Settling for second best has never been the American way. But, as the developed nations of the world continue their insane race to the bottom, coming in last may seem like a victory of sorts.
An article at Monty Pelerin’s World used this quote from a Daily Beast article:
And yet, as the rest of the world goes to hell, politically and economically, the U.S. is standing tall economically—at least on a relative basis. China is slowing down rapidly. Countries tethered to China’s erstwhile insatiable demand for natural resources, like Australia, are downshifting. Brazil is struggling, an immature market with immature political systems. Europe is mired in a seemingly never-ending cycle of austerity and sovereign debt crises. The Middle East? Forget about it. As the BRICs seem to be broken, analysts are now looking to sub-Saharan Africa for growth. Yet throughout it all, the U.S. economy continues to chug along.
And, Pelerin’s response was much like what mine was”
The quote strikes me as both forced and faint praise. The fact that we are not going to hell as fast as the rest of the world doesn’t mean that isn’t our ultimate destination.
I suppose it might be comforting to some that we are not as bad as the others, but does that make Hell any less painful? To think, this is all we have gotten for squandering trillions of dollars of wealth, most of which will be borne by those yet unborn.
When one is feeling pain, it’s not much comfort that someone else is feeling more pain. Be that as it may, coming in last in the race to the bottom is better than coming in first.
The Daily Beast article quoted by Pelerin is correct, however. The US is doing better than the other guys. Here are some links to articles discussing the woes in China and Japan, and Europe. So, as the US economy chugs along like a train with square wheels, we are doing better than our competitors in the developed world. We will get where they are going, it will just take a little longer.
It must be very frustrating for Obama and the rest of the politicians that don’t represent us that we are loosing this race. I’m sure they thought that ObamaCare would give the boost we needed to take the lead. But then, ObamaCare isn’t fully implemented yet, so they may yet be vindicated. ObamaCare is one of and many the most important factor in the disproportionate growth in part-time jobs relative to full-time jobs. I reported on the subject of part-time jobs just the other day. This trend is not going away, folks, so it bears repeating. I’m not sure but I think it was the TOTUS blog that ran a humorous satire on this subject recently. The author was lauding Obama for his new jobs program that promised to double the number of jobs in America. The punch line was that every adult American would have two part-time jobs. Sadly, the joke is on us. To illustrate again how serious this trend is, I found this graphic at National Review:
Scary, isn’t it? Now the Bureau of Labor Statistics has two methods of measuring employment. The above graphic comes from the Household Survey method. The other method is a survey of information reported by employers which would indicate the part-times jobs for the same period was 50% of the total jobs added in 2013. Reality probably is somewhere between 50% and 70.6%. Whatever, Americans should find the trend very disturbing. And, as ObamaCare is implemented in the coming year, this trend will likely get worse.
My good friend, 5eteaster, in a comment on yesterday’s post made the point that the Republicans in the House have the power to stop this nonsense; that is, they have the power of the purse and they could defund ObamaCare and a lot of other nonsense. But, they won’t because they don’t have the political will to force a government shut-down to get their way. And, a part of the reason they don’t have the will is that there are not enough conservative/libertarian freedom lovers left in American to give the support they would need to take on that fight. That is a god-awful shame!
Does anyone understand why the regressive “progressives” so intent on our finishing this race? The prize for finishing the race is a pile of ashes.
Good luck to those who take comfort in the fact that America is the best of the worst.
Well, that’s what I’m thinking. What are your thoughts?