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22 May 2016

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Degringolade

Sort of off topic, but I came up with this today (I think, someone probably got to it before me)

Do you want to hear my take on this years election?
Donald Trump is for people who have already been thrown off the boat
Bernie Sanders is for folks who have just figured out they are next
Hillary Clinton is for folks who think that their tickets mean something

Fred

Babak,

David Duke, really? He was rejected by those disaffected flyover country voters more than once.

Fred

Lefty,

QE was not initiated by Trump.

Fred

Babak,

Single moms in the corn fields? RIght. I know a few too but none of them are out in the corn fields.

Lefty_Blaker

Fred,

I don't think I said it was. My point was how the skewed effects of the economic recovery were based largely on how it was implemented by giving the financial institutions cash which they used in ways that largely benefitted themselves and their class and not the economy as a whole, particularly rural areas. Hence the weak recovery in general where the vast proportion of the income has gone to the financial elites, like Trump.

Margaret Steinfels

No. People who have lost or whose children never had industrial jobs know what they have lost. Those jobs are lost. Trump has created the illusion that he knows all about that loss, always has, and has put his finger on all of the causes and that he understands the consequences.

He promises to reverse that. He won't and he can't. That is the illusion.

turcopolier

Margaret Steinfels

"He promises to reverse that. He won't and he can't" So, you think that the US is in an irreversible economic decline in which manufacturing can not be revived? Perhaps that is so. pl

Linda Lau

As one of those "East coast types" I resent the idea that we are all alike. We have plenty of wage stagnation here and the real estate market has still not recovered. As for Trump I can't see how disdain for a man who has insulted everything this country is supposed to stand for is a bad thing.

turcopolier

Linda

Fleischer's remarks were directed at the NE media establishment. Are you a media type now? Trump is really another escapee from "Shark Tank" but IMO the corporate media establishment has abandoned all objectivity with regard to Trump and are actively and almost universally campaigning against him. IMO that is inappropriate. pl

Tyler

MS,

Trump has made comments about trade going back decades. They're there, but not talked about cause it wrecks the media's "Trump has no positions!!!" narrative. Trump has never made a secret of being of the elite, but he doesn't care. This "oh he's pretending to be folksy" thought process is a projection created by you and the rest of the Left.

Bernie Sanders, who got kicked out of a hippie commune for being lazy knows of what he speaks? You're ridiculous.

Tyler

Lefty,

Projection.txt

Trump plays the game, admits the game is f-cked, and doesn't like playing the game, but is honest in that's what you have to do to get ahead. That's why people support him.

You're going to be very mad when that yuge wall gets built.

Tyler

Linda,

How has he "insulted" all that this country stands for. I wanna see THIS thought process at work.

Tyler

Sir,

He can. Margaret just doesn't want to admit that a "bad thinker" like Trump is going to bring about the policies she claims to support.

Margaret Steinfels

I think some industrial jobs can be revived. But given that India has now joined China in the manufacturing business with laborers willing to work for even less than the Chinese, I have a hard time figuring out how the steel industry is going to come back. There is a steel glut worldwide, an oil glut, and likely to be an auto glut. But there's also a beer glut, thanks to American ingenuity in creating ten thousand different brews. Somewhere in Wisconsin and Vermont, there is an uptick in manufacturing cheeses. Okay this is not big-scale, but it's "industrial." It requires machinery (and machinists), specialized ingredients, etc. And it's local (in some of the places where rural poverty is rife). There is even an absinthe brewery not far from our cabin (made from local wormwood).

AND THEN, I think the unions have to come back and defend what's left. Do you think Trump will support that? Doubtful. I am hoping that the Carrier Air Condition Company and its owner United Technologies get ripped to shreds over their decision to leave Indiana, and carefully rethink why ACs made in Mexico will be purchased by Trump voters?

Consumers: Stop buying cheap stuff from China, etc. That means Trump voters too!

Margaret Steinfels

Tut! tut! Thinker? You exaggerate. His mouth is self-running and not connected to any thinking process.

Margaret Steinfels

Example: Mouth and brain disconnect.

