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Several years after receiving my M.A. in social science (interdisciplinary studies) I was an instructor at S.F. State University for a year, but then went back to designing automated machinery, and then tech writing, in Silicon Valley. I've always been more interested in political economics and what's going on behind the scenes in politics, than in mechanical engineering, and because of that I've rarely worked more than 8 months a year, devoting much of the rest of the year to reading and writing about that which interests me most.
(8 comments) Monday, December 21, 2015 Saving Capitalism for the Many, Not the Few, a new book by Robert Reich
A copy of the Introduction to Reich's new book follows here. It's a great read which I hope many of you will get in to, so that we can more extensively discuss the book and its ideas here. This introduction is a succinct and brilliant explanation of what this important book is about.
(8 comments) Tuesday, December 15, 2015 Evolutionary Reconstruction of The Economy -- The Slow, Gentle Road to a Kind of Socialism
There are now 130 million Americans who are involved in co-ops and credit unions, the latter being in possession of $1 trillion in assets. In addition, 10 million Americans are now members of worker-owned companies. Plus, there are now 2000 publicly owned municipal utilities. Indeed, 25% of America's electricity is now produced by these kinds of socialist institutions.
(27 comments) Monday, October 26, 2015 To What Extent Are the Fed and Big Banks Criminal Enterprises?
If our government printed the money it needs instead of allowing the criminally syndicated Fed to do it for us, there would be no national debt & therefore no interest to be paid on it, which interest payments are continually foisted off onto us citizen taxpayers. Hence the need for all of us to pay much higher income taxes than we would otherwise have to pay. Remember, interest payments on our national debt are huge.
(4 comments) Friday, July 24, 2015 Now Finally Taking Shape: A World With Ever Less Decently-Paid Work for Most. But Must This Be a Problem?
New, labor-saving technology is likely to exert a slow but continual downward pressure on the value and availability of work, i.e. on wages and on the number of prime-age workers with full-time jobs. Eventually, by degrees, that could create a new normal, where the expectation that work will be a central feature of adult life dissipates for a significant portion of society. Fortunately there are alternative kinds of work.
(39 comments) Saturday, July 18, 2015 When and Why Love Must Sometimes Be Up for Sale
Was it not essentially love for sale? If not, I wonder how you understand all of this and if this letter will change your mind at all. Did you think of me as a pushover and a stooge, or just a poor, dumb 'man' struggling to fulfill the 'obligations' that men customarily have? But of course you would and will never tell me. And no wonder you are not a feminist! You much prefer to be "the Queen," with all accorded privileges.
(5 comments) Saturday, April 18, 2015 Is Hyperinflation in Our Near Future? Recent Developments Suggest It May Well Be
Over the past two years, the US has slashed oil imports from the Saudis. The increase in American oil production has led to a 62% collapse in global oil prices. This has obliterated Saudi profit margins. In response, a Saudi-led coalition has developed an "oil weapon" it plans to unleash on us. By this means they plan to once again be the world's preeminent oil profiteers, while knocking us down a peg or two in the process.
(18 comments) Monday, April 6, 2015 If Worker Productivity is Continuing to Go Up, Why is the Buying Power of So Many of Us Going Down?
The majority of workers have no other choice than to produce all the superfluity that can be made to sell - to people like themselves, who spend ever more of their waking hours at work & who then buy this stuff as compensation for the fact that they no longer have enough time & education to enjoy their full humanity, much less spend enough time with their kids. And now these workers are being replaced and falling into poverty.
(29 comments) Thursday, March 26, 2015 Why Our Government Needs to Take Over the Federal Reserve Bank ASAP
Taking over the Fed is the missing element needed to move humanity back from the brink of economic destruction and nuclear disaster, away from a future dominated by fraud, ugliness and warfare, toward a world of justice and beauty. Who gets the power to create money is the question that's at the heart of monetary reform, and this power is awesome, at times stronger than the executive, legislative and judicial powers combined.
