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Radically Inept
Thursday, February 26, 2004
  This is in response to a conversation of which many of you will only see this side do to constraints imposed by a third party, but I think the statements below will hold on their own:

Yeah, there are thugs of all stripes. This is another one where I don't feel that race is the issue. Rather, it's a culture that is going to hell. Marriage across all lines, is almost a thing of the past. And, of those that get married, I think the stat is 50% end in divorce. Economically, most Americans are financially strapped to the point were both parents have to work. Now, many of the people I know resent it when I say that a large part of wage stagnation in America is the entry of women in large numbers into the work force. When you double the size of labor available, there is no pressure on the employers to raise wages. Add to this an invasion of immigrants desperate for any job, and again, there is no pressure to raise wages. The former was originally a matter of choice, and the latter is due to a failed enforcement regime. Staying w/ the latter for a moment, the answer to illegal aliens is not guarding the border, but to severely fine, and perhaps imprison, employers who hire illegal aliens. This includes the lilly white suburbanites who hire illegal aliens for domestic help. If there are no jobs available here to these people, they have no motivation to come here. Further, once these people are removed from the work force, there will be pressure to raise wages, because the services are still needed and/or desired. 'Jobs that nobody wants' is a complete fallacy, once these jobs pay a living wage, Americans will want them.

Going back to the former, entry of women into the work force, is not nearly so simple an issue. Many are there by choice, and in our country, they should have that choice. If there is a market for skills, and they can compete, there is no legal reason to deny them that entry. On the other hand, many of the women in the work place are (excuse me if I switch tenses occasionally, I don't have the time to formulate a better piece right now) there by economic necessity. I'm sure many would love to have a spouse that works an 8hr a day job which provides sufficient income for the family. Again, this is not a problem with a simple solution, but let me do a slight review as to how it occurred. First of all, there has always been a segment of the female population in this country that worked, but it was after WWII when a steady increase began. This occurred for a host of reasons, I'll only address a couple here. One reason was that following WWII, there was a very real reduction in eligible bachelors as so many had died in the war. This was especially true in communities where the local National Guard units decimated in battle. Anyway, the point here is that many women had to work to support themselves. Later, as the US became more affluent, many married women just worked part time for a little extra spending money for the family. The unintended consequence here, was that it led to wage depression. First of all, these part timers brought work place skills learned during the Rosie the Riveter program, again during WWII, but were willing to work for less as this was only for extra spending money. Employers faced with the choice of hiring a male whom they had to pay wages substantial enough to support a family, versus a woman who was willing to work for less, since presumably her husband provided the 'real' financial support, hired the woman. So men, to compete in the same market, had to begin to except lower wages for the same job that used to pay enough to support a family.

I put much of the blame for this on a corporate mentality that puts profit before anything else, but then that is truly what they are supposed to do. There's this huge misconception promoted by many of the elites, that corporation create jobs. No, they create profits. Jobs are overhead to be cut or reduced as soon as possible, to do less is not maximizing efficiency. Tommy Hillfiger may well be the perfect corporate model. He is a one man operation. All of his products are produced by other companies. He does not own any of the means of production and has no employees (well, he may have an assistant, or something). Everything is outsourced. I think it was Fruit of the Loom that made the shirts, and someone else the pants. He has reduced his overhead to the point of extreme efficiency. And, he's a good example of another reason for the current jobs situation. Most of his outsourced production is done overseas. Which brings us to yet another problem; the value of jobs hear will not rise as long as people else where are willing to work for less, and bringing the products from overseas remains cheap or gets even cheaper. Our wages will rise only when the cheapest available labor begins to match our 'standard' , which in fact, should drop at the same time. That was poorly worded. Our wages will go down, and the overseas wages will go up, until a balance is reached. And, frankly, there's not a damn thing that can realistically be done about it. The times, they are a changin'.

Anyway, I want to get to this point quickly. Anyone that wants me to flesh this out further, let me know. Low wages mean everyone has to work. So, between single parents, and parents where both have to work (often at least one is working two jobs), there is no one left to raise the kids except the TV. And with few exceptions, what it teaches is absolute amorality if not immorality. Even the commercials promote the idea that it is okay to lie to other family members, and that the kids are smarter then the parents. Corporations looking to boost sales, have for years marketed to youth, and the lowest common denominator. This is efficient capitalism, and they have no morals outside of increasing their returns on investment and maximizing profit. Television today would shock anyone who died before the 70's. Granted much of the turmoil of the 60's and 70's was a reaction to the very real hypocrisy in our society, but it may well be that the hypocrisy itself, was actually good for us. At least we pretended to have morals even if we failed to live up to them. Now, the pervasive attitude is once your rich no ones cares about the dead bodies buried in the past. This really has always been true, but we used to at least pretend that the path up should be a moral one. It is the attitude that has changed. In fact, it was the 70's when 'if it feels good do it' became a mantra and 'Looking Out for Number #1' was a huge best seller, and an indicator that we were now putting individual desires ahead of the collective good. Again, it was the attitude that changed more then the reality of the situation.

I will come to the issue of race later. Right now I have some cover letters to compose. 
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