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Notes on the Decline of a Great Nation

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I think the government was hijacked decades ago, and maybe that's what Ike was somehow talking about?

Anyway, we have had poor governance for quite a few decades, and it has been essentially a bipartisan effort.

Indeed, I think that what any Prsdnt can actually do in terms of the Economy and so on is very limited, so perhaps that's why they make such a big issue of International affairs, where they can score points at home by being Firm and all the rest of it, and please those who are pulling the strings by pursuing whatever shady motives they may have. The President is there to serve, certainly; but it's not the People they're there to servce, is it?

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I think lack of proper Education. And lack of children learning respect, is what is ending this nation, not politics... unless you want to link those to politics. Americans are getting more ignorant and only caring about entertainment. Religion is actually dying off too, so ignorance cannot be laid at religions door. People treasure the political opinons of Gwen Stephani, Katy Perry and John Mayer then about people who have been in politics all their lives and who have helped countless people... because, those people are CELEBRITIES and thus Need to be Worshipped and followed on Twitter and Facebook. It is downhill from here people, regardless of who wins the Presidency.

People since the beginning of civilization have said that about the younger generation.

Your grandfather thought your mothers generation was terrible. Your great grand father thought your grandfathers generation was terrible. Its just the way things work. People will always be stupid. Get over it. Its not the fault of a culture. Its just a mob mentality and the way people work.

Culture is always stupid. And it will stay stupid. It won't be the downfall of civilization.

Edited by Kazoo

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Indeed, I think that what any Prsdnt can actually do in terms of the Economy and so on is very limited, so perhaps that's why they make such a big issue of International affairs, where they can score points at home by being Firm and all the rest of it, and please those who are pulling the strings by pursuing whatever shady motives they may have. The President is there to serve, certainly; but it's not the People they're there to servce, is it?

You hit the nail on the head!

No, he does not serve the people, he serves his masters, and they are hidden behind the curtain. The purpose of today's mainstream media is to keep the curtain firmly in place, while the purpose of honest media and whistleblowers is to pull the curtain back.

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Nothing lasts forever, even cold November rain....

In 1961, having seen it from the perspective of POTUS, Ike warned about pretty much what we are seeing today. Endless illegitmate wars while the rest of the country suffers. Failing infrastructure, record homeless, and a military industrial complex run amok.

Control of the government was hijacked by special interest groups years ago, and eventually the Supreme Court gives us the Kelo ruling and the Citizens United ruling.

If democracy means control of the government by the citizens, it is an utter illusion.

Germany was also a Christian Republic. Do you think Germany's authoritarian republic and the demoocratic republic of the US were the same, or did education of democratic principles and a taught culture, manifested a more democratic society, than the republic of Germany that the US fought against?

Back to the subject of this thread here is a good explanation of the economic changes that concern us today.

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Economy_of_the_United_States What things might we do differently?

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snapback.png747400, on 09 November 2012 - 12:39 PM, said:

Indeed, I think that what any Prsdnt can actually do in terms of the Economy and so on is very limited, so perhaps that's why they make such a big issue of International affairs, where they can score points at home by being Firm and all the rest of it, and please those who are pulling the strings by pursuing whatever shady motives they may have. The President is there to serve, certainly; but it's not the People they're there to servce, is it?

You hit the nail on the head!

No, he does not serve the people, he serves his masters, and they are hidden behind the curtain. The purpose of today's mainstream media is to keep the curtain firmly in place, while the purpose of honest media and whistleblowers is to pull the curtain back.

Greenspan warned us we were in for a long period of high employment, because deregulating the banks lead to serious trouble, and there was noout way of this besides the economic pain we have suffered. As Bill Clinton said during the campaign, no president could fix our economy faster than it takes to recover from the past banking and spending mistakes. We should be talking Reaganoics and deregulation of banks, and sending our industry over seas, not blaming presidents. That is to look at the policies and the result of following them. I am sure we will not agree on what is the best decisions, as it childish to expect a president to resolve all the problems.

Obama responded to the financial crisis that became obvious after he had entered the race to be our President, by taking the course Roosevelt took, and this did mininzed the pain, and our economy is doing better than European economies. Yes, our debt is increasing, but things would have been worse if Obama had not taken the course Roosevelt took.

