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  •  We definitely lack anything in the way (22+ / 0-)

    of a proactive policy to address the needs of this growing group of people. They already constitute a permanent underclass on the margins of the economy. This is not unique to the US. European countries have somewhat larger cohorts of the same situation. It is a phenomenon of post industrial economies.

    There are two broad trends contributing to this, globalization and automation. Countries with emerging economies are creating labor forces  with increasingly sophisticated skills. Technology is producing a growing ability to perform work tasks with out the use of human labor.

    Even if the will to create new jobs were present among governmental and business leaders, which it is not, approaches that have been workable a generation ago would be less so now. It seems to me that a more creative approach is going to be required to deal with the problem.

    •  With the amount of money printed up to (39+ / 0-)

      prop up the banking sector, we could have built the greatest civilization in human history, at least in terms of infrastructure and sustainable prosperity.

      We could have transformed our energy distribution infrastructure to accommodate and maximize new energy and sustainable efficiency. We could have transformed our transportation infrastructure to, again, maximize efficiency and sustainability.

      We could have made advanced progress in clean energy production with multiple technologies that require massive investment to develop.

      We could have transformed our infrastructure to be vastly more efficient, instead of wasting as much as 80% of the energy we burn, by re-insulating homes and offices.

      We could have transformed our education system by building thousands of smaller, neighborhood schools with teacher/student ratios in the 10s instead of 40s per class.

      We could have built thousands of libraries and community centers fostering...community.

      We could have begun paying public servants a decent wage thereby dramatically reducing corruption and incompetence.

      America is falling apart. I walk through city streets and I see a lot of work to do. Just fixing and cleaning up our streets, without the somewhat lofty goals of transformation would employ millions.

      Of course, the mere act of just creating millions of decent paying jobs would be the most transformative thing.

      Putting millions of Americans to work will dramatically reduce crime, abortion rates, suicides, drug addiction, and a plague of other social illnesses we suffer from in our dog eat dog, sociopathic-like society.

      Of course, giving tens of millions of people stable, comfortable incomes and a sense of serving their fellow Americans won't solve all of our problem. Just the vast majority of them.

      •  Perhaps it's time to END THE FED? (2+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        Dburn, Pablo Bocanegra
        •  Removing our central bank is suicide. (4+ / 0-)
          Recommended by:
          AlexDrew, HeyMikey, Kombema, chujb

          The Fed may not be accountable, but being able to change the money supply is a basic tenet of Keynesian Economics.

          .................expect us......................... FDR 9-23-33, "If we cannot do this one way, we will do it another way. But do it we will.

          by Roger Fox on Mon Dec 09, 2013 at 12:52:15 PM PST

          [ Parent ]

          •  This is OUR country (2+ / 0-)
            Recommended by:
            Pablo Bocanegra, KJG52

            This land is our land.  The assets of this nation belongs to the people.  So, why are we borrowing money from the Fed?  The Fed is a criminal cartel that steals wealth from everyone but those in the top 0.0000000001%.  Why anyone would want to leave so much power in the hands of a few unelected bankers to issue endless debt and set interest rates is beyond me.  

            •  Ask Greece how that worked for them. (1+ / 0-)
              Recommended by:
              Kombema

              .................expect us......................... FDR 9-23-33, "If we cannot do this one way, we will do it another way. But do it we will.

              by Roger Fox on Mon Dec 09, 2013 at 03:22:03 PM PST

              [ Parent ]

              •  Greece got FUCKED by Goldman Sachs (0+ / 0-)

                who owns the Fed.  Among other things.  But keep believing your Keynesian dream.  It's worked out great for us, hasn't it?

              •  Silly (4+ / 0-)
                Recommended by:
                NoMoreLies, AoT, JesseCW, MDhome

                Greece's situation is not remotely comparable.

                I don't however advocate eliminating the function of a central bank. We just need to nationalize it. And we need to stop borrowing our national currency.

                Since 1913, we have been told over and over again why we need a privatized central bank to sell us our own currency with interest, which private bankers and bond traders get to profit from, so as to avoid recessions and inflation.

