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night owl
Dan Kervick at New Economic Perspectives discusses Market Myths and the Real Drivers of American Progress:

A dogma can be a very powerful thing. When dogma is sufficiently powerful, the people in its grip can lose sight of who they are, where they have come from, and how they got from the place where they started to the place they now occupy. Americans during the past few decades have been in the grip of an especially strong dogma, the dogma of Market Fundamentalism.

Falling in with the preachers and zealots of this charismatic sect, they have convinced themselves that their once lofty economic place in the world was primarily due to an American preference for minuscule government coupled with the visionary leadership of free-wheeling entrepreneurial heroes, latter-day secular saints who were able to set the economic agenda and pursue it unencumbered by regulatory ties. For some Americans, this mythic free enterprise utopia, bestridden by business titans, represents the very essence of American freedom. And so the free market faithful have pursued a neoliberal political agenda in order to see to it that the tablets of this magnificent ancestral wisdom are carried down unbroken into the present all-too-errant age.

But the creed is bunk. It is a fictive concoction filled with tales of an imagined past that never existed. And yet, the more enthusiastically the apostles of Market Fundamentalism have attempted to put the spurious creed into practice, the further they have taken us away from historical truth and the real-world sources of our actual prosperity. We need to drop the totemic legends and look that real history squarely in the face, so we can remember who we really are.

Here is a graph of annual real gross domestic product for the United States during the period starting in 1929 and ending in 1959:

Real GRP 1929-1959
The most noteworthy portion of the graph is the highlighted period running from 1939 to 1944, and closely lining up with the years of the Second World War. We see that during that short time period, the US economy roughlydoubled in size. The economic performance of Americans during those years was truly extraordinary. Emerging from a decade during which the country experienced a severe depression that slashed the size of the economy by one quarter, followed by a period of recovery that accomplished no more than returning the economy to its previous size before stalling out once again, Americans worked together during the war years to engineer a vast industrial machine and make a staggering economic surge forward.

Following the war, we then see a sharp one-year drop as the country partially demobilized, followed by a three-year period of stagnation. But then followed a decade of steady economic progress during which time the economy grew by another 50%. And although it is not shown on this graph, the 60s were a similarly strong period as the US economy increased in size by about another 1/3rd from 1959 to 1969. So altogether, the US economy roughly quadrupled in size during the 30-year period lasting from Great Britain’s entry into WWII until Neil Armstrong’s first steps on the moon. This period in US history constitutes a modern economic miracle.

What drove that growth? Solidarity and organized national purpose. Americans worked together as a team during the war, and that solidarity contined into the postwar decades, behind an engaged and economically pro-active government. […]

the kinds of progress we need are so far-reaching that we cannot expect them to emerge haphazardly from the scatter-shot entrepreneurial hubbub. We are going to need new infrastructures for social living and transportation; new education systems; new forms of energy technology, health technology, financial technology and information technology; and all must be executed and organized thoughtfully and in optimally efficient and rational ways.

This is going to take an enormous amount of work and intelligent strategic planning, as well as a lot of discussion, debate and experimentation. It is thus also going to require innovative new forms of democratic participation, deliberation and consensus building. And it is vital that as new infrastructure is created, the public retains ownership of the key systemic elements of that infrastructure instead of letting them fall into the hands of monopolists and oligopolists. Dismantling the plutocracy is itself part of the generational challenge.

Young people living today—the people with the most energy, tenacity, creativity and optimism—are desperately ready to engage in this project, and need to be liberated from the gloomy, dystopian pessimism and unimaginative indolence of our current crop of leaders and elders. But instead they are being crushed under unemployment and debt, and held prisoner by a generation that seems to have talked itself into a cowardly worldview of pre-fated decline and failure.


Blast from the Past. At Daily Kos on this date in 2006The "Intervention" That Never Was:

The entire theme of the past week or so that the White House has been "rethinking" its failed Iraq stategy is pure fiction.  

