Skip to main content

Paul Krugman at The New York Times takes a hunk out of Jamie Dimon's and Marlene Seltzer's hides in Jobs and Skills and Zombies:

A few months ago, Jamie Dimon, the chief executive of JPMorgan Chase, and Marlene Seltzer, the chief executive of Jobs for the Future, published an article in Politico titled “Closing the Skills Gap.” They began portentously: “Today, nearly 11 million Americans are unemployed. Yet, at the same time, 4 million jobs sit unfilled”—supposedly demonstrating “the gulf between the skills job seekers currently have and the skills employers need.”

Actually, in an ever-changing economy there are always some positions unfilled even while some workers are unemployed, and the current ratio of vacancies to unemployed workers is far below normal. Meanwhile, multiple careful studies have found no support for claims that inadequate worker skills explain high unemployment.

But the belief that America suffers from a severe “skills gap” is one of those things that everyone important knows must be true, because everyone they know says it’s true. It’s a prime example of a zombie idea — an idea that should have been killed by evidence, but refuses to die.

E.J. Dionne at The Seattle Times via The Washington Post writes Who cares about the value of work?:
The GOP, [two conservative theorists] said, “should extol work and demand it.”

Yes, that last phrase—“demand it”—could lead to a darker kind of politics involving the demonization of those who simply can’t find jobs. Thus did U.S. Rep. Paul Ryan, R-Wis., get into trouble for mourning “this tailspin of culture, in our inner cities in particular, of men not working and just generations of men not even thinking about working.”

No matter what Ryan was trying to say, he seemed to be emphasizing the flaws of the unemployed themselves rather than the cost of economic injustice. My Washington Post colleague Eugene Robinson captured this well: “Blaming poverty on the mysterious influence of ‘culture’ is a convenient excuse for doing nothing to address the problem.”

Nonetheless, many conservatives really do realize that they need to embrace hardworking Americans. But the question stands: What are they willing to do about it?

Peter Beinart at The Atlantic writes Hillary Clinton Doesn't Deserve a Free Pass From the Media:
Between now and 2016, Brock will keep pressuring journalists—especially liberal ones—to view every criticism of Hillary Clinton through a partisan lens, to bury their qualms so as to avoid complicity with the Fox News slime machine. Let’s hope he fails. Clinton is a gifted, well-meaning politician whose Manichean tendencies can get her, and the country, in trouble. The 2016 race will be a better campaign, and she’ll be a better president, if the press bears that in mind.
Below the fold you can read excerpts from additional pundits.

Robert M. Sapolsky at The Los Angeles Times Hoping against hope: It's a people thing:

The defining feature of human brains is the size and complexity of the cortex, which provides the underpinnings of rationality for our actions. But just because we have more developed cortexes doesn't mean we are always rational decision-makers. We humans constantly find ourselves loving the wrong person, buying things we don't have the money for and believing that fad diets consisting of nothing but sundaes will work.

To be human is to hope against hope.

When it comes to decision-making and risk assessment, we tend to think in an asymmetrical manner that feeds an optimistic outlook and denies discouragement. This has been shown in recent work by Christina Moutsiana and colleagues at University College London and published in the prestigious Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences.

Leo Gerard at In These Times writes When the 1% and politicians join forces, democracy loses:
The most jaw dropping is the case of former Republican Utah state attorney general John Swallow, who used shadowy nonprofit organizations to conceal hundreds of thousands of dollars in donations from the vilest industry in America—payday lenders.

In exchange for the money, Swallow promised to use the office of attorney general to champion payday lenders, the flimflam men who exploit and bankrupt the poor with short-term loans at exorbitant interest rates. [...]

Swallow knew, however, a payday lenders’ water boy would disgust voters. So he and his associates shrouded the payday lender donations with a bunch of “social welfare” nonprofits, which don’t have to report who contributes, The New York Times reported last week.

Martin Nunn at The Independent warns that the world should Respond now to Putin's dismissal of the Geneva Convention, or international law will suffer for it:
Whilst Putin’s disrespect for international law is clear the depth to which he is prepared to descend is deeply worrying. In the sieges of Ukrainian military installations in Crimea they have used human shields, hiding their troops behind walls of civilians and local militia in total violation of all the rules of war.

Clearly the international community cannot simply sit by and allow a permanent member of the United Nations Security Council and a signatory to the Geneva Convention to ride rough shod over international law in such a calculating and premeditated way. Since 1949 those that flout international law have invariably faced justice. Whilst in this case the world has, thankfully, not had to bear witness to mass murder—the intent to flout international law is deliberate. Therefore it is time for the International Criminal Court in the Hague to open an investigation into events in Crimea.

Ari Berman at The Nation writes GOP Steps Up Attack on Early Voting in Key Swing States:
Wisconsin Governor Scott Walker signed legislation eliminating early voting hours on weekends and nights, when it’s most convenient for many voters to go to the polls. When they took over state government in 2011, Wisconsin Republicans reduced the early voting period from three weeks to two weeks and only one weekend. Now they’ve eliminated weekend voting altogether.

Over 250,000 Wisconsinites voted early in 2012, one in twelve overall voters. Cutting early voting has a clear partisan purpose: those who voted early voted for Obama 58 to 41 percent in Wisconsin in 2012, compared to his 51 to 48 percent margin on Election Day.

