Saw Zakaria and Friedman Speak Tonight

Discussion in 'Economics' started by circadian, Sep 8, 2009.

  1. I had the pleasure of listening to Fareed Zakaria and Thomas Friedman speak tonight at my school. The key take-aways for those who care are:

    1. US will get nothing done under it's broken political regime. Partisan non-cooperation will be the slow ruin of America, likened to a cancerous tumor that slowly eats at the patient. There is an incentive for party members to be noncooperative with one another that comes from fund raisers.

    2. A thorough, and timely strategic review needs to occur. The political/economic/foreign policy goals of America are ambiguous and are thus extremely wasteful. Too much money, manpower and time is being thrown at problems who don't have a definitive strategy or goal. Many of our "endeavors" need to be ceased, as we are spread too thin as a country (likened to the British Empire). If we chose to scale back in many programs/campaigns, we could save a hell of alot of money.

    3. America needs to innovate now, as it's the only way to ensure that future generations will have (at the very least) the same living standards as today.

    4. Arabs are tired of the yardsale that is Iran, and really would not care that much if Israel attacked them (although they would publicly chastise Israel). It is almost an expectation from the Arab world that Iran will be attacked. It would do well to shut them (Iran) up.

    5. Afghanistan is a broken country, always has been...always will be. Expect nothing from them except more narco trafficing.

    6. Uncertainty is the new norm, and from now on...expect the unexpected.

    Many of the topics came back to lack of political party cooperation. The parties are trying to freeze eachother out, and the casualties are the American people. There was very little economics discussed, to my dismay. It was more geo-political in nature and was a very good discussion. Some of this is redundant stuff, but I thought it'd be beneficial for some to get this stuff "hot off the presses."
  2. For a better democracy

    deport all the neocons to the middle east and every where else they feel like spreading their version of "democracy"

    Ban all corporate funding. All elections to be publicly funded. Any network using public airwaves ABC,NBC,CBS ,FOX to provide cut-rate TV ads.

    Anyone who puts up False swift-boat type ads gets capital punishment. You hang a few of these maggots, the rest will pipe down. After all they don't represent the public good.

    If you don't have a high school certificate, you can't vote

    To pay off the debt:

    Stop invading other nations and remove all foreign military bases. Cut military spending to support only salaries.

    Take every govt. office and fire 10% of the staff.

    Abolish the Federal Reserve system and make a new central bank audited yearly by the GAO. Make everything transparent.
  3. ashatet


  4. ashatet


    "3. America needs to innovate now, as it's the only way to ensure that future generations will have (at the very least) the same living standards as today. "

    Now that is funny. I used to be in the innovation business as in engineering, but what happened is that we treat engineers are second class citizens and MBAs as superior people. Now we have a country full of MBA and sports personality and real estate agents and very few engineers, and if there are no engineers, who would do the innovation now.

    I guess, NBA, NFL, Hollywood movies do not constitute as a good export. Seems like we need to start working.
  5. Some of us think this is good. Govt doing too much is bad and if you can't get bipartisan support for something chances are it is not worth doing. I usually vote for the most gridlock increasing candidate.
  6. pitz


    Most engineers would *love* to be treated as 'second class citizens'. In corporate America, right now, they're treated as subhuman trash, only to be hired on short-term contracts, if at all, and of course, every effort undertaken to outsource their job.

    Meanwhile, 'marketing managers' or 'district managers', with little more than college, have rewards a'plenty and 6-figure salaries heaped on them.

    No wonder we're screwed.
  7. I wonder how they think we are going to fix the "broken political system"- or don't they? Suddenly we are supposed to expect everyone in DC to cooperate? Does Obama have the leadership skills to do this (he talked of it in the campaign)? Do we expect them to reform themselves out a job?
  8. Both of those guys are useless know-it-alls. "Fix the political bickering in Washington". Wow. Earth-shattering stuff there.
  9. Wouldn't make any difference if we HAD the engineers. Innovation won't save us. The real money is in PRODUCTION.. and that will be done with the low labor cost producer... and that isn't the US.

    The Talking Heads keep mentioning "innovation".. because it's hopeful (false, of course). America has always lead the world in innovation and likely will still.

    Nobody wants to say "innovation isn't the answer... it's production... and we're not going to get that".

    As for "partisan politics"... the ONLY solution is to get rid of BOTH parties...

    America needs a Constitutional Party!!
  10. It was put forth with a little greater sense of urgency. The speakers admitted that this problem isn't a new one for America, but 20-30 years ago it didn't matter that much b/c we were the lone superpower. America could fool around and waste time and resources but as long as we retained the no. 1 spot no one cared. Now, with the emergence of many large countries and economies, we've got to get our act together or we'll be left in a vulnerable state.

    To put it simply, we're not the only alpha male anymore, and if we don't step up our game...they'll overtake us in the coming decades.
    #10     Sep 9, 2009