ALBUQUERQUE — Despite his promise to unite the Republican Party, Donald Trump attacked New Mexico Gov. Susana Martinez — the chairwoman of the Republican Governors Association — on Tuesday night and accused her of “not doing the job."

https://www.washingtonpost.com/news/post-politics/wp/2016/05/25/trump-accuses-new-mexicos-republican-governor-of-not-doing-her-job/?wpmm=1&wpisrc=nl_daily202

ked

yes, I'm not into reservations in the least.

ked

pick your poison, more or less.

ked

as usual, thanks.

ked

"the media" (all of them things) is oblivious to many goings-on these days. if your assessment about people not necessarily wanting DT is correct, we shall be observing a heck of an awakening in the last stages of the election.

turcopolier

Margaret Steinfels

If manufacturing is permanently disappearing from the US we should be glad that you and I will not live to see the gradual descent of working class Americans into poverty. The process is underway promoted by Freed Trade and the march toward a smaller and smaller work force as companies seek more and more automation in their operations. pl

Tyler

BNW,

Adelson went to Trump Tower to kiss Trump's ring.

ked

If I may, Col, allow me to point out that the drive for automation to supplant human labor is a long-standing & powerful trend that will not abate. It has the logic of rationalism in its momentum. The issue is how (if possible / if desirable) to manage it.
The transition to a non-manufacturing-centric economy in the US could have been / would be possible IF there had been a a concomitant dedication to a serious ($$$) national policy to achieve technology & engineering skills training program built into our education system (the Germans have been recognized for doing so).
Think of it as a WPA for our workforce in order to stay ahead of the curve. Of course it takes more than a press conference & photo op. Unfortunately, our political polarization would not (& will not) allow it, and our major manufacturing enterprises simply do not invest in this kind of long-term investment. A gov/industry program might work, but where's the will & leadership (from anywhere)?
Related, the decrepit condition of our nation's physical infrastructure has cried for attention for decades. As a people, we blow that off as well. Those jobs would be of great & lasting value even as service-labor, esp in comparison to lawn care & the like (not that I'm against nice golf courses... relaxing when not infuriating). Would actually make America great again.

Anyway... decent, wise & broadly dispersed leadership coulda / woulda addressed these challenges, but there's been no will... in the past or present, not in our politics or among our people. Too often, things must get worse before they can get better. That may be the lesson of the Trump phenomenon.

{further, there remains a good deal of modern versions of old-school manufacturing in the US, especially in the deep South ("America's Own Third World - C'mon Down!") where I live & enjoy long-standing family roots. change unfolds, it's manageable as long as one is flexible and willing. those values can be taught, at home, school, church... even through media.}

turcopolier

ked

The automation progression is accelerating steadily as companies realize that robots are cheaper then people in the long run. IMO you are wildly off the mark if you think that the masses of working people in the US can be "trained" to find new work in a new economy of technology. IMO the end result of free trade folly and robotization of the economy will be a mass of people living on the dole. pl

ked

If so, the mass of all people on Earth will be living on the dole. This is not a trend that's restricted to the West, nor even mature economies. It is happening everywhere, right now.

I am a bit surprised that you find that working people in the US can't be trained / retrained. I believe that the US Army represents confirmation that a large number of our citizens are trainable to perform useful tasks, almost independently from their skills when they showed up at the door. I think the US military has proven to be one of the most successful educational institutions in history and that it demonstrates that skills-training is possible outside the martial arts in our technology-rich culture.

Given the scale of the problem, and how we've ignored it for decades, I admit it would take time... lotsa time & concerted effort. One of the impacts of our modern times is that technology-driven "change that only occurs over multiple generations" to "changes that occur in numerous waves across the span of a single generation (or career)". So, what do you do when you face problems that take time? Do not delay starting.

I think many analysts are ready to surrender to the challenge of managing change, & blame overwhelming complexity of advanced technology. I have witnessed guys who didn't graduate from HS handily operate $.25M HAAS CNC mills & lathes - one of many such cases.

I believe the problem is the standards we set for ourselves as a nation, not the human capital. Capital is a number... it's what you do with it that counts. Unfortunately our leadership in gov & the private sector (especially finance) don't try very hard - maybe they aren't up to the job.

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