Where are we headed nationally? My thoughts.

Feb 2018
2,236
1,519
Oregon
In days long gone by, humans could cooperate for the common good. Those who owned businesses benefited from their own efforts, their ingenuity, and their sacrifices. Although there were conflicts, they treated their employees to decent wages and even important benefits like medical coverage and vacations. In recognition of their improving lifestyles while working under such conditions, workers were more friendly, accepting, and tolerant of their employers. Not so much today. So what happened?

Capitalism entails conflict, by its nature. In those days the conflicts were less visible and less acute, and therefore there was less resistance. The press reported fewer issues. There were fewer problems with healthcare, education, mass murders, union suppression, election fraud, immigration, and other issues we see today. And the capitalist continued to get richer without obvious disrespect to the working class.

But with capitalism's need for a 2.5-3% annually compounded rate of growth in markets, sales, and profits, the conflicts and contradictions inevitably sharpen over time. And when that rate of growth starts to become unsustainable, things really sharpen! The ideology and culture, desires and intentions of the rich grow more and more at odds with those of the working class. Antagonisms serve to undermine the unity of the people. And this is very much in the interest of the capitalist, first as a divide-and-conquer technique, but also as a way of spreading and popularizing capitalist values. And this sharpening of conflicts is only "necessary" when capitalism finally enters into crisis and sustaining the golden goose becomes more challenging. When capitalism degenerates, the culture degenerates as well in support of the economy's changing needs.

This is where we are today with sharpening left-right animosities, increasing accusations from both sides, a blatant willingness to invent obvious falsifications to justify conflicting behaviors, and the failure of the moral and ethical compass that used to cause liars to back off at some point for fear of becoming too obvious.

The logical way out seems to be that of equal and opposing forces arguing for the hearts and minds of the people, and let them take sides at the ballot box. But the sides are not equal today. The "left" has been severely disarmed, union strength has been crushed, people's parties have been dismantled, elections have become a bad joke on democracy, and the power of the capitalist's wealth have won the day in all these areas and more.

So what's the solution? Well, I think that depends on whether we-the-people are willing to CREATE the solution, or whether we choose to sit back and let it work out as fate decides and hands it to us.

In the first case the question is whether there is time, or is it too late already. If there is time, people's organizations and parties must be built and unions repaired and spread. Then we have a chance.

Otherwise, in the second case, my fear is that oppression will grow worse and worse, rights will be taken away, the rate of arrests for violation of new suppressive laws will increase, and violence will grow until there is a complete crackdown on freedoms backed up by martial law. THEN the working class will be forced to organize and a violent revolution will be all but guaranteed.
 
  • Like
Reactions: Clara007
Mar 2013
10,456
11,421
Middle Tennessee
But with capitalism's need for a 2.5-3% annually compounded rate of growth in markets, sales, and profits,

Therein lies the heart of the issue. Everyone want's that 2 to 3 percent. The problem is, the population is growing at less than 1% annually. So how are the biggest companies delivering their earnings targets? Buy reducing structural costs. That means fewer employees and lower wages for those they do hire. That means every company is making every employee do more with less. I see it at my current job. We are at least five people short. 1 or 2 full-timers and 3 or more part-timers. We already handle three times the volume as any other location in the region. And corporate expects us to do it with the same number of people as every other location. Our fear is now, if our manager doesn't get some new people in soon, the ivory tower people will decide we don't really need those extra people and that we can continue to do the volume with what we have now. The problem is, we're all tired. 10 and 11 hour shifts have become the norm. On my days off I half expect a text from the manager to see if I can cover a few hours. At least once a week he texts to see if I can come in early.

The issue would be, they can't find qualified people. They can't get people because their pay scale is shit. When I went for my interview and the manager told me what starting pay was I literally laughed. I told him thank you, sorry for wasting your time and headed for the door. He came back a couple of days later with a somewhat less shit offer. I never had any intention of staying there long term. It fits my needs for the moment.

I saw it at my last job. I watched as our regions contained fewer and fewer people. Then they downsized my ass. Now I see it even worse at my new job. I haven't really looked around all that much because everyone is paying about the same. And THAT is the issue. Every company is holding the line on wages and people can't afford the very products and services their own companies make and sell. The only way many of these companies can post improving profits is to reduce costs because they are NOT growing. They are not increasing market share. They are not increasing demand so they can't raise prices.
 
Dec 2015
19,636
19,649
Arizona
Countries change when its people demand it and in OUR case when the demographics demand it. America hasn't been paying attention. The "graying of America" is the beginning of the new trend and will be defining our future. Just as it always has the Baby Boom generation had its impact but is coming to it's close.

