Gene Healy, in his sarcasm-laden article Take Me Down to the Parasite City, notes that DC has the highest percentage of college grads and the lowest unemployment in the nation. And they don’t produce anything there…
D.C.'s "high-skill" economy boasts more college degrees than any other major metropolitan area in America. "If you wanted to imagine what the economy might look like if the country were much better educated," Leonhardt writes, "you can look at Washington."
Hey, you people out there in flyover country: We're eating your lunch because we're "smarter" than you! Hit the books, rubes: We built this!
Even so, I found it a bit unsettling last fall to read that "Beltway Earnings Make U.S. Capital Richer Than Silicon Valley," as the Bloomberg News headline put it. After all, Silicon Valley "creates" wealth, while we -- smart as we are -- mostly shuffle it around. (Gene Healy)Phillip K. Howard observes that the Federal Government is a deviant subculture:
A deviant subculture is defined by sociologist Anthony Giddens as one "whose members have values which differ substantially from those of the majority in a society."
American government is a deviant subculture. Its leaders stand on soapboxes and polarize the public by pointing fingers while secretly doing the bidding of special interests. Many public employees plod through life with their noses in rule books, indifferent to the actual needs of the public and unaccountable to anyone.He tells a sad story about trying to advance a solid, bipartisan idea, reaching to the highest levels of government, and getting nowhere. He concludes:
Right and wrong no longer matter in this deviant subculture. Sealed off from personal responsibility by accumulated bureaucracy and thick walls of special interest money, our government is covered by a putrid mold of cynical gamesmanship and everyday hypocrisy. People scurry around its baseboards seeking short-term advantage, but big change is so inconceivable as to be laughable. (Federal Government: A Deviant Subculture)Can Anyone Fix Too Big To Fail?
James Pethokoukis asks, "Would Mitt Romney Break Up The Big Banks?"
Pethokoukis is a very smart man, so he starts out by offering a direct quote from Romney saying he has no such intention, but that was back in March. Tea Partiers and rightwingers are no happier about Too Big To Fail than their leftwing fellow citizens, so the author engages in some wishful thinking.
Does adding Ryan to the Ticket Change Romney’s Stance?
Ryan understands the danger of crony capitalism to the U.S. political economy, and the Wall Street-Washington nexus — not Solyndra — is the number one example of this. I would guess he has an open mind on the issue. (Pethokoukis)It’s a nice fantasy, but I’m not holding my breath. Romney is a creature of Wall Street. If he did break up the DC-Wall Street orgy, it would be a Nixon to China moment.