(43 comments) Monday, February 2, 2015 The Origins, and Decimation of, America's Great Middle Class. And What to Do About It
The large, thriving middle class, which America used to have, didn't just arise out of the blue--it was created using an economic tool that was essentially socialistic. After WWII, our gov't taxed the rich heavily, & massively redistributed that money through the GI Bill, so that an unprecedented half of our population suddenly started benefiting from free college, free job training, cheap mortgages & affordable medical care.
(10 comments) Sunday, January 11, 2015 Does Affordable Housing Really Need to Be So Scarce in Most Big Cities?
Why is it that a growing percentage of urban men today can't afford to rent or buy a home that is as nice as the one in which they grew up? Meanwhile, there are plenty of rundown buildings in, or very close to, such cities . . as well as a huge supply of currently idle workers who would love to repair and refurbish such buildings, if it would eventually earn them a home of their own, from amongst those they help refurbish.
(7 comments) Friday, September 19, 2014 Even if We Defeat ISIS, Will We Be Able to Defeat Each and Every One of Its Successors?
Because of our dependence on Mideast oil, and the tactics we use to ensure our supply, and because these tactics result in the social and economic oppression of millions of Muslims, we need to understand and accept a terrible truth: Vengeful hatred of the US and the executions of Americans on Middle Eastern soil is simply the cost of US oil companies doing a very lucrative business in the region.
(6 comments) Monday, August 18, 2014 Rejoinder to a Rebuttal of My Most Recent Article on the Transfer of Income to the Rich
For many decades, technological advancement was met with an ever shorter workweek and everyone eventually regarded this as fair. Why should it be any different today? Historically, workers had to work 12 hrs/day, 6 days/week. This seemed proper to owners of factories & machinery and to those with good incomes, but not to others. So, by way of protest & unions, the legal length of the workday was reduced to 8. Now how about 6?
(40 comments) Saturday, August 16, 2014 By What Means Have Income and Wealth Steadily Been Transferred to the Rich?
This transfer has mainly occurred by way of employers making sure that the profits and benefits of ever greater worker productivity (which advancing machinery and technology steadily provide) is rarely if ever shared with workers in the form of a reduced workweek and/or a higher hourly wage. Instead, this ongoing stream of newly created wealth is continually directed upward into their elite pockets.
(12 comments) Sunday, July 6, 2014 In a Dying Civilization What Are the Responsibilities of Intellectuals?
If we are to survive on this planet even for another hundred years, our approach needs to be revolutionary, not apathetic; creative, not dogmatic; scientific, not superstitious; and sustainable, not exploitative. But this will only take place when and if we learn from world history and formulate effective plans for drastically changing socioeconomic arrangements.
(46 comments) Thursday, June 5, 2014 Are Existing Economic and Financial Arrangements Causing Ever More Destructive Weather Events and Species Die-Off?
Existing economic and financial arrangements, which we have allowed to develop, are causing ever more destructive weather events. Blow by blow, Neil deGrasse Tyson defeats every single argument made against the idea of human-made climate change. Then, to add salt to our self-inflicted wound, he tells the tale of two scientists who long ago brought solar-powered generation of electricity to the world -- way back in the 1800s!
(20 comments) Thursday, May 29, 2014 George Monbiot: "The Dangers of Continued Growth Now Demand a New Economic System. ASAP."
The inescapable failure of a society built on economic growth & its inevitable destruction of the Earth's living systems are the 2 central, overwhelming facts of our age. Yet they are mentioned almost nowhere in our corporate-owned & controlled mainstream media. They are the 21st Century's great taboo realities, & also the subjects guaranteed to alienate your friends & neighbors should you make the mistake of bringing them up
(27 comments) Sunday, May 18, 2014 What the 1% Don't Want You to Know
Invested capital tends to produce real returns of at least 6%, while economic growth is always much slower. Therefore fortunes based on those high returns grow faster than the economy & much faster than wages, which will continue to shrink (in terms of their buying power), as dynastic wealth grows steadily larger. These fortunes will then pass on to the next generation an even larger share than they would have in decades past.