Other trends are clear. The country isn't getting any whiter. And the Republican coalition is growingly increasingly dependent on that shrinking white vote. In eight years' time, America's white population is expected to start falling, as the number of people dying exceeds the number of births.

The GOP has also been dependent on the rural, blue-collar vote as America becomes urban and educated.
Almost half of millennials and children are from ethnic minority groups and it is this great diversity that is at the heart of demographic changes. As the country comes to rely on them for its future prosperity, everyone will have to consider how society must change to make a success of this new reality.

Our younger generations WANT a very different America. Their priorities are completely inconsistent with previous generations and they aren't particularly happy with the way the Boomers (OK BOOMERS movement) have governed this nation. These new voters are pragmatic and they do NOT have an idealized picture of what America looks like: the little cape cod house in the burbs surrounded by a white picket fence--a station wagon sitting in the driveway--two and a half kids--dog in the fenced yard.
Our young voters have soured on capitalism and are embracing social programs--rapidly. They've seen our oligarchy and HATE it. They've seen our greed, corruption, racism, divisions--the haves and have nots--and have said "NOTHANKS---NOTACHANCE".
So if you want to know how America is changing--that's a good place to start. AND maybe we should be thanking the Forever Trumpers and the GOP. Young America has been watching and what interesting role models they have seen and heard.
They have also seen and heard the insults and mockery........of them. "OH those Millennials! The lazy, myopic good-for-nothings." "No ambition" "No brains or drive or passion." "So entitled with that attitude of theirs." "Don't know the meaning of hard work." "Too casual--too informal".

Watch out, America. Big changes are coming.
 
  • Like
Reactions: tecoyah
Feb 2018
2,236
1,519
Oregon
Therein lies the heart of the issue. Everyone want's that 2 to 3 percent. The problem is, the population is growing at less than 1% annually. So how are the biggest companies delivering their earnings targets? Buy reducing structural costs. That means fewer employees and lower wages for those they do hire. That means every company is making every employee do more with less. I see it at my current job. We are at least five people short. 1 or 2 full-timers and 3 or more part-timers. We already handle three times the volume as any other location in the region. And corporate expects us to do it with the same number of people as every other location. Our fear is now, if our manager doesn't get some new people in soon, the ivory tower people will decide we don't really need those extra people and that we can continue to do the volume with what we have now. The problem is, we're all tired. 10 and 11 hour shifts have become the norm. On my days off I half expect a text from the manager to see if I can cover a few hours. At least once a week he texts to see if I can come in early.

The issue would be, they can't find qualified people. They can't get people because their pay scale is shit. When I went for my interview and the manager told me what starting pay was I literally laughed. I told him thank you, sorry for wasting your time and headed for the door. He came back a couple of days later with a somewhat less shit offer. I never had any intention of staying there long term. It fits my needs for the moment.

I saw it at my last job. I watched as our regions contained fewer and fewer people. Then they downsized my ass. Now I see it even worse at my new job. I haven't really looked around all that much because everyone is paying about the same. And THAT is the issue. Every company is holding the line on wages and people can't afford the very products and services their own companies make and sell. The only way many of these companies can post improving profits is to reduce costs because they are NOT growing. They are not increasing market share. They are not increasing demand so they can't raise prices.
Unions matter.
 
Feb 2018
2,236
1,519
Oregon
Countries change when its people demand it and in OUR case when the demographics demand it. America hasn't been paying attention. The "graying of America" is the beginning of the new trend and will be defining our future. Just as it always has the Baby Boom generation had its impact but is coming to it's close.

Other trends are clear. The country isn't getting any whiter. And the Republican coalition is growingly increasingly dependent on that shrinking white vote. In eight years' time, America's white population is expected to start falling, as the number of people dying exceeds the number of births.

The GOP has also been dependent on the rural, blue-collar vote as America becomes urban and educated.
Almost half of millennials and children are from ethnic minority groups and it is this great diversity that is at the heart of demographic changes. As the country comes to rely on them for its future prosperity, everyone will have to consider how society must change to make a success of this new reality.

Our younger generations WANT a very different America. Their priorities are completely inconsistent with previous generations and they aren't particularly happy with the way the Boomers (OK BOOMERS movement) have governed this nation. These new voters are pragmatic and they do NOT have an idealized picture of what America looks like: the little cape cod house in the burbs surrounded by a white picket fence--a station wagon sitting in the driveway--two and a half kids--dog in the fenced yard.
Our young voters have soured on capitalism and are embracing social programs--rapidly. They've seen our oligarchy and HATE it. They've seen our greed, corruption, racism, divisions--the haves and have nots--and have said "NOTHANKS---NOTACHANCE".
So if you want to know how America is changing--that's a good place to start. AND maybe we should be thanking the Forever Trumpers and the GOP. Young America has been watching and what interesting role models they have seen and heard.
They have also seen and heard the insults and mockery........of them. "OH those Millennials! The lazy, myopic good-for-nothings." "No ambition" "No brains or drive or passion." "So entitled with that attitude of theirs." "Don't know the meaning of hard work." "Too casual--too informal".

