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July 18, 2016


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Thanks, Rogue. IIRC, the Arizona Republic had a front page editorial on election day that said, since BG had virtually no chance of winning, Arizonans should at least deliver his home state to him.

I moved to Az. in 1966 and missed the Goldwater debacle,but I have since found it ironic that Eugene Pulliam and BG both were ran out of the party they created for being RHINO's.The R&G created the monster that allowed the Birchers to take over the Republican party and now the birds are coming home to roost.

I still have my "If I were 21, I'd vote for Goldwater" button. I remember my folks getting dressed for the victory rally to be held downtown. I remember the republican party.
What we have now isn't it. I've chosen to become "not a member of an organized political party ."
Whoo are these people that call themselves "republicans?"

Based on my small circle of friends and family who self identify as republican, we have the following description:

High School education
Obtain info on world events from Fox news only
Gun owner
Religious in theory only, not in practice
Zero knowledge in history
Zero knowledge in economics
Zero knowledge in science

Closed minds - no new knowledge allowed in.

Good thing the public elected that pacifist LBJ instead of that war mongering Goldwater; otherwise Viet Nam might have happened.

However the Dems learned a good page for the play book: demonize the opponent. Just can’t get enough of that. Trump has become a fascist somehow.

Quite a situation we find ourselves in. Trump with no political record to speak of and HRC with a record of total failure. It comes down to a matter of personality and character. Given the total repulsiveness of HRC you have to go with Trump.

Was there any kerfuffle over Goldwater's Jewish heritage? I know he didn't practice, but given the anti-Semitism then and now......

None that I know of, Diane. He was raised Episcopalian. But the most powerful force behind the GOP in Phoenix was Harry Rosenzweig -- again, no anti-Semitism (nor for any of the predominately Jewish merchant princes of old Phoenix). For all of Phoenix's sins, this wasn't one of them.

A Clinton Neocon election is scary. But a Trump victory is even scarier. Non pure white people will be in great danger in Amerika. And Climate Change and progressive liberals will be at risk. And even wall street may find Trump a threat. So mark your ballot. It may be the last time you will find a voting booth.

The Planet has become a “Death House”. I see no bright future ahead and not much hope with the current candidates for American president. I heard Pancho Villa was an optimist. Consequently he died in a hail of assassin’s bullets as he was a threat to those wanting economic, mental and physical control of the peons.
So the warmongers of the world will goose-stepping on to destroying all the planets resources and human lives as they march across the scorched earth.
Would Bernie Sanders or Elizabeth Warren or John Kasich or Jeb Bush been better choices. Maybe but would it have changed the trajectory of those that run the planet, Bankers.
“pity this busy monster, manunkind
“a hopeless case if-listen : there’s a hell of a good universe next door, lets go”.
ee cummings

It's hard to say what Barry Goldwater would have done with Vietnam...I'd guess essentially the same thing as LBJ--i.e.listen to the generals--with maybe the addition of tactical nuclear weapons. After JFK's assassination our increased involvement was guaranteed.

However, a Goldwater election would have resulted in No Voting Rights Act, No Civil Rights Act, just business as usual in Dixie, y'all.

No war on poverty either. Just the Right's compassionate conservative war on poor people.

As far as Clinton v. Trump, I guess you have to weigh your subjective view of her "total repulsiveness" against his demonstrably complete hypocrisy.

Tough call, huh?

There are rapid changes in the trajectory of the size of the millennials (sic) and the rapid decline of the boomers population.

If they can put their cell phones down for a minute, they may change things.

If they can't , they will suffer the hell and damnation we boomers brought down on them.

Hillary 2016

Pence , burn in hell you white haired satan.

Then there are the very NAMES of the political parties, Democrat and Republican, and what root words they spring from. These terms clearly define what the parties prioritize and direct their energies toward…and explain the actions these priorities inform.

