A More Polarized Union?

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  1. Avatar Will Truman
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    Notably, between Clinton and Walker, one of the two is the party’s overwhelming favorite, and the other is the furthest-from-center of those with a clear path to the nomination.

    I suspect that if Clinton sticks left and the Republicans stick right, one of these visions is going to win and the other will adjust accordingly within a decade.Report

    • Avatar Saul DeGraw in reply to Will Truman
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      Well obviously one is going to win.

      I just don’t see how the parties can adjust though.

      Suppose the GOP sticks to the right and wins the general. What can the Democratic Party abandon? Climate Change? Marriage Equality and LGBT0-rights? Immigration reform? the Welfare State that remains?

      Suppose HRC see stays to the left and wins. What can the GOP change? What if we get a situation where the Democratic Party has a natural lock on the Presidency but the GOP remains in firm control of the House because of gerrymandering? What if it is only the Senate that is up for grabs?

      What if Democratic Power gets locked in the Presidency and a certain amount of states like the Coastal ones and Upper MIdwest while the GOP retains firm control over the rest of the states?Report

      • Avatar Will Truman in reply to Saul DeGraw
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        A lock will be temporary. If the GOP wins in 2016 or 2020, they stand a good chance of having the presidency and both houses. I’d the Democratic majority is real (or is really a liberal majority) they’ll have a good enough showing in 2020 to get some statehouses and control redistricting. And if the GOP loses three or four elections straight against increasingly leftward Democrats, controlling the House won’t be enough in any event. Parties are not content t9 control a house.Report

  2. Avatar Saul Degraw
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    says:

    Here is an interesting story:

    http://www.slate.com/articles/life/education/2015/07/volunteer_professor_ad_it_says_a_lot_about_the_sorry_state_of_academia.html

    A very small college in Virginia had an opening for a volunteer professor. The job posting was never intended for the general public but it somehow got picked up by a site like Indeed. This caused a lot of hurt among academics who felt like they were being offered room and board (5 meals a week) instead of pay for teaching.

    Is there any field that does not have oversupply but is also not highly technical?Report

  3. Avatar Kim
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    says:

    Country’s moved left since Clinton. Libertarians included.Report

    • Avatar nevermoor in reply to Kim
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      And GOP has moved right.Report

      • Avatar Michael Cain in reply to nevermoor
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        These two in combination leave me wondering how the GOP has, then, managed to make such substantial gains in statehouses and governors offices.Report

        • Avatar Will Truman in reply to Michael Cain
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          Arguably, at least, it’s the difference between “the country” and “the voters”… particularly pertaining to mid-term elections.Report

        • Avatar LeeEsq in reply to Michael Cain
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          GOP voters tend to vote in more elections than Democratic voters for a variety of reasons. The political geography of the United States also favors the Republicans in legislative elections.Report

        • Avatar aarondavid in reply to Michael Cain
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          This was my thought also. Or, to put it another way, they do seemed to have moved right. Right into more state houses, senate seats and house seats.Report

          • Avatar Saul Degraw in reply to aarondavid
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            says:

            @aarondavid

            But I think Lee has a good point that this is because of political geography potentially more than more and more Americans believing in GOP talking points.

            Liberals tend to live in concentrated areas and they can dominate states where the cities can dominate politics or there is a long progressive tradition. Do you think the GOP has a chance of winning a state-wide race in California in the immediate future? Do you think they have a chance of taking back either part of the California legislature? The GOP is winning in some areas while turning themselves into a permanent rump party in other areas.

            A place like Kansas has a long GOP history. Colorado and Wisconsin have long purple histories.

            California, Washington, Oregon, and Vermont used to be strong GOP states. Bill Clinton was the first Democratic President to win California’s electoral college vote since Johnson in 1964. It was pretty recently that we had the Governator. Now the GOP has some strong holds for congressional seats but even those could change.
            Issa’s district barely swings to the R camp now.