I don't think we say nearly enough about the debt caused by Bush taking us to war without budgeting for it, and without selling war bonds, but going to war completely on credit. A debt we must now pay plus interest. In this day of insane credit spending, I guess we have to put political responsibility in the constitution and spell out, a president can not enter us in a war, without a congress approved plan for paying for it.

While looking into possibility of nuclear war, I came across pictures of extremely expensive bombers being warehoused in Arizona, because these jets built to delivery nuclear bombs are out dated. We are spending huge sums of money on very expensive military weapons, that are rapidly out dated, and this is besides the expense of war. This spending on military research and technology looks like healthy economic growth with great jobs, and at the same time, it is a main factor in our national debt. It was Eisenhower, Reagan and Bush that took us down this path. Clinton and Obama have tried to wean us off this military spending, but we can't just cut the cost without crashing our economy. What do you want?

Edited by me-wonders
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People since the beginning of civilization have said that about the younger generation.

And now and then it is true. Like now. The US is falling further behind other industrial nations. The percentage of university students studying math, science and engineering has fallen off to a third what it was 20 to 30 years ago. That is why any tech company you were to go look into will have large numbers of foreign born, foreign educated engineers and scientists. I work at Intel, and I've read the reports that Intel can not find enough qualified college graduates to meet its growth goals. And thus hires lots of people out of India,China and other nations.

The students that do graduate many times can not find work. We are training generations of well educated office workers and low level managers. Look at Spain, Italy and France... even before the Recession, the youth there had 25 to 30% unemployment. Is that what we want for the US?

Your grandfather thought your mothers generation was terrible. Your great grand father thought your grandfathers generation was terrible. Its just the way things work. People will always be stupid. Get over it. Its not the fault of a culture. Its just a mob mentality and the way people work.

My grandfather was a Coal Miner and died at 40. My dad was a Custodian. I am in Engineering at Intel. My hope for my Son is that he does not have to be a coal miner... because he is so badly educated, that he can't get a job counting the till in a supermarket. I'd like to see the US be respected for its general education once again, rather then Mocked publically by other nations and by our own Policitians for policial gain.

Culture is always stupid. And it will stay stupid. It won't be the downfall of civilization.

Yeah. You say that till your being tossed into a collosium. Or till you are living under Muslim law. Or till you have no legal rights because there is no US anymore, just a bunch of dictatorships.

It is those who are lazy and decide that what ever happens is OK, that are the ones that allow Empires to Fall. And cultures to disappear. Or, for history to repeat itself.

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And now and then it is true. Like now. The US is falling further behind other industrial nations. The percentage of university students studying math, science and engineering has fallen off to a third what it was 20 to 30 years ago. That is why any tech company you were to go look into will have large numbers of foreign born, foreign educated engineers and scientists. I work at Intel, and I've read the reports that Intel can not find enough qualified college graduates to meet its growth goals. And thus hires lots of people out of India,China and other nations.

The students that do graduate many times can not find work. We are training generations of well educated office workers and low level managers. Look at Spain, Italy and France... even before the Recession, the youth there had 25 to 30% unemployment. Is that what we want for the US?

My grandfather was a Coal Miner and died at 40. My dad was a Custodian. I am in Engineering at Intel. My hope for my Son is that he does not have to be a coal miner... because he is so badly educated, that he can't get a job counting the till in a supermarket. I'd like to see the US be respected for its general education once again, rather then Mocked publically by other nations and by our own Policitians for policial gain.

Yeah. You say that till your being tossed into a collosium. Or till you are living under Muslim law. Or till you have no legal rights because there is no US anymore, just a bunch of dictatorships.

It is those who are lazy and decide that what ever happens is OK, that are the ones that allow Empires to Fall. And cultures to disappear. Or, for history to repeat itself.

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And now and then it is true. Like now. The US is falling further behind other industrial nations. The percentage of university students studying math, science and engineering has fallen off to a third what it was 20 to 30 years ago. That is why any tech company you were to go look into will have large numbers of foreign born, foreign educated engineers and scientists. I work at Intel, and I've read the reports that Intel can not find enough qualified college graduates to meet its growth goals. And thus hires lots of people out of India,China and other nations.

The students that do graduate many times can not find work. We are training generations of well educated office workers and low level managers. Look at Spain, Italy and France... even before the Recession, the youth there had 25 to 30% unemployment. Is that what we want for the US?

