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hardnox
Advisor

The difficulty of retreat

As I previously noted, the old post WWII US centric world security and financial order is long in the tooth, but retreat is the most difficult maneuver.

 

This AM we have a hint of a dollar funding shortage in Europe, triggered by concerns over DB. That's one of the problems with having the world's reserve currency- the market is going to demand that you keep a substantial float.

 

Putting aside the innumerable counterfactuals by People Who Did Everything Right, there's 70 years of bipartisan consensus behind all this (in fairness, some Birchers who have been against everything throughout, although very few actually hewed continuously to that line).

 

My belief is that if elected, either candidate will quickly be hit with various crisises, more than likely a financial one emanating from Europe, China or both.

 

At that point it isn't so much an ideological matter as a technocratic one and I'm not real interested in Trump/Laffer/Kudlow tackling it on my behalf. I don't think anybody is going to fix anything here- just a matter of managing the contraction. Of which I'd say Obama has done passably well.

 

The great tragedy here is the actions of the DNC/DLC crowd that made sure that Ms. It's My Turn got her turn. Surprisingly and organically, Sanders caught the imagination of the young generation but they stifled it.

 

So we're going to have to go through another 4 years of disorder before anything approaching a new consensus emerges- since demographics are destiny, maybe that is the way it had to be.

 

The magic of the GI Gen wasn't that they were all loaded with whoopass for Hitler, it was social consensus and the willingness to engage in collective efforts.

 

We can actually accomplish about anything, over time, with a new consensus. But the time hasn't come yet- looks like more tribulations to come first.

 

Damning Clinton with faint praise- at least there is nothing good to come from the old order burning the bridges via Trump.

25 Replies
hardnox
Advisor

Re: The difficulty of retreat

The space program probably exemplifies the nature of the GI Gen more than anything else can.

 

It began as a Cold War response to Sputnik. But then The GI Gen President-JFK- made it into a matter of a national calling and pride and they enthusiastically took it up.

 

Say what you might about JFK's personal failings, he was the the pre-eminent national leader to speak to the aspirations of his generation. and when he got snuffed out, so did more than a bit of their cultural trajectory.

 

In the end the moon landing itself amounted to relatively little other than the national pride associated with meeting the challenge. But the public investment assured half a century of US dominance in aerospace and technology.

sw363535
Honored Advisor

Re: The difficulty of retreat

Change does not come from not changing.


the clinton age group has done nothing but live off the ww2 gen and charge up debt. Criticise, and demand someone else pay for what they want. Time to send her to the rest home.
We are handing bernies kids nothing but the "bill", and expecting praise for it. We are not through hearing from them.
They are desperate and even communism will look good to those who have nothing to loose. They see through the hocus pocus of political causes.
hardnox
Advisor

Re: The difficulty of retreat

I recommend Strauss and Howe, Generations, if you'd like to expand your perspective on the generational dynamic in US history.

 

William Strauss, now deceased, was a Republican policy wonk who served on one of Pete Peterson's entitlement reform tribunals. He wrote that the idea of defining history in generational terms came to him through that experience.

 

He said he spent a lot of time talking with people of all ages about the topic and was struck by the profound degree to which each of the cohorts generally disliked, misunderstood and blamed the adjacent ones.

 

Except for the Great Generations that come along every fourth, who are universally lionized, but over time tend to become characatures of their real natures, in service of the present agendas.

 

BTW, boomers are favoring Trump. White ones heavily.

bruce MN
Advisor

Re: The difficulty of retreat

Good point on boomers.  The heart of that generation has generally never appreciated the Clintons as representing us. Elected Bush as a hopefully better rep.  

 

Of course, any sense of that having been the case is lost in that Hole in History that you coined here.

 

And, of course, Trump is a boomer.  

hardnox
Advisor

Re: The difficulty of retreat

Good insights occasionally represent themselves accidentally here at the swamp.

 

Some time back I retold a tale from a WII vet that might  have been portrayed as indicating our boys fighting fervor was less than absolute.

 

Of course it quickly was attacked for the heresy, although worth noting that folks from that camp don't tend to have much of a sense of humor other than findig a new way to throw some Just Know dogwhistle out. And that the boys were the greatest and most formidable bunch of soldiers, ever, is also something the Just Know.

 

But here's the thing- our WWII military was a close to a true citizen army of a democratic republic to be formed probably since early Rome.  They were funny, irreverent and if you wanted to lead them- at least below the company level- you had to tolerate near insubordination at times. There wasn't fragging but if you got tagged as a by the book hardass they'd make your life miserable.

 

But they pretty much wisecracked their way to Berlin (almost) and Tokyo, had need been.

 

Pop culture, even when it is shlocky, tends to capture the essence of an era. Nobody complained about the books and movies that portrayed them as heroes, and many were, but the thing that really captured the culture of that time was stuff like Mr. Roberts, Sgt. Bilko, McHale's Navy.

 

 

 

 

r3020
Senior Advisor

Re: The difficulty of retreat

We have been if full retreat for years hiding behind the skirt of the federal reserve. Retreat is easy but once you start stepping backwards it hard to plant your feet and say no more. Sooner or later we will have to make the hard chioces. Hillary will keep stepping backwards. We don't know about Trump.

bruce MN
Advisor

Re: The difficulty of retreat

You didn't respond to this when I put it up a day or two ago.  Maybe had to get up and go to the can or yell at somebody to go down and get the mail.  I don't know.

 

http://www.vox.com/the-big-idea/2016/9/28/13081298/conservative-trump-apocalyptic-america-optimism

polybiousgmail
Contributor

Re: The difficulty of retreat

bruce MN
Advisor

Re: The difficulty of retreat

Won't open.