Democrat comes from democracy: government of all the people. Republican comes from republic: state in which power rests with the citizens entitled to vote. The first word of the definition is telling: Democrats are concerned with GOVERNMENT of the ALL THE PEOPLE. Republicans are concerned with the STATE in which power rests with the CITIZENS ENTITLED TO VOTE. Would God and Jesus be more concerned with a government of all the people OR a state in which power rests with the citizens entitled to vote? In my Christian faith, I strongly believe God and Jesus would endorse the former quite strongly over the latter.

This leads me to the entirely conservative efforts to “limit” the access of citizens to vote—an effort that also exists in this state. I am quite confident that God views these efforts with opprobrium and disdain because these are attempts at “control,” limiting freedoms, and, consequently, “power,” for those the conservatives consider as “undesirables.”

Conservatism, being an attempt to limit change, also gets caught up in attempting to curtail both existing, and the expansion of, freedoms for those who disagree with conservatism. This is because conservatism, by its core philosophy, seeks to at least keep the “status quo,” if not turn the clock back. This all too often becomes an agenda to control both the pace of change—and marginalize those who embrace that change.

Besides, even if you don't believe in God, there is the natural world where, as in a hurricane, the elemental force of the atmosphere seeks to regain balance. Likewise, in a society where everybody has equal rights, there is less disturbance from societal storms seeking that endgame of "balance."

As a postscript to all of the above, the conservatives try to insinuate the liberals are somehow ungodly and unpatriotic. These conservatives try to use a descending ladder of liberal-socialist-(ungodly)communist.

Do you really think Jesus would affirm avaricious capitalism and its militarism--or a peaceful sharing of the wealth that socialism is.

Big Clue: Jesus upending the moneychanger's tables in the temple.

Greed puts paid to that idea!

I agree with and approve of what Bradley Dranka, said. This announcement was paid for by those that inhabit the halls of Rouge.

Ruben I agree but will they if they hear the noise will it fuel the passion needed?

"The “silent majority” cultivated by President Richard Nixon, Alinsky told Playboy magazine, was “ripe for the plucking by some guy on horseback promising a return to the vanished verities of yesterday.”

Well now its the white noisy, soon to be a, Minortiy saddling up their white horse.


The problem is that the "silent majority" is soon to be a "loud minority" due to not only the increasing "browning" of America from its increasing share of minorities, but also from an increasingly cosmopolitan and worldly electorate.

The conservatives in this country long for the 1950's, when society was more homogenized and conformist.

This conservative electorate sees the “outside” world changing, and this change, ever accelerating, alarms and frightens them. Wishing to remain in their own little world, and their “comfort zone,” they continue electing these intolerant conservatives to represent them because they detest cosmopolitan “change.” Another facet of this entrenched antipathy toward “change” is the conservative electorate demanding their freedom while steadfastly attempting to deny freedom for those they dislike. These conservatives fail to understand that “freedom,” by its very essence, is a concept of the absolute in that freedom is only valid in totality. That means everyone has freedom or it is mere chicanery—especially when one preaches it as just for one side. These attempts to limit the “undesirables” freedom through social control are nothing more than legislative efforts to limit “change” because freedom is the main impetus and driver of “change.” These campaigns to limit freedom for “undesirables” are also part of the larger strategy to deny social justice. The progressive, cosmopolitan world sees this dichotomy and passive-aggressiveness in the conservative electorate and views it as the wellspring of intolerance, despising, and hate for the non-conformism, free-spiritedness, and diversity that propels the hated “change.” This larger world also sees this denial of freedom and social justice as, in its authoritarianism, just a lesser form of the totalitarianism peddled by Hitler, Stalin, Mao, and the Kims of North Korea. These dictatorships were, as even the staunchest conservative would have to admit, ultimate “law and order” societies.

The Republican party, mind you, largely rejected Barry Goldwater because he came to believe gay marriage and such equality issues as voting rights were morally correct.

