OT: The America That Works

I try to avoid suggesting articles, since everyone already has plenty of their own, but this is an exception. The current issue of _The
Economist_ has a special report titled "The America that Works," and it's worth reading.
It's actually seven articles plus an introduction, but they're short. The Economist does not write windy articles. Nor do they re-hash what others are reporting. I haven't seen anything quite like this.
Good reading. (follow the link in this intro to get to the articles in the report)
http://tinyurl.com/a45h9tt
--
Ed Huntress

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On 3/15/2013 7:43 PM, Ed Huntress wrote:

Thanks, Ed. That was a nice breath of fresh air.
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wrote:

'Glad you found it interesting, Richard. The Economist doesn't buy into conventional wisdoms, for the most part, and they often come up with surprises.
This was a good one.
--
Ed Huntress

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On Friday, March 15, 2013 11:51:36 PM UTC-7, Ed Huntress wrote:

Actually on this subject they have accepted conventional wisdom and have warned against implementing austerity while the economy is still weak and have favored fiscal stimulus (but not necessarily the mix Obama has sponsored). They've also scolded my party for running deficits by keeping taxes too low (at 60% of spending).
In the long term, the Economist has usually favored the more conservative national party in British elections and endorsed socialists only twice, both times Tony Blair, yet in US elections it's endorsed only two Republicans for President, George W. Bush and Ronald Reagan, but not for either's reelection. It didn't even endorse the obvious choice in 1988, George H.W. Bush, a British-style conservative.
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On Mon, 18 Mar 2013 10:23:40 -0700 (PDT), snipped-for-privacy@my-deja.com wrote:

Another way to put it is that they're somewhat conservative on monetary and fiscal policy, but they aren't nuts.

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Haven't had time to read the whole thing yet, but looks real interesting. Bookmarked... Thanks for sharing!
Jon
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In the same light, a more positive hope for the future...
<http://blog.ucsusa.org/crop-rotation-generates-profits-without-pollution-or-what-agribusiness-doesnt-want-you-to-know/
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wrote:

Interesting. I read the piece, but I didn't follow the link to the full study.
Do you know if they're comparing it to two-crop rotation with plowing? Or with seed drilling? It makes a big difference.
My wife's relatives, who have large farms in IL, two-crop (corn/soybeans) rotation, have told me how much they save by drilling, but I don't know enough about it to know how that would stack up against the multi-crop plans.
--
Ed Huntress

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On 3/16/2013 4:46 PM, Ed Huntress wrote:

I'm not a farmer at all. Drilling by default around here means oil.
But since you asked, I think I'll go ahead and read the full study. I can sometimes understand what they are getting at. Sometimes.
I was really happy to see any such research going on at all!
Quote: Now, you can bet that Monsanto (or Syngenta, or Cargill) would never pursue a study like this one. I mean, why would they? There?s very little for big corporations to sell to farmers who are engaged in low-input agriculture. In fact, just the opposite?the more farmers are convinced they can?t be profitable without pricey inputs, the better the companies? bottom lines will look.
Even when it just isn?t true.
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On Fri, 15 Mar 2013 20:43:26 -0400

Interesting article Ed, thanks for the pointer. You may like this one too:
http://www.mlive.com/business/index.ssf/2013/03/is_michigan_talent_shortage _du.html
"Steve Lowe Jr. is scrambling to find more than a dozen skilled machinists, experienced engineers and laborers after his company recently won a multimillion-dollar contract to build giant camshafts for diesel locomotive engines.
He said he?s sought out state work force agencies, local community colleges and employment agencies in seeking the workers he needs to start camshaft production this summer.
Lowe said he even looked into hiring foreign workers through the federal government?s controversial H-1B visa program, which allows workers from other countries to work temporarily in the United States..."
--
Leon Fisk
Grand Rapids MI/Zone 5b
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On Sun, 17 Mar 2013 17:02:48 -0400, Leon Fisk

Very interesting, and somewhat surprising, in southeast Michigan. It has to tell us that a lot of young people are burned off or turned off to manufacturing.
There's enough blame to go all around. You really have to follow it closely to make any sense of it, which I'm not doing these days. I'm glad that reporters like Haglund are carrying the torch, because on-the-ground reporting like that, which he's done a lot of, is the only way to construct a complete picture.
Thanks for the link, Leon.
--
Ed Huntress

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> federal government?s controversial H-1B visa program, which allows >workers from other countries to work temporarily in the United

A lot of people don't simply just post flyers on the bulletin boards at the local colleges. Many of the juniors and seniors would be happy to start.
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On 3/17/2013 4:02 PM, Leon Fisk wrote: ...

http://www.mlive.com/business/index.ssf/2013/03/is_michigan_talent_shortage_du.html

Well, if it's _experienced+ machinists and engineers he's looking for, it's highly unlikely he's going to find them at those places. A few working types may being going back for career training at the juco/tech schools, but if so they're not too likely to want to return to what they're trying to leave. Experienced engineers of capability aren't going to be at the community college unless they're teaching. Sounds like so many, he wants cheap first and and foremost and doesn't know what it is he's actually asking for.
Probably biggest real problem in hiring quality there is that everybody w/ any initiative and skill has pretty much bailed out of the Detroit area already...here in far rural SW KS we've over 3-dozen new teachers in the school system over the last 5 years from the area 'cuz of the shrinkage of opportunity there. And elementary and secondary ed ain't exactly the most demanding of educational paths(+) so one can only imagine what those w/ the abilities and drive to actually do engineering coursework have done long before.
What, Detroit itself is down to <759k from the peak of 2M in the 50s? Not sure of the surrounding area but it can't be good, either.
(+) This isn't anything intended against 'em, just an observation that it doesn't take Einstein to get a general education degree.
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