Time and time again, this White House has demonstrated that it seeks not change, but merely the illusion of change. We saw this White House tactic in full force earlier this year with the so-called "staff shake-up". The media touted the appointment of Josh Bolten as chief of staff as a signal that the White House was ready  for "fresh ideas and energy." Months later, the same stale and stubborn White House remains.

Indeed, "stubborn" describes the President's attitude towards this "Iraq policy review" perfectly.


Tweet of the Day:

Not realizing that "the best and the brightest" is an ironic term is only slightly less irritating than misusing "ironic."
@jaketapper



On today's Kagro in the Morning show, Greg Dworkin on the much-Tweeted poll saying GOP House control's a bad thing. Plus, a reminder on ACA website problems. Blind squirrel alert: "Tea Party needs to recognize that it's playing with live ammo." Random notes: Max Blumenthal's Tweet on observations about early-career Obama, and; the Star-Ledger's incoherent Chris Christie endorsement, alongside question about his politicization of the judicial system. Finally, the budget conference included in the shutdown deal. How does voting in conference work? And why have a conference at all? Is there a Grand Bargain threat?


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Comment Preferences

  •  982,008 registered users on dKos now. (16+ / 0-)

    Here are the 10 newest registered users on dKos.  Hope to see their comments and diaries here soon!  (If they're not spammers.)

    Diane1940JDH
    daobo (user #982,000: spammer)
    jane4mokel
    alohafauxtinio8
    holeralph4
    bjws
    briele
    devonhubbard2 (user #982,006: spammer)
    valshires
    tedwenky


    And since our society is obsessed with numbers that end in a lot of zeros as milestones, here's a special shoutout to users:
    #981,900: FederalSockpuppet
    #982,000: daobo (spammer)

    We've added 162 more users in the last 24 hours.  We're no longer being flooded with all those fake users.


    And for your Diary Rescue music pleasure, with her just getting married, here's Kelly Clarkson's "People Like Us".

  •  Obamacare and the insane GOP (10+ / 0-)

    Chris Hayes talked about these topics with Barney Frank, Michael Eric Dyson, Eric Stern, and Evan Smith.

    Rachel talked about it with Dr. Zeke Emanuel.

    Lawrence talked about it with Robert Costa, Sam Stein, and Christine Ferguson.

    He also had a segment "Are You Smarter Than a White House Correspondent?" where he went to town on ABC's Jonathan Karl for being so incredibly obtuse about the individual mandate even after Jay Carney explained it to him, but unfortunately the segment hasn't been posted online yet.

    Ed Schultz talked with Rep. Elijah Cummings (D-MD), Katrina Vanden Heuvel, Tom Perriello, Heather McGhee, and Dr. Corey Hebert.

  •  New Jersey gay marriage legal now! (10+ / 0-)

    Rachel spent most of her show tonight talking about New Jersey legalizing gay marriage, and about Chris Christie's opposition to it.

    Ed Schultz and Lawrence O'Donnell also covered the news, with Ed interviewing Christie challenger Barbara Buono (D), and Lawrence talking with Robert Costa and Eugene Robinson.

  •  Maryville and rape culture (11+ / 0-)

    Chris Hayes spent the last part of his show talking about rape culture in the wake of the horrific Maryville rape case, with Rebecca Traister, Salamishah Tillet, Sonia Ossorio, and Winnifred Bonjean-Alpart.

  •  Voter suppression in Texas (11+ / 0-)

    Lawrence talks with Jess McIntosh about how Texas is seeking to disenfranchise married women who haven't finished the process of changing their last names.  Oh, discrepancy?  Sorry, you can't vote anymore!

  •  American Progress is the Problem Not the Solution (14+ / 0-)

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    We are called to speak for the weak, for the voiceless, for victims of our nation and for those it calls enemy.... --ML King "Beyond Vietnam"

    by Gooserock on Mon Oct 21, 2013 at 08:49:46 PM PDT

  •  The new conspiracy - fainting truthers (10+ / 0-)

    The Obama reflex-haters are all talking about how he set up a woman to fake a faint in back of him during his speech so he could seem to be a caring guy (and not that evil tyrant who wants us to have health care).  Among the comments out there in the rantosphere is "did you see the patch on her arm with the wire attached to it?"  I'm not even sure what that's supposed to mean -- that she's an android secretly being controlled like a wire-guided missile???