                How's that worked out so far? Starting with the Great Depression, which occurred a mere 15 or so years after the creation of the Fed, we've had over 30 recessions and excessive inflation that is only disguised by technological advancement?

                One day, future historians will look back on how we allow banks to print money from thin air and then charge us compound interest on loaning it to us, and recoil in horror at what a scam it is.

                And no, I am not a gold bug. We should just print money we need. Interest free. It just has to be invested to prevent inflation. Money spent creating real value as I described above.

                Our entire monetary system is a scam. If people understood it, they would revolt.

            •  borrowing from the Fed? (0+ / 0-)

              Hard to see how this is what is going on.

              The Fed bought $4 trillion worth of bonds from the public; the $4 trillion sits in excess reserves accounts at banks and is not being lent out as usual-the Fed is paying interest on these reserves and banks are unwilling or not able to lend due to lack loan demand.  This is an issue unto itself.

              The Fed simply "printed" money to buy these bonds-the interest they earn is turned over to the Treasury after the very  low rates on excess reserves have been paid.  Unless rates go up and new bonds become a lot more valuable than old ones, the Treasury is making money on this scheme.

              In most eras, this bond buying would be the opposite of borrowing money-it is simply printing money and it would normally lead to enormous inflation and the cheapening of our debt obligations.

              This, of course, is the right wing criticism of the Fed, despite inflation being nowhere in sight.

              I believe the Fed is doing what it can to stimulate the economy after the "Great Recession".  The standard 1930's Keynesian answer to our dilemma is not monetary but fiscal. (after all rates are near zero, what else can the Fed do?)  

              Most liberal economists believe that we simply have not popped up demand this cycle through aggressive government spending.  This era, in their mind, represents a failure in fiscal policy.

              Again, ask the right wingers, if our debt and spending is unsustainable, why are real and nominal interest rates so low?  Don't the markets require risk premiums for spenders like Greece?  Maybe we need to spend?

          •  Then you have a different central bank (0+ / 0-)

            You don't need to have the specific bank that we have to implement monetary policy. There are plenty of other ways to do it.

            If knowledge is power and power corrupts, does that mean that knowledge corrupts?

            by AoT on Mon Dec 09, 2013 at 05:15:38 PM PST

            [ Parent ]

      •  Great remarks on a great diary (6+ / 0-)

        James, as long as the 1% will continue to ship jobs overseas, whenever they can save a couple cents an hour in labor/production costs, the American worker will be getting screwed.

        Both parties are in the pockets of the 1% who own too much of America, including the media. They now control spin on all of the news and data. Most American now have a dim view of the future.

        War is costly. Peace is priceless!

        by frostbite on Mon Dec 09, 2013 at 12:48:48 PM PST

        [ Parent ]

        •  As a business owner (0+ / 0-)

          one is always looking to cut costs wherever he/she can because it is survival of the fittest.  People blame companies for shipping jobs overseas but if companies started doubling prices on their products as a result of hiring and manufacturing domestically, they would go out of business in a matter of months if not weeks or days.  

          There are real things we can do to start creating jobs here at home.  One is to lift the burden on these employers by removing regulations and taxes.  Give them incentives, not hurdles, to operate here.  It costs a lot of time and money to start a business let alone hire and/or fire a worker in the US.  Starting and maintaining a business should not be impeded by those who know nothing about it.  Then, in order to help these businesses stay competitive, we should levy taxes on companies that ship their jobs overseas.  You want to build a factory here?  Okay, do it.  We won't get in the way.  You want to build a factory in Vietnam?  Fine.  But we will levy a 40% tax on your bottom line.  

          That is just one of many things we can do to start the recovery process.    

