The House is controlled by a bunch of sociopaths who want to burn everything to the ground. We’re going to run up against the debt ceiling again in 2023. As it approaches, they’re going to use the threat of default to try to extort all kinds BS. The best suggestion for neutralizing the threat I’ve heard so far: Mint the Coin. The headline nails it, “The debt ceiling is an absurd problem. Only an absurd solution can save us.”
So tonight I log on for the first time in god knows how long and I see an draft of a post I started to write in 2020. I haven’t touched it since – still just a brain dump and excerpts of pieces other people wrote – but interesting that I still see things pretty much the same way as I did then. Anyhow, here’s the unedited draft –
A few questions to frame the discussion of student debt forgiveness:
Why privilege forgiveness of student debt over forgiveness of other types of debt, e.g., medical debt?
What’s the root cause of the student debt crisis? What, if anything, will debt forgiveness do to address the root cause?
What broader social goods will be achieved by forgiving student debt?
I remain lukewarm about straight-up debt forgiveness because I don’t have satisfying answers to those questions and I haven’t heard any from anyone else. Continue reading →
Degrowth: A planned reduction of excess energy and resource use in rich nations to bring the economy back into balance with the living world, while reducing inequality and improving people’s access to the resources they need to live long, healthy, flourishing lives.
How much should we pay to promote solar energy in Massachusetts? Recent state government programs have resulted in the commitment of at least $10 billion of consumer funds—well over $1,500 for every man, woman, and child in the state. Is there a need for more government-directed subsidization, or have we reached a point of diminishing returns? Let’s look at the big picture.
and his conclusion:
What’s next on the list of well-intentioned financial mandates that will help reduce the risk for the developers of new energy technologies by passing along costs to the rest of us? Rest assured, the government will be asked to gamble with our money. And investors and advocates will do their best to keep things hidden so the rest of us don’t understand the costs they are asking us to bear. Some advocates now want unwarranted energy storage incentives. Some even argue for a return to expanded solar incentives. Let’s keep an eye on things and demand cost-effectiveness and transparency with regard to the amounts promised on our behalf.
There’s a lot in between. Unfortunately, he missed the big picture. The purpose of the “solar gamble” is to help transition us to using carbon-free (or at least carbon-neutral) energy not to save consumers money. The latter is a fringe benefit not the primary motivation. Levy misses the big picture because his focus is on financials. Money matters and how the costs of transition are shared – that they’re shared equitably – is important but leading with financials sets the wrong tone.
It’s especially important to press these priorities of security and solidarity now, when the share of US GDP going to profit has increased since 1984 from 2% to 16%–a difference totaling $17,000 per US worker. Wealth is jointly produced; well-being should be jointly achieved. https://t.co/eWSDDIMKs0
To make it work, it’ll mostly take controllable one-way car charging from the grid (V1G) and a small amount of two way charging/discharging from the car and the grid (V2G) to be used on the worst day of each forecast year.
That’s right, use your EV as a battery to power your house after you get home in the evening. Continue reading →
11. Roberts writes: “Having only 2% on the farm [down from 40%] is a feature, not a bug. It’s a good thing. It’s a glorious thing. Because it allowed the creation of all the glorious things that would amaze the farmer brought into the present — the smart phones and the artificial knees and youtube videos, and cross-country travel and cars and the longer life expectancy and everything else we didn’t have in 1900 that makes life more pleasant and even more meaningful for the children and grandchildren of farmers in 1900.”
YouTube videos make life more meaningful?… Fine, I won’t argue that. Of that 38% who moved from farm to other occupations though, how many are involved with building artificial knees? More generally, what became of them? What fraction took manufacturing jobs, the kind that have been disappearing over the past few decades.
13. Roberts writes: “Fracking - lower prices coming from innovation – is potentially more reliable than cheap imported energy that could go away. But that difference doesn’t change the point that the full benefits when prices fall from either change has a wider set of effects than just less expensive energy.”
Environmental impacts of continued reliance on carbon-based energy – you might want to look into those, Russ.
[The left] should be offering solutions to uncertainty – a stronger better social safety net and a job guarantee. We should also be offering people real control over their lives – and not control exercised on their behalf by the sort of elites they profess to despise.