    Silence is not an effective reply to propaganda.

    by fleisch on Mon Oct 21, 2013 at 08:53:48 PM PDT

  •  thinking of a modified name: (3+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    JML9999, Larsstephens, Jeff Y

    for the miracle we're witnessing...

    The shorter, faster, safer route to the U.S. West Coast and to nations in and around the Pacific Ocean allowed those places to become more integrated with the world economy.
    ... evolution reaches America, just in time ... for Obamacare. ♥

    Addington's perpwalk? TRAILHEAD of accountability for Bush-2 Crimes. @Hugh: There is no Article II power which says the Executive can violate the Constitution.

    by greenbird on Mon Oct 21, 2013 at 08:55:52 PM PDT

  •  Sounds like someone was drunk, (3+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    greenbird, JML9999, Larsstephens

    with maybe a Xanax or two thrown in for good measure.

    Here's Jenna Jameson's Messy, Slurred Good Day New York Segment:

    Retired porn star Jenna Jameson went full Anna Nicole earlier today during a segment on Good Day New York, which, according to TMZ, was cut short because she was such a fucking disaster. Her chat with Rosanna Scotto and Greg Kelly was no beauuuutiful dueeeeet. Far from it.

    On writing her just-released erotic novel, Sugar, Jameson said, "I didn’t want it to be exact of what I’ve always done, so I kinda made up a fantastic, yummy story. ‘Cause, y’know, I read all the other stories and I was like [groan]." Her weave was as disheveled as her syntax. [Groan], indeed.

    http://gawker.com/...

    "I'd rather be hated for who I am, than loved for who I am not." - Kurt Cobain

    by Jeff Y on Mon Oct 21, 2013 at 08:57:53 PM PDT

  •  Nice tweet by Tapper though he's loathsome. (4+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    Larsstephens, Jeff Y, JeffW, JML9999

    Will be posting a Foster Brooks comedy routine later unless someone suggests they may be offended. These clips are from the 60's and 70's and may contain stereotypical humor not appropriate in today's world. Any concerns leave a comment.

  •  Cruz idolaters are getting all whipped up again (6+ / 0-)

    "If Wall Street paid a tax on every “game” they run, we would get enough revenue to run the government on." ~ Will Rogers

    by Lefty Coaster on Mon Oct 21, 2013 at 09:04:24 PM PDT

  •  A few pics to enjoy... (11+ / 0-)

    No one knows what it's like, To be the bad man, To be the sad man, behind blue eyes....

    by blueyedace2 on Mon Oct 21, 2013 at 09:05:14 PM PDT

    •  I will post my comment... (1+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      Eric Nelson

      ...under this magnificent "trestle trail sunset" as I'm sure my comment needs moderation and blessings.  Please forgive me.  I feel as nutty as a Rethuglican.  The economy!  Thankfully, I've returned to my previous inability to understand any of it.  So:

      )“the question of US debt, which translates directly into the question of US currency, i.e., the fate of the dollar. Does the legislative branch want to play games with the only thing that supports the market for US Treasury paper — the dollar’s proxy — which is the generally-held notion that the full faith and credit of the nation stands behind promises to pay?”
               from James Kunstler...

      TYVM and good night, sleep well, sweet dreams  of other things like trestle trail sunsets!
       

      "...the wish to believe over-rides ... reality" James Howard Kunstler

      by dharmasyd on Mon Oct 21, 2013 at 09:42:03 PM PDT

      [ Parent ]

  •  Hence, the counter-revolution. (7+ / 0-)
    Dismantling the plutocracy is itself part of the generational challenge.
    They're watching the direction of movement and are beginning to discern their own sunset.
    Of course, you realize...this means war!