The Republican party, as represented by its non-inclusive policies and intolerance, is not only out of step with the rest of the world, but also, by Trump's mercurial and dictatorial nature, very unsettling for the world's stability.

These factors are being taken very seriously by the rest of the world because we are a beacon of light that could become a beacon of the unknown.

That uncertainty is troubling to many that see the possibility of a vindictive bully becoming President.

Well said Bradley.

So far the 3 possibles for Hillary's VP are losers.

Bradley, as an old white guy who is a republican I must tell you the 50's were my best years. I had paper and doughnut routes. I was the tether ball champion at Sunnyslope grade school. I worked the lettuce, carrot, grape and sweet potato fields. At 15 my first girlfriends last name was Moreno (brown). In the summer harvest season I slept on the floor of my pal Eddie Valdez's house and his mother fed us fresh flour tortillas and great beans for energy. I cruised Central in my 4 on the floor Chevy. Hung out at Bob's Big Boy and Riverside Ballroom. By 1961 I had more money than my Democrat parents. IKE was my Hero. Today it's BERNIE.

A Clinton choice of Kaine as VP (wants to deregulate banks) is like picking a Koch to be head of the EPA. When it comes to $$ and continous war I see little distance between Hillary The Roman and Donald The Emperor. I stand before you today, my subjects, to announce. Let the Hunger Games begin.

Cal, I rather doubt you would have understood this at the time (I was 7 then), but Goldwater's ascendency was a reaction to Eisenhower's middle of the road policy. The leftover ethos from the Robert Taft excoriations of Truman fueled the conservative disenchantment over Eisenhower's "steady as she goes" policies. Obviously, some of Goldwater's appeal came from Strom Thurmond's "states rights" plank in 1948.

Goldwater started the whole far-right wing ball rolling. However, while Reagan, its first beneficiary, got most of the things he wanted, he understood that talking with the other side (and compromising sometimes) was necessary.

That sentiment of cooperation, I truly believe, is what today's far-right wing
actively refuses to do.

It is this anti-cooperation sentiment, which I believe is Trump's greatest strength among his political base, that most worries rational people worldwide.

If Reagan '80 is to Goldwater '64, then who in 2020 is to Trump'16? Not just the likely nominee but the inheritor of his nativist supporters?

I'm too young to have been around for Goldwater's run, so when his name is brought up, I remember the time I was privileged to get to meet him. The professor of my political science course at ASU had a personal relationship with him and he would come once every year to talk to the class. I was in the class in 1993, so he was quite old but still really sharp. I don't remember much that he said specifically, but my impression of him was that he was very plain spoken and not at all shy to go against Republican orthodoxy. Seemed kind of contrarian, but charismatic at the same time. I enjoyed listening to him and speaking with him briefly after class. I came to value the experience even more when he died a few years later. It's not often that one gets to meet a true historical character.
For some reason I remember reading in 1988 in an article that Dan Quayle had a license plate that read AUH2O. Clever, and he's not someone you tend to think of in terms of clever.

Bradley I'm 76 and been following history since I was 14. Back later just got in from movie, the Infiltrator. Was OK but not near as good as the book. They did mention that Regean (Iran/Contra) was a dope dealer why Nancy was doing her "Just say NO" spiel.

A good read on BG is: "The Politics of Murder" by Dave Wagner.
Old Barry was not quite as clean as some believe.

The xenophobic and jingoistic rallying cry of the Trump crowd echoes the America First movement of 1939-1941. This 1939-1941 effort was to stop America getting involved in the European conflict then ongoing.

The America First motto of Trump has a similar core ideology in that it is marginally concerned with the rest of the world's opinions. America is supreme by our beliefs--and the rest of the world secondary.

This is a dangerous position insofar as many of America's corporations are out in the "rest of the world," and a huge portion of their profits (which contribute greatly to our standard of living) come from outside U. S. borders.

This is something these "business-friendly" Trump supporters would be wise to remember when they parade their xenophobic jingoism that will isolate the U. S. if it becomes international policy.