Sadhbh Walshe at The Guardian, writes If stillbirth is murder, does miscarriage make pregnant women into criminals:
Seven and a half years ago, a Mississippi teenager named Rennie Gibbs went into premature labor and delivered a stillborn baby girl named Samiya. Initially, experts attributed the baby’s death to the umbilical cord wrapped around her neck. But when traces of a cocaine byproduct showed up on the autopsy report, a medical examiner declared the stillbirth a homicide and cited cocaine toxicity as the cause. Shortly afterward, the 16-year-old Gibbs was charged with murder, specifically “depraved heart murder”, a charge that can carry a sentence of up to 20 years to life in prison. [...]

But should women who engage in unhealthy activities during their pregnancies really be criminalized—to life in prison—if they fail to produce a healthy baby? If so, where do you draw that line?

Just think for a second where such a policy could lead us. Like many women of her time, and many women since, Jacqueline Kennedy Onassis smoked while she was pregnant. Jackie-O had a history of troubled pregnancies—at least one miscarriage, a stillborn daughter and baby Patrick, who barely survived two days. Those losses caused the Kennedy family enormous pain. Now imagine if an overzealous prosecutor decided that Jackie's smoking had harmed the babies and indicted the First Lady on murder charges.

Such a scenario might seem far-fetched; indeed, for a woman in the Kennedy demographic, it is. But for poor women—especially poor black women suspected of drug use who fail to carry babies to term—criminalization is already a popular sport.

Matthew Rothschild at The Progressive writes Obama Whitewashes World War I:
President Obama just went to Flanders Field in Belgium to pay homage to those who lost their lives in World War I.

But rather than use the occasion to point out the idiotic hideousness of that war, he whitewashed it, praising “the profound sacrifice they made so that we might stand here today.”

He saluted their “willingness to fight, and die, for the freedom that we enjoy as their heirs.”

But this was not a war for freedom. It was a triumph of nationalism, pitting one nation’s vanity against another. It was a war between empires for the spoils.

Liesl Bradner at Truthdig Iraqi Law Would Legalize Marriage for 9-Year-Old Girls:
It’s nearly incomprehensible for people living in a modern, civilized society to fathom there are still countries where it’s perfectly acceptable for a 40-year-old man to marry a 10-year-old girl. Yet, it’s happening in India, Ethiopia, Nepal and dozens of developing countries.

Iraq has recently put forth a controversial draft law that would allow men to marry girls as young as 9 years old and force their wives to have sex without consent. Women would also not be able to leave the house without their husband’s permission. [...]

Iraq’s current law sets the legal age for marriage at 18 and forbids divorce.

Your Email has been sent.
You must add at least one tag to this diary before publishing it.

Add keywords that describe this diary. Separate multiple keywords with commas.
Tagging tips - Search For Tags - Browse For Tags


More Tagging tips:

A tag is a way to search for this diary. If someone is searching for "Barack Obama," is this a diary they'd be trying to find?

Use a person's full name, without any title. Senator Obama may become President Obama, and Michelle Obama might run for office.

If your diary covers an election or elected official, use election tags, which are generally the state abbreviation followed by the office. CA-01 is the first district House seat. CA-Sen covers both senate races. NY-GOV covers the New York governor's race.

Tags do not compound: that is, "education reform" is a completely different tag from "education". A tag like "reform" alone is probably not meaningful.

Consider if one or more of these tags fits your diary: Civil Rights, Community, Congress, Culture, Economy, Education, Elections, Energy, Environment, Health Care, International, Labor, Law, Media, Meta, National Security, Science, Transportation, or White House. If your diary is specific to a state, consider adding the state (California, Texas, etc). Keep in mind, though, that there are many wonderful and important diaries that don't fit in any of these tags. Don't worry if yours doesn't.

You can add a private note to this diary when hotlisting it:
Are you sure you want to remove this diary from your hotlist?
Are you sure you want to remove your recommendation? You can only recommend a diary once, so you will not be able to re-recommend it afterwards.
Rescue this diary, and add a note:
Are you sure you want to remove this diary from Rescue?
Choose where to republish this diary. The diary will be added to the queue for that group. Publish it from the queue to make it appear.

You must be a member of a group to use this feature.

Add a quick update to your diary without changing the diary itself:
Are you sure you want to remove this diary?
(The diary will be removed from the site and returned to your drafts for further editing.)
(The diary will be removed.)
Are you sure you want to save these changes to the published diary?

Comment Preferences

  •  "Iraqi Law Would Legalize Marriage for 9-Year-Old (18+ / 0-)


    You mean all cultures aren't equally valid after all?

  •  Monday Numbers by Fitzsimon.... (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
  •  It's depressing... (14+ / 0-)
    that individuals suffering from depression are often more accurate in their assessment of the world than are healthy control subjects.
  •  Those who prey on the poorest (17+ / 0-)

    such as those payday loan sharks, are the vilest of the vile.  I can only hope there is a special hell awaiting them and Utah's AG,  John Swallow should get even worse than that.  I find it disgusting to even call them human.

    As we express our gratitude, we must never forget that the highest appreciation is not to utter words, but to live by them. John F. Kennedy

    by JaxDem on Mon Mar 31, 2014 at 04:48:49 AM PDT

  •  There is a jobs deficit still with those supposed (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:

    4 million jobs. How about on the job training? Oh I forgot, jobless = "lazy".