    We can discuss this and wonder what to do about that, but in the end, the ONLY thing that matters is voter turnout. Ya CAIN'T go to the dance if you AIN'T bought your ticket! Go team go.

    by franklyn on Mon Oct 21, 2013 at 09:09:56 PM PDT

  •  Mother Jones on FOX News sockpuppets (2+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    Eric Nelson, Calamity Jean

    defending FOX in the blogosphere -- apparently they used to (and still do?) require their employees to have multiple aliases to post on their behalf.  It gives me hope that the deadheads may not be as numerous as I think, but not much hope.

    Silence is not an effective reply to propaganda.

    by fleisch on Mon Oct 21, 2013 at 09:44:00 PM PDT

  •  "Market Fundamentalism"..carried down unbroken.. (9+ / 0-)

    ..into the present..That's the goal, protecting the republicans creed.

    But it is vulnerable because it is fake. If it was true it wouldn't need to be protected using means that defy freedom. Like huge corporate conglomerates that capture and monopolize resouces - all a part of "conservative free market" principles, limiting competition in order to survive.

    Year after year of repetition. Taught in schools. Whole right wing colleges built based on false framing to indoctrinate new adherents.

    Adherents taught to operate opposite of what is preached and call it truth

    ..a fictive concoction filled with tales of an imagined past that never existed. And yet, the more enthusiastically the apostles of Market Fundamentalism have attempted to put the spurious creed into practice, the further they have taken us away from historical truth and the real-world sources of our actual prosperity. We need to drop the totemic legends and look that real history squarely in the face, so we can remember who we really are.
    The advertizing/propaganda of all time; that we Dems must break. Because this is what really worked:
    Solidarity and organized national purpose. Americans worked together as a team during the war, and that solidarity contined into the postwar decades, behind an engaged and economically pro-active government. […]
     - emphasis added
    Workers united to build a better life in every sense. People taking care of people with solidarity and unions to protect the working folks rights to fair pay for fair work

    Break the vulnerable myth of the so-called free market that has never been "free" from manipulation by those that became "owners" - and then all people win- even those who don't work/deserve it.

    This is a really well thought out and improtant presentation of history to begin to break the myth imo  

    Thx MB

  •  New WP-ABC Poll Confirms - GOP Fucked Up (4+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    Eric Nelson, viral, kat68, JeffW

    Major Damage To GOP After Shutdown

    There was little in the findings for the GOP to feel good about. The party’s image has sunk to an all-time low in Post-ABC surveys, with 32 percent of the public saying they have a favorable opinion and 63 percent saying they have an unfavorable view. Almost four in 10 Americans have a strongly unfavorable view of the GOP.

    The tea party fares just as badly. Barely a quarter of the public has a favorable image of the movement, the lowest rating in Post-ABC polling.

    Asked who they consider responsible for the impasse, 53 percent of poll respondents cite Republicans, 29 percent blame Obama and 15 percent fault both sides equally. Republicans who support the tea party movement overwhelmingly blame Obama for what happened, but among Republicans who do not back the tea party, almost as many cite congressional Republicans as name Obama or both.
  •  :o) (3+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    Eric Nelson, JeffW, jan4insight
  •  . (5+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    JeffW, viral, Eric Nelson, eeff, Calamity Jean
  •  Woman who fainted at WH event is (6+ / 0-)

    a type 1 diabetic and 20 weeks pregnant.

    http://www.cnn.com/...

    "Go well through life"-Me (As far as I know)
    This message will self-destruct upon arrival in the NSA archives in Utah.

    by MTmofo on Mon Oct 21, 2013 at 10:36:13 PM PDT

  •  "Remember when God chose McCain..." (2+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    JeffW, kkkkate

    In light of all this misplaced Tea Party frustration, perhaps we could throw them all a bone and help job their memories a bit...

    Remember when God chose John McCain & Sarah Palin to lead the nation, heralding the dawn of victorious Tea Party ideals everywhere and a nation safe from socialist Muslim communists from Kenya and their gay agenda? ...me neither.


