Showing posts with label World War II. Show all posts
Showing posts with label World War II. Show all posts

Saturday, January 02, 2016

Nehru, Tibet, Aur Britain Ka Pret

Nehru ne Tibet mein ja ke Chin ke sath yuddh kyon nahin kiya? Ye bahut ajib baat hai. Nehru ne khud apni ajadi ke liye yuddh nahin kiya. Shanti ke raste se gaye. To fir Tibet ke liye banduk uthane ka sawal kahan paida hota hai?

Britain ka tha ki hum India par raj is liye kar rahe hain ki ye jungli log khud apne par shasan kar nahin sakte. Agar hum tumhe independence de dete hain to aapas mein kat mar karte rah jaoge. You don’t know how to govern. To World War II ke khatm hote hote British samrajya ka sharir to khatm ho chuka tha. Lekin British samrajyavad ka pret khatm nahin huwa. Usne wo shrir chhod diya. Usne wo sharir chhoda aur Amrika ke sharir mein ja ke ghush gaya. To on the behalf of Britain tab Ameriki wahi baat kahne lage. Ki tum ajad kyon huwe? Dekho, tumhari banegi nahin Pakistan se. To Pakistan ko prop karna shuru. To ye to galat baat hai. Ek desh ajad huwa hai aur aap usko harass par harass kiye ja rahe ho. Desh ajad bhi huwa ya nahin?

India Pakistan partition ke baad jo log mare wo Hitler ke yahudi hi the. Bengal famine mein jo log mare wo Hitler ke yahudi hi the. India Pakistan ka border demarcation janbujh ke kuchh is kism se kiya gaya ki log bhari tadat mein mare jate. Jis bande ne wo demaracation kiya, wo usi raat desh chhod ke bhag gaya. Kyon ki use bakhub malum tha usne kya kiya. Log marne wale hain, ye use maloon tha. Log mare usi style mein demarcation huwa tha.

To ye kahna ki Nehru ne Chin se jang kyon nahin lada, ye to Amrika ke sharir mein Britain ka pret bol raha hai. Chin ne galti ki. Tibet mere ko behad priya hai. Jitna Bharat priya hai utna Tibet priya hai mere ko. Lekin Nehru did not have the option to go to war. Jab Britain aur Amerika kah rahe ho ki tumne achha nahin kiya ajadi le liya, to Soviet Union ke tarah haath badhana, asha karna ki Chin ke sath dosti ho jata to achha rahata. Wo to understandable baat hai.

Yuddh kiya Amrika ne. Korean War, abhi tak chal raha hai. Jab ki Korea Tibet ke tarah remote nahin hai. Tibet abhi remote hai to us samay kaisa raha hoga? Bharat khud apne Akshay Chin ilake mein nahin ja sakta tha to Tibet to dur ki baat thi.

Yuddh kiya to Amerika ne Vietnam mein. Dekho kya huwa. Abhi tak sab afsos kar rahe hain.

Chin ne us samay galti ko. Lekin aaj ka solution wo hai jo Dalai Lama khud kah rahe hain. Tibet ko independence nahin chahiye, lekin Dalai Lama ko Chin ke bhitar jaa ke ghumfir karne ki ijajat ho. I support that.

Pakistan aur Bharat ko ye British divide and rule mindset ko 60-70 sal late hi samajh lena chahiye. Britain ke pret. Ki tension se fayada nahin. Chalo relationship ko normalize karte hain aur ek dusre se jam ke byapar karte hain. Shanti banate hain. Tarakki ki sonchte hain. Chhota sa tapu hai Britain. Kya hai? Aaj kya hai Bharat ke samne?

Duniya ke do sabse bade loktantron ko ek dusre ka number one ally ban jana chahiye. Jis tarah Madhesi Nepal mein kah rahe hain, Abhi Nahin To Kabhi Nahin. To abhi accha mauka hai. Obama ke final year mein. Bharat ko bhi regional outlook se upar uth kar ek global outlook ke or badhna chahiye. Militarily nahin, lekin trade, commerce ke raste to tatkal kar sakte hain.