            I think you are underplaying the role of partisanship and gerrymandering and geographical advantage here and confusing it with the majority of Americans agreeing with the GOP ideology. The Democratic Party and their candidates did win more votes than the GOP in the past few elections:

            http://www.washingtonpost.com/blogs/the-fix/wp/2015/01/05/senate-democrats-got-20-million-more-votes-than-senate-republicans-which-means-basically-nothing/

            The issue is that Democratic voters are highly concentrated because they tend to be urban and the fault of this makes them vulnerable to gerrymandering. If you look at safe Democratic districts, they tend to be really safe with margins of the candidates winning 70-90 percent of the votes. Safe GOP districts tend to be safe by something like 55 percent of the vote. So comfortable and nearly impossible to overcome for a variety of complicated reasons but not as overwhelmingly safe as Democratic districts.

            Basically, just because there are a lot of low-population and homogeneous and largely rural states that give the GOP and advantage in state-wide politics does not mean that the majority of Americans agrees with them. Now this doesn’t make their victories less than legitimate, the system is the way it is but it does not mean that the American public is in totes agreement with the GOP either.Report

        • Avatar Saul Degraw in reply to Michael Cain
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          @michael-cain

          1. There have been a lot of studies that show that the American public downplays or simply does not believe in the radicalism of the GOP.

          2. What Lee said. The fact that GOP voters are older and wealthier makes them more likely to come out in mid-term and off-year elections.

          3. Liberals tend to concentrate more than GOPers.Report

        • Avatar morat20 in reply to Michael Cain
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          Mid-term electorate is substantially different than Presidential years.

          I think the fact that the GOP has started approaching gerrymandering with a fervor that is really..unusual…(Texas’ mid-cycle changes, Florida’s changes that just got bounced by a court, etc) and working really hard to making it more difficult to vote for Democratic constituencies is probably pretty telling of their actual concerns.

          I honestly think the GOP is getting the shaft from the people that stay home in off-years. This basically creates a push-pull dynamic in the GOP that prevents them from moderating. Extremism is punished in Presidential years, rewarded in off years, and basically has them stuck. The gerrymandering and voter suppression stuff seems like an attempt to break out of the trap (only aimed at Presidential years, not off years. Which makes sense. Why would the GOP encourage democratic voters to show up?)Report

          • Avatar LeeEsq in reply to morat20
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            The formal political science term for what the GOP is doing is Constitutional hardball. American politics like the politics of other nations is governed by a series of norms in addition to formal rules and procedures. The high number of veto points and other unique features of the American government make following the norms really important. What the Republican party has been doing is ignoring all those norms for short term benefit.Report

        • Avatar Stillwater in reply to Michael Cain
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          says:

          These two in combination leave me wondering how the GOP has, then, managed to make such substantial gains in statehouses and governors offices.

          Yeah, that’s an interesting dynamic, if actually true. Personally, I think the GOP has very visibly moved to the right both socially and economically, but I don’t think the country as a whole (whatever that means!) has moved to the left, especially on economic issues. In particular, I don’t think the Democratic party has moved further to the left than it’s ever been, and if anything has moved substantially to the right in recent years. But even if that quick analysis is right, it doesn’t account for conservatives making remarkably huge strides in recent years at the state and Fedrul CC level.

          Personally, I think they’ve been so successful because conservatives are better organized on the ground and are acting on a strategy of developing political support and success from the inside out, from the local to the national. And to a great extent (it seems to me) they’ve been successful in that endeavor due to conservative politicians not only advocating policies supported by the base, but appealing to folks who (for whatever reason!) think that traditionally liberal policies are no longer the best solution to our national, state-level, local, economic problems.

          I mean, I’ve said this before, but in the last two presidential elections the conservative candidate ran a campaign that bordered on sketch comedy, yet each of them garnered high fortyish percentiles in voting. Clearly, lots of folks are predisposed at this point to not vote Dem even when their candidate reveals himself as politically incompetent.Report

          • Avatar nevermoor in reply to Stillwater
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            I definitely think it’s tribal for a solid 60-80% of voters (which, actually, may be rational since there’s a lot more difference between a “centrist” democratic presidency and “centrist” GOP presidency than between Clinton and Warren (or Theoretical Centrist Conservative and Walker).

