Pig therapy for Congress.

Wow!  I wonder when people will be done wigging-out over President Trump.  I continue to hear hissy-fits about Trump as President.  Has he been acting too Presidential?  Do his real activities lack sufficient drama?  So imaginary non-events continue to be fabricated and accusations based on gossip are being reported as though they’re real.  Hysteria ensues.  And all at the expense of real work that our legislature needs to do to fix our economy.  Shame on the gossip sharing press and on Congress members that take this bait.

When Congress has bickered again and failed to fix the problems that they are causing I have sometimes wondered what new tasks they can be assigned that would bring their focus back to the people’s business.  I have imagined that a successful pig farmer can loan each Congress member their very own full-grown pig.  The farmer will collect a pig rental fee.  And the Congress member will be required to keep the pig in good health and happiness for a year on a fixed budget in order to continue their service in office.  I realize that most Congress members are wealthy and wouldn’t know how to care for a farm animal or stay within a budget.  But they should try to learn something new.  Part of America’s problem with Congress is that Congress members aren’t learning from their mistakes and making the needed policy changes to improve our nation.  Pig therapy might be just what Congress needs.

Congress members will bring their pig into the Congressional chambers so that they will be reminded that real living beings depend on the legislature to do the right thing.  Writing legislation with people in mind might be easier with a living and breathing reminder-pig at hand.  If Congress members find pigs in the legislature to be too messy, they can choose a different venue.  Meeting in a new place might give them new ideas.  Keeping pigs will remind Congress members that living beings, pigs or people need attention, food, a clean environment, and that if they are ignored too long, they will become restive.

I would like each Congress member to pay the pig tax so that they will remember that taxes can make keeping a pig unaffordable.  I would like them to pay veterinarian fees so that they will be reminded that expensive healthcare can make keeping a healthy pig hard to do.  K-Street will be converted into a farmer’s market where the Congress member will buy food for their pig instead of visiting lobbyists.  There on K-Street, they can converse about pigs and the business of pig prosperity with other Congressional pig farmers.  And each Congress member will have to clean up after their pig to be reminded that Congress members should clean up the messes that they make.  Likewise, Congress will write their own laws–no more un-elected bureaucrats or think-tanks writing legislation.  Congress members will not be allowed to hire a pig keeper.  Their pig will be their responsibility.

Right now, the United States is in trouble.  Taxes are too high but the government continues to overspend.  Almost ten years have passed since the Great Recession and the economy is practically at a standstill.  Interest rates are being kept low because of government debt and that hurts people who normally would receive interest on their savings.  Government debt is also being used as an excuse for overtaxing people more and never lowering taxes.  And Congress continues never-changing bad laws in the United States that have harmed prosperity.  Although there was some policy analysis in Congress in favor of repealing bad laws and fixing the economy when President Trump entered office, any changes have been blocked by nonsensical Trump complaints.  Change is needed because there’s a lot of trouble out there.

Americans can hardly make a move without being charged double for everything.  Getting a good job is harder and there’s less opportunity because so many middle class jobs have disappeared.  Tuition has doubled over the last ten years in some places.  Jobs aren’t secure for degree holders or for non-degree holders.  Real estate has been inflated dramatically (in some places it has doubled since 2010).  Healthcare has inflated (500% inflation of insulin over the last ten-year period).  Food has inflated (skirt steak at $13.95 per pound last year).  Forty nine million, or 49,000,000 Americans are living in poverty right now according to wikipedia (https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/ Poverty_in_the_United_States).  Financialization after bank deregulation has put the advantageous use of capital at the apex of society where wealthy corporations can engage in huge capital risk but ordinary Americans suffer the consequences.  For most people this is a no-fun economy.  And in the no-fun economy, so much that once was possible for so many is now impossible.