Britain ka dhona chhodo. 21st century aa gaya hai. 1947: A Love Story ko bye bye karo. Bit gayi so baat gayi.

Chin ko bhi chahiye ki thoda maturity dikhao.

Nehru ne Chin ke sath Tibet mein ja ke yuddh nahin kiya is liye tumne Pakistan ko apna military ally nahin banaya. Tumne Pakistan ko apna military ally is liye banaya ki Britain ka pret tumhare sharir mein ja ke ghush gaya.

Saturday, May 16, 2015

Does The World Government Have To Await A Total Spread Of Democracy?

English: Emblem of the United Nations. Color i...
English: Emblem of the United Nations. Color is #d69d36 from the image at (Photo credit: Wikipedia)
Bill Gates, Bill Clinton, Global Poverty, World Government, Soft Racism

A representative for every country on the planet so as to cover all of the land surface on the planet, voting in New York City, hosting regular parliamentary debates, voting for leadership --- what are the problems?

Will it be one country one vote? That might not be democratic. Voting has to reflect the populations in those countries.

Bill Gates is right. The only way to truly tackle global disease is by creating a world government, and no, the UN in its current form is not it. Somebody tell the powers that be, World War II has long been over. Need to reset the pieces on the board.

You could create two chambers. The lower chamber would have one country, one representative, with each representative getting a vote that is in direct proportion to that country's population.

There would be an upper chamber. There it is one country, one vote, regardless of population. But this would be a much weaker chamber, mostly casting symbolic votes.

There would be a Security Council, one representative for each continent: Asia, Africa, North America, South and Central America, Europe, represented by the most populous country on each continent. Another five seats would be reserved for the most populous countries not thus covered.

There would be an Economic Council, representing the 10 largest economies on the planet. The World Bank and the IMF would be under this Council. The Council would report to the General Assembly.

What seems to be the problem? That many participating countries are not even democracies? Bob Dole once laughed out loud that Gaddafi's Libya seemed to be chairing the Human Rights Council. "You hear many jokes about the UN, but nothing beats the real thing!"

This is a tricky one. Does the world need to wait for a total spread of democracy to have a genuine world government? Or can it go for it now?

I'd argue the world does not need to wait for that moment, instead it can hasten that moment by creating a genuine world government, that works in total transparency, and through regular democratic voting.

How will this world government fund itself? Each member country would be required to give 1% of its GDP to this world government. That is the tax you pay to be a member.

The International Court in Hague would become the judiciary limb.

The Secretary General would be elected by the two chambers through majority vote. One country nominating a person, another seconding her/him makes you a candidate. If no candidate gets a majority in the first round, the top two vie again. Once elected, the Secretary General forms a cabinet. Each continent must be represented. One would think a 10 member cabinet would suffice.

Creating this world government would be the fastest way to create a world where there is a rules based order. Right now we have an order based on armies. Very expensive armies.

This world government would have an army, and a police. Done right countries like America suddenly will need a much smaller defense budget. It will see a huge peace dividend with which to build infrastructure. It has ageing roads and bridges. It could start paying down on its huge debt. I am sure China would appreciate.

This is not a loss of power for America. The false power of white supremacy that bemoans 3,000 dead at the World Trade Center and goes ahead and kills a million people in Iraq!

This world government through its heartthrob of democracy and transparency would be the fastest way to wipe out global poverty and disease, and that is before it even spends any of its money.

Note that in this model you are not creating constituencies and holding elections to a world parliament. Each sovereign country participates. And the UN bureaucracy is rebuilt along meritocratic lines. The quota system that allows member countries to populate the ranks has led to a bloat. No wonder Bob Dole cracked jokes.

The UN bureaucracy has to be rebuilt along meritocratic lines.