          •  Where do you get "doubling prices" from? nt (1+ / 0-)
            Recommended by:
            Roger Fox

            "He who fights monsters should see to it that he himself does not become a monster. And if you gaze for long into an abyss, the abyss gazes also into you."

            by Hayate Yagami on Mon Dec 09, 2013 at 01:41:50 PM PST

            [ Parent ]

            •  Out of my ass...It's not an exact figure. (0+ / 0-)

              But in all seriousness, our company manufactures and imports a lot of our goods from overseas because it's a lot cheaper to do it that way.  We're in the apparel business and if we kept such parts of our operation here in US, we wouldn't be able to compete.  It's not an ideal situation because we'd love to keep all of our operations here where we can easily oversee and manage production as well as hire locally and create jobs at home but it's either offshore or out of business unless we can get away with charging $10 per shirt to our wholesalers and get away with it.  We can't.  And our contractors who were based here two decades ago have long moved their factories to Mexico, China, Vietnam, Pakistan, etc, etc.  Higher taxes + endless regulations + higher wages = higher prices in the end.  That's the reality we're dealing with.  

              •  again, bs (2+ / 0-)
                Recommended by:
                Hayate Yagami, MDhome

                this only works if you are trying to be a lowest cost retailer.  people pay decent money for quality products that could be built right here, but companies would rather have profit today than a more powerful economy where everyone does well - and you do too.

                take an example, apple could build all of their products here at a cost increase between $30-$55 per device, and they would still make >$100 profit per device.  so why aren't they doing so?  pure greed, the kind of greed you are advocating.

                •  Nathan (1+ / 0-)
                  Recommended by:
                  Smoke and Mirrors

                  Apple is a public company which means they have to constantly show earnings growth, not just a decent profit. They have to constantly tell Wall Street a new story. That includes public employee pension funds, university endowments and middle class investors who have mutual fund holdings.

                  Its a lot more complicated than "greed".

                  •  Companies layoff people to prevent them from... (2+ / 0-)
                    Recommended by:
                    MDhome, nathanfl

                    Retiring!

                    Pushed Out of a Job Early

                    If there is one thing older workers fear in this economy, it’s losing their jobs as they approach retirement. But that is exactly what happened in March to Richard L. White, who was the director of career services at Rutgers University for 22 years.

                     Mr. White, 63, had received positive annual reviews from 1990 to 2011. In 2009, the supervising administrator wrote that his work was “conducted at the highest possible level!”

                    He was considered a leader in the field, winning a Fulbright grant in 2005, the first year it was offered for career services directors. Rutgers, the biggest public university in New Jersey, was ranked 21st nationally in 2010 by The Wall Street Journal for placing undergraduates; in 2012, Bloomberg Businessweek ranked the business school 33rd in the nation for M.B.A. pay

                     But none of this information was included when Gregory S. Jackson, now the university president’s chief of staff, wrote Mr. White’s performance appraisal for the first time in April 2012. Mr. Jackson, who had recently taken oversight of career services, wrote that Mr. White had failed to meet standards in every category.

                    Soon after, Mr. White was removed as director; within a year, he was fired.

                    http://www.nytimes.com/...

                    They lay them off just before they can retire... and then they can't find work because of age discrimination.
                  •  no its not more complicated (0+ / 0-)

                    wall street is the apex of greed - it is a profit extraction industry.  

                    additionally, apple will be assembling certain computers here in the US soon, so it is not only reasonable but they will be accomplishing it.

                    maybe you cannot run a business that is in a race to the lowest prices here in the US, so why do that?  if it is going to cost more money to make things here, why not just make the higher quality products, keep the money in the country, and the whole economic pie grows?

                    i enjoy Italian food a lot, and they heavily regulate their industries to ensure quality and adherence to tradition if businesses are wanting to benefit from the Italians world reknowned quality products and craftmanship.  I buy imported Italian food that is DOP certified (or other certifications depending on the industry) and they are not cheap, but it is so worth it.  It it working in Europe, and it works here too.

              •  Asian Blue jeans $20, Made in Texas $25 (0+ / 0-)

                youre in apparel and you dont know that?