            The GOP tends to dominate rural environments while Dems dominate cities. That means the GOP gets a LOT more natural territory, and a bunch of states, with wildly over-represented voters (not just gerrymandering, which BSD and the GOP just happens to be better at, but state-level stuff too). That’ll change with demographics, as it couldn’t be clearer that the GOP cannot win non-white voters.Report

          • Avatar Richard Hershberger in reply to Stillwater
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            “Personally, I think they’ve been so successful because conservatives are better organized on the ground and are acting on a strategy of developing political support and success from the inside out, from the local to the national.”

            Very much this. The right has for some decades now emphasized local organization and elections to town councils and school boards. The left, its motto of ‘think global act local’ notwithstanding, largely sucks at this.Report

            • Avatar LeeEsq in reply to Richard Hershberger
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              There lots of debates on why this is among the Left. Many liberals and leftists think that the right wouldn’t be as successful as they are without the funding of lots of wealthy people. They argue that even if liberals and leftists emulated the right’s strategy, we would get fewer results because the left would lack the funding the right gets. Others, like myself, argue that many liberals and leftists prefer theatrical and exciting protest politics over the more boring but effective politics of going to meetings and voting in elections from the bottom to the top.Report

        • Avatar Notme in reply to Michael Cain
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          Dont you know? The liberal default answer is the koch bros. Blaming them releaves them of having to think critically about the left’s policies.Report

    • Avatar Damon in reply to Kim
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      That’s one person’s opinion….This libertarian certainly never moved left. He moved on a different axis.Report

  4. Avatar aarondavid
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    I think things are going to get more polarized until something breaks. I think that thing will be the economy. How it happens I got no idea, but I am pretty sure it wont be social issues like the ones you mention. and that is because you are right, neither party is going to budge on those, they are too much red meat for the base. But the economy is the one area that you can through shit at the wall and see if it sticks. And as soon as one party finds the right thing, its all over. They will pick up house seats and then senate seats, state houses and judges etc. Much like the left did in the ’30’s and the right did under Regan. And at that point they will get the spoils, which are the social issues.

    And then the whole thing will start over again. Thus it always was.Report

    • Avatar Saul Degraw in reply to aarondavid
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      Or there can be massive economic growth and this whole thing will be forgotten.

      Though it is still troubling that we are far apart socially.

      Despite what I wrote to you above, I think the GOP could theoretically be competitive with a certain segment of the San Francisco population. At least to win a potential seat or two from the tonier districts for the Board of Supervisors. They just need to be able to have an honest to god Rockefeller Republican. I don’t think this will happen anytime soon.Report

      • Avatar aarondavid in reply to Saul Degraw
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        If there is massive economic growth, to the victor goes the spoils. Also, if Democrats go back to Clinton era policies, more people in the center of the country would vote for them.Report

        • Avatar Morat20 in reply to aarondavid
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          HAHAHAHAHAHA.

          Oh wait, you were serious.

          Haven’t you worked it out yet? No matter who the Democrat is running for President, they’re the “most liberal Democrat ever”. (Kerry was, then Obama. Hilariously they were both in the Senate at the same time with Bernie Sanders, but whatever). Whatever policy they enact will be the “most liberal ever”.

          Were you not around during the Clinton years?Report

          • Avatar aarondavid in reply to Morat20
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            And yet, every conservative is the Most Conservative to the left.

            And Clinton was the first pres I voted for (both terms.Report

            • Avatar Notme in reply to aarondavid
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              Dont forget that every gop’er is part of the war on women, the right wing compiracy and secretly hates minorities and immigrants. Did i miss anything?Report

              • Avatar Zac in reply to Notme
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                “and secretly hates minorities and immigrants.”

