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Notes to myself, possibly of interest to others.
-- Bill Northlich

Thursday, September 9, 2010

Gimme that old New Deal...

Ideological conservatism has ruled the day for 40 years. The genius of the New Deal, in retreat throughout this period, was not ideology. It was the pragmatic observation that the only way to achieve long-term prosperity is for the government to draw the weak and less wealthy into participation in the economy. Left to their own devices, the strong and wealthy will rationally act in their own short-term interests. Only government can act in the collective long-term interest. The unbridled free enterprise and deregulation advocated by conservative ideologues can make a few people wealthy in the short-run, but it is unsustainable because middle- and lower- income families will inevitably be left behind.

What has been missing is a progressive leader willing to risk telling the public the truth. The middle- and lower-classes have been getting poorer. The quality of their employment in good times has deteriorated; and progressively, in each downturn, unemployment persists for longer and longer periods after the economy improves. As high school and college graduation rates have stagnated, the American dream of boundless opportunity has withered away, even for their children. Even the apparent success of the wealthiest is unsustainable unless increasing income disparity is reversed.
---Wallace C. Turbeville,a former CEO of VMAC LLC and a former Vice President of Goldman, Sachs & Co.

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