John said, "Barry went on to recant his stance on civil rights, sincerely I believe. He was never a theocrat or culture warrior."
Me think, Barry had some good bones (http://www.barrymgoldwaterjr.com/BMGBiography.htm)
and was much smarter than George W Bush but he was more like George W Bush than Abraham Lincoln. Barry was a great guy to be with on a float down Grand Canyon and sit by the campfire and down a cerveza. And he knew how to handle a camera and got along great with everyday folks.

Politically He seemed to fall in line with whatever his handlers were advocating. Later in life his views evolved likely due to the influence of his second wife, Susan Shaffer Wechsler. Following is her current thoughts on a comparison between Barry and Donald.


I think it was a mistake by Barry to be convinced to run for president. Trump did not run for president by mistake, he has been deliberating for at least a decade but wisely bided his time for the right opening, And like Bernie Sanders he found that opening in the great dissatisfaction currently at play in Americas political system.

One thing one has to realize is that before the electoral public gets anything, those they elected get theirs.

The Blacks I worked with had a saying for government work and serving in the armed forces: "Before you get anything, (Uncle) Sam gets his."

I think people should apply the same maxim to those they elect.

Do you really believe they are, or should be, altruistic.

Or that if Trump gets in, he'll not be selfish. As if greed didn't get him where he is today?

The way I view Clinton vs. Trump: The devil you don't know (Trump, by his propensity for outlandish statements) may be worse than the devil you do know (Clinton, because her stances are fairly realistic).

When I consider the temperaments of both candidates, our years of at least semi-stability makes me much more comfortable than four years of at least semi-uncertainty.

The girl picks the daisy, and the boy acts crazy!

Hillary may have just elected The Donald.

@Cal: What did she do now? The VP pick?

@ Bradley: You keep harping on the greed thing. Yes Trump was born rich and just got richer. Mostly legitimate (as far as I know). The Clintons are two-bit hustlers; greed that boggles the mind. The Clinton Foundation scam is going to blow up in the face before this is all done.

Billy's Blacklist
Hollywood Ten.
Donalds drone list
Everybody that didn't support me.
Will Jon be Trumps, Trumbo?
Maybe a slight chance that WKG
Will be on Hillary's Hit list

@Cal: While a lot of “not friends of the Clintons seem to die in very unusual circumstances” I’m not on the conspiracy bandwagon. Easy for me to say. If I’m on the “list” it’s way down there. By the way they do have an enemies list (See “HRC” a more or less authorized bio). The guy who needs to be very worried is Gary Byrne. He was a secret agent assigned to the White House during the Bush I and Clinton administrations. He has a book called “Crisis of Character”. It’s as inside look of how the whole thing operated. We have an expression in the South called “Bitch From Hell” That’d be HRC.

I think the demo VP candidate is a very important nomination. I don’t think HRC will last out her term. Being Sec of State almost killed her (see “HRC” above).

wkg in b ham: Not just the greed thing as in money greed, but the greed thing in terms of giving back to those who elected you. But most of the newly-elected just "fall in line" with the establishment that exists in Washington or their state capital.

So much of Republican dissatisfaction is born from the newly-elected not delivering on their promises--and their electorate is pissed at them. Term limits, wanting firebrands to represent them, etc. seem to be in fashion with the tea-party/freedom caucus.

What I am saying is that, when you have a capitalist system that glorifies ambition and greed, one should not be surprised that their representatives are also going to be ambitious and greedy. That applies to power as well as money. The present party systems foster and reward that ambition and greed.

It's the economic system.

But Trump being a potential "loose cannon" in world politics is what really worries me--because I doubt many world leaders are going to take the kind of rhetoric he dished out in the campaign laying down. I suspect those offended by him if he becomes president might retaliate economically against the U. S.

@Bradley Re “capitalist system that glorifies ambition and greed, one should not be surprised that their representatives are also going to be ambitious and greedy.” Such emotions/motivations are intrinsic to human nature. Socialism has been a virtual failure where ever it has been tried.

