Here are a few odds and ends to share with you that alone would not make for very substantive blog posts but I think will still be worth a few minutes of your time.
Jill Stein raised $3.5 million for her candidacy as the Green Party candidate for President. She initially stated that she needed $2.5 million in donations to fund a recount of the Presidential election results in Wisconsin, Michigan and Pennsylvania. As the money started flowing in so did her estimates of what she needed. As of Wednesday, she has raised $6.7 million and the amount she says she needs is going up with it. (now it's $9.5 million).
It does make you wonder where all the money has come from for what appears to be a fool's errand. In fact, she did not even comply with the rules or the deadline in Pennsylvania which would be the most critical state to turn against Trump if any of this would make a difference.
I guess we really know what the Green Party stands for now, don't we? What other reason is there for Stein to be doing this? And if liberals would really like to make a difference to the tune of almost $10 million, how about donating it to inner city program for children in those three states. They could use the help.
Carrier and Ford
Donald Trump is still 50 days away from being sworn in as President but he has already fulfilled two of his more high profile campaign pledges. Carrier and Ford have already announced that they will keep jobs in the United States instead of moving them to Mexico as they had previously promised.
I guess President-elect Trump does not understand that politicians are only supposed to promise stuff...not actually do it.
What did Barack Obama say about Trump during the campaign on this issue? This is what our current President said in Elkhart, Indiana during a PBS NewsHour Townhall when campaigning for Hillary in June.
“When somebody says … that he’s going to bring all these jobs back. Well, how exactly are you going to do that? What are you going to do?” he asked.
“There’s no answer to it. [Trump] just says, ‘Well, I’m going to negotiate a better deal.’ Well, how — what — how exactly are you going to negotiate that? What magic wand do you have? And usually, the answer is he doesn’t have an answer.”
The magic wand? I guess it was something President Obama did not have or did not care to use.
In addition to job losses in middle America we also have a significant problem with underemployment in our economy. There is little doubt that this was a significant reason that Trump won the Presidency.
Patrick Cox of Mauldin Economics put together a nice summary of how our expectations and technology are combining to provide us with unintended consequences that are making the problme worse. He observes that we are in a vicious cycle of our own making that has many American workers in a rat race to nowhere.
Cox does not have the answer but he thinks that "our twisted ideas about money, work and education are the real problems" behind this situation.
The crazy expectations we put on our children (and ourselves) have consequences:
- Too many people go to college because they think it is essential to career success.
- Excess supply of college-educated people drives down wages.
- Low pay plus student debt obligations make them look for the lowest price in everything they buy.
- This reduces wages for the less-educated people who sell everyday goods and services.
- Worker productivity falls as low wages discourage the more qualified workers.
- Eventually, robots become the most cost-effective labor.
- More people go to college to get ahead of the robots.
Worth thinking about.
The Internet Minute
Finally, speaking of technology, I came across this interesting chart in The Daily Shot that shows what happens in an internet minute.
150 million emails sent every minute.
69,444 hours of NetFlix viewed.
20.8 million WhatsApp messages.