Done right, this world government takes the sting out of regional trade deals. The WTO should be a wing of this world government. This world government would be the best way to deal with climate change. With terrorism. Terrorists thrive in the huge blind spots that exist between sovereign countries. You need not dilute that sovereignty. But you do need to get rid of the blind spots. A world government does that.

What would it take? Who will tie the bell round the cat's neck?

This will also create space for a new global reserve currency. China came up with a pretty good idea early in 2009. The US shot it down. And so now the Chinese currency competes with the dollar in places like Africa.

A world government taken to its logical conclusion will create a world by as early as 2030 where people move around from country to country, like goods do today, and that does not seem to create problems. Immigration is like terrorism, it exists in the blind spots between sovereign nations. In a global world, there should only be travel, no immigration.

A world government is long overdue. There is no need to wait for a total spread of democracy before we can make it happen. Like Amartya Sen said, "A country does not become fit for democracy, a country becomes fit through democracy."

The world government idea will not become possible because there has been a total spread of democracy, but creating a world government will hasten that total spread of democracy on the planet.

Why does the world need to wait for a major Climate Change related disaster before it can whip up a world government? Why can't it be done by world leaders who will see the light? It will save America hundreds of billions of dollars. Every year. We will conquer poverty and disease.

The world government's Health Department will do work that the Gates Foundation can only dream of. Rich white guys have their limitations.

Imagine that world government putting money into R&D on Energy. We will see nuclear fusion happen. The world government's space agency will take humans beyond the solar system. Scoot over, Elon Musk.

How about having two chambers? In the lower chamber, each country's vote is according to its population. In the upper chamber, each country's vote is proportional to its GDP, the GDP calculated for PPP (purchasing power parity). Will that make America feel better? Both chambers would have equal power. I am sorry if it sounds like campaign finance gone horribly wrong. I am just trying to get America to come on board.

I think there is a way to blow up China's internet firewall. You do that (use Musk's internet satellites) and there is no way China can stay away from fundamental political reform. Free speech is the most important of all human rights. You put that into play, and all other parts of democracy follow very quickly. That and that leaves only Africa as a big chunk without democracy. Arabs will also come along. With fracking and green energy, the House of Saud does not have that kind of muscle any more. It will fall and make way for democracy. Why can't they take about 10 billion for themselves and let the country be?

Monday, May 11, 2015

The R Word

Blackmon’s book describes what he calls the “Age of Neoslavery,” in which newly freed slaves found themselves entangled in a legal system built upon involuntary servitude — which included the selling of black men convicted of crimes like vagrancy and changing employers without receiving permission........ “The constitutional amendments that were supposed to free African-American slaves did something for about 10 years, then there was a North-South compact that granted the former the slave-owning states the right to do whatever they wanted,” he explained. “And what they did was criminalize black life, and that created a kind of slave force. It threw mostly black males into jail, where they became a perfect labor force, much better than slaves.” ...... “If you’re a slave owner, you have to pay for — you have to keep your ‘capital’ alive. But if the state does it for you, that’s terrific. No strikes, no disobedience, the perfect labor force. A lot of the American Industrial Revolution in the late 19th, early 20th Century was based on that. It pretty must lasted until World War II.” ....... by the 1970s and 1980s it’s going back to the criminalization of black life.” ....... “It’s called the drug war, and it’s a racist war. Ronald Reagan was an extreme racist — though he denied it — but the whole drug war is designed, from policing to eventual release from prison, to make it impossible for black men and, increasingly, women to be part of [American] society.”
Obama shared personal anecdotes about the racist double standard she had encountered as the wife of the nation’s first black president

Thursday, August 29, 2013

Political Benefits For Obama From A Syria Strike

Official photographic portrait of US President...
Official photographic portrait of US President Barack Obama (born 4 August 1961; assumed office 20 January 2009) (Photo credit: Wikipedia)
(1) Greatness

You liberate people, you enter the greatness department as president.