Take comfort in the adage that demographics are destiny: Eventually you run out of old angry white guys.

And then there is this:


That’s OK, there are plenty of young angry white people to take their place. Add to that angry blacks and and Cemtral Americans,….

Come to think of it they all agree on one: the status quo sucks.

Look at all the angry people at this site alone.

Where does Hawking find the time? Not only to do his physics, write books, and all the extra time needed to deal with his physical problems but to be an expert on American Politics. And doing so from England! To top to off he must be telepathic to read the minds of Americans. Remarkable.

You don't have to be telepathic.

You only have to be smarter than the typical American.

And that ain't hard.

B. Franklin...still wise after all these years.

Wkg - Hawking doesn't. He's a giant fake.

I think Joe's on to something the number of old "white" guys is diminishing. And the young white guys don't have the $$ the old white guys had and they don't vote in the same numbers the old folks did. The angry young white guys are more like the Bundys and Timothy McViegh.
I'M having trouble identifing any angry people on this post. Can U point some out to me WKG?
I'm happy that Dudas got me straight. Hawking is a fake and The Donald is the real deal?
Fits right into Stupidvilles decesion to" come for the experts first".
Not being an expert I'm hoping u all don't forget to write in Bernie and Jose.

The most scary thing is that probably a very large percentage of the American voters is totally uninformed.
See: Joe Arpio keeps getting re-elected

Cal - read the post again - I didnt say a word about Trump.

Oh no I did it again and ass/u/me 'd.
May Ted Cruz's god forgive me that I sinned. Must have been my overwhelming emotion trying to defend my Hero, Stephen Hawking. He has been married seven times. Many more times than Donald and he is,alot smarter than all politicans.

Enough of my poking satire that seeks adversarial comment.
Seriously, A Trump presidency may be what we need to bring about a real revolution to bring the 1 percenters and thier financial minors into a seious discussion.

Dudas in the future I'll try and live up to your itelligence standards and hopefully not offend your sensibilties. But at 76 and an IQ of 99 it will be,a struggle.

Hi. Off topic, but this looks pretty interesting : http://www.latimes.com/books/jacketcopy/la-ca-jc-paolo-bacigalupi-20150524-story.html about, among other things, Phoenix and Las Vegas vying for water.

I don’t blog anyplace else, I don’t facebook, twitter or any of that stuff just an email and hang out here, for FUN. I am not interested in being perfect, dotin every I and crossin ever t. I don’t pretend to be some genius. I am an Iowa farm boy that went to country school and graduated last in my high school class. But I read a lot and really enjoy Jons stuff and the commenters that come here. However when if it gets to the point it’s not FUN, I will quit cumin.
As some amigos carbrones de mi in South Tucson always remind me, No le hace.
PS, I haven’t been angry for 10 years or more, porque, no le hace.

Dont forget to write in Angela Davis and Jerry Brown for President and VP.

Hasta manana.

@Cal Re “angry”. How about:

Based on my small circle of friends and family who self identify as republican, we have the following description:
High School education
(Ruben…I know I’m not in your circle of friends. You got the “White” part right and missed on all the rest)

So the warmongers of the world will goose-stepping on to destroying all the planets resources and human lives as they march across the scorched earth. (Cal)

Pence , burn in hell you white haired satan. Ruben)

Wkg seems your engineering skills are unable to identify when U R being F'ed with. I'm sure Ruben is getting a big laugh .

Talk about angry:

@Cal Re Ruben: Yep. Went right over my head.

Re the anger thing: I think there’s A LOT to be angry about. As you know I’m a Tea Party guy and almost everyone here is way to the left of me. But, on most things I would agree with you all on the general enumeration of what our national problems are – although we might not agree on the details of the problem. On most things we’d disagree on what actions should be taken to deal with them.