    They really are incorrigible.

    Dense.

    And a few other choice words.

  •  Ted Cruz returns home to Texas. (0+ / 0-)

    A huge party was planned to celebrate the homecoming. Mike Lee was Ted's date for the evening. They fought over who would lead in the first dance. Palin showed up to give table dances in a red, white, and blue 'G' string, and silver starred pasties. Marcus and Michele Bachmann crashed the party by hiding in the big cowboy hat cake, and jumping out with a big "surprise!" at the conclusion of the playing of the Star Spangled Banner. Louie Gohmert was seen sitting in the corner strummin' on his 'ol banjo to the tune of 'Fly Like An Eagle'. Sirens could be heard in the distance, as another fertilizer plant exploded just a few hundred yards away from the party. Everyone scrambled down the road to the site of the explosion to watch the flames dance with the warm Texas night. Gohmert became mesmerized by the flicker of the flames reflecting off of Palin's silver stars. Michele punched Marcus for even looking in Palin's direction, but he still managed to slip her a crisp 100 dollar bill under her 'G' string. What a night! Welcome home to the 'Real America'.


    So, we had to extrapolate purely on the basis of your anatomy. You’re quite complicated, Sir. - UID 16382

    by glb3 on Mon Oct 21, 2013 at 11:15:58 PM PDT

  •  Tapper, "petty and annoying" (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    this just in
    Not realizing that "the best and the brightest" is an ironic term is only slightly less irritating than misusing "ironic."
    — @jaketapper
    There is also being "Petty and Annoying"...

    It's also the title of a book, an independent film and a commonly used term in today's lexicon. Why do journalists have to be so petty and annoying, now THAT is truly irritating.

    "I think it's the duty of the comedian to find out where the line is drawn and cross it deliberately." -- George Carlin, Satirical Comic,(1937-2008)

    by Wynter on Tue Oct 22, 2013 at 12:59:30 AM PDT

  •  Jake Tapper Is a Very Smart Fellow (2+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    this just in, bartcopfan

    Mr. Tapper,

    I noticed that you tweeted some words earlier today.

    Not realizing that "the best and the brightest" is an ironic term is only slightly less irritating than misusing "ironic."
    Mr. Tapper, I think you need an education on irony.  There are no ironic "terms" (or, even, "ironic phrases").  Irony is a trope.  A trope is use of a word, phrase, or image in a way not intended by its normal signification.

    Specifically, irony is

    the expression of one's meaning by using language that normally signifies the opposite, typically for humorous or emphatic effect
    or
    Speaking in such a way as to imply the contrary of what one says, often for the purpose of derision, mockery, or jest.
    Clearly, one needs to understand the context in which the speaker uses the words or phrase.

    The title of a popular book by David Halberstam, "The Best and the Brightest", did not change the normal signification of the words.  "Have a nice day" also retains its original meaning, however often the phrase has been used ironically.

    I hope I have helped you in this matter.  If you need more information, you might talk to someone literate (not at ABC - try the New York Times staff perhaps).

    Let me leave you with one more example:

    Jake Tapper is a very good reporter.
  •  Apropos of nothing, (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    kkkkate

    my Twitter feed has been inundated with Kimye Tweets as Kanye West rented out AT&T Park for the express purpose of proposing to his girlfriend Kim Kardashian. Half have been calling for an exorcism of the park before next season, the other half hoping that the Giants will use the extra $200K to get a halfway decent left fielder. I think a simple fumigation will suffice, though I'm not sure there's a tent large enough to cover the entire stadium -- might be better off just going with the guys from Orange Oil.

    There's only one rule that I know of, babies -- goddammit, you've got to be kind. -- Kurt Vonnegut

    by Cali Scribe on Tue Oct 22, 2013 at 02:28:00 AM PDT

  •  The spam is getting (2+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    JeffW, this just in

    Ridiculous.  I can understand a few but the recent diary list is spam ridden.  With all the great minds here, isn't there some fix that could be come up with?  