(2) Avoid Being A Lame Duck

An Obama who pushed out Assad will be a stronger Obama in domestic politics. He will still be able to do things all the way to 2016. In short, a strike on Syria makes immigration reform more possible, for example.

(3) Help The Economy

World War II got America out of the Great Depression. Bringing democracy to Syria, Iran and Russia will bring the unemployment rate in America down to around 5%.

(4) Clarity Of Purpose

I was Barack Obama's first full time volunteer in New York City. I am talking early 2007. To me the case for a military strike on Syria is as clear as the case for Obama was back then.
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Tuesday, September 13, 2011

The Mini Me Stimulus Bill Lacks Imagination

It is half the size of the original stimulus bill, which was too small in size in the first place. Tax cuts don't cut it.

A stimulus is like an electric shock to the heart. It is only appropriate for extreme circumstances. And logic for normal times does not apply. Too much of political debate in America has been about trying to apply normal time logic to abnormal times.

When you see the threat of a Great Depression, you go into massive deficit spending. But there is no budget for it is no argument. FDR was not given a World War II budget. He spent massively anyway.

Right now it feels like America is in terminal decline.

This great economic crisis is a time to rearchitect America in a massive way. This crisis is a grand opportunity. Tax cuts to make cry baby Republicans happy, extending unemployment benefits, keeping teachers and firefighters on payroll, those are all wonderful goals, but none of them are to do with the jobs, companies and industries of tomorrow.

Europe and America are now suffering from what Japan has been suffering from for close to two decades now. Band aid solutions don't work in these situations.

Bold, Drastic Action Necessary

Japan, Europe, America: Three Trillion Dollars

The three old economies should cough up some money and put a big chunk of it into connecting every human being to broadband internet. Down the line this infrastructure can be sold off to the private sector. The costs incurred now will be recouped.

Finance: A New World Order

The dollar's special place in the world has to come to an end. It is that special status that gives rise to fiscal irresponsibility on Capitol Hill.

A Total Spread Of Democracy

Total internet access will bring about a total spread of democracy. The people will rise on their own. They will help themselves. They will talk to each other and build the institutions of democracy.

Rule Of Law Between Nations

National armies are hangovers from the era of the nation state. Globalization taken to its logical end asks for rule of law between nations.

The Education Bubble

Peter Thiel is right. The education bubble is way bigger and way more dangerous than the housing bubble. Universal broadband has to be brought to the service of lifelong education for everyone on the planet. Traditional schools and colleges are simply not delivering. Their reaches are way too small.
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Friday, August 12, 2011

The Stimulus Bill Was Messed Up

Mussolini (left) and Hitler sent their armies ...Image via Wikipedia
  1. It was too small. It should have been at least a trillion. (Stimulus: Make It A Trillion, Stimulus: Size Matters)
  2. One third of the stimulus going to tax cuts was a huge mistake. That was like appeasing the Republicans, not one of who voted for the bill anyways. When the world appeased Hitler, World War II happened. When Obama appeased the Republicans, the Tea Party happened, and he lost the House. 
  3. That one third should have been spent on jobs programs where you train people for a week and you send them out to work for $10 per hour, $20 per hour. (Three Million Jobs)
  4. The number one goal of the stimulus bill should have been to take every American to one gigabit per second kind of internet access. But most of the focus stayed on physical construction. That was the equivalent of FDR putting all his stimulus money into farm jobs. No, he focused on industries, and the jobs of tomorrow. 
  5. There was not enough global focus. There were too many Great Depression lessons that were applied to the Great Recession. The number one aspect of this Great Recession is its global component. A new global financial architecture has to be built. That is policy level work. 
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Sunday, April 24, 2011