                If you call that secrecy, I would hate to see what you consider overt.Report

              • Avatar Notme in reply to Zac
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                Thanks being an example of liberals that stick to their pre conceived notions so they dont have to think.Report

              • Avatar Kim in reply to Notme
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                Comments like this come off better when you’re less trolly yourself, fwiw.

                Nevertheless, I’ll second that one. Illegal Immigration is both a pro and a con to conservatives — people are getting rich off quasi-slavery, and the people who are losing jobs because of it hate it.

                So, naturally, what happens? You get completely ineffective programs designed to “band-aid” the issue, without actually stopping anyone.

                And god forbid you actually make them citizens, or at least legally here. Because that would cost Hebrew National and tons of other places a shitton of money.Report

              • Avatar Zac in reply to Notme
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                For someone who claims to be a lawyer, you seem to have a remarkably hard time constructing coherent English sentences. Perhaps the excessive rage-spittle is slicking the keys up?Report

              • Avatar Murali in reply to Notme
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                Well, I don’t think its that much of a secret.Report

        • Avatar Saul Degraw in reply to aarondavid
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          @aarondavid

          Morat has a point. I gotta say that in our conversations I sometimes feel like we live in very different versions of California and the United States.

          The Democratic Party is basically trying to keep what remains of the welfare state from a never ending assault from people like Walker and their financial backers. How radical is it to support the existence of programs that are between 50-80 something years old? Not very in my book.

          Which policies can the Democratic Party moderate on while still being to the left of the Republicans? Money for education? Climate change? LGBT rights? Affirmative Action? Ever so slight increases in taxes on really high income earners?

          A lot of middle-aged dudes have this very strong “leave me alone” attitude that I find perplexing.Report

          • Avatar aarondavid in reply to Saul Degraw
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            Morat has zero point. And as much as the idea of Rockefeller republicans might appeal to the new denizins of SF,. SF is pretty hard left at this point, but with “tech 2.0” that is changing. More “Brogramers” could seriously change the dynamics of that town causing an exodus of the left to places like Oakland. That really is no different than a moderate Dem. Hell, I might even go back to voting D at that point.Report

        • Avatar Saul Degraw in reply to aarondavid
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          @lwa has it correct. The issue isn’t that the Democratic Party has moved too far to the left, the issue is that the GOP has gone so far to the right that even Bill Clinton’s DLC centerism and Matt Y’s neo-liberalism looks like Trotsky and Lenin at the Finland Station.Report

          • Avatar Notme in reply to Saul Degraw
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            Its funny how liberals always think the gop has gone to some radical place and the dems have become the reasonable moderatesReport

            • Avatar aarondavid in reply to Notme
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              Simple conformation bias.Report

              • Avatar Saul Degraw in reply to aarondavid
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                @aarondavid

                I actually dislike the introduction of confirmation bias and other neuroscience terms in politics because everyone is smart enough to realize confirmation bias in their ideological opponents but not quite insightful to realize confirmation bias in themselves.

                Everyone suffers from confirmation bias and motivated reasoning and all the other cognitive science traps. This is what makes people people. Or to err is human. Knowing a term like cognitive bias, I see “Know I will insult the other side (which I would have done anyway) but I will do so with science to make it seem like more-intelligent insulting.”Report

              • Avatar Stillwater in reply to Saul Degraw
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                Eg., the confirmation bias exhibited when Aaron reduces the meta-political views of “partisans” to an expression of confirmation bias.

                Oh well!Report

              • Avatar Saul Degraw in reply to Saul Degraw
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                Of course that should be now and not know.Report

            • Avatar LWA in reply to Notme
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              It is funny indeed.
              Excuse me while I read a communique from Sanders Central explaining how he wants to raise the Social Security cap and subvert the American Way.

              Just like Cloward-Piven would do.Report

          • Avatar aarondavid in reply to Saul Degraw
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            It is interesting that the two main D pres candidates, one is an avowed socialist, and the other is running to the left of her husbands centrist, triangulated policies. But, no, it is just the R’s running from the center.

