Great Leap Backwards

December 2nd, 2011 at 11:00 am | 20 Comments |

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The head of a major union lauding a model where striking gets you shot?

Lord I miss George Meaney and Lane Kirkland.

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Recent Posts by John Vecchione

20 Comments so far ↓

  • balconesfault

    The biggest problem with that OpEd is Stern’s claim that:

    The conservative-preferred, free-market fundamentalist, shareholder-only model—so successful in the 20th century—is being thrown onto the trash heap of history in the 21st century. In an era when countries need to become economic teams,

    The free-market fundamentalist model as a sole driver of America’s successes in the 20th century is a myth.

    • dugfromthearth

      I find bigger fault with “the Global Revolution—coupled with Deng Xiaoping’s government-led, growth-oriented reforms—has created the planet’s second-largest economy.” Which makes no mention that China has 4 times the U.S. population. China should have 4 times the economy of the U.S. It is not doing well, it has been held back. If the U.K. suddenly was on a trajectory to be the world’s biggest economy we should take notice of what they are doing. With China it is the demographic inevitable being portrayed as economic miracle.

      • balconesfault

        China should have 4 times the economy of the U.S. It is not doing well, it has been held back.

        Well, it was held back in large part thanks to Mao’s legacy.

        1 – Mao attacked the “elites” in his country, basically destroying a generation of the kind of intellectual firepower you needed to compete as an economy in the 20th century.

        2 – The heavy handed thugs that Mao used throughout the country to ensure that agricultural products were grabbed by the government for export sufficiently quashed any entrepreneurism that might possibly have occurred at the local level.

        3 – Mao did have an industrial policy, and it was absolutely horribly designed and managed. For example, unrealistic steel production quotas were demanded, and local officials ended up meeting these by looking at every piece of iron and steel, whether in productive use or not, as a potential scrap source to use to make meeting their quotas easier.

        An economy based on pure state control is going to fail in the long term, because it is inevitable that the state will make mistakes and there will be no counterweight in the economy left to offset those mistakes.

        An economy based on pure free market ideology is going to fail in the long term, because the free market places no value on people outside of their roles as consumers and producers. In the long run, the free market does not care if a country thrives or collapses, since capital can always flow somewhere else.

  • Rabiner

    So he can’t say anything positive about China? Seriously that’s such a simplistic thought process Vecchione. Do you get paid by the post or word? because it clearly isn’t by the idea.

  • Fart Carbuncle

    Uh oh.

    Waiting for FF’s resident sinophile, frumple, to give us his great knowledge… :D

  • dante

    I’m sorry, who’s lending who money right now?

    • dugfromthearth

      Americans are lending America money right now. The Chinese loans to the U.S. are a small portion of the borrowing.

    • NRA Liberal

      “…It’s also important to understand that foreigners do not fund the spending of the USA. As a current account deficit nation, the US government can appropriately be thought of as a net currency exporter. This means that we send pieces of paper over the foreign nations in exchange for goods and services. In doing so these nations get the benefit of employing millions of domestic workers via their business partnerships with US corporations. But this doesn’t mean they “own” the USA.

      When China receives dollars they can only do a handful of things with these reserves. China, for the most part, chooses to invest these dollars in US Treasuries. They have attempted to use their dollars to purchase other USD denominated assets, but the US government has squashed those efforts. So, instead of leaving these pieces of paper to collect dust in vaults, they open what is the equivalent of savings account with the US government. Most importantly though, if you study the bond auction data from the USA you’ll find that indirect foreign bidders make up a very small portion of the auctions. This is due to the fact that the Primary Dealers are designed to be able to take down the entire auction. As I discussed above, this is their primary role in the agreement in being a PD. So, while China can choose to buy bonds, it is by no means necessary that they do so. China could literally leave the market for US government bonds and the show would go on….”

      From “Understanding The Modern Monetary System”

  • jdd_stl1

    I didn’t read Stern’s piece as lauding China’s economic model, but
    instead lauding China’s recognition that planning is necessary.
    From what I understand, China has structured 5-year plans.
    We have elections every 2, 4 and 6 years. And our cycles are built
    around elections. Is that working well for us at this point in history?

    America needs to embrace a plan for growth and innovation, with a streamlined government as a partner with the private sector. Economic revolutions require institutions to change and maybe make history, because if they stick to the status quo they soon become history. Our great country, which sparked and wants to lead this global revolution, needs a forward looking, long-term economic plan.

    A former union leader calling for a partnership between a “streamlined government”
    and the private sector, sounds pretty reasonable to me.

  • drdredel

    I’ve been waiting for 2 days for FRUMFORUM to post a comment on the bizarro world legislation that is making its way towards Obama’s desk (here’s an OpEd from the NYTimes which talks about it :

    I’m sorry to digress on a non-related topic, though as its subject is a totalitarian state, which is where we’re headed, so maybe that makes it ok. In any event, sorry to digress, but I think this is really worth talking about and hope that someone picks up the story and posts a proper blog post about it that we can then comment on.

    This legislation would authorize the U.S. military to basically “disappear” people who they felt were somehow connected to something nefarious. Why anyone who knows anything about history would think it wise dismiss the 4th amendment and its due process guarantees as unnecessary, so long as the military was involved, is truly confounding.

    Additionally, the obvious other question this raises is what problem are we actually trying to solve? Are there giant droves of terrorists assembled (or assembling) on our soil that are both totally malevolent and simultaneously so crafty that they can always avoid actually breaking any laws for which they can simply be processed like any normal criminals (If you say… sure, look at Goldman Sachs! I agree, but I don’t think that’s who this provision is being crafted to send to Guantanamo without jurisprudence, and even if it were, I’ll take take a justice system that can be gamed over a fascistic military rule, any day!).

  • ottovbvs

    US business leaders are constantly lauding the Chinese economy (which is run by a communist dictatorship)…..aren’t they? Lord I miss Henry Luce.

  • icarusr

    Didn’t Michele Bachman say that the US should become more like China? Did I miss Yecchione’s article on that?

  • balconesfault

    The head of a major union lauding a model where striking gets you shot?

    And yet the GOP looks longingly to the days when American Robber Barons would hire Pinkerton men to do exactly that here on the Jersey Docks, in the Ohio Factories, or in Wyoming mining towns.

    • dugfromthearth

      to be fair, they only want to return to robber baron days if they cannot just re-instate slavery

  • Graychin

    Planning? Who needs planning when we have the Almighty Invisible Hand working for us?

    Unfortunately, that Hand is sometimes moved by foolish, greedy people. In 2008, it darned near pushed us over the edge.

    (JV – the last time I checked, industrializing America didn’t mind shooting strikers back in the day. And you can (still) get shot in the good old U S of A for demonstrating. Don’t be so self-righteous.)


    I see Frum still hasn’t imposed a quality filter on whom he’ll allow to post articles here. See you in another three months I guess.

  • Ray_Harwick

    Never writes a damn thing you can take seriously. This is just snark like you read in the comments at Newsmax.

  • jakester

    Even Hitler did some good things for the German economy & Stalin basically industrialized Russia, but neither models seem right for the US either