The US Military Budget Needs To Come Down To 100 Billion From 600

During his stay in England Kalecki met John Ma...Image via WikipediaI Fixed The Budget, You Can Too
The Washington Post: The Politics And Economics Of A Falling Dollar: in 1944 when Britain’s John Maynard Keynes and the United States’s Harry Dexter White conjured up the financial architecture for the global economy that served the world rather well from the end of World War II through the early 1980s. Since then, its shortcomings have been revealed by a series of financial crises that have become more severe and more frequent, with the fixes for one planting the seeds for the next ..... a new and better architecture has proven elusive ..... The dollar is used worldwide as the agreed-upon unit of exchange by producers and traders to price oil, minerals and other commodities. Ditto illicit dealers in drugs, weapons and other contraband....... Because it is the currency most easily exchanged, the dollar is on one side or the other of 85 percent of the transactions on global currency exchanges. When Indians buy Chilean wine, the transaction is usually conducted by converting rupees into dollars and then dollars into pesos. ..... by making it so cheap and easy to borrow money, we have been enabled and encouraged to live beyond our means, taking on so much debt that the dollar’s role as reserve currency is now called into question ..... foreign officials have been looking to diversify their portfolio. Indeed, that was just what they were doing in 2007 and 2008, until the euro crisis raised doubts about the next-likely alternative. ..... In the optimistic scenario, a credible budget deal is reached in Washington, the Fed manages to sop up all the excess liquidity it has created, and the long-term slide in the dollar remains gradual enough for the world to muddle through until a new order and a new architecture can emerge. ....... the failure to adopt a budget deal triggers a U.S. credit crisis that spawns a dollar crisis, which sets off another global financial crisis — one that makes the last one look like child’s play. ..... the heart of most of the economic issues we’re dealing with, from budget battles to the euro crisis to the rising price of gasoline.
America has to balance its budget, and the raging debate on the defunding or funding of Planned Parenthood is a loud act of denial. The Planned Parenthood's budget is peanuts. You could kick that organization out of existence and the US budget deficit will be as big as ever.

Some major cuts are needed. The number one item on the table has to be the size of the US military. It is too big. America can't afford it. I think the US military budget has to be brought down from the 600 billion it is today to a more manageable 100 billion. David Cameroon in Britain might have some tips to share.

Who takes care of the world then? What you do is you work towards rule of law also between nations. You build stronger international organizations. I can see need for future military action in the service of democracy like is going on in Libya. And I am all for it. But such exercises are best if they are UN sanctioned and many nations are involved.
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Tuesday, March 01, 2011

Sound Military Options

The leader de facto of Libya, Muammar al-Gadda...Image via Wikipedia
Times Of India: US flexes muscle, sends warships to Libya: The United States began moving warships toward Libya and froze $30 billion in the country's assets as the administration declared all options on the table in its diplomatic, economic and military campaign to drive colonel Muammar Gaddafi from power. ...... conferring with allies about imposing a no-fly zone over Libya. Such a move would likely be carried out only under a mandate from the UN or Nato, but Hillary's blunt confirmation that it was under consideration was clearly intended to ratchet up the pressure on Gaddafi and his dwindling band of loyalists...... USS Kearsarge had left the Red Sea to transit through Suez Canal into the Mediterranean, close to Libya. USS Kearsarge has armed helicopters and harrier jets on board as well as around 700 Marines ..... USS Enterprise had also been kept on 'high standby alert' in the Red Sea ...... A no-fly zone would require removing "the air defense capability first" ..... Anti-regime leaders said they have formed a military council in Benghazi, which has become the hub of efforts to topple Gaddafi. The council, comprising officers who joined protesters, will liaise with similar groups in other freed cities but it was not clear if there were plans for a regional command.
For America to send ground troops into Libyan territory would be a huge mistake. For one, America can't afford it. Two, I doubt the UN would authorize such a move. Three, that would send a very bad signal. It is for people power to oust dictators, that is not the job of the US military.

I have never advocated that the US send ground troops into Libya.

Saturday, October 09, 2010

Is America In Decline? Is It Rome Or FDR?