And the growth of the newly impossible will continue because it begins with a sick economy that has grown sick under economic interventionism machined into existence, fitted into place and welded in by Congress.  Economic interventionism has been profitable for some but disastrous for others.  Consequences reverberate and vibrate all around us, louder and louder.  Now, our ability to recover economically is declining because some professions are failing to train and educate the next generation of workers.  There is now a decline in university attendance.  That means that there will be fewer professionals and educated persons.  There’s a growing shortage in many trades that can’t now provide a living wage that can stand up to insecure employment that comes and goes, high healthcare costs, high taxes, low profits.  These are clear warning signs.

Both the Democrats and Republicans have forgotten how to legislate for outcomes that help ordinary people.  When they oppose the other party, they actually work together to block changes that are needed.  I ask Congress for activism not opportunism and obstructionism.  I ask Congress to think like a farmer and stop thinking like a lawyer or a banker.  I ask everyone for a moratorium on Trump hysteria.  I suggest that Congress get down to doing the people’s business.  If they can’t do the people’s business, perhaps they should try pig therapy.

If you want to understand how Congress intervened in the U.S. economy by enacting legislation that changed our national game plan, then read Political Catsup with Economy Fries: Liberalism, Pragmatism, Opportunism available at Amazon.com right now in electronic or text format.

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Discord grows as we drift away from real world narrative.

Imagination is more than extra spice in the press narrative lately.  These days imagination is the narrative.  For example, I have heard accusations in the morning news that Russians interfered with our elections but I haven’t heard any proofs.  Reporters stopped this narrative briefly after Wikileaks showed that hacking by foreign nations can be simulated by the CIA.  And Vladmir Putin has denied Russian interference.  But someone has imagined Russian election tampering and made a declaration about it.  Announcing that U.S. security agencies have become convinced of Russian interference without offering proof doesn’t convince me of anything.  It shows that imagination has become the narrative.  It may also show that news agencies have fully embraced a parody of reality in favor of “make-believe.”  That’s at least one step beyond post-modernism and a step into crazy.  Crazy can be dangerous.  So as a nation, can we take a step toward what’s real and demand proofs for security claims and in reporting?  Right now, especially, it’s wrong for blowhards to hog all the energy in politics and block potential progress.

I’ve also noticed that when Obamacare is defended, it is defended based on people’s hopes rather than on Obamacare’s performance.  People pretend that healthcare can be provided to everyone just because they want that to be true and they pretend this while the U.S. government has a twenty trillion-dollar debt.  When they describe any changes to the ACA, people speak as though there’s been a dire loss of something real that we all have been able to enjoy from Obamacare in its brief mal-implementation.  They don’t seem to acknowledge the failures of the ACA at all.  They usually don’t even acknowledge that insurance companies are abandoning the program.  Isn’t that strange?  I wish that people who want to defend the ACA would look it over more carefully and understand its shortcomings.  I have read that Barach Obama refused to provide information about the ACA despite several Freedom of Information requests.  Perhaps under the new president, that information can be supplied now.  Maybe it would encourage people to look at the facts about the ACA as it exists so they don’t overpraise it based on their fantasies about it.

I’ve noticed that the job outlook is confusing too.  I’m getting two really different jobs reports.  One uses employment agencies’ data and the other uses department of labor projections.  On the one hand, labor projections predict that jobs like data scientist, general and operations manager, information security analyst will grow and have salaries in excess of $70,000 per year.  But probably there aren’t many of these jobs in existence.  And no mention is made of job security for them.  Our labor market is shrinking for many professions right now.  On the other hand, employment agencies report job shortages for jobs that don’t pay nearly $70,000.  These are jobs like barbers, pile driver operators, tax preparers, cargo and freight agents, and skilled trade workers, for example.  Notice how projected jobs pay so well but jobs for which there’s a current shortage pay much less.  There’s an obvious difference between projections and reality.  Fantasy job projections take up space in the narratives about jobs without really offering us anything in terms of real opportunities.  It’s another example of imagination displacing reality in the narrative.

Some of our political discord comes from the conflict we all experience when facts collide with a popularized imagination based narrative.  Fantasy narratives can cause increasing political discord.  If you want to understand more about changes in policies enacted over U.S. history, specific changes that have changed the American political landscape, read Political Catsup with Economy Fries available at Amazon.com, right now.