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Friday, January 1, 2016

Fareed Zakaria, "America’s self-destructive whites": The Collapse of Hope and Change

In a Washington Post opinion piece entitled "America’s self-destructive whites," Fareed Zakaria writes:

"The United States is going through a great power shift. Working-class whites don’t think of themselves as an elite group. But, in a sense, they have been, certainly compared with blacks, Hispanics, Native Americans and most immigrants. They were central to America’s economy, its society, indeed its very identity. They are not anymore. Donald Trump has promised that he will change this and make them win again. But he can’t. No one can. And deep down, they know it."

I am unaware of the basis for Zakaria's claim that Trump has promised to make whites in America "win again," however, it is certainly true that the US is undergoing significant demographic change. The United States Census Bureau declared in March 2015:

  • The U.S. population is expected to grow more slowly in future decades than it did in the previous century. Nonetheless, the total population of 319 million in 2014 is projected to reach the 400 million threshold in 2051 and 417 million in 2060.

  • Around the time the 2020 Census is conducted, more than half of the nation’s children are expected to be part of a minority race or ethnic group. This proportion is expected to continue to grow so that by 2060, just 36 percent of all children (people under age 18) will be single-race non-Hispanic white, compared with 52 percent today.

  • The U.S. population as a whole is expected to follow a similar trend, becoming majority-minority in 2044. The minority population is projected to rise to 56 percent of the total in 2060, compared with 38 percent in 2014.

  • While one milestone would be reached by the 2020 Census, another will be achieved by the 2030 Census: all baby boomers will have reached age 65 or older (this will actually occur in 2029). Consequently, in that year, one-in-five Americans would be 65 or older, up from one in seven in 2014.

  • By 2060, the nation’s foreign-born population would reach nearly 19 percent of the total population, up from 13 percent in 2014.

  • A cause for concern for white Americans? I don't think so. What should be troublesome, on the other hand, for all Americans is that child poverty in the US is horrendous compared with other developed nations.

    Similarly, all Americans should be worried that, as reported by Gretchen Livingston of the Pew Research Center, "the share of children born outside of marriage now stands at 41%, up from just 5% in 1960."

    All Americans should be outraged that the US is effectively bankrupt. America's debt has risen to an unsustainable $18.8 trillion, or more than $157,000 per taxpayer.

    And all Americans should be concerned that President Obama has trashed US overseas credibility and deterrent power.

    Work hard and you will succeed? No more. "Hope" and "Change" have proven hollow catchwords. The American dream is dead. Moreover, the collapse is black and white.

    1 comment:

    1. I listened to Fareed on 'GPS' just now, instead of reading his words.

      Fareed is using his bully pulpit to try to paint white Americans as defective racists, solely responsible for Trump's poll support.

      Fareed must be getting a nice paycheck from those on 'Wall Street' still monetizing the American economy. In 1978, the target was publicly traded industrial companies, starting with American Can. The new paradigm in 1978 was insistence on double digit earnings increases quarter after quarter, because of the Great Inflation 1973-76. Manufacturing was no longer profitable ENOUGH.

      When inflation was tamed by 1990, Wall Street continued the double-digit paradigm because ... they could.

      By 2000, having run out of publicly traded industrial manufacturing corporations, the monetization was in housing via mortgages & CDOs, enabled by the Clinton administration...

      Fareed displayed his own bias/ignorance of how economies work by comparing Germany and America's 'trade' sectors.
      A genuinely curious 'journalist' would have noted that unit labor cost in Germany has been higher than unit labor cost in the USA since 1978, even though American industry has been hobbled by a fatal defect: the cost of health insurance linked to employment in the USA, the worst legacy of WW2.

      Currently, Wall Street is monetizing US health care.

      Wonder why we are killing ourselves?

      Take my job, take my house, take my health care.

      It did not have to be this way. In 2008, McCain's health care plan was to 1) de-link medical insurance from the job, and 2) allow insurance companies (to this day still regulated state-by-state) to cross state lines.

      And, it has nothing to do with racism or future demographics, or 'globalization'.

      America somehow turned into a nation run by greed and lies.

      By my estimate, the American dream died in 1980, except for all those white men running Wall Street, and all the (mostly Democratic)politicians who feed from their trough.

      I can not explain Trump, except, he does channel all that anger that, when buried inside, fuels a depression that eventually kills.

      Broken Heart Syndrome can not come soon enough.