    But the evil elected rotten Rs & their evil corporate & 1% masters are happy with this crap.

    nosotros no somos estúpidos

    by a2nite on Mon Mar 31, 2014 at 04:50:44 AM PDT

    •  If there were 4 million jobs (2+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      Aquarius40, Amber6541

      openings you would see all kinds of facilities in training, in house or for profit, signing bonuses and so for as has happened with nursing or trucking at specific points.

      •  GOP hypocrites won't support jobs programs (0+ / 0-)

        It's really up to the Democratic Party to push the Progressive caucus budget where we raise the capital by higher taxes on the rich, closing corporate welfare tax breaks, and begin $700+ billion dollars worth of infrastructure jobs. When is the huge Progressive caucus going to start flexing their muscle with the DCCC and the DSCC? To start making the case over and over that we can create tons of new jobs if we can get the 'pubs out of the freakin' way? Voters have no idea that these budgets, after 4 years of them, even exist? We're the ones with the messaging issue, not the Republicans.

        We don't need a war with centrists, we simply need a wave of our majority caucus to push Third Way / DLC policies out if the way THIS cycle in 2014. Then we'll won't need to have an ideological battle with the neoliberal wing of the party in 2016. This is the year we need them to start building the momentum of that wave to broaden a likely 2016 sweep and to set the populist agenda that Hillary and Joe and anyone else who wants to run for president needs to run on two years from now.

  •  Krugman hit how this lie got built. (15+ / 0-)

    The GOPer lie that a skills gap is the cause for long term unemployment....

    So how does the myth of a skills shortage not only persist, but remain part of what “everyone knows”? Well, there was a nice illustration of the process last fall, when some news media reported that 92 percent of top executives said that there was, indeed, a skills gap. The basis for this claim? A telephone survey in which executives were asked, “Which of the following do you feel best describes the ‘gap’ in the U.S. workforce skills gap?” followed by a list of alternatives. Given the loaded question, it’s actually amazing that 8 percent of the respondents were willing to declare that there was no gap.

    The point is that influential people move in circles in which repeating the skills-gap story — or, better yet, writing about skill gaps in media outlets like Politico — is a badge of seriousness, an assertion of tribal identity. And the zombie shambles on.

    Republicans are good at lying and then at repeating the same lies over and over. For productive, truthful activities... they got nothing.

    The opposite to GOPer dysfunction appears in the industrial engineering work of W. Edwards Deming:

    "The quality of a product reflects the integrity of the process."
    That is the universal truth here. That's why Republicans are so bad at governance.

    The GOPers ??? They got nothing. Watch any talking-head clip of Boehner lying about Obamacare... it's pitiful.

    "Stealing kids' lunch money makes them strong and independent." -- Rand Ryan-Paul von Koch

    by waterstreet2013 on Mon Mar 31, 2014 at 04:53:55 AM PDT

    •  If there really were a skills gap (17+ / 0-)

      one would expect to see employers behaving in a rational way -- by providing the training to fill that gap, as they did until at least the 1980s. And it was paid on-the-job training.

      Or they would reevaluate what they list as the basic job prerequisites, and what they consider deal-breakers (does a chef really need a drivers' license? How many jobs really need a criminal background check, which makes millions unemployable? Is a BA really required or just a convenient way to screen out a bunch of people?).

      The fact that neither of these things have happened says to me that either there isn't a skills gap, or they have a firm policy of making the public sector or workers pay the costs of training.

      •  They are conveniently fuzzy... (5+ / 0-) to what skills they find lacking, but I think we all know what very narrow skill sets they value: the ability to use technology to frequently extract small amounts of money from the already financially stressed. Any other skill sets are worthless to them.

        Change does not roll in on the wheels of inevitability, but comes through continuous struggle. --Martin Luther King Jr.

        by Egalitare on Mon Mar 31, 2014 at 05:50:56 AM PDT

        [ Parent ]

      •  Biggest factor in "skills gap" reporting (7+ / 0-)

        would be easy to fact check, if media were inclined to do such a thing.  The biggest factor to check would be wages.  If there were a huge skills gap, employers would be paying higher wages to applicants who had the requisite skills for particular jobs, but according to the BLS, this is not happening.  Wages are not rising even for those whose skills are concomitant with those necessary for the job.  When you see wages rising for those professions requiring specific skills, you'll know that a skills match actually is a problem.

        So far, employers have not been willing to raise wages to acquire employees whose skills fit with a job's demands.  Instead, employers are pushing for relaxed rules on H1B visas in order to bring in more "temporary" immigrant workers who possess the necessary skill sets who will work for lower wages and who can have their visas cancelled if they insist on higher wages and benefits.

        "In this world of sin and sorrow there is always something to be thankful for; as for me, I rejoice that I am not a Republican." - H. L. Mencken

        by SueDe on Mon Mar 31, 2014 at 06:35:35 AM PDT

        [ Parent ]

        •  Wage-fixing? (2+ / 0-)
          Recommended by:
          waterstreet2013, SueDe
          The biggest factor to check would be wages.  If there were a huge skills gap, employers would be paying higher wages to applicants who had the requisite skills for particular jobs, but according to the BLS, this is not happening.  
          Wage-fixing, as championed by Steve Jobs, could keep the wages down in the face of a shortage—after all it would be a crime against capitalism to let non-executive wages rise.