            Sorry, when several partisans tell me the other party is the only one that is crazy, I roll my eyes and look the other direction. I don’t want the BS to get my face.Report

            • Avatar Stillwater in reply to aarondavid
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              Sorry, when several partisans tell me the other party is the only one that is crazy, I roll my eyes and look the other direction. I don’t want the BS to get my face.

              I have to apologize too, cuz whenever I hear someone account for other people’s views by attributing to them “team”-based confirmation bias I turn away. I don’t want to get all that “non-partisan”, “above the fray” icky on me.Report

            • Avatar North in reply to aarondavid
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              I think this would have more merit if we had any reason to think that H-dawg will be running to the strongly left of center AFTER her parties nomination is secured.Report

    • Avatar Stillwater in reply to aarondavid
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      I think things are going to get more polarized until something breaks. I think that thing will be the economy. How it happens I got no idea, but I am pretty sure it wont be social issues like the ones you mention. and that is because you are right, neither party is going to budge on those, they are too much red meat for the base.

      I’m not sure the economy breaking will lead to less polarization. I actually think the opposite would be the case. I mean, we see that polarization playing out in real time right now, yes? If the economic doody hit the spinny wind making thing (which it did, statistically speaking, only a few years ago!) we’d see polarization along the already established political lines. You’d just see folks changing “teams” for purely self-interested reasons.Report

      • Avatar aarondavid in reply to Stillwater
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        @stillwater
        What I mean by break, is that there is a massive change. It could be that during the next presidency (D or R) what little recovery we have backslides into a real depression. Or, some Next Big Thing happens financially, and the economy shoots up. A la the internet years. If its bad, one party will get blamed, and if its good, one party will reap the harvest.Report

        • Avatar Stillwater in reply to aarondavid
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          Aaron,

          I think I’m confused (which is a good indicator of being actually confused): are you saying an economic collapse/surge will actually increase polarization? I thought you were saying the opposite up there.Report

          • Avatar aarondavid in reply to Stillwater
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            @stillwater
            I am saying the opposite. I am saying that the polis will see what ever happens as an excuse to go toward one party. There will still be polarization, but the nation will not be split as evenly as now. Much like during the great depression the D’s basically took over the nation and created the New Deal. They came up with a plan, and the nation leaned that way. Heavily.Report

  5. Avatar LWA
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    Whenever I am tempted to bemoan the polarized state of the union, I remember my childhood during the late 60’s, and how truly polarized it was.

    Part of what made that polarization truly awful was that, like the Civil war, split families and generations from each other.

    There were real genuine stakes involved- most young men were confronted by the real specter of death or mutilation in the rice paddies, and the older generation were confronted by their own children chanting for the victory of the enemy. China and Russia were trul,y seriously menacing- I recall pictures of the Cultural Revolution, of mild mannered professors paraded through the streets with placards around their necks, surrounded by screaming mobs, of Russian tanks in the streets of Czechoslovakia. I remember reading Gary Allen’s “None Dare Call It Conspiracy” and while it seems like lunatic ravings (even to a precocious child) I could grasp the real terror of the writer, who was convinced that was America’s future.

    This is part of why I see the GOP base as so deranged- they see a détente with a much much smaller nation like Iran as , literally Far Worse Than Munich and a President who has lobbied for no gun control bills one who will round up American into concentration camps.

    The rhetoric is so wildly overblown for the actual policy differences- its as if they have to invent a Barack Obama with which to argue, (or as Jamelle Bouie himself noted after Clint Eastwood’s stunt, “an old white man arguing with an imaginary Negro”), or invent a new Hitler each week, since there is a lack of the real article.

    The American left as personified by Hilary Clinton advocates a platform that would have been tame for Truman or even Eisenhower; the extreme ultra hard maximus Left of Bernie Sanders is a regurgitation of the New Deal.