CHICAGO - NOVEMBER 04:  A young child wearing ...Image by Getty Images via @daylife
The New Republic: Political Columnists Think America Is In Decline. Big Surprise.: Samuel P. Huntington noted that the theme of “America’s decline” had in fact been a constant in American culture and politics since at least the late 1950s. It had come, he wrote, in several distinct waves: in reaction to the Soviet Union’s launch of Sputnik; to the Vietnam war; to the oil shock of 1973; to Soviet aggression in the late 1970s; and to the general unease that accompanied the end of the Cold War. Since Huntington wrote, we can add at least two more waves: in reaction to 9/11, and to the current “Great Recession.” ..... “By faith and honor, / Our madams mock at us, and plainly say / Our mettle is bred out and they will give / Their bodies to the lust of English youth / To new-store France with bastard warriors.”

There has been relentless talk that America is in decline. Just like the Roman Empire ended and the sun set on the British Empire as World War II concluded, America's number one position is now gone. That is the suggestion. That is one train of thought. (Another Trillion To Buy Real Estate?)

Another train of thought is that Barack Obama is like FDR. His Great Recession is like FDR's Great Depression was. Just like that big crisis, handled well, took America to new heights, Obama will handle this crisis well as well, and America will be taken to heights it has never seen before. (Father Of India Dot Com Craze Gives A Thumbs Up To America)

I belong to that second school of thought. I am a Barack Obama fan. I am an optimist. I have a realistic idea of where India and China stand today. China is still largely a Third World country. Hundreds of millions of Chinese are still Third World poor. And China does not have America's democracy or diversity.

But I am a cautious optimist. They say the proudest title to wear in a democracy is that of a citizen. The proudest hat during Obama 08 was that of a volunteer and I was wearing that hat. Barack Obama has done a good job so far, but he has not yet done everything that needs to be done. The unemployment level has to go down to five or six per cent on his watch, for example. And the political winds might blow in some unforeseen ways, he might lose the House next month. That might complicate matters for him.

The fundamental transformation has not happened. If America were to go back to the same old same old now, if America were to go back to being a country where only white men became president like the Tea Party wants, then yes, America is a power in decline. It is already a multi-polar world as it should be. Attitudes that get alarmed that China is pulling hundreds of millions out of poverty are attitudes that will ensure America's decline.

America could emerge stronger than ever out of this crisis, but that is not a certain outcome. The arc of history bends towards justice, but it does not bend on its own. There is work to be done. America could still see a second industrial revolution driven by clean tech.

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Monday, September 06, 2010

This Is Like 1938

Paul Krugman, Laureate of the Sveriges Riksban...Image via Wikipedia

The government stepped in to bail out the banks. The government stepped in with a stimulus bill. But the government did not step in to create about five million jobs. That third part is the missing part of the zigsaw puzzle. The Great Recession has not been fed the Tennessee Valley Authorities of these times. It has been for the government to dream up the jobs of tomorrow and bring them home. And I am not talking cutting edge stuff that perhaps is best left to the visionaries and the qualified in the private sector, although even there, it can be argued, bold would be beautiful. Perhaps this is just the time for a Manhattan Project for the environment, or to take a man/human to the environmental moon.

The first stimulus bill was a little misguided. It was too small, the tax cuts were unnecessary. Too much of it went to just paying people unemployment and salaries until the economy went back to normal. That normal has not happened. Because this is not 2001 or 1992 or 1980. This is more like the FDR times. It is a great crisis that can be steered to create a better future than ever before existed. This is a time for big, bold action still.

Band aid solutions will not work. And caving into GOP fervor to go back in time will fare even worse. The electorate has to be saved from itself. The electorate has to be relentlessly educated to do the right thing in November.

What are the options?

Some say a second stimulus is a fiscal non event. It is not happening. I am not so sure.

The Fed has not exercised all the monetary options available. Paul Krugman seems to suggest that. And I agree. Letting inflation go up a little so it becomes expensive for the private sector to sit on the near two trillion dollars it is sitting on would be a great idea.