          My country, right or wrong; if right, to be kept right; and if wrong, to be set right.—Carl Schurz
          "Shared sacrifice!" said the spider to the fly.—Me

          by KingBolete on Mon Mar 31, 2014 at 10:51:22 AM PDT

          [ Parent ]

      •  In addition to your great points.. (3+ / 0-)

        name one job title that is experiencing a dramatic increase in hours worked,  rising wages and benefits or a job title which is prompting people to re-locate within the country to specific regions other than that of roughneck oil worker moving to N. Dakota.  According to economist Dean Baker, There aren't any!

      •  If there were really a skills gap, business would (4+ / 0-)

        work in tandem with universities and community colleges and even high schools to evaluate, develop (and teach) courses so that graduates are trained to become the workers they need.

        "It ain't right, Atticus," said Jem. "No, son, it ain't right." --Harper Lee, To Kill a Mockingbird

        by SottoVoce on Mon Mar 31, 2014 at 07:10:43 AM PDT

        [ Parent ]

        •  In the 1960s and 1970s this was more common (0+ / 0-)

          than not at the Land Grant universities and their satellite schools.

          You went to school 2/3 of the year and worked at decent-paying internships the other 1/3.

          "Stealing kids' lunch money makes them strong and independent." -- Rand Ryan-Paul von Koch

          by waterstreet2013 on Mon Mar 31, 2014 at 12:31:28 PM PDT

          [ Parent ]

        •  Well, the executives who claim there's a (1+ / 0-)
          Recommended by:

          skills gap are claiming that it's hurting their ability to fill non-entry-level positions, so it's hard for them to claim that this is a problem with the schools. On the other hand, that difficulty still doesn't prevent them from doing it.

          Unfortunately when smart and educated people get crazy ideas they can come up with plausibly truthy arguments. -- Andrew F Cockburn

          by ebohlman on Mon Mar 31, 2014 at 03:17:26 PM PDT

          [ Parent ]

    •  Actually this "Zombie Lie" is NOT a partisan (4+ / 0-)

      phenomenon.  The key line is that it, like "entitlement reform" it is a badge of seriousness.

      Obama, Clinton, and Durbin are most definitely members of the GOP.

      "The working class mind is strange and unpredictable" -- Ty Lookwell

      by Illinibeatle on Mon Mar 31, 2014 at 05:41:00 AM PDT

      [ Parent ]

    •  In fact, unemployment went up MORE for college (5+ / 0-)

      grads and those with graduate degrees than the lower education levels. End of 2007 vs. mid-2012/mid-2013.

      Unemployment percentage increases:

      -- Advanced degree: 88%

      -- College graduate: 87%

      -- Some college: 87%

      -- HS graduate: 78%

      -- Less than HS: 54%

      Stats from the Current Population Survey from U.S. Census Bureau and the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics.  

      Of course you can Go-GOPer and believe Jamie Dimon  and Marlene Seltzer. To Hell with them damn facts!

      The overall rates for unemployment are higher with less education. Sure thing. But clearly the changes related to the Bush Recession do not in any way reflect a "skills gap." Decline of labor participation follows a similar pattern -- married women with children are staying home with their little kids, a tradition in the U.S. going back to the WW II Era and before.

      If anything, more education is good for you economically. Not, however, because businesses are doing a good job reinvesting profits and building more useful products.

      (We need ~10,000 more Elon Musks.)

      "Stealing kids' lunch money makes them strong and independent." -- Rand Ryan-Paul von Koch

      by waterstreet2013 on Mon Mar 31, 2014 at 05:41:04 AM PDT

      [ Parent ]

      •  A recent study indicates that the "high tech".. (3+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        waterstreet2013, catwho, Amber6541

        jobs featuring the greatest skills gap are the romantic job-titles of "welder" and "industrial machine mechanic and repair."

        •  Getting to be a certified welder (2+ / 0-)
          Recommended by:
          catwho, Amber6541

          in NYC costs a $20,000 tuition. On balance, one helluva good investment for most kids if they have the strength and stamina for the jobs.

          "Stealing kids' lunch money makes them strong and independent." -- Rand Ryan-Paul von Koch

          by waterstreet2013 on Mon Mar 31, 2014 at 07:02:51 AM PDT

          [ Parent ]

          •  Thirty years ago my cousin dropped out of (1+ / 0-)
            Recommended by:

            college after deciding it just wasn't for him.  Instead, he became an underwater welder.  Great move for him; he makes more money in four months than his PhD father makes in a year.

            "In this world of sin and sorrow there is always something to be thankful for; as for me, I rejoice that I am not a Republican." - H. L. Mencken

            by SueDe on Mon Mar 31, 2014 at 09:53:43 AM PDT

            [ Parent ]

            •  There's a "Homeless Prof." NY Times (0+ / 0-)

              article this weekend. They only ran it regional.....

              In the classroom, Mary-Faith Cerasoli, 53, an adjunct professor of Romance languages, usually tries to get her message across in lyrical Italian or Spanish.

              But on Wednesday, during spring break, she was using stencils and ink and abbreviated English to write her current message — “Homeless Prof.” — on a white ski vest she planned to wear on a solo trip to Albany two days later to protest working conditions for adjunct college professors.

              Ms. Cerasoli has been an adjunct for several years at Mercy College in Westchester and several other places in and around New York City. ......

              As a guess, Mary-Faith would have one helluva time trying to do underwater welding.