    There is something going on here, something dangerous, but it isn’t “polarization”; It isn’t BSDI. One side is being motivated by some sort of inchoate rage that is entirely of their own making. And the thing about rage is that it isn’t rational or amenable to calm negotiation and compromise.
    The GOP base boasts of their scorn for compromise- the surest path to primary victory is in being the most outrageous, the least conciliatory, with the maximum bellicosity.

    Its like an entire party of Gary Allens- terrified and enraged, but not knowing which menacing shadow to lunge at.Report

    • Avatar Morat20 in reply to LWA
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      Fear sells eyeballs. 24-7 cable news needs to keep people glued to it.

      The GOP sorta hitched their wagon to this with Rush, back in the day, and the Southern Strategy (which, at it’s base, was to keep white people afraid and angry with minorities). Add in cable news, and the media jumps whole hog into things. Anything to keep the eyeballs glued.

      Not to say the Democrats are blameless, but the GOP was in on the ground floor of this thing and sorta reaped the whirlwind.

      Now days, i can’t tell which politicians are pandering and which drank the kool-aid.Report

      • Avatar Saul Degraw in reply to Morat20
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        @morat20

        Why settle? Why can’t they be pandering and drinking the kool-aid at the same time?Report

        • Avatar Morat20 in reply to Saul Degraw
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          Oh, I’m sure people cross the lines on various issues. But I also think that there’s certainly a problem with people having grown up on red meat believing it.

          Among other things, you wouldn’t have the subdued panic as the GOP tries to tone down the crazies and deal with Trump.

          I think Citizens United might have bitten the GOP on the rear.Report

      • Avatar LWA in reply to Morat20
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        I think we get transfixed by the social changes such as SSM and forget how truly leftist things were in the past compared to how conservative they are now.

        Gary Allen who I referenced was within the mainstream of Bircherite conservative thought when he accused Nixon of being in league with the nefarious Communist cabal, because Nixon had wage and price controls, and instituted wideranging governmental controls like the EPA.

        Who remembers that? That up until Reagan a lot of prices of things like milk and gasoline had their price regulated like utilities, a holdover from WWII. That during the 1950’s most European nations nationalized (i.e. SOCIALIZED) their basic industries? And the US did the same during WWII?

        How many people know that socialism has a long and proud history in America, wholly separate and apart from Soviet and Chinese influence? Not just the Populists but organizations like The Grange and farmers cooperatives, the Arts and Crafts movement (Those dreamy romantic Pre-Raphaelite paintings? That Morris Craftsman Chair and Stickley side table? Goddam Socialists they were)

        So the timid notion that reinstating Glass-Stegal, a law from our grandparent’s day is somehow is a terrifying lurch to the unknown territory of Stalinist state planning is the product of both historical ignorance and fear mongering.Report

        • Avatar DensityDuck in reply to LWA
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          You’re talking about price controls as though they were a good thing that led to a healthy, low-unemployment economy.

          I’m thinking more about gas shortages and stagflation.Report

          • Avatar Damon in reply to DensityDuck
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            And 20% interest rates, from Savings and Loans, on deposits. Oh yes, fun times.Report

          • Avatar LWA in reply to DensityDuck
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            I was only pointing out that 2015 Hilary is more conservative than 1968 Hubert Humphrey, while 2015 Scott Walker would have been one of the “kooks” that Buckley expelled in the 1960s from the conservative movement.Report

            • Avatar Saul Degraw in reply to LWA
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              @lwa

              Yes and no. I think it depends on the issue. The current Democratic support for LGBT rights would probably be shocking to Humphrey.

              But Humphrey was a product of his time and that time was the Great Depression and WWII. His original desire was to be a university professor but he had to delay his education because of the Great Depression and help out at the family pharmacy, a task he hated.

              HRC is very much a product of people like Humphrey making sure their kids did not have to sacrifice their dreams.Report

        • Avatar j r in reply to LWA
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          The problem with the whole “X time is more liberal/conservative than Y time” idea is that it implies that all the vectors of political and social movement can be subsumed into an overly simplistic left/right gauge.