The president has to engage in vision talk. He has to start talking like he is the nation's CEO, which he is. You engage the leaders of all segments of the private sector in brainstorming sessions. You let them help you think in terms of the jobs, companies and industries of tomorrow. And you give a series of speeches. You are not proposing to spend. It is not about money. It is about making speeches to prop up private sector confidence. It is about pumping vision. Where there is no vision, the people shall perish. This is as important as fiscal and monetary moves, and the most in command of the top guy. And it does not cost money.

These are not normal times. The wheels of capitalism are not churning like they are supposed to. Capitalism is fish outside water right now. Political leadership matters more, not less.

This is not like 2001. This is not like 1992. This is not like 1982. This is more like 1938. What finally got America out of the flunk back then was the massive spending of World War II. For the American voter to vote for the cut-the-deficit people in November would be suicidal. This is time for more, not less spending. But more alone will not work. The spending has to be about creating the five million jobs of tomorrow. I am thinking more along the lines of basic retraining for solar panel installation and the like.

America does not need World War III, but it does need a second stimulus bill that will be geared towards giving history a push. It has to be about the government actively creating about five millions jobs of tomorrow. They would be to do with green tech, education, with health.

I am for a second stimulus bill that is a trillion dollars. Its primary component would be to guarantee 100 MB broadband to all Americans. It would require freeing up wireless spectrum not 10 years from now, but today. It would require South Korea like competition into the broadband sector. The Internet is the interstate highway of today. People telecommuting are people not having to drive to work. Save the sky. There would be a massive spending on retraining the jobless for the jobs of tomorrow. Shovel-ready is a worker who only needs three months of training. Dream up five million jobs in green/clean tech, in education, in health. Install tens of millions of solar panels. Cut the obesity in the country by half in five years. Send out health care workers with the task. Bring the illiteracy down. Send mobs of mentors into the inner cities. Pay them. Turn this into a country of 75% college graduates in five years by taking all courses and lectures and textbooks and journals online that anyone anywhere can access for free, ad supported.

This second stimulus has to be a declaration of war. America can afford to go from a 13 trillion debt to a 14 trillion debt, but it can not afford Great Depression II or World War III.

A trillion dollars is what America spent in Iraq alone. Some say it is but a third of what America spent in Iraq alone. A trillion dollars is not a lot of money in the big scheme of things.

New York Times

Housing Woes Bring New Cry: Let Market Fall: Over the last 18 months, the administration has rolled out just about every program it could think of to prop up the ailing housing market, using tax credits, mortgage modification programs, low interest rates, government-backed loans and other assistance intended to keep values up and delinquent borrowers out of foreclosure. The goal was to stabilize the market until a resurgent economy created new households that demanded places to live...... a dose of shock therapy that would greatly shift the benefits to future homeowners: Let the housing market crash. .... Caught in the middle is an administration that gambled on a recovery that is not happening.... “They are deeply worried and don’t really know what to do.” ..... Sales of new homes are lower than in the depths of the recession of the early 1980s, when mortgage rates were double what they are now, unemployment was pervasive and the gloom was at least as thick...... “extend and pretend” or “delay and pray”

That ’70s Feeling:Steven Slater, a flight attendant for JetBlue, ended his career by cursing at his passengers over the intercom and grabbing a couple of beers before sliding down the emergency-evacuation chute ..... The “blue-collar blues” were so widespread that the Senate opened an investigation into worker “alienation.” ...... “I’d give the shirt right off of my back / If I had the nerve to say / Take this job and shove it!” ...... Workers have learned to internalize and mask powerlessness, but the internal frustration and struggle remain. ..... Today the concerns of the working class have less space in our civic imagination than at any time since the Industrial Revolution.