The were a couple of things I let go at the time. Never want to ‘jack a thread. But this one seems played out.

The issue of “change” brought up by Bradley. The implication being that “change” is something that is intrinsically good. Well change can be good; but there’s at least in equal chance that it will be bad in the long run. For example, building the interstate highway system was discussed recently here. Seemed like a good thing at the time. In retrospect, maybe we’d have been a lot better off to have never done. I’m pretty much in the “bad idea” camp. I think changes that are made on purpose should be undertaken very slowly and have an “undo” button.

Re “isolationism”: I don’t even agree with the term. But I’m firmly behind the “America First” sentiment. Anything else is senseless. This doesn’t mean turning you back to the world. Switzerland has been “isolationist” for centuries. No one thinks of the Swiss as being provincial in any way. The “never ending war” routine, self-defeating trade packs, mass immigration (legal and illegal), fixer of all problems, etc. must stop.

Wkg hope U get to feeling better. I got up around 1000. Took my vitamins had oatmeal, checked Jon's column. Read a bunch of Absurd news crap. Time for a walk into the peaceful desert surrounded by blue sky. No hate there. Hasta luego.

Change is not "intrinsically good", but it is inevitable.

And to fight against inevitability is a mug's game.

We change, we "evolve", or we die off.

As regards the Tea Party, I've always wondered at their unbending belief in the free market and unfettered capitalism. Both of which demand that businesses find the cheapest labor. Which in our global economy sends millions of what were once middle class jobs to China, India, Mexico--wherever wages are lower. The only way to prevent this is through government intervention/regulation--that right wing demon Big Government again--because if you rely on the patriotism of the corporations involved you will be sorely disappointed.

Then there was the famous Tea Party cry of "keep your government hands off of my Medicare", as ignorant and obtuse a statement as I've ever heard.

Better, and much easier, to be angry about 'socialism' and that Kenyan Muslim in the White House than to make a nuanced, realistic assessment of what is happening and why.

I'll say this for the Tea Party, their raging ignorance did manage to muck up the Congress in the 2010 election. And we're still paying the price for a Congress full of no-nothing do-nothing anti-government zealots.

So that's the Tea Party...

But I'm sure some of them are "good" people.

As far as wanting to be like Switzerland...Really?

Did you all notice on the front pages section here the
GOP transportation plan????

The Green Liberal Good News.

wkg in b ham: Where there is some form of socialism (western Europe, Canada, Scandinavia, Japan), I am quite sure their standard of living is very similar to ours. The kicker is their average life expectancy is greater than in the U.S. Probably this is due to the less stress from not having to be as ambitious or aggressive as we are here in America.

Would you call that a failure? Or is it just because you disagree with some spreading of the wealth? Saying greed is human nature is a morally poor excuse for not trying to help others less fortunate.

wkg in b ham: That there will be change is the only thing that remains the same.

It's how we respond to that change that is a telling sign of what is in our hearts and minds.

Accessing this change by accepting it is inevitable is the only chance we have to influence it--by becoming an active part in it.

Acting as if you can stop it seems to be that you really want to opt out of it. Change will happen with or without any of us.

Having a leader that acts as if he wants to go back in time to the late 1940's-mid-1960's, a period when White America called most of the shots around the world, is a total delusion. If he's really serious about this idea that America can once again rule the free world, I believe he'll get resistance from other countries in the form of economic NON-cooperation that will only serve to hurt us.

@B Franklin re “We change, we "evolve", or we die off.” I’m glad you bring up the evolution aspect of change. The overwhelming majority of genetic mutations are harmful and die off. Very few are useful; and most of these are helpful modifications of what already exists (e.g. a little longer neck for a giraffe). I was speaking of those changes that are optional and on purpose. Most federal programs are both.

Re: “I've always wondered at their unbending belief in the free market and unfettered capitalism.” Yes I believe in markets and capitalism. Markets can never be totally “free’ and or capitalism “unfettered”. But restrictions to markets and limits to capitalism should be made with a great deal study and made slowly.