                .................expect us......................... FDR 9-23-33, "If we cannot do this one way, we will do it another way. But do it we will.

                by Roger Fox on Tue Dec 10, 2013 at 08:59:35 AM PST

                [ Parent ]

          •  Removing which regulations? n/t (5+ / 0-)

            Don't tell me what you believe, show me what you do and I will tell you what you believe.

            by Meteor Blades on Mon Dec 09, 2013 at 02:03:04 PM PST

            [ Parent ]

            •  Oh, gosh, I don't even know (0+ / 0-)
              •  And which of those in that document do... (4+ / 0-)

                ...you think should be excised?

                Don't tell me what you believe, show me what you do and I will tell you what you believe.

                by Meteor Blades on Mon Dec 09, 2013 at 03:03:28 PM PST

                [ Parent ]

                •  I want to offer competitive wages (0+ / 0-)

                  without having to take out social security, medicare, taxes, et al from everyone's paycheck.  For example, if we're paying $80,000/yr to someone, I want him to take home $6,500/mo and not $4,800.  I want to operate my warehouse without the city telling me that I need to make cosmetic or structural changes to be in compliance with their ever-changing codes.  I want tax breaks and incentives for hiring, not drown in paperwork.  I want to pay the same tax rate/import duties for cotton, poly, nylons, etc, not different paperwork and tax rates for each fabric.  I could go on and on...And no doubt some will accuse me of wanting to run a sweatshop paying $5 an hour.  But whether you choose to believe or not, we have a high retention rate because we pay good wages and bonuses and we have very liberal vacation/sick day policies.  And look.  As an employer, I don't want my building to be crumbling down or our environment to pose danger to anyone.  That'd just be stupid as I have the most to lose if some shit started coming down and people ended up hurt or dead as a result.  And if I were to allow some dumb shit like that to happen, I deserve to be out of business and locked up anyway.  What I have problem with is these bureaucrats who know nothing about my business telling me how to run it.  And forcing me to waste time, energy and resources to please them to a T when I could be doing something much more productive.

                  •  Move your operations to Somalia, perhaps?... (1+ / 0-)
                    Recommended by:
                    MDhome

                    This is neo-liberal tripe, man. You want the end of the social welfare safety net,  and more profits. Full stop. Former Republican refugee, now DINO, I assume?

                    "Government by organized money is just as dangerous as Government by organized mob." -- Franklin D. Roosevelt

                    by Kombema on Mon Dec 09, 2013 at 04:18:47 PM PST

                    [ Parent ]

                  •  So now I know you want privatize Social... (4+ / 0-)
                    Recommended by:
                    AoT, JesseCW, joedemocrat, bryduck

                    ...Security and eliminate Medicare. How do you feel about OSHA?

                    Don't tell me what you believe, show me what you do and I will tell you what you believe.

                    by Meteor Blades on Mon Dec 09, 2013 at 04:21:23 PM PST

                    [ Parent ]

                  •  the rules exists because of history (0+ / 0-)
                    What I have problem with is these bureaucrats who know nothing about my business telling me how to run it.  And forcing me to waste time, energy and resources to please them to a T when I could be doing something much more productive.
                    that's the reason.  i work in one of the most regulated industries - health care.  nearly everything i do is associated with a regulation, with a rule, and with a policy from hospitals, state and federal governments and their myriad of agencies, as well as professional organizations.  every year there is more regulations than the year before.  why?  because we are constantly finding ways things can go wrong.

                    i thought this would be self-evident.

              •  Yah where /would/ anyone get the idea of garment (2+ / 0-)
                Recommended by:
                socialismorbarbarism, Kombema

                industry regulation - http://www.theguardian.com/... ?

          •  what a load of crap (5+ / 0-)

            there are thousands upon thousands of businesses paying people good wages and they do it right here in America.  Take CostCo as an example, the tech industry pays well.  Health Care does too.

            There are real things we can do to start creating jobs here at home.  One is to lift the burden on these employers by removing regulations and taxes.  Give them incentives, not hurdles, to operate here.  It costs a lot of time and money to start a business let alone hire and/or fire a worker in the US.  Starting and maintaining a business should not be impeded by those who know nothing about it.  Then, in order to help these businesses stay competitive, we should levy taxes on companies that ship their jobs overseas.  You want to build a factory here?  Okay, do it.  We won't get in the way.  You want to build a factory in Vietnam?  Fine.  But we will levy a 40% tax on your bottom line.  
            i like regulations.  building codes, health codes, fire safety codes, these are really important things.

            btw, why would a libertarian like yourself register on this site?

