They say all politics is local. Here we have Newman Ridge. In Calaveras County a similar battle is unfolding over a proposed asphalt plant. The tactics of the opposition appears to come from a similar playbook. Is this all more than coincidence?
Marketwatch.com recently ran a story that stated: “The number of drugs in short supply in the U.S. has risen 74% from five years ago, to about 265... They range from antibiotics and cancer treatments to commodity items such as saline.” A recent article in Barron’s said that as of 2013: “…no new landfills have been permitted in the U.S. in 18 years, and no new hazardous-waste incinerators have been built in the past 15 years.”
Maintaining our roadbeds, having essential pharmaceuticals and disposing of our waste are not economic growth projects, they are staying put projects. Without them, we fall behind and enter a period of decline...and this is without even adding in population growth both natural and from legal and illegal immigration. While we debate social issues like gay marriage and some see a moral decline, the economic decline is most often only witnessed locally. I believe most people think that their town is in trouble, but that things are pretty good elsewhere. Everyone in Kansas feels relieved that they don’t have to pay the rents in San Francisco. The new media may have exploded, but most people still see their limited, habitual sources. If it’s not a crisis yet, it isn’t news.
This may well be the Chinese century, but the United States doesn’t have to sink into oblivion. How close to sinking into a deep hole are we? Our illusionary life is sustained by debt. The Federal Reserve buys about half the debt of the US Treasury. Most of the other half is sold to unknown entities in places like the Grand Cayman Islands. This is less stable than a house of cards. Some say a collapse is being engineered and that recent domestic military maneuvers are preparation. But others say this is total paranoia. Clairvoyants say the USA will break apart into a series of regional republics. We all know that movements such as the State of Jefferson are now occurring.
I don’t know what will happen nor can I predict the future. But I acutely observe what is happening, find it alarming and struggle for optimism.
Copyright 2015, Mark L. Bennett