Re “Both of which demand that businesses find the cheapest labor.” Business utilizes the best labor at its disposal. Cost is a part of the “best” aspect, but a lot of other factors are present too.

Re “Which in our global economy sends millions of what were once middle class jobs to China, India, Mexico”. See my comment earlier about “The “never ending war” routine, self-defeating trade packs, mass immigration (legal and illegal), fixer of all problems, etc. must stop.”

Re “that right wing demon Big Government again” Indeed, I think big government is a threat. If you don’t think so too you just haven’t thought about it enough.

Re “Then there was the famous Tea Party cry of "keep your government hands off of my Medicare", as ignorant and obtuse a statement as I've ever heard.” I have never heard this statement but that could just be me. I will say this; it’d be a total rat-f__k to pay Medicare taxes for 25 or 30 years and then be told “never mind, we’ve decided to terminate the system”. A surprising number of millennials and Xers that I know want to eliminate Social Security (or at least its obligations). Again paying into the system for 50 years that I didn’t want to be in anyway and then walking away just isn’t right. Doesn’t mean that it won’t happen because not doing so would hurt even a larger

Re “the Tea Party, their raging ignorance did manage to muck up the Congress in the 2010 election.” Maybe. I’d say it was Obama and his policies. The only reason I’m not paranoid about the possibility of an HRC victory (possible but probably not likely) is that 8 years of HRC would just about kill off the Democratic Party.

Re “As far as wanting to be like Switzerland...Really? “ I used them as a role model for “isolationism”. But if wouldn’t be a bad model to emulate.

Uh, in no particular order:

The political party that wants to get rid of Medicare as we know it, and Social Security for that matter, certainly isn't the Democratic Party.

Switzerland is approximately two thirds the size of West Virginia with the population of New York City. Their "isolationism", at least in this century, was no doubt helped along by being the Nazi's banker. Oh, and by the way, their healthcare system is similar to Obamacare. It's run more efficiently, probably because there aren't any Republicans constantly trying to repeal it, rather than improve it.

We can agree that no market is truly "free". And that's exactly why they need to be regulated. We've seen what unregulated financial markets lead to. Wall Street running rampant without any fear of the consequences.

I repeat, without some sort of government regulation, in today's interconnected world manufacturing will always flow to the cheapest possible source. Or do you think all those Chinese assembling iphones and that crap they sell at Wal Mart are more skilled than we lazy Americans?

As far as big government being a "threat", the real threat comes from continuing to elect people who don't believe in government to govern you.

WOW, now this is getting exciting and FUN.

@Cal It is fun. But going to have to disengage for a while; drunk posting in the middle of the night is never a good idea.

Glad to engage with BF and Bradley. Down to actual statements of facts instead of “Trump is a Nazi”. Back at yah if RC doesn’t post.

One thing of value (I hope) is my total rediscovery of just how good a grilled cheese sandwich (even if it’s made via a George Foreman Grill) and tomato soup are. I’ve actually witnessed arguments about weather water or milk were the best dilatants for the soup. This is crazy. Everyone knows half-and-half is the best.

This piece, "1964," is really just the prequel to "Trump and the GOP."

Probably the most concise writing I have ever seen about such a broad subject.

wkg in b ham:

What is the law of unintended consequences in a capitalism that
focuses on profits above all else?
When you pay for that "cheapest labor possible," you give up some of your
power in the service of greater profitability.

This has been going on for decades.
Germany post-WWII, Japan, China, Vietnam, etcetera, are all nations that have grown powerful from our profits "uber alles" economic system.
We paid them the seed money that has grown those countries.

Americans need to recognize that other nations concerns are not beneath ours. Their self-interests, especially in combination(s), may even carry more economic weight than our (300+ million strong) concerns. The world is 7+ billion people, of which we are about 1/23rd.