  •  GDP, "National Purpose," and higher tax rates.... (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    bartcopfan

    From the overnight thread post about the GDP growth:

    What drove that growth? Solidarity and organized national purpose. Americans worked together as a team during the war, and that solidarity contined into the postwar decades, behind an engaged and economically pro-active government. […]
    And what was it that had us working together? 90%+ marginal income tax rates.  

    What started us on a decline of greed, and the creation of the expansive gap between the 1% and the rest of us?  The 28% highest marginal rate created by Reagan in 1987.

  •  The genius of Henry Ford (0+ / 0-)

    was not the production line.
    The genius of Henry Ford was recognizing that he could expand his market if his workers were paid enough to afford the products they built.
    In other words, the genius of Ford was the consumer model of economics, sustained by a strong and growing middle class.

    We kidnap. We torture. It's our policy. Embrace it or end it!

    by Mosquito Pilot on Tue Oct 22, 2013 at 03:49:10 AM PDT

    •  Another myth, according to Halberstam (0+ / 0-)

      In David Halberstam's The Reckoning, comparing the US and Japanese auto industries through the examples of Ford and Nissan, he demolishes this hoary chestnut.  He cites Ford hiring records of the early 1910s to show that Henry, far from being a perceptive visionary, was simply paying market wages to keep down a 1300 percent annual turnover rate in auto assemblers!

      Halberstam argues, convincingly, that the "genius" of Henry Ford's $5/day wage "creating middle-class consumers of his own product" was simply making lemonade of lemons--a "positive externality" as economists would say--an explanation ladled on after the fact.

      "Push the button, Max!" Jack Lemmon as Professor Fate, The Great Race

      by bartcopfan on Tue Oct 22, 2013 at 07:39:32 PM PDT

      [ Parent ]

  •  ECONOMIC OBSERVATIONS (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    kkkkate

    FIRST OBSERVATION:  Money, wealth, capital, assets, etc. can be created and destroyed
    SECOND OBSERVATION:  Money, wealth, capital, assets, etc. are only useful when it is creating something useful to or for society, the nation or a culture.
    THIRD OBSERVATION:  As wealth is taken out of a society and made unavailable through gambling, speculation or other means social disorder increases.
    FORTH OBSERVATION:  Money, wealth, capital, assets, etc flows upward and if not stirred becomes stagnant.
    FIFTH OBSERVATION:  When consumption increases, employment increases, and visa- versa.
    SIXTH OBSERVATION:  No correlation exists between a low income rate for high income citizens and an increase performance in the national economy.
    SEVENTH OBSERVATION: The invisible hand has a thumb on the scale causing free enterprise and markets to favor the most powerful within any society.
    EIGHTH OBSERVATION: Only government can remove the thumb by using laws, rules and regulations and the strong, sure, even and fair enforcement thereof.
    NINTH OBSERVATION: Investment and consumption are not in competition but enjoy a symbiotic relationship.  Without investment there would be nothing to consume, and without consumption there would be no reason to invest.
    TENTH OBSERVATION: Full employment leads to fuller production and fuller services, and a more equal distribution of wealth, resources, capital and tax revenue.   It does not lead to inflation.
    ELEVENTH OBSERVATION: As the number of mega lending banks decreases, the competition between banks decreases resulting in the credit/bank- ratio-too-GDP increase.  When the credit/bank- ratio-too-GDP approaches 100%, the economic growth of the nation decreases.
    TWELVETH OBSERVATION:   As unemployment increases the nation’s deficit and debt increases.  As unemployment falls so does the deficit and debt, they are directly coupled!  WHY?   Workers pay income taxes.  Taxes produce government revenue thereby reducing the deficit and debt.
    THIRDTEENTH OBSERVATION: Whenever corporations can profit by manipulation of information or cooperative collusion, its workers, customers and consumers are vulnerable to abuse, fraud and malfeasance.