My grandfather was a Coal Miner and died at 40. My dad was a Custodian. I am in Engineering at Intel. My hope for my Son is that he does not have to be a coal miner... because he is so badly educated, that he can't get a job counting the till in a supermarket. I'd like to see the US be respected for its general education once again, rather then Mocked publically by other nations and by our own Policitians for policial gain.

Yeah. You say that till your being tossed into a collosium. Or till you are living under Muslim law. Or till you have no legal rights because there is no US anymore, just a bunch of dictatorships.

It is those who are lazy and decide that what ever happens is OK, that are the ones that allow Empires to Fall. And cultures to disappear. Or, for history to repeat itself.

How did you know to go into engineering? I am so frustrated with my family, because my grandchildren do not value education and really screwed up. I mean, get the loans for college, screw around, and having to drop out with loans they can not repay, no jobs, and just going deeper in the hole. On the other hand, we have no industry around us to motivate anyone to get a degree in engineering. For the kind of jobs you are talking about, they would have to move. I am saying, the high tech jobs, just are not part of our reality, so no one prepares for them. Expecting our young to prepare for the jobs you are talking about, is like expecting an Eskimo to want all the things we have, and to be movie stars, with absolutely no contact with our culture, and no idea how different our lives from living in ice huts and hunting. It is a reality too far out of their experience of life. They can not imagine it and therefore do not prepare for it.

Not long after the 1958 National Defense Education Act, we experience the social upheaval of the 1960 tys. A decade later we announce a national youth crisis, and shift funding from our elderly population into programs for troubled youth. If we are aware of anything, it is social problems, not the high tech reality you are living. In part, those social problems are caused by no longer transmitting our culture, and preparing youth for a high tech society with unknown values. We stopped preparing them for critically thinking and began programming their brains to function like computers, something is right or wrong, true of false, but this thinking is far to simplistic for real life, so are young a smart (?), but not wise. They do not know the reality that is being created, and are not in control of anything. We are doing something wrong, and I would not lay the blame the kids. We are not being good leaders.

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The rewards for being an engineer do not match that of wall street. Someone with the intelligence to do well as an engineer would also do well on wall street. Which path do you think they should choose?

There is a reason we have a generation of office workers and low level management instead of researchers and engineers.

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How did you know to go into engineering? I am so frustrated with my family, because my grandchildren do not value education and really screwed up. I mean, get the loans for college, screw around, and having to drop out with loans they can not repay, no jobs, and just going deeper in the hole.

I didn't know to go into engineering. But I did like drawing, and building a lot I also tested very high in the traits needed for engineering in Junior High. I suppose they don't do Aptitude testing anymore, since it would show some kids as having no aptitude. Thus all are probably denighed these insights equally... just to be Fair.

They do not know the reality that is being created, and are not in control of anything. We are doing something wrong, and I would not lay the blame the kids. We are not being good leaders.

I suppose that is true. But, I don't really blame the kids. It is the Hands-Off parents and the Go-Into-The-Arts idiot teachers that I would blame. Our modern schools don't steer kids into math and engineering anymore. They are just trying to get them through the system and out of school, to be someone elses problem.

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The rewards for being an engineer do not match that of wall street. Someone with the intelligence to do well as an engineer would also do well on wall street. Which path do you think they should choose?

There is a reason we have a generation of office workers and low level management instead of researchers and engineers.

There wasn't any shortage of engineers and thinkers in previous decades. Very few actually do uber well at being a doctor or a lawyer. Sure, they might get into the $200k+ paycheck but, as many, many Republicans have noted this election cycle, that is only 2% of the population.

Are you proposing that the new generations of students in the USA are somehow Stupider then those in Japan and India? India has ten times the percentage of students going into engineering that the US does. Not because engineering pays poorly, but because there is no GLAMOUR to being an engineer. Kids today mainly care about the fame and "Likes" a career might get them.

Kids are not any stupider, it is simply that they are mainly concerned with other Cultural factors that will not help them succeed financially.

Edited by DieChecker
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Both partys are to blame.

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No, they are not stupid. The intelligent choice is to go where the money is. Our culture promotes management over engineering/science. America accepts being a CEO as good qualification for being President of the United States, but turns its nose on a scientist or engineer. I work around alot of engineers. They are responsible for multi-million dollar projects. But, they always have management above them, who get more respect, more say so, and more importantly, more money. Kids want to be like Romney not like Stephen Hawking.