            •  A 40% tax on imports is not libertarian (1+ / 0-)
              Recommended by:
              NoMoreLies

              The root of the evil here is a bias for everyone to imagine their job is important.  Smoke and Mirrors is advocating a world where he can continue to operate his business and employ Americans as well. He probably down grades the importance of government in that world.

              And he of course is not going to consider a world where textiles is close to nationalized. But the fact is that many older industries like farming and textiles probably can be run more efficiently at this point under heavy regulation (farms are already halfway a part of the federal government) then without. The reason being that as more automation becomes possible (as happened with farms) allowing Smoke and Mirrors to run a dark factory that requires no humans will end up simply being a rent all of us pay him for clothes.

              Private enterprise belongs mostly on the bleeding edge. The financial industry, farms, etc. are more and more about too big to fail - ie the risks are systemic not local and so must be mitigated by the government; we are not allowed to starve or financially implode for the sake of competition. But don't expect anyone in those industries to admit it. Admitting we need a 40% tax is as much as we can expect from anyone having a middle man job.

              •  I dispute the validity of such a tax on imports. (0+ / 0-)

                That would be an unreasonable tariff in violation of WTO regulations. I want proof.

                "Government by organized money is just as dangerous as Government by organized mob." -- Franklin D. Roosevelt

                by Kombema on Mon Dec 09, 2013 at 04:22:26 PM PST

                [ Parent ]

                •  Pardon my French (2+ / 0-)
                  Recommended by:
                  JesseCW, Kombema

                  But fuck the WTO. Unless we start talking about actual solutions we aren't going to fix the problem. Getting rid of globalization as it stands now is the first step.

                  Also, for the record, textiles are returning to the US as highly automated plants. As automation increases in various industries we'll see those industries return to the US because labor is a smaller part of the cost of doing business because there are fewer employees.

                  If knowledge is power and power corrupts, does that mean that knowledge corrupts?

                  by AoT on Mon Dec 09, 2013 at 05:23:19 PM PST

                  [ Parent ]

                  •  That was not an endorsement of the WTO, only a (1+ / 0-)
                    Recommended by:
                    AoT

                    reference to the fact that our textile-buying friend is misrepresenting the tariff on textiles, which is most certainly not 40% -- thanks to the WTO, and despite considerable history of protection of the industry here.

                    "Government by organized money is just as dangerous as Government by organized mob." -- Franklin D. Roosevelt

                    by Kombema on Mon Dec 09, 2013 at 07:26:18 PM PST

                    [ Parent ]

          •  good grief, that tripe is rancid (3+ / 0-)
            Recommended by:
            Kombema, AoT, nathanfl

            neoliberalism is the problem, not the solution

            open your eyes

          •  You sound like a paid blogger from the Chamber (0+ / 0-)

            I can understand how this topic could attract the people from the right wing, since one of the things they use to try to discredit any upswing in the unemployment rate is that the number of people who have given up looking is high, but your post is soooo transparent.

            This is a phenomenon I see here a lot anymore.  I see somebody posting something that seems to be advocating the same failed trickle down deregulation policies that have failed us and acting like it's something new.

            When I come to this site I like to hear DEMOCRATS talk about DEMOCRATIC solutions to problems like the number of non participating workers.

            I have heard all the republican arguments that have failed us over an over and don't need to hear them again.

      •  great comment: i know it sounds naive now (1+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        JesseCW

        but i really thought obama understood this and intended to implement a plan along your line

        especially the part about energy and the grid

        it's still the right thing to do, even moreso now

      •  Very good, J H (1+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        James Hepburn

        You can safely assume you have created God in your own image when it turns out that God hates all the same people you do. Anne Lamott

        by MDhome on Mon Dec 09, 2013 at 06:46:13 PM PST

        [ Parent ]

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