    FOURTEENTH OBSERVATION:  All economic, social and political problems are made worst by stagnation, austerity, sequestionization and lethargy.
    FIFTHTEENTH OBSERVATION:  In a speculative economy which expects its profits NOW! Requires GROWTH!  The Earth’s resources are finite and disappearing.  The real need is for economic/social/political transformative change NOW!
    SIXTEENTH OBSERVATION: CONCERNING CAPITALISM AND INNOVATION:                                                                                                        
    A)    Capitalism asserts they it is more capable at advancing innovation then other economic systems.  Yet, capitalism often choices a lesser technology over a more efficient one to maintain short term profit regardless of the risks to health and safety of workers, citizens and environment.
    B)    The profit motive can become a barrier to progress if the newer advances are either capital intensive or slow to realize a immediate profit; even when the resulting impact and profit may be greater long term.
    C)    THINK!!  FOSSIL FUEL OVER SOLAR, WIND RENEWABLES; INEFFICIENT OVER EFFICIENT CARS; RAIL OVER PNEUMATIC TUBE TRANSPORTATION; CU WIRE OVER BROADBAND AND MANY MORE!

  •  Wow, thanks for that Kervick piece, that was (2+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    Eric Nelson, VL Baker

    really outstanding!  I really hope all the youth who were at the Powershift conference last weekend read that!  

    I think the frequent disparagement of that up and coming generation is woefully misplaced.  The youth that I know and work with are passionately committed to improving the state of the world that they have inherited.  They possess little of the consumption ethic that my generation grew up with and work their asses off just as hard as the generation that Kervick writes about.  They just aren't buying into the mindless robotic work-for-work's-sake corporate bullshit ethic that my generation was pounded over the head with for three decades.  There's a great essay on them over at Aeon Magazine, Kids these days - Millennials are as hard-working as anyone else – so why does pop culture pretend that all we do is party?.  From the article:

    The best minds of my generation, at least the ones that I know, are not being destroyed by madness, they’re not sitting up hollow-eyed and high smoking in the supernatural darkness of cold-water flats floating across the tops of cities contemplating jazz. Sure, some of them are lingering. But the others are working. They’re helping to make the world go. And they take it pretty seriously.
    There's another great essay over at TriplePundit that talks about how their generation seems to be eschewing the whole consumption mandate bullshit, too.  From the article, Can Aspirationals’ Idea of Sustainable Consumption Bring a Better Future?:
    The authors note that this trend sounds very promising. “Driven by young, optimistic consumers in emerging markets and amplified by technology and social media’s influence, Aspirationals represent a powerful shift in sustainable consumption from obligation to desire,” said Raphael Bemporad, co-founder and chief strategy officer at BBMG. “By engaging Aspirational consumers, brands can further the shift toward more sustainable consumption and influence behavior change at scale,” added Eric Whan, Sustainability Director at GlobeScan.
    The TP folks do thankfully point out at the end of the article that while the changes are promising, they do not address the more fundamental structural problems and the need to transition to a steady-state economy, which in the last analysis is the only way we are ever going to have a truly sustainable society.  But at least it is progress.  

    After reading all these things I'm feeling a lot more optimistic about the future lately than I have in a very, very long time.

    Pessimism of the intellect; optimism of the will. - - Antonio Gramsci

    by lehman scott on Tue Oct 22, 2013 at 05:04:55 AM PDT

  •  Top tax rates during American growth (2+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    David B, bartcopfan

    Any discussion of market myths and America's growth through the 40's and 50's should include this graph of historical tax rates:

    http://en.wikipedia.org/...

  •  One of the biggest drivers of post-war growth (0+ / 0-)

    was the addition of women to the workforce.  Prior to that only a small fraction worked at all, but once they were more or less drafted to assist with the war effort many were unwilling or uninterested in losing the economic and social freedom they gained from working.  Unfortunately we no longer have that humongous available pool of workers (other than the unemployed of course) so it may be difficult to reproduce the results.

    Republican threats amount to destroying the present if we don't allow them to destroy the future too. -MinistryOfTruth, 1/1/2013

    by sleipner on Tue Oct 22, 2013 at 08:41:12 AM PDT

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