Edited by Gromdor
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I didn't know to go into engineering. But I did like drawing, and building a lot I also tested very high in the traits needed for engineering in Junior High. I suppose they don't do Aptitude testing anymore, since it would show some kids as having no aptitude. Thus all are probably denighed these insights equally... just to be Fair.

I suppose that is true. But, I don't really blame the kids. It is the Hands-Off parents and the Go-Into-The-Arts idiot teachers that I would blame. Our modern schools don't steer kids into math and engineering anymore. They are just trying to get them through the system and out of school, to be someone elses problem.

Oh my goodness, what you said is just awful and I am afraid the truth. The No Child Left Behind Act made matters worse, as the teacher's job depends on how well the kids test, forcing the teacher to teach for the test. Classes are way too large, and this is another reason students who do not keep up with the crowd, do not do well. However, Newton and Einstien were not great students. They were focused on what was going on in their own brains, not what their peers or teachers were focused on. I think today, both of these men would live and die without getting anyone's attention, because of merit hiring, and the automatic rejection of anyone who does not have the right formual education and experience.

Interestingly ancient Athens also became focused on technoligical correctness, and brought on its own entrophy. We are closing out creative, independent thinkers and this leads to entropy.

As for getting to engeering through art, how many children get to explore their artistic potential today? Art and music are paths to comprehending mathematic concepts, and schools have cut art and music for budget reasons. Our understanding and reasoning is very poor, and leads to dehumanized humans and social problems.

I am in a hurry but I want to respond to Gromdor. Especially women look for meaningful work, and this is usually low paying work. God help the nation where all the whole focus has forgotten human values and is focused monetary reward.. Our very survival depends on engineer type people, and researchers and creative people, and perhaps we need to rethink who deserves the highest pay checks. I think we are in a revolution against CEO's and that many of us believe their pay is excessive.

Edited by me-wonders
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Oh my goodness, what you said is just awful and I am afraid the truth. The No Child Left Behind Act made matters worse, as the teacher's job depends on how well the kids test, forcing the teacher to teach for the test. Classes are way too large, and this is another reason students who do not keep up with the crowd, do not do well. However, Newton and Einstien were not great students. They were focused on what was going on in their own brains, not what their peers or teachers were focused on. I think today, both of these men would live and die without getting anyone's attention, because of merit hiring, and the automatic rejection of anyone who does not have the right formual education and experience.

Interestingly ancient Athens also became focused on technoligical correctness, and brought on its own entrophy. We are closing out creative, independent thinkers and this leads to entropy.

As for getting to engeering through art, how many children get to explore their artistic potential today? Art and music are paths to comprehending mathematic concepts, and schools have cut art and music for budget reasons. Our understanding and reasoning is very poor, and leads to dehumanized humans and social problems.

No Child Left Behind was a good idea...and it worked...everyone practically can read and write when they graduate...but big whoop...it was an utter failure! What it really did was make everyone else stand and wait for the rest to catch up...it dumbed down even more the 'whole' system. Forget teaching history...American History? Focus on the test...you are so right about that!

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No, they are not stupid. The intelligent choice is to go where the money is. Our culture promotes management over engineering/science. America accepts being a CEO as good qualification for being President of the United States, but turns its nose on a scientist or engineer. I work around alot of engineers. They are responsible for multi-million dollar projects. But, they always have management above them, who get more respect, more say so, and more importantly, more money. Kids want to be like Romney not like Stephen Hawking.

What you're saying is true. But there is LOTS of engineering opportunity and FEW management positions (at least in comparison to the number of college graduates). Plus those guys that are making the big bucks are all Doctorate level guys or MBAs. So very many people go out looking to get into the glamourous positions and end up with a Bachelors Degree and working in the Aisles at CostCo or Walmart. They are aiming at the big money, and almost all of them will fall short.

It is a cultural problem, IMHO.

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No Child Left Behind was a good idea...and it worked...everyone practically can read and write when they graduate...but big whoop...it was an utter failure! What it really did was make everyone else stand and wait for the rest to catch up...it dumbed down even more the 'whole' system. Forget teaching history...American History? Focus on the test...you are so right about that!

I think No Child Left Behind was meant well, but I agree it is not working. It ended up being more like, "Hold Back Most, so The Few Can Pass".

