American Elephants

Your Remedies Don’t Work, Mr. President. You Are Just Making things Worse! by The Elephant's Child

President Obama pleads for patience about the economic recovery. The recession didn’t happen overnight, he said, and it’s going to take time.  “Worst economy since the Great Depression.” And he’s sorta, kinda, realizing that the federal government can’t fix the job situation, but they’re trying anyway.The latest is community colleges— they are going to train lots of young people for factory jobs.

Obama went down to the Northern Virginia Community College Alexandria Campus this last week to see the labs where young folks are training for jobs working on advanced vehicles.  If I remember correctly, when Obama gave Chrysler to the Italians and the Unions illegally, and shafted the bondholders illegally, the administration shut down somewhere around 800 Chrysler dealers. Illegally.

Those dealers were independent, privately owned businesses whose connection with Chrysler was that they bought their stock of vehicles from Chrysler. Each of the 800 dealers around the country employed somewhere around 75-100. There were salesmen and secretaries, and a lot of skilled automotive technicians.  The auto companies have laid off a lot of people as well. So laid-off automotive technicians with a wealth of experience who are trying to find jobs are now, thanks to the federal government, in competition with a bunch of new young community college students who have been trained for jobs that don’t exist?

The President said:

 The fact is, we understand what it takes to build a stronger economy.  We know it’s going to require investing in research and technology that will lead to new ideas and new industries.  We know it means building the infrastructure, the roads and bridges, and manufacturing the new products here in the United States of America that create good jobs.  Above all, it requires training and educating our citizens to out-compete workers from other countries.

That’s why today’s announcement is so important.  And that’s why I also want to see Congress — so, Jim, get working on this — (laughter) — pass the Workforce Investment Act, to build on this progress — (applause) — to build on this progress with new and innovative approaches to training — and to really figure out what works.  We’ve got a lot of programs out there.  If a program does not work in training people for the jobs of the future and getting them a job, we should eliminate that program.  If a program is working, we should put more money into that program.  So we’ve got to be ruthless in evaluating what works and what doesn’t in order for folks to actually obtain a job and industry to get the workers they need.  That’s how we’re going to help more Americans climb into the middle class and stay there.  That’s how we’re going to make our overall economy stronger and more competitive.

Let me just make this point.  If we don’t decide to do this — it’s possible that we could choose not to do the things that I just talked about.  We could choose not to make investments in clean energy or let tuition prices rise and force more Americans to give up on the American Dream.  We could choose to walk away from our community college system.  We could say to ourselves, you know what, given foreign competition and low wages overseas, manufacturing is out the door and there’s not much we can do about it.  We could decide, in solving our fiscal problems, that we can’t afford to make any of these investments, and those of us who’ve done very well don’t have to pay any more taxes in order to fund these investments.

No, Mr. President, you don’t understand what it takes to build a stronger economy. You have had two-and-a-half years to learn something about the economy, and you have clearly learned nothing.  You have talked endlessly about “investing in research and technology” but government doesn’t know anything about the kind of research and technology done by the free market.

You have taken billions of taxpayer money to “invest” in infrastructure, roads and bridges — and squandered it on favors for your supporters, favors for the unions, support for Democrat party hangers-on. You’ve squandered billions on driving energy prices sky-high by shutting down our own abundant energy in favor of useless wind farms and solar arrays and electric cars that no one wants.

So NO.  NO funding for your Workforce Investment Act.  Forget it. NO more investments in “clean energy.” It’s a scam. The government doesn’t know anything about creating jobs. The government doesn’t know anything about picking successful businesses, nor creating a “21st Century Economy.” We’ve heard all  your old tired platitudes before.

The world has a lot of experience with governments that thought they could pick successful businesses, and tell them what products to make. And their “expertise” has ended in disaster for their people. Socialism sounds nice in dorm rooms or faculty lounges, but it has never, never worked, anywhere.

Another article from Fox News explains how “Lean Manufacturing Takes Root in U.S.” Joe Biden visited a dishwasher plant that uses “lean techniques” in June, and noted that “the country that doesn’t innovate stagnates.” Toyota’s just-in-time production system is spreading through American manufacturing.  I rest my case.

Democrat Voters Don’t Care About Lies and Bad Behavior! by The Elephant's Child

I have studiously avoided any mention of Congressman Anthony Weiner. To say it is thoroughly covered by many other sources is a vast understatement. Most people just want the whole thing to go away; while a vast number of others cannot resist the temptation to make jokes, usually connected to the Congressman’s last name.  Once started down that path there are few things one can say without running into unfortunate word combinations.

From the New York Times:

“Congressman Weiner departed this morning to seek professional treatment to focus on becoming a better husband and healthier person,” said the spokeswoman, Risa Heller. “In light of that, he will request a short leave of absence from the House of Representatives so that he can get evaluated and map out a course of treatment to make himself well.

Ah yes, Rehab. When any celebrity’s actions start making front-page news, it’s off to rehab for a cure. Psychology really didn’t make it into prime time until after World War II.  In the late 50s and early 60s, we had the rise of the helping professions.  There was little in human interaction that could not be improved with a little attention from a psychologist.  Thus even Wikipedia lists clinical psychology, educational psychology, forensic psychology, legal psychology, health psychology, industrial psychology, organizational psychology, occupational health psychology, school psychology, sport psychology, exercise psychology, neuropsychology, traffic psychology, and ecological psychology. There must be something there for Mr. Weiner.

I am sure that the helping professions can do helpful things, but I am not convinced that the self-esteem movement was the answer to anything in public schools.  In international comparisons, our students have soaring self-esteem, and lousy ability in math and science, and they don’t know much about history or geography either. I guess you could look at that and say that the psychologists have done a dandy job, we just need some mathematicians and scientists to step in and fix things.

Publicly, the evidence we have of rehab fixing up celebrities is pretty thin. Of course we don’t hear about the reformed jerks who have now become nice — we only hear about the drunks who go on another binge, the addicts who are back in court, the messy divorces, and the bastard children.

The 60s generation, the counterculture movement, the sexual revolution, the feminist movement,  socially accepted drug use, hippies, Eastern religions, the ‘new left’ , the anti-war movement all provided plenty of need for the helping professions — but did they help? Can a jerk, with the help of rehab, become a non-jerk?  And can rehab keep a misbehaving Congressman in office, and away from the camera?  And keep him from becoming mayor of New York?

Nancy Pelosi and Debbie Wasserman-Schultz have demanded his resignation. Congressman Weiner has departed for an undisclosed location. Democrats don’t seem to mind much about whatever he has done. They care about his constant presence on the front page, with the (D-NY) after his name.

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