A few more humble notes for Mr. Obama about where we are today….
During the run up to the recent Congressional elections, I was on Larry King Live with a super smart man whose name I have forgotten. Larry asked a smart question. The question was, "Is Barack Obama a better campaigner than a President?" One of the men on the panel said, "Of course he is. When he is campaigning, all he has to do is promise things. When he's President, he actually has to do things."
The same is true for all politicians, but the problem is acute for Mr. Obama because he has promised things he simply cannot do.
He cannot make the U.S. more competitive with the Far East and with Germany unless and until he gets U.S. education up to a far better level than it is at now. He cannot do this without revolutionizing the lives of young Americans, turning them from sex, drugs, rap, and rock 'n' roll to studying. This is far beyond his poor power to do. He cannot make an American worker who demands $30 an hour competitive with a Taiwanese worker who will work for $2 an hour with just as good equipment. He cannot make American college students who want to study film production into competitors with Chinese engineers. (Although I should say that America leads the world in making money off mass culture because we have by far the most imaginative and creative people on this planet in this arena living within a small radius in Southern California. Studying film production is not studying engineering but for the nation's future, it might be better than studying engineering.)
My old dad used to tell me that the reason U.S. workers could get paid so much more than Far Eastern workers was that our workers had so much better equipment to work with. This is not necessarily true any longer, and so our wages must very slowly move towards parity with Chinese wages. This will be a slow, but painful process.
President Obama seems to simply not "get it" about solar power and wind. When we taxpayers spend money to design better solar and wind power systems, those systems wind up getting made in the Far East. How this helps our workers is a mystery to me.
I also love President Obama endlessly referring to "clean coal." There is no such thing as "clean coal." Coal is coal. They can use all kinds of technology to immensely reduce pollution from coal. But there is no such magical thing as "clean coal." This is not a problem for me at all. I am happy with whatever kind of coal anyone wants to burn to keep the lights on. But this idea that there is some magic thing called "clean coal" that is as non-polluting as wind is just nonsense. It is a bit worrisome to keep hearing Mr. Obama, our president, talking about something that is just a fantasy.
You know, I am getting so tired of fighting these battles… I think I will just go to sleep now. I'll fight more tomorrow.
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