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What you're saying is true. But there is LOTS of engineering opportunity and FEW management positions (at least in comparison to the number of college graduates). Plus those guys that are making the big bucks are all Doctorate level guys or MBAs. So very many people go out looking to get into the glamourous positions and end up with a Bachelors Degree and working in the Aisles at CostCo or Walmart. They are aiming at the big money, and almost all of them will fall short.

It is a cultural problem, IMHO.

What did you expect? We promoted a culture to admire whoever has a lot of money, regardless of what he did to get it.

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What did you expect? We promoted a culture to admire whoever has a lot of money, regardless of what he did to get it.

I didn't promote it, or my father, or most of my neighbors growing up... But then we were all "dumb-as-stumps" Rural Republicans. I didn't even understand that people had to have "Special" expensive jeans and shoes till I was off to college.

Now that everyone has a Smart Phone that basically IS the internet, everyone is plugged into what they Need to do to be Cool, or Popular.

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What did you expect? We promoted a culture to admire whoever has a lot of money, regardless of what he did to get it.

True! But we also promoted a culture with a negative mindset. The truth is that 98% of all people are never going to make it big...it isn't the 99% vs the 1%...in reality it is the 98% vs the 2%. But it really isn't a 'vs' situation. 98% of people use the word Can't as a regular part of their volcabulary, immediately followed by an excuse to support the proposition Can't. 2% of the population have figured out that the real game changer is in your own head, that by eliminating the negative words from your volcabulary, you Can achieve remarkable things.

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Did you not think that basing a culture around the fantasy which is the "American Dream" would be without consequences ?

The problem is a very deep cultural one and unfortunately it has infected the world through the promotional machine which is Hollywood.

If you tell everyone that an ordinary life is failure what can you expect.

Br Cornelius

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Did you not think that basing a culture around the fantasy which is the "American Dream" would be without consequences ?

The problem is a very deep cultural one and unfortunately it has infected the world through the promotional machine which is Hollywood.

If you tell everyone that an ordinary life is failure what can you expect.

Br Cornelius

Huh?? AFAIK, the "American Dream" used to be that you worked hard at your job and then were rewarded with commensorate pay, allowing that American to buy a home and maybe even a 2nd car and 2nd TV!!!!! WOW! The American Dream was coupled with the Protestant Work Ethic. Where as, the hard working Protestants did well for themselves and achieved better lives for themselves and their kids.

The "American Dream" these days seems to be that everyone is Entitled to live a Middle Class lifestyle, regardless of Work Effort, or even working at all. Working hard is for Suckers, dude....

I think that part of the problem is convincing the Youth of today what Ordinary is. If every kid grows up and gets through high school thinking that Ordinary is a Mayo Clinic Surgeon, or a NYC Bank CEO, or a Pitcher for the Red Socks, or a Platinum Record Rap Star, or a Box Office busting Actor, then they are almost all going to be disappointed in life.

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The United States is frittering away its role as a model for the rest of the world.

Since when was that statement ever truthful? Most countries in the world forged their own paths in the world or were modelled after the British, French or other colonial powers. I don't remember New Zealand looking up to the US as a model for ourselves. We always looked to the British and the Australians. And when they failed to provide the answers, we did what we thought was needed to be done. Give women the vote. Become nuclear free.

America needs to stop pretending that everyone looks up to them as a model state. Because that is so far from the truth, it isn't even funny.

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Since when was that statement ever truthful? Most countries in the world forged their own paths in the world or were modelled after the British, French or other colonial powers. I don't remember New Zealand looking up to the US as a model for ourselves. We always looked to the British and the Australians. And when they failed to provide the answers, we did what we thought was needed to be done. Give women the vote. Become nuclear free.

America needs to stop pretending that everyone looks up to them as a model state. Because that is so far from the truth, it isn't even funny.

I think the U.S. does seem to have always assumed that it's a role model for the rest of the World, whether or not the rest of the World has actually said that that's what they want or not.

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I think the U.S. does seem to have always assumed that it's a role model for the rest of the World, whether or not the rest of the World has actually said that that's what they want or not.

I think you are both missing a point somewhere. America...people came here because they were searching for something...Freedom...freedom from oppression both tyrannically and financially. That's the point.

A lot of....Americans don't even get that. The idea that everyone should be or wants to be like America is ridiculous as MichaelW pointed out. The one thing that America had going for it...that other countries did want and did aspire to was the aspect of Freedom. I would gather that today, N.Z. is a much 'freer' place to live than America...which is becoming more and more oppressive every day!

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