Comments on: The sorrow and the pity of Obama’s budget Sun, 28 Jul 2013 14:34:09 +0000 hourly 1 By: atoe Sat, 27 Apr 2013 12:40:43 +0000 America’s economic downturn is due to other nations siphoning off our best ideas for seeding and growing their own sorry economies. This technology transfer has occurred unabated for decades and we’ve lost not only the technical edge to compete globally, but now the financial backing is also crumbling. Obama wants to share the wealth which will only drain the ‘reserve tank’ and prolong the agony. We need our politicians to be trained professionally in careers which promote innovation and collaborative skills like creative thinking, idea sharing, teamwork, objective test of ideas, cost consciousness, efficiency, rapid test and timely completion of projects. Instead, our politicians are trained in careers which don’t value creative thinking and encourage divisiveness and differentiation. This leads them to adopt others’ ideas as their own, take competitive and opposite positions, apply subjective testing based on opinion (polls), distort statistical data to achieve a goal, focus on ‘winning’ instead of compromising to attain a better result, wearing down opponents rather than completion of effort. The only thing we can say with certainty is that we will document our fall from greatness very well because good record keeping is an important skill for attorneys.

By: breezinthru Fri, 19 Apr 2013 02:18:09 +0000 Even though there are many who can so easily ignore the tremendous harm that was done to more than a hundred million ordinary Americans, someone needs to speak the truth. Thanks, Chrystia.

Millions of jobs that formerly paid a modest, but decent wage have vanished to remote corners of the globe. Justice has vanished into the deep pockets of those who have close friends in Congress and the SEC.

Those who are still well-compensated for their labors have nothing but disdain for fellow Americans who are desperate for the opportunity to earn a living.

This country is a mere spectre of what it once was.

By: FrankRifleman Mon, 15 Apr 2013 23:26:14 +0000 Unqualified for the job.

By: Biscayne Mon, 15 Apr 2013 09:24:08 +0000 And the purpose of this article is ? Getting the Republicans off the hook , of course,I am sorry Freeland, but you really are second rate.

By: Chapelhill Sun, 14 Apr 2013 13:35:31 +0000 The level of disconnect in this piece is stunning. I thought I was reading a piece dripping with over the top sarcasm until it became clear she really believes this stuff. The extreme left is just as delusional as the Glen Beck right.

If Obama isn’t a 1 percenter I can’t say who would be.

By: chyron Sat, 13 Apr 2013 20:44:34 +0000 2utatch
Question: Was professional education in US hit as heavely as in former USSR?
As i see currently here that lot of demand for skilled workforce exists without system in place to train it. Basically busyness owners seek skilled and experienced workers at same time skimping on funding common professional education or on providing competitive wages and _clear_ growth _prospects_ to young people with basic skills.

As for people bein’ less interested in engineering/science than other things – look at TV cable schedule. There’s only one true blue collar here, his name is Homer Simpson…

By: paintcan Sat, 13 Apr 2013 17:26:52 +0000 “It is worth noting that Obama was writing about the 99 percent in 2006 — well before the Occupy Wall Street movement introduced that term into our collective discussion and before Obama’s presidential campaign introduced him into the national debate.”

Why is that worth noting? It means Obama supporters were behind the OWS movement and used that line as their buzz word.

I’ve never been sure how anyone came up with 1% anyway. I recall that Fernand Braudel used the figure 5% that he claimed was about the size of the elite class of any historic society. And a few books I can’t recall the names of anymore, back as far as the 60s, used to talk about the top 10%. If the middle class is shrinking so, apparently, is the top?

That the number of the elite is drifted so far in the past decades seems largely driven by PR and fashion. This country tries on social theories the way some women charge their outfits. And it gets bored with them just as quickly.

Who knows, we could be talking about the top 1/10 of one percent in a few years, when things get really tight. That should be just lovely. That would mean hardly anyone will be mega wealthy and they would be easier to cage and tax. Or they will simply run away to the Cayman Islands or Dubai and the country will figure out a constitutional way to confiscate the assets of the emigres or emigre.

When the ship is sinking – the personality or competence of the captain isn’t really all that important. If the problem is structural, there is nothing the windbags at the top are going to be able to do but collect their salaries, their perks and anything else they can grab before the tub sinks, and they take the available lifeboats. That has seemed to be the fundamental approach to politics and life in the country for the past 40 years.

None of our legislative leaders, even dear leader Obama, are really the type to go down with the ship. I don’t think they make self-sacrificing leadership anymore. I think all of them are fully prepared to write off the wreckage and look for other boats to milk until they sink too.

Obama got the worst of all possible worlds with the health care reform legislation. Couple rising costs with inflation like a tidal wave (the pressure is building to astounding proportions and may be the only way this country can live with it’s massive deficits and debts) and we’ll all be swimming with the fishes and we’ll be back to the issue with a vengeance for decades to come. That is if the country doesn’t destroy itself Syrian style in a blood bath of foreign mercenaries we will be very hard pressed to identify or control. It’s obvious in the gun debates, that many are arming themselves for just such an event or because they are afraid it will happen. “Great powers” have been torn apart before by severe inequality. The rising powers will use this country as a field for exercise in global concern, profit, and a let for domestic aggression and frustration.

The country is built of ticky-tacky and would be reduced in the blink of an eye. So is its population.

By: giftgirl Sat, 13 Apr 2013 16:20:30 +0000 Thank you Ms. Freeland once again well-written, thoughtful article. However, I really believe until we have real campaign finance reform in this country, not only will the chasm keep widening at an ever quickening pace, but more and more legislation will be passed in favor of the corporatocracy with the effect of continually chipping away at middle class.

The simple fact that a congressman spends well over 75% (this is very conservative, most estimates are much higher) of his or her time fundraising speaks volumes about what kind of a job they are actually doing as opposed to what citizens think they are doing. It’s no wonder legislation is written by and for the benefit of corporate America. In the end, it doesn’t really matter how fervently Obama fights for the 99%. There are 535 people in this country who even if they share Obama’s view, are beholden to the deep pockets that threaten their existence; if they were to vote their conscience, big money can quickly find another candidate who will do their bidding. The gun reform issue is a perfect example of how big money has skewed a debate in which the vast majority of Americans are actually in agreement.

I think Obama is most likely saddened by a lack of courage by so many who have the power to make positive change to just do it.

By: hariknaidu Sat, 13 Apr 2013 15:45:49 +0000 I suggest the real crisis in the financial sector is the banking and money markets which are not getting smaller after the crash – in EU it’s the central financial structure bringing down sovereign states.

As long as banks are *too big to fail*…and there is no Chinese wall between commercial and shadow-banking (ie. Hedge Funds & Investment Banks) the inequality of wealth will exacerbate and politicians/leaders will not have the wherewithal to deal with the power of plutocracy.

The Pascha (Obama) is a passing political phenomena and won’t really mitigate growing chasm in American society.

By: AZreb Sat, 13 Apr 2013 14:07:31 +0000 Our country is more divided than ever before, even during the abortion battles, the civil liberties era – any time I can remember in my 76 years.

That division comes from the top, with many of us angered at the broken promises. It comes from the top, with the catering and pandering to certain groups at the expense of our citizens and legal immigrants. It comes from the top, with members of the cabinet refusing to prosecute wrong-doers.

Now we see that the broken promises, the catering and pandering, the “too rich to jail” decisions are going to hurt the most vulnerable – those this president promised to protect. SS cuts, Medicare cuts, Obamacare problems that are increasing, 1/4 of our children facing hunger and the hunger and poverty rates rising, unemployment and under-employment – these are real problems and will hurt (are hurting) our country and its people.