              "Stealing kids' lunch money makes them strong and independent." -- Rand Ryan-Paul von Koch

              by waterstreet2013 on Mon Mar 31, 2014 at 12:27:59 PM PDT

              [ Parent ]

    •  I think it can be successfully argued... (7+ / 0-)

      ...that there is ZERO "skills gap" for most of the $2.5-3 Trillion in known infrastructure deficit we have. Most infrastructure projects are unique to the terrain and circumstances and therefore must be custom built. We have more than enough people with skill and experience to tackle that backlog and simply starting on the list will create opportunities to initiate the training and development of current and future generations to continue what is already a multiple decades backlog of need.

      Change does not roll in on the wheels of inevitability, but comes through continuous struggle. --Martin Luther King Jr.

      by Egalitare on Mon Mar 31, 2014 at 05:44:40 AM PDT

      [ Parent ]

  •  At what point does (22+ / 0-)

    the federal government step in and make the voting process "uniform" across the country? If that's the Republicans new argument for limiting voting opportunities state by state than the fix should be easy.

    Republicans are adopting the early voting cuts under the guise of “uniformity”—claiming they want all counties to have the same hours, which punishes large urban counties if small rural counties don’t have the money or manpower for extended early voting hours.
    And really? The first WTF of my week.
    Florida GOP State Senator Mike Bennett in 2011, who said: “I wouldn’t have any problem making it harder...I want the people of the state of Florida to want to vote as bad as that person in Africa who’s willing to walk 200 miles…This should not be easy.”
    •  Big, big roadside sign: (10+ / 0-)
      Republicans Do Not Want You To Vote.

      Tag the sign with an 800- number and "The Democrats" with a web URL.

      "Stealing kids' lunch money makes them strong and independent." -- Rand Ryan-Paul von Koch

      by waterstreet2013 on Mon Mar 31, 2014 at 05:46:08 AM PDT

      [ Parent ]

    •  Of course, it's a teeny bit easier hopping into (3+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      Stude Dude, a2nite, hulibow

      your Lexus and driving to the local elementary school, walking in, signing a register and strolling over to an unoccupied voting machine.

      But, hey! RHIP!

      What stronger breast-plate than a heart untainted! Thrice is he arm'd, that hath his quarrel just; And he but naked, though lock'd up in steel, Whose conscience with injustice is corrupted. Henry VI Part II Act 3 Scene 2

      by TerryDarc on Mon Mar 31, 2014 at 06:00:08 AM PDT

      [ Parent ]

    •  The federal government can not make (3+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      a2nite, hulibow, Aquarius40

      "uniform" rules for state elections.  They could make rules for federal elections, but since state and federal  elections happen in most instances on the same day(s) in all the states, having separate rules for federal and state elections would cause more problems than they would solve.

      "In this world of sin and sorrow there is always something to be thankful for; as for me, I rejoice that I am not a Republican." - H. L. Mencken

      by SueDe on Mon Mar 31, 2014 at 06:40:48 AM PDT

      [ Parent ]

      •  Fair enough (1+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:

        but can't something be done at the Federal level regarding voting rights? I don't know, it seems like it's a lawsuit rush at election time & as some of the items in the states are clear attempts to disenfranchise voters the rules should be enforced now instead of the last minute.

      •  Not really. (0+ / 0-)

        To save money, the non-federal elections held at the same time as a federal election could just follow federal procedures since it would be more costly and somewhat odd to do an election both ways.  In elections not synced up with a Federal election they could do it differently but might just settle on doing it the same way as Federal elections.

        My country, right or wrong; if right, to be kept right; and if wrong, to be set right.—Carl Schurz
        "Shared sacrifice!" said the spider to the fly.—Me

        by KingBolete on Mon Mar 31, 2014 at 10:58:36 AM PDT

        [ Parent ]

    •  We had the (4+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      a2nite, hulibow, Aquarius40, KingBolete

      Presidency and both houses, we knew Republicans were playing this game and let it pass without action. At this point the only solutions are federal including free required national ID and voting registration when you get it, marking minimum times for early voting or mail voting in all federal elections

  •  three diaries last week on the lies about jobs (3+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    Floande, a2nite, Yo Bubba

    reading the comments about people who once were "middle class" (does it seem like that long ago we had one?) and now have skills but are at the wrong place at a time when there are almost no jobs

    a couple of the comments have people who had national recognition in their fields, technical fields, and have not been able to find jobs

    these diaries are in the list of the oldest first for no particular reason

    many people of the DK community are on medicare which shows their economic level

    F**k Me

    OK, now it's official

    Losing hope

  •  Scarborough officially nuts (8+ / 0-)

    the only Republican who can beat Hillary Clinton is Jeb Bush because he's SOOO smart. I guess his Chris Christie, Scott Walker, Jeb Bush and Tom Colburn chant has settled on that yahoo.

  •  Thanks for the roundup, MB! (6+ / 0-)

    I often wonder how anyone is supposed to train for a "future job." It takes years of preparation to become an accountant or a physician's assistant. What if someone undergoes that training and emerges only to find that there are now "new" shortages in unrelated areas?

    It's depressing that patriarchal males can't think of anything to do except oppress women. If they would spend half as much time trying to right the wrongs of their societies as they do making laws against women they'd be better off. Oh, but that would mean thinking, wouldn't it? Mustn't do that.

