Never-Ending Sequels

The announcement has rolled through Wisconsin. $3 billion in aid will land a total of 13,00 jobs somewhere around Kenosha. Or maybe less. Or maybe it won’t happen at all, like past promises. But it’s a great deal, one that will create jobs.

It’s hard to say exactly what the Taiwanese electronics manufacturer is going to do given how quickly the breathless announcement came out. What matters is that it had to be announced because it’s not actually about jobs or anything tangible. All of this is just a very expensive form of political theater, allbeit with stakes lower than last week’s show. Government is here to fix the economy and provide jobs, right? So here ya go.

Like many sequels dished up by Hollywood this is a must-see summer thriller. It’s following a well established formula that everyone loves. And like those movies, it begs the question – where did this come from?

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One Weak Show

In other news, the US Senate failed to pass anything. This hardly seems like news given that they fail to get anything done nearly all the time. But the botched repeal of the Affordable Care Act (ACA), aka Obamacare, is a special new level of failure.

Normal procedures are completely gone. There is no committee report and there is no estimate from the Congressional Budget Office (CBO). Stuff is being whipped together in a few hours and thrown onto the floor.

The chaos is much more important than the bills themselves because it seems the Republican leadership, especially Sen McConnell (R-KY) must know better. That can only mean they aren’t even trying. So what, after all, are they doing?

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People’s Economics Update

The first section of People’s Economics, “Our World,” should be done by the end of this week. It describes what, where, when and how of today’s economy – all in terms of “who”. It is indeed always about people – their values, their trust, their skills, their fears, and their dreams.

But the most important “who” of all is you, because without your support People’s Economics wouldn’t happen. Ultimately it is of you, by you, and for you. Click here to support the GoFundMe campaign that will help make People’s Economics a reality.  Thank you for everything you do to make this happen!

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Resiliency and Interdependence

Long ago, most Americans lived as Laura Ingalls Wilder chronicled in the “Little House” series.  Pa Ingalls and family were out in the wilderness, living with the rhythm of the land and putting away what they could to survive long winters and perhaps beyond.  The family’s net worth was what they had around them.

That life has been replaced with interdependence based on a dollar value assigned to absolutely everything.  We all get by with any extra scratch, should there be some, not stored up to get through the winter but properly invested in convertible assets.  This means everyone is subject to  the “free market”, which determines the value of all assets including experience, talent, and work.

That interdependence has changed our world to one with much less hard work or struggles against nature, and yet to many it has become as hostile as any winter on the Great Plains.
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Schmidt Rathskeller

This is a post from 2011.  After a long delay, the Rathskeller is indeed going to be open to the public in a few months!

The tower rises from the heart of West Seventh, defining and defying the passage of time and the lay of the community.  The Schmidt Brewery is the West End to many people because it rises like an old oak from secure roots to dominate the skyline longer than anyone can remember.  Its endurance is remarkable because it cannot be ignored yet somehow has been neglected,  too big to care for and yet too important to imagine life without.

That’s how the Fort Road Federation, through the help of the City of Saint Paul, came to acquire the property for redevelopment.  Decades of tireless work by many people, led by City Councilmember Dave Thune, has reached another turning point for this symbol of a community and its endurance.  After years of planning and haggling it has a new owner and, soon, a new use.

I toured the site as member of the Federation’s Board of Directors.  I’d like to show you one small but vital part of this great site, the Rathskeller.  It is one of the hidden jewels of Saint Paul, soon to be uncovered once again.

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Frenzy

Tired of the Trump-Russia stories yet? Well, they are only just beginning. Which is strange because much of the information coming out now could have come out a year ago, if anyone had bothered trying to dig. But the “liberal media” didn’t at the time and has only really started to get going.

If you’re tired of today’s press, you’re far from alone. The problem, however, isn’t bias but a severe case of “shiny object syndrome” where nothing is investigated unless it appears popular.

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Stands For Nuthin’

Is the nation on the wrong track or the right track? Do you think that the political parties stand for something more than opposition to each other?

If you answered these questions with the most negative possible answer, you’re far from alone. Rasmussen has been polling the right/wrong track question for many years, and it’s headed back to the low 20% “right track”, net about -40, that it was at a year ago. The brief bump from Trump has worn off.

Even worse, a Washington Post / ABC poll shows that about 2/3 Americans think that the two major parties don’t actually stand for anything other than opposition to each other.

This is the reason why People’s Economics is necessary. It’s time to reboot everything – not just the people, but the fight that drives them.

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