Paul Krugman: 1938 in 2010: The president’s policies have limited the damage, but they were too cautious, and unemployment remains disastrously high..... the year is 1938..... the nature of the recovery that followed refutes the arguments dominating today’s public debate, discouraging because it’s hard to see anything like the miracle of the 1940s happening again..... the stimulus raised growth while it lasted, but it made only a small dent in unemployment — and now it’s fading out......More stimulus is desperately needed ..... March 1938. Asked whether government spending should be increased to fight the slump, 63 percent of those polled said no. Asked whether it would be better to increase spending or to cut business taxes, only 15 percent favored spending; 63 percent favored tax cuts. And the 1938 election was a disaster for the Democrats, who lost 70 seats in the House and seven in the Senate....... World War II was, above all, a burst of deficit-financed government spending ..... the federal government borrowed an amount equal to roughly twice the value of G.D.P. in 1940 — the equivalent of roughly $30 trillion today. .... Deficit spending created an economic boom — and the boom laid the foundation for long-run prosperity. Overall debt in the economy — public plus private — actually fell as a percentage of G.D.P., thanks to economic growth and, yes, some inflation, which reduced the real value of outstanding debts. And after the war, thanks to the improved financial position of the private sector, the economy was able to thrive without continuing deficits. ....... when the economy is deeply depressed, the usual rules don’t apply. Austerity is self-defeating: when everyone tries to pay down debt at the same time, the result is depression and deflation, and debt problems grow even worse ...... Even under F.D.R., there was never the political will to do what was needed to end the Great Depression; its eventual resolution came essentially by accident. ..... politicians and economists alike have spent decades unlearning the lessons of the 1930s, and are determined to repeat all the old mistakes..... the big winners in the midterm elections are likely to be the very people who first got us into this mess, then did everything in their power to block action to get us out .... a little bit of intellectual clarity, and a lot of political will.

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Wednesday, August 18, 2010

Carolyn Maloney's Work On The Second Avenue Subway Line

Congresswoman Carolyn Maloney: "Ten years ago, when we first started talking about the possibility of building a Second Avenue Subway, people scoffed. I have been championing the project in Congress...."
Maloney has been taking credit for a non existent Second Avenue subway line on the campaign trail. Maloney lacks integrity at a fundamental level.

  1. In 1920 Maloney first came up with the idea. 
  2. The Great Depression disrupted her work. Shame on the Great Depression.
  3. World War II disrupted her work. Shame on World War II.
  4. She got back to work after World War II was finally over. 
  5. Every time Maloney tried to get down to work, the estimated cost went up, and so Maloney was perturbed. But she kept looking for fresh starts every few years for decades. 
  6. 1972. Maloney was part of a groundbreaking, one of many it seems. 
  7. In the 1990s Maloney got down to it again. Her enthusiasm was still at a high level after decades of false starts. 
  8. Many steps, small and big, were taken all through the 1990s and the 2000s. Maloney would like to take credit for them all. 
And now you know how the Second Avenue subway line came to be. Go take a ride. Enjoy. And sign the online petition that wants the Second Avenue subway line renamed in Carolyn Maloney's name.

2nd Ave. Subway History
Wikipedia: Second Avenue Subway
NYMag: The Long, Tortured History of the Second Avenue Subway
New York Times: Further Delays Possible for Second Avenue Subway
Reshma Saujani Goes on the Attack Against Carolyn Maloney in Upper East Side Congressional Race
May 21, 2010 ..... Maloney ripped off her ideas on immigration and entrepreneurial innovation. ...... Maloney introduced the bill, which calls for granting two-year visas to immigrants who begin start-ups with qualified investors, on the House floor on April 29, eight days after a Saujani Op-Ed piece proposing a similar idea
Carolyn Maloney Recycles Hillary Clinton "Endorsement" On Campaign Website
The Upper East Side congresswoman's website shows an apparent endorsement from the former senator..... Congresswoman Carolyn Maloney has proposed a spate of immigration and economic development bills that challenger Reshma Saujani said borrow from her own ideas. ........ AsSecretary of StateHillary Clinton can't endorse political candidates. But that hasn't stopped Carolyn Maloney from recycling an old quote and using an image of Clinton to make it look like the former senator is backing the Upper East Side congresswoman's reelection bid.
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