    "Religion is what keeps the poor from murdering the rich."--Napoleon

    by Diana in NoVa on Mon Mar 31, 2014 at 05:18:50 AM PDT

  •  Dr. Ezekial Emmanuel gave BrainWrap a shout out (15+ / 0-)

    on Morning Joke.
    Referred to Brainwrap as "some guy in Michigan," who is the go to guy on ACA enrollment.
    No mention of Dkos or the fact that Brainwrap is a blogger and citizen journalist...doing the job that our failed corporate media.
    No clip available yet.

    •  Only moment I saw of the show (3+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      cosette, skohayes, wintergreen8694

      this morning was that and the common sense approach to health the Dr was talking about.  Very irresponsible to not name the person you are quoting and giving credit. Ridiculous reporting, ridiculous show.

      Everyone! Arms akimbo! 68351

      by tobendaro on Mon Mar 31, 2014 at 05:42:30 AM PDT

      [ Parent ]

    •  Sandbagging (3+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      DRo, cosette, tb mare

      The great thing about Brainwrap's numbers is that he's truly being conservative. Final numbers with the extensions will almost certainly be 7 million+ (although non-payers may hold it just under 7M). Add in Medicaid expansion, known off-exchange additions and sub-26 year-olds and we're approaching 17 million.  But Charles isn't counting the likely 3 million or so additional off-exchange growth. I'm calling it near 20M once we know all of the numbers (maybe by end May).

      Of course, the Republican heads are already exploding over the currently reported 6 million number. WY Sen Barrasso was on the Sunday Morning circuit claiming that the administration is "cooking the books" with that number. As Jack Nicholson would say; they can't handle the truth! 20M might put them on suicide watch.

      "One of the more serious temptations which stifles boldness and zeal is a defeatism which turns us into querulous and disillusioned pessimists, sourpusses." ― Pope Francis

      by GoodGod on Mon Mar 31, 2014 at 05:46:32 AM PDT

      [ Parent ]

    •  Clip is out. Emmanuel did credit Brainwrap's site. (4+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      tb mare, a2nite, Meteor Blades, Amber6541

      Emmanuel at :55 after the ad and Barrasso's Fox Snooze Sunday Freakout
      Sorry I can't Luddite. I was half asleep when this came on and didn't hear the lead up to some guy in Michigan.
      Glad that Charles got some credit.

  •  re: Obama Whitewashes World War I (3+ / 0-)

    This article in the Nation might have been written about other wars. Ten seconds to come up with a war that meets this definition:

    But this was not a war for freedom. It was a triumph of nationalism, pitting one nation’s vanity against another. It was a war between empires for the spoils.
  •  Re: Progressive on Obama's glorification of WWI (3+ / 0-)

    Rothchild's excellent piece, quoting Wilfred Owen's great poem, ends with this:

    For the soldiers Obama praised did not die for “freedom,” but for something much more base.

    They died for the same reason U.S. soldiers died in the Iraq War. As Howard Zinn noted, ten years ago, “They died for the greed of the oil cartels, for the expansion of the American empire, for the political ambitions of the President. They died to cover up the theft of the nation’s wealth to pay for the machines of death.”

    I only hope to live long enough to hear a U.S. President speak honestly about war. This one sure won’t.

    by way of contrast:
    "I have said that control of arms is a mission that we undertake particularly for our children and our grandchildren and that they have no lobby in Washington."  --"Statement by the President to American Women Concerning their Role in Securing World Peace (449)," November 1, 1963, Public Papers of the Presidents: John F. Kennedy, 1963.
    JFK Library

    Resist much, obey little. ~~Edward Abbey, via Walt Whitman

    by willyr on Mon Mar 31, 2014 at 06:04:13 AM PDT

    •  WWI was about nationalism and empire, (2+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      Amber6541, IL clb

      from the point of view of the leaders. But any time spent in reading the letters of the soldiers in the line shows that their motives were far nobler. Were they duped? I'd say yes. But my reading of Obama's speech was that he was honoring the motives of the soldiers.

      Back in the 60's, we used to say that Vietnam was fought to keep the world safe for Coca Cola. But don't say that to a Vietnam combat vet, because his motives were more noble than that. Was the war a mistake? Of course. But those vets, and their WWI predecessors deserve to be honored.

      Note, however, that the best way to honor them is to prevent anyone else from dying in stupid wars.

  •  There's definitely a skills gap. When you've got (4+ / 0-)

    a huge number of people at jobs that don't come anywhere near using the abilities they've got, what else could there be?

    At least half the future I've been expecting hasn't gotten here yet. Sigh.... (Yes, there's gender bias in my name; no, I wasn't thinking about it when I signed up. My apologies.)

    by serendipityisabitch on Mon Mar 31, 2014 at 06:24:32 AM PDT

  •  Skills gap.... or is it... (5+ / 0-)

    The notion that US people in part or in whole are lacking in skills is ridiculous. Any new employee needs training. Even employees coming directly from a previous set of skills for a job or from university has to be skilled-up in the processes and protocols of the new company. We always hear that university student new hires have to be untrained from their academic habits to the ways of the new company.

    So I say - BOLSHOI.

    Also, what says, on the whole, that new hires from India, Mexico, Indonesia, China, Vietnam, etc. don't have to have training, untraining or retraining? The chances are that they need MORE, not less, training and up-skilling.