I think Trump and a lot of other more conservative voters feel we can just do whatever we want to do without consequences. I suspect the rest of the world may have a different opinion of that if that kind of indifference becomes national policy. And they may respond to such arrogance with actions of their own to demonstrate their opprobrium. They do have a say at the table, and we gave those countries seats and voices with the money we paid them.

World War II should have hammered home the consequences for ignoring the rest of the world by wishing to remain aloof in ours.

When everyone contributes to something, by the laws of evolution, the whole becomes stronger than the sum of its parts. Like it or not, our economic system and the standard of living we enjoy is intertwined with the rest of the world.

Can any regular American besides the top 1% really afford being isolationist?

@ Bradley re “wkg in b ham: Where there is some form of socialism (western Europe, Canada, Scandinavia, Japan), I am quite sure their standard of living is very similar to ours.” Western Europe, Canada and Scandinavia are the systems of “social democracy” (an unfortunate name that implies as implies socialist economic systems – not state sponsored social programs). Norway’s economic system that’s interesting and I’d like to get into but it’s just too big a topic. The U.S. is a social democracy also – just not the extent of the others. Japan doesn’t to knowledge have much in the way of social programs. But all of them have economic systems that are largely capitalistic – just like to U.S.

To my knowledge, none of the countries you have listed have standards of living that aren’t even close to that of the U.S. I do admit that we have pockets of extreme poverty that they probably don’t. Use of per capita incomes is typically used to defend the performance of “your” countries. They lag that of the U.S. but not by all that much. The real kicker is the cost of everything you need money to pay for. High income taxes, VATs on everything, incredible “sin taxes”, etc.

Re “The kicker is their average life expectancy is greater than in the U.S. Probably this is due to the less stress from not having to be as ambitious or aggressive as we are here in America.” No the reason is genetics and life styles/culture. Ethnic Nords, Danes, Sweds etc. living in the US have higher life expectancies than there European cousins.

Norway IS interesting. In addition to providing universal healthcare, the State owns large shares of the petroleum, communications, and hydro electric industries.

In fact, the State owns over 30% in all publicly listed companies.


Moving on, I think using per capita incomes to assess a nation's relative wealth is too easily skewed by having a bunch of billionaires and near billionaires. Qatar and the Emirates have very high per capita incomes. In any case, despite what Der Trump would have us believe, the USA is still the richest and most powerful nation by far.

And we spend much more than any other country on earth on our health care.

So, forget those healthy Scandinavians. Why don't our citizens outlive the Italians and Portuguese and New Zealanders and Australians and...? We are about 30th on the life expectancy chart.

And why do we fall behind other, "lesser" nations in areas like livability and quality of life ratings?

One of the things we are most "exceptional" about in the USA is our exceptional unwillingness to learn from other countries

B. Franklin,

It's really a matter of what we think of our fellow man: Is that man (or woman) worthy of something better than, "You're on your own!"?

This permeates not only social justice, but also, how business conducts itself in the moral plane. I think our "profits above all" form of capitalism has a huge negative effect on life expectancy and quality of life here in America. We are a "go-go-go, git 'er done" fast-forward society that seldom "smells the roses." We don't consider the consequences of our profit-driven behaviors and too many of us wind up under those roses before our time. Too many people blindly try to "have it all."

Our ambitious and aggressively aggrandizing lifestyle has a bad habit of sucking everything out of us in our quest to "get ahead." Very few people live "in the moment." Those who do understand the rejuvenating powers of "slowing down." You would be surprised how many more people (as a percentage of the population) in these "longer-living" countries live life at a less-frenzied pace.

Speed kills. Nobody hurts you harder than yourself.

wkg in b ham:

Just consider this--aggressive and ambitious IS a lifestyle/culture.
While it is a choice, too many people, by trying to "fit in," get sucked into a habit that becomes a behavioral addiction.

This aggressiveness and ambitious lifestyle has been demonstrated to raise stress levels.

I posit that stress, over a long period of time, can kill.

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