Watch out, America. Big changes are coming.
So you give passing notice to difficulties, you then blame each vaguely referenced concern on one section of the public or another, suggest that it is the demographics and the people that are the problem, end by suggesting we thank (!!!!!) "Forever Trumpers" and the GOP!!!!! Other than that you're vague and your "mealy-mouthed" rant is a flop and an attempt to blame social and other problems on the very ones who have no power to have such influences: the people.

Yet you gave my OP a "Like". So I'm confused. Maybe your problem is clarity, Clara.

Thanks for playing.
 
Dec 2015
19,636
19,649
Arizona
So you give passing notice to difficulties, you then blame each vaguely referenced concern on one section of the public or another, suggest that it is the demographics and the people that are the problem, end by suggesting we thank (!!!!!) "Forever Trumpers" and the GOP!!!!! Other than that you're vague and your "mealy-mouthed" rant is a flop and an attempt to blame social and other problems on the very ones who have no power to have such influences: the people.

Yet you gave my OP a "Like". So I'm confused. Maybe your problem is clarity, Clara.

Thanks for playing.
WHOAAA, Dude. Where did all that anger come from? Your question topic is "Where are we headed" and I tried to address that question.
AND I was vague? By stating facts and demographic changes on the horizon---and by speculating HOW those demographics will determine "where we are headed"?
I thought I was pretty clear, but let me try again. 1) Voters will determine the direction America goes. 2)Those voters will no longer be old, white and privileged. 3) Those voters will have entirely different priorities. 4)Those voters will become our lawmakers and leaders. 5) Those voters will support social programs, including healthcare for all.

AND I clearly stated that anyone who wants the question "where are we headed" answered, they/we should start with our changing demographics.
NOW.....explain your rant.
 
  • Like
Reactions: Lloyd Christmas
Feb 2018
2,236
1,519
Oregon
WHOAAA, Dude. Where did all that anger come from? Your question topic is "Where are we headed" and I tried to address that question.
AND I was vague? By stating facts and demographic changes on the horizon---and by speculating HOW those demographics will determine "where we are headed"?
I thought I was pretty clear, but let me try again. 1) Voters will determine the direction America goes. 2)Those voters will no longer be old, white and privileged. 3) Those voters will have entirely different priorities. 4)Those voters will become our lawmakers and leaders. 5) Those voters will support social programs, including healthcare for all.

AND I clearly stated that anyone who wants the question "where are we headed" answered, they/we should start with our changing demographics.
NOW.....explain your rant.
Anger? What anger? It was just observation and assessment.

Voters will not determine where America goes because voters are now sufficiently controlled by gerrymandering, voter suppression, election fraud, and the electoral college, not to mention hackable electronic voting machines with a total absence of any audit trail, intense propaganda, and such enormous amounts of money in the process that the ordinary voter has no hope of competing with it. It is the "big money" that is deciding where America goes and has been so deciding for a long, long time.
 
  • Like
Reactions: Lloyd Christmas
Aug 2019
1,001
1,004
Albuquerque, NM
We are headed down in flames and I don't see it recovering, as long as right wingers continue to defend blatant corruption and continue watching Fox news, or if people don't get out and vote and stop the scumbag Republicans (and any Dems involved as well) in letting the rich fuck over this country for greed.
 
Dec 2015
19,636
19,649
Arizona
Anger? What anger? It was just observation and assessment.

Voters will not determine where America goes because voters are now sufficiently controlled by gerrymandering, voter suppression, election fraud, and the electoral college, not to mention hackable electronic voting machines with a total absence of any audit trail, intense propaganda, and such enormous amounts of money in the process that the ordinary voter has no hope of competing with it. It is the "big money" that is deciding where America goes and has been so deciding for a long, long time.
Why did you bother posing a question if you don't want any opinions? Voters WILL INDEED determine our future because gerrymandering is 1) Disappearing and 2) Won't matter if most voters are YOUNG, IMMIGRANTS, MINORITIES and Democrats.
Laws are written to be changed.
 
Dec 2015
19,636
19,649
Arizona
We are headed down in flames and I don't see it recovering, as long as right wingers continue to defend blatant corruption and continue watching Fox news, or if people don't get out and vote and stop the scumbag Republicans (and any Dems involved as well) in letting the rich fuck over this country for greed.
Change is coming. Wait for it.