          Almost no one in the present thinks that highest marginal tax rates in 90th percentile is a good idea, which would imply a move to the right. But almost no one in the present would publicly stand up for legally-enforced segregation, so that implies a move toward a more liberal state. So why bother? Why not instead simply deal with the evolution of ideas and positions as they are, for themselves?Report

          • Avatar LWA in reply to j r
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            Yes, that’s true, except we are dealing with the proposition that there exists a “center” and both sides- (Both Sides, mind you!) have run away to their respective poles.

            In this proposition, Obama and Hilary are extremists, outliers from the sensible, traditional, reasonable center.

            So its worth looking at the evolution of political scales over time. If there is such a thing as a center, it has moved one way on social issues, and a different way on economic issues.

            It needs to be said repeatedly that even the ideas of Bernie Sanders, Socialist, would seem tame and common sense to earlier generations, while the ideas of Scott Walker would have been too radical even for Goldwater.Report

            • Avatar j r in reply to LWA
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              That proposition is questionable.

              Where was the Democratic Party center in the 1960s on the issues of civil rights or the wae in Vietnam?

              It needs to be said repeatedly that even the ideas of Bernie Sanders, Socialist, would seem tame and common sense to earlier generations, while the ideas of Scott Walker would have been too radical even for Goldwater.

              That statement is only true to the extent that you choose the “ideas” and the members of “earlier generations” that make it true. And even then, so what? There are “earlier generations” that would find it mad that women can vote and that we fly through the air in funny-looking metal tubes. What does that have to do with civil rights and aeronautical engineering?Report

              • Avatar Murali in reply to j r
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                Though to libertarians and neoliberals, the trajectory of history (at least in broad strokes does look rosy) The consensus on personal, economic and civil liberties has shifted in a direction of greater liberty on all fronts.Report

            • Avatar Saul Degraw in reply to LWA
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              Maybe. I think Orange County would have elected someone like Scott Walker for most of their 20th century history. His brand of conservatism did start in Southern California.Report

  6. Avatar Damon
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    Like @aarondavid said, it’ll be the economy.

    Things will lumber along…until they don’t. One day, it’ll just stop. Thing will go to hell in a hand basket and what was will end and something will come up from those ashes. It’ll likely be different from what we see now, and much nastier.Report

  7. Avatar Notme
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    Saul

    How funny you mention the low labor force participation rate. Last economic thread i brought that up and kazzy and others insisted that it didn’t matter or wasnt relevant.Report

    • Avatar Kazzy in reply to Notme
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      says:

      Wrong, @notme . Wrong wrong wrong. But so expected that you would completely distort the facts.

      I never said it didn’t matter or wasn’t relevant. I said looking at absolute numbers was not useful when you are making comparisons across vastly different population sizes. If you remember, I linked to the rate itself and noted that we were indeed at modern lows but far from the historic numbers that the absolute figures would indicate. I wasn’t criticizing concern over labor participation, I was criticizing the bullshit, talk radio argument you attempted to trot out and could not defend because, well, it was fucking bullshit.

      So, if you can demonstrate why making comparisons of absolute numbers with regards to labor participation rate (which is *exactly* what you were doing in that thread) is relevant or meaningful, by all means, make that argument. If you can’t, then piss the fuck off.Report

  8. Avatar DensityDuck
    Ignored
    says:

    ” I am starting to wonder if everyone including the elites worries about a future of long-term and maybe life-long underemployment for most Americans and they are just afraid to admit this is true.”

    Yuuuup. What happened to the jobs in 2008 was not that people suddenly had no money; what happened was that companies had been looking at ways to replace their non-business-related activities with websites, and an economic downturn provided the perfect excuse. Sorry, we fired most of HR, but you who remain can log onto our new Intranet Portal to fill out your timecards and check up on medical insurance coverage. Sorry, we fired first-level tech support, but would you like to check our website for answers to common problems?Report

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