Smart Links 12 June 2012
Commentary on inequality’s dangers, a different path, what if China accepted immigrants, Japan`s `Western` citizens, economic sabotage, more China slowdown proof, Israel at risk, and the Liberals need to say what needs to be said.
‘Of the 1%, for the 1%, by the 1%’.
Vanity Fair -- Of the 1%, by the 1%, for the 1%
Americans have been watching protests against oppressive regimes that concentrate massive wealth in the hands of an elite few. Yet in our own democracy, 1 percent of the people take nearly a quarter of the nation’s income—an inequality even the wealthy will come to regret.
Rethinking long hours, meetings, being nice, plans, and doing less. Thanks to Scott of Toronto.
Pdf below – Rework
Out of the box idea. Thanks to John of Toronto.
Winnipeg Free Press -- What if China accepted immigrants?
What if China, flush with its new wealth, opened its doors to mass immigration? It would make sense from an economic and social point of view, because its one-child-per-family policy has produced a young generation far smaller than the one that now does most of the work.
Trapped by history. Thanks to Ken of Tokyo/Hong Kong.
New York Times -- A Western Outpost Shrinks on a Remote Island Now in Japanese Hands
Every morning, as the sun rises over this remote Pacific Island and its tiny port with typically Japanese low-slung concrete buildings, John Washington commits a quiet act of defiance against the famously insular Japan: he hoists an American flag over his inn.
The GOP’s political strategy: sink the US economy.
Guardian -- Did Republicans deliberately crash the US economy?
Be it ideology or stratagem, the GOP has blocked pro-growth policy and backed job-killing austerity – all while blaming Obama.
Business Week – Understanding the Chinese Slowdown
A sure sign of Chinese concern about their economy is the flurry of announcements about growth. China must give “more priority to maintaining growth,” Premier Wen Jiabao said on May 20. “
Sliding to disaster.
New York Review of Books -- Israel in Peril
On April 15 of this year I was returning to Israel on an Alitalia flight from Rome. About forty minutes before landing in Tel Aviv, the captain informed us that Israel had announced extraordinary security measures, constricting its air space in response to an unusual threat, and that from that moment on—we were still high above the Mediterranean—until we would be allowed to leave the terminal, all photography was strictly forbidden; beyond that, we were to follow the instructions of Israeli security personnel on the ground.
Talk the walk.
National Post -- Liberal party must embrace the big, bold change its hardcore supporters hate
Here is the difficulty, if you’re a Liberal leadership aspirant gearing up for a yearlong campaign: Your party desperately requires new ideas and bold thinking, if not a top-to-bottom re-imagination. You know this.
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Twin Virtues: Inequality of Outcomes & Equality of Opportunity©
Ultimately, the most successful societies find the balance between the twin virtues of inequality of outcomes and equality of opportunity.
The new politics must marry the twin virtues of unequal outcomes and equality of opportunity.
When too few get too much everybody loses.
Feminism is about women living their lives on their own terms, marshalling the resources of the society to make that possible, and men embracing this as vital to a successful society and their own liberation.
Can it be that striving for equality of opportunity however imperfect the process not only benefits the individual but also creates benefits for the society that are unintended but wonderful?
Economics must be a 'moral enterprise' as much as politics claims to be. Economic outcomes need to be framed in terms of right and wrong not just efficiency if only because these often align in surprising ways that are good for society and the economy.
My vision of Canada is that any Canadian child from a family of limited circumstance can expect to have a chance at lifetime of unlimited opportunities.
Free trade is a wonderful thing. Time and time again economists have proven that free trade creates enormous wealth for each country 'on the whole'. Historians have shown that free trade is usually associated with rising political, social and cultural liberty. The perennial problem is that free trade always creates tremendous disruption for thousands even millions of individuals often concentrated in one geography, and where the state is idle, not investing in best in class instruments of social justice, free trade can be a permanent ticket out of the middle class, down, not up.
Tax policy should be founded on the principle of generating steady tax revenues sufficient to maximise environmentally sustainable economic growth in order to fund fair government.
Public policy should be designed to decrease inequality before the law and increase equality of opportunity.
Capitalism is not the problem; the problem is what we do with capitalism.
Content is always more difficult to argue than conspiracy.
Let the state regulate and the market operate (most things).
Welfare strategies are best designed as a hand up, not as a hand out.
Political debate should not be fact free fighting.
Explanation lasts longer than eloquence.
Always favour empowerment over dependency.
The most enduring public figures are embraced for the causes they fought for and not the concept of themselves they hoped others would remember them by.
Find your voice and don't be the echo of somebody else.
It is possible to operate on two different levels: the practical, cautious and conservative; and the realm of ideas, open, free, and radical.