    So, again, I say BOLSHOI.

    It's the cost of labour. I REPEAT. The cost of US labour, which is directly based on the costs of living that the company doing the hiring are directly or indirectly responsible for raising.

    So, yet again, I say BOLSHOI.

    Follow the money. When there is a rise in costs of living and companies decide to hire cheaper workers from overseas (on site or off site), there is a trickle-OUT of the money that people pay for a product or services.

    Together with wage theft comes the smoke and mirrors of the job-skills gap. OH. And btw, that "job-skills gap" may very well be coded speech for.... speech for.... Uhhhh, yes, a way of describing a certain demographic. Y'all know what I mean.

    Ugh. --UB.

    The Republican Party is run by the KOCH BROTHERS.

    by unclebucky on Mon Mar 31, 2014 at 06:29:32 AM PDT

  •  Cognative dissonance on Facebook (so what's new?) (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    Gentle Giant

    Last night some people were forwarding a jpeg from some group called something like the Rocky Mountian Black Conservatives. It was that picture of Kent State with the caption like "The school shooting that the Government wants you to forget about!" Since when do the Wingers love Hippies and hate law&order and the Guard?

    I'm not really fond of Hippies because that thing didn't age well into the '80s, but I'm really sympathetic to them on this. They had it horrible getting shot. They probably would have had it even more horrible if they dared to shoot back provoking the Guard to really massacre them to the nearly last one and getting a big public backlash.

    This morning some Liberatarian forwarded back to back anti-fracking and anti-regulation graphics....

    "If this Studebaker had anymore Atomic Space-Age Style, you'd have to be an astronaut with a geiger counter!"

    by Stude Dude on Mon Mar 31, 2014 at 06:30:58 AM PDT

    •  Perhaps the cultural aspects of the hippies, (5+ / 0-)

      the style, slang- the affectations, didn't age well into the 80s, but the ideals, for the most part, were good. A LOT of babies got thrown out with their bathwater starting in the years just before Reagan.

      But the Kent State students hardly qualify as "hippies". They were students. Kids. Getting an education in an American college and protesting peacefully- trying to make a difference in a small way. They were kids very much like my own two sons, except a few years younger.

      It wasn't mostly hippies who protested. Theirs was more of a dropping out culture, of communalism and peace. Yes, hippies would protest, but most of the young who took part in the civil rights and anti-war protests were definitely not hippies.

      "Non-violence is a powerful and just weapon which cuts without wounding and ennobles the man who wields it. It is a sword that heals." - Martin Luther King, Jr.

      by Gentle Giant on Mon Mar 31, 2014 at 06:53:09 AM PDT

      [ Parent ]

      •  I could have lived better in the '80s. (1+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        Gentle Giant

        If a lot of aging ponytails who like to brag about being slopping over with peace&love&understanding, didn't show me the opposite.

        It's not like the Reagan era didn't already have smothering and stifling conformist Conservatism over that.

        A lot of the stuff that they use to insult me for being uncool and unmellow could get me now diagnosed as ADD and over-diagnosed as aspergers.

        And lot of the stuff that they thought was stupid, retarded, and unmellow could now be called Steampunk, Diesel Punk, and Atom Punk. So maybe  it was actually halfway clever in a way they couldn't see or wouldn't admit.

        And just because you're "B.J. Rogne" or "Rebecca Fishman" or "Denis Corrigan" or "Tim Kitchen" smuggly thinking that you're always in the right when you mistreat somebody just because you were born really early in the Boom in the suburbs with a silver spoon and white collar parents and asycophantic clique backing you doesn't really make it right.

        "If this Studebaker had anymore Atomic Space-Age Style, you'd have to be an astronaut with a geiger counter!"

        by Stude Dude on Mon Mar 31, 2014 at 10:05:31 AM PDT

        [ Parent ]

        •  Sorry. (1+ / 0-)
          Recommended by:
          Gentle Giant

          I'm just a little bit of a sour ball because I'm trying to come to terms with InterStellar OverDrive and Sci Fi Guy! probably never getting a commercial break. It makes me feel like a whole lot of my life is being negated.

          "If this Studebaker had anymore Atomic Space-Age Style, you'd have to be an astronaut with a geiger counter!"

          by Stude Dude on Mon Mar 31, 2014 at 11:13:31 AM PDT

          [ Parent ]

          •  I landed in a pretty good place in my (1+ / 0-)
            Recommended by:
            Stude Dude

            young adult years- post hippie, pre-disco jerk.

            That being said, our current era feels quite a bit like the early 60s with the rahrah & America, F-yeah stuff polluting the culture. With income inequality getting increasing attention, and wars for conquest having done damage to our flesh and treasure, we could see a new era of citizen activism.

            My fear is, with the militarizing of our police forces and the surveillance apparatus we have in place, it could get real ugly- ugly enough to make the worst parts of the 60s upheaval look like a dress rehearsal.

            "Non-violence is a powerful and just weapon which cuts without wounding and ennobles the man who wields it. It is a sword that heals." - Martin Luther King, Jr.

            by Gentle Giant on Mon Mar 31, 2014 at 11:53:39 AM PDT

            [ Parent ]

  •  Am I missing something here? (7+ / 0-)
    Since 1949 those that flout international law have invariably faced justice.
    Did I miss the news, that Dick Cheney and George W. Bush are now behind bars?

