Monday, March 15, 2010

Allocation of Resources

One thing we need to remember is how badly this society allocates resources. The country's infrastructure -- roads, bridges, water mains, sewers, buildings -- is old and breaking down. It all needs to be replaced.

If we are going to reduce coal and oil and gas use -- which we really need to do, this is a survival question -- we need to insulate old buildings, build new energy efficient buildings, greatly expand mass transit, install a lot of solar power cells on roofs, create wind farms...

We need a modern computer infrastructure, which we do not have. The US invented modern computing and the Internet. We have lost the lead we once had and are falling farther and farther behind other countries.

We need a huge amount of research into environmental problems and how to solve them. We are going to have to design and build entire new industries, starting from scratch.

For example, electronics depends on rare minerals. What happens when these run out? Can we find substitutes, or will we go back to semaphores?

We need sustainable agriculture.

There is enough work here to keep everyone busy: engineers, IT people, skilled trades people, laborers, farmers, gardeners, environmental scientists, materials scientists, accountants...

Instead, we have jobs for fast food workers and people selling crap at Walmart's. Maybe. Last I heard, Walmart's was laying off.

So, there is work to do and people who want jobs, and the only thing that prevents the two coming together is capitalism. As long as capitalism runs the US, there is no point in worrying about education, because the real jobs -- the jobs that really need to be done -- won't exist; and Wall Street will be sucking up all the resources of the nation.


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