservative and narrow-minded since then. But crises have a way of waking us up to action. This is that.

    "Liberty without virtue would be no blessing to us" - Benjamin Rush, 1777

    by kovie on Tue Apr 30, 2013 at 09:31:00 PM PDT

    [ Parent ]

    •  I agree that those programs carried on for a long (16+ / 0-)

      period.  But I wonder if a development scenario -- "We need roads, canals, land platting record, etc" -- will relate to programs where we have to get people to do what they don't naturally want to do.

      Addressing climate change requires changing people's actions against their will (at least in some cases, roughly 1/2 the nation would be a guess).  Development -- roads, canals, plats, etc -- were things everyone wanted. Desired improvements.

      Social Security would be one long term example, but everyone pays in and everyone collects out.  It was built with a guaranteed constituency.

      What I fear is that our representative (haha) government will be delayed until the crisis is too apparent, too far along.  Oil and 1% groups are pushing hard against doing anything. By the time the consensus comes about, will there be time to address the problem without facing Malthusian catastrophes?

      "The law is meant to be my servant and not my master, still less my torturer and my murderer." -- James Baldwin. July 11, 1966.

      by YucatanMan on Tue Apr 30, 2013 at 10:19:17 PM PDT

      [ Parent ]

      •  Maybe the pre-Citizens United government was (1+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        YucatanMan

        capable of responding to a crisis whose only solution threatens the established economic order.

        Post-Citizens United? Not so much. The problem with our government is not that it is structurally impotent, it's that we have rendered it impotent by the ascendence of political interest and greed so potent that it has now claimed the last bastion of protection of our democracy: the Supreme Court.

        Could a true reformer ever be elected President? Only if that true reformer masqueraded as a Wall Street shill to get there. Sort of a reverse Obama. But even such a president would still be faced with a thoroughly corrupt and purchased Congress.

        It does seem hopeless. But we have to continue to do our best to organize, to educate, to be as active as we possibly can be. Otherwise, there truly is no hope.

    •  you are stuck on thinking in terms (12+ / 0-)

      of government and the idea that a centralized government is the best way to go about facilitating this sort of change.

      just because rethugs argue against the federal government out of a long history of resistance to progressive ideals like social justice and economic equality, does not mean that another sort of change is not appropriate.

      at this point, i am at least partially convinced that communities moving towards self sufficiency with the idea that they can move faster towards the change we need is a good idea and maybe the only way we can start to change things.

      in any case, i see absolutely no evidence that dc is going to do the sort of things we need it to do.

      time has run out.  we need to start doing things differently on the ground where we are.

      its almost impossible no matter what we try, but groups of people getting together to create real change in their immediate surroundings may be the only alternative.  this has the advantage of pointing to these communities when they start functioning at a higher level than others who not have made these changes.

      but all this depends on time and we don't have time.

      without a miracle, we are toast, literally and figuratively.  

      crispy critters.

      all that moderation has us in a bigger mess than anyone can solve.  

      •  I don't know of any examples where this works (0+ / 0-)

        in a country as large, advanced and complex as ours. And climate change is obvious a global, not merely national problem. I literally can't see how this can be dealt with properly without the role of major world governments, including our own. This cannot be fixed on a grass roots level. What block association is likely to invent a better battery or wind turbine?

        "Liberty without virtue would be no blessing to us" - Benjamin Rush, 1777

        by kovie on Wed May 01, 2013 at 11:33:05 AM PDT

        [ Parent ]

    •  Railroads, Homestead Act, Morrill Act (1+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      kovie

      The Transcontinental Railroad, the Homestead Act and the Morrill Act had to wait for the Confederacy to withdraw from the national legislature for a time.  This may be why calls from Southern states to secede get a fairly sympathetic hearing from some on the Left.  

      "Politics should be the part-time profession of every citizen who would protect the rights and privileges of free people and who would preserve what is good and fruitful in our national heritage." -- Lucille Ball

      by Yamaneko2 on Wed May 01, 2013 at 10:42:36 AM PDT

      [ Parent ]

      •  Which is why I'm on the fence (0+ / 0-)

        as to whether the Civil War was worth it. The slaves were freed but only to face a new kind of slavery that their descendants face to this day. We're still divided over race and culture. The south continues to be a net drain on the economy. And over 600,000 died. Perhaps it would have been best to let the south go, let it have its own civil war (which it would have had eventually), clean up its shit on its own timetable and terms, and then beg to rejoin the union 50 years later, after WWI, less angry and resentful that it was.

        And think of all the great things we could have done without its resistance!

        "Liberty without virtue would be no blessing to us" - Benjamin Rush, 1777

        by kovie on Wed May 01, 2013 at 11:36:44 AM PDT

        [ Parent ]

        •  I'm not sure the North would escape fissures. (0+ / 0-)

          For some reason, societies always seem to latch onto sizeable minorities within to bully and blame.  Great Britain's bigots take breaks from hating on Muslims by hating on Poles.  Russians dislike Tatars, Georgians, Armenians and Chechens.  Sunni and Shia tear at each other over the Fourth Caliph, barely waiting for Mohammed's flesh to go back to the clay.

          The mother of all refugee crises on the Ohio shore would not be particularly conducive to development, especially if Europe's colonial powers decided to take sides.  

          "Politics should be the part-time profession of every citizen who would protect the rights and privileges of free people and who would preserve what is good and fruitful in our national heritage." -- Lucille Ball

          by Yamaneko2 on Thu May 02, 2013 at 03:48:42 PM PDT

          [ Parent ]

        •  Another thought. (0+ / 0-)

          The nadir in race relations (Jim Crow to WWII) was horrible, terrible and rotten.  In the midst of that nadir, African-Americans individually and in groups made sizeable advances.  W. E. B. DuBois, in "The Souls of Black Folk", briefly inventoried the millions of dollars of property accumulated by former slaves in aggregate.  The rise in black literacy from 1865 to 1900 has few parallels in history, even amidst some terrible discouragement from the neighbors.  

          Postponing the start of that boom from 1865 to 1890 would have been terrible for the South and for the rest of the country.  

          "Politics should be the part-time profession of every citizen who would protect the rights and privileges of free people and who would preserve what is good and fruitful in our national heritage." -- Lucille Ball

          by Yamaneko2 on Thu May 02, 2013 at 04:02:03 PM PDT

          [ Parent ]

Subscribe or Donate to support Daily Kos.

Click here for the mobile view of the site