    Plus ça change, plus c'est la même chose.

    by notKeith on Mon Mar 31, 2014 at 06:32:33 AM PDT

  •  Therefore it is time for the International (2+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    tb mare, Amber6541

    Criminal Court  in the Hague to open an investigation into events in Crimea."  Yes, place that on the agenda immediately after the events surrounding the war of aggression waged upon IRAQ.

  •  OK, job skills are lacking (4+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    Don midwest, a2nite, Caniac41, Amber6541

    So why aren't the GOP and business leaders pushing for a new system of skills education like the old apprentice ways?  Could it be 'cuz it's linked to unionism?  Heaven forbid folks should find work if it means unions!  Look at the recent mess with VW plant vote.

  •  sec clinton's manichean worldview (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    Don midwest

    would be okay if she didn't stoop to grub for money
    every time she can.

  •  You got it, Paul. (4+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    Caniac41, Don midwest, RadGal70, ebohlman

    When the recent Depression began, I saw lots of skilled people lose their jobs for the crime of being older, more experienced, and more expensive.

    As time went on and employers began to realize it was good to have somebody around who both knew things and has seen things, they tried to hire some of these folks for shit wages, but, mostly, wanted to bring them in cheap on H-1B visas.

    A lot of the people I knew are now in that "don't have the skill zone" even though, over the course of the career, that had learned new technologies and skills over and over and over and over again.  They are people with a proven skill set in technology: a deep understanding of technology, a demonstrated ability to apply it, and a demonstrated ability to learn it.

    And you know what?  Everybody you hire today will have to learn new technology unless you plan to fire them all when something new comes out.

    Oops. Guess I got a little rant-y.

    LG: You know what? You got spunk. MR: Well, Yes... LG: I hate spunk!

    by dinotrac on Mon Mar 31, 2014 at 08:03:33 AM PDT

  •  There is a very real skills gap. (4+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    Don midwest, SueDe, Amber6541, SpaK

    The gap is that employers don't have the skills to convince skilled jobseekers that they should be happy to work for poverty level wages.

  •  Manichean means a choice between good and evil (2+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    Amber6541, IL clb

    from Wiki:
    "the term "manichean" is widely applied (often disparagingly) as an adjective to a philosophy or attitude of moral dualism, according to which a moral course of action involves a clear (or simplistic) choice between good and evil, or as a noun to people who hold such a view."

    I always forget

    Those who quote Santayana are condemned to repeat him. Me

    by Mark B on Mon Mar 31, 2014 at 08:46:41 AM PDT

  •  I admit to being afraid of Hillary myself (2+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    Subterranean, Amber6541

    Her neocon tendencies and connections unnerve me. Of course, I still think she'd be better than ANY Republican. I just wish we had a progressive candidate ready to roll.

    "Portion of the adolescent prisoners in solitary on Rikers Island who have been diagnosed with a mental illness: 7/10." Tell someone.

    by RJDixon74135 on Mon Mar 31, 2014 at 08:51:03 AM PDT

    •  There will be progressive candidates. (2+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      RJDixon74135, Amber6541

      We are still along way out from the election. There will be candidates for the Democratic nomination that are  significantly to the left of HRC.

      The real danger we face right now is the efforts by the HRC backers to squash any opposition before it gets a chance to present itself to the public.

      A populist, economic-centered, anti-Wall Street message would resonate with the base tremendously, and HRC has zero credibility to push a message like that.

      Just wait. I still think the nomination will go to an as yet unknown candidate that is perceived to be to the left of HRC, just like in 2008. This is going to be exciting.

  •  Immigration increases & amnesty for illegal aliens (0+ / 0-)

    Paul Krugman must know that Congress is beholden to corporate interests. Both Democrats and Republicans have been owned by big business for years. Krugman understands that flooding the workplace with millions more immigrants will depress middle class wages even more. Yet he keeps supporting immigration and amnesty for illegal aliens. Why?

    The Trans Pacific Partnership and the so-called "Comprehensive Immigration Reform" currently being pushed by Congress and our president have one thing in common: Flooding the professional workplace with immigrants to depress wages and destroy our once-strong middle class.

    Sadly, many liberals, perhaps Krugman included, fall into step with big business, perhaps because they're thinking about dewey-eyed farm hands, not the millions of foreign tech workers who are about to take our jobs.

    What 1986's amnesty for illegal aliens did to America's blue collar jobs is about to happen to the rest of our middle class, especially the tech sector. Congress and Obama, supported by both progressives and the super-rich, want to open the gates to millions of high tech workers who will gladly work longer hours for much less pay than we HOPEd to get in our own careers. Where else does the left wing agree with the Chamber Of Commerce except on immigration increases and amnesty?

    Perhaps Krugman has some big investments in corporate America and knows very well how profitable it'll be (for him, personally) if high tech companies are allowed to slash worker pay by importing immigrants. He's tenured at a major university. It's not like he's facing losing his job to someone from India or China or Taiwan.

    Paul Krugman should take an honest look at why one out of six Americans are immigrants, and why the left wing consistently works against its own economic interests in pushing for more amnesty for illegal aliens and a massive increase in immigration overall. Because once "Comprehensive Immigration Reform" or the Trans Pacific Partnership are passed by Congress and signed by our plutocratic president, there will be no recovery for the middle class.

Subscribe or Donate to support Daily Kos.

Click here for the mobile view of the site