My friend and respected newsletter-economist John Mauldin is one of the smart-sane ones and he has a lot of cogent things to say. He often zeroes in on mistakes being made by the other side, in ways that might actually lead to direct improvement, were the process of deliberation and negotiation still in play. He makes the kind of suggestions that the minority party ought to be making, in order to fix and improve political measures, instead of leaving them to pass without conservative input and hoping they will fail.
(Side note: My guess is that more GOP office holders would be “Responsible Republicans” if they thought they could get away with being seen actually engaging in deliberation and negotiation with the commie/nazi/satanic liberals, without being punished by the current owners of their party -- Rush Limbaugh, Rupert Murdoch and the Saudi Royal House.
(In fact, my best guess is that some RRs will emerge from hiding, as soon as primary season is over, when they no longer have to fear a Fox-propelled populist insurgency from the far-right. Of the kind the only yesterday deposed Senator Bennett from the GOP nomination for re-election from Utah. The survivors may get some backbone in mid-summer... especially if Republican poll numbers start to slip. We already see signs of negotiation over finance reform that was anathema during the Health care debate.)
But back to John M. Let me reprint a passage of his you should ponder:
It now looks like almost 30% of the Greek financing will come from the IMF, rather than just a small portion. And since 40% of the IMF is funded by US taxpayers, and that debt will be JUNIOR to current bond holders (if the rumors are true) I can't tell you how outraged that makes me. What that means is that US (and Canadian and British, etc.) tax payers will be giving money to Greece who will use a lot of it to roll over old bonds, letting European banks and funds reduce their exposure to Greece while taxpayers all over the world who fund the IMF assume that risk. And does anyone really think that Greece will pay that debt back? IMF debt should be senior and no bank should be allowed to roll over debt and reduce their exposure to Greek debt on the back of foreign taxpayers.
Dang but that’s smart and on-target... and wholly based on commen sense, rather than reflex left rightism.
One of 10,000 things that I hate most about Culture War is that guys like this are marginalized to fret on the sidelines, without anyroute for their voices to be heard in high places. It’s not the fault of the “other side.”
It is the fault of a movement that has gone mad, manipulated into an orgy of dullard hatefulness, instead of putting guys like John up front. Grownups who would negotiate hard... but negotiate like adults.
=== WISDOM FROM THE EAST ===
Michael Nash, the film-maker who created the new documentary “Climate Refugees,” has offered a fascinating insight into what’s at stake in the current American climate-ideology wars. While his main emphasis is focused on the millions of refugees who already are on the move, because of changing water and food conditions... (three million leaving Burma, 300,000 who never went home to New Orleans)... he also had an insight that starkly portrays the insipid self-destruction that is inherent in our current Culture War over this issue:
”An interesting conversation took place one night while we were at COP15. Producer Justin Hogan and I were having drinks with a couple of guys from China. We started talking about America and how America looks at climate change. I asked them what they thought about America, and what they told me stopped me in my tracks.
“They said, “The left wants to save the world, and the right thinks it’s all about money. The right thinks America’s economy isn’t strong enough to move from an oil-based energy system to an alternative-based.”
“They then went on: “The right is correct – it’s all about money – but they could not be more incorrect in their interpretation of the money.”
“I asked “What do you mean?” They continued: “Make no mistake about it, the world is going green. Nothing would make people like us in China happier than America continuing this debate for the next 10 or 15 years. Because in 15 years, when you guys come out of the fog, China will own the revenue stream of the green revolution. We’ve spent a hundred years trying to catch up with the United States, and we now have the opportunity to blow past you in a half generation.””
Wow. That really turns your head, reminding you that the "defenders" of free enterprise have been its worst enemies.
I have stressed relentlessly that most of the measures that would help alleviate Anthropo generated Global Warming (AGW) happen also to be essential for achieving US energy independence, increased economic efficiency, and a competitive edge in the most important technologies of the next generation.
On that basis alone, the neocon Koolaid in this issue is tantamount to treason, and that makes it small surprise that Rupert Murdoch’s chief investors and business partners include some of the top Russian and Gulf State petro princes and oligarchs, using some of the same consultants and strategies that worked for Big Tobacco, a generation ago.