The local Left joins the national Left in their happy dance about the ‘Climate Change agreement’ reached in Paris this week. What they don’t seem to appreciate is that it will have about as much impact on earth’s climate, no matter how widely it is accepted or rejected, as does the Iran deal have on that country’s development of nuclear weapons. It is all a desperate search for some optics to bolster the community organizer’s legacy and support heir apparent Hillary’s campaign.
The humorous part of their awareness spills over to more immediate concerns about economics and development of the local economy. For openers our devout Democrats are overjoyed that California is on the upswing in job creation and corporate formation. The feds (Census Bureau) recently tried quietly to pour some calming water on these breathless reports, pointing out that one fifth of California’s population lives in poverty, the state has the highest poverty rate in the nation, and the largest fraction receiving welfare of one kind or another. And our unemployment rate (5.7%) remains doggedly above the national average no matter how the numbers are tortured.
But the real knee slapper is that the local Left has finally discovered STEM and the benefits that jobs in that sector bestow upon those who can do numbers among other things. I was pointed to one loud local luminary who now advertises a ‘how to’ posting on lifting the local economy – he advises we become a major STEM employer. Now sumbich, why didn’t the rest of us think about that ten years ago?! The knarly part is that their ‘how to’ isn’t a ‘how to’ at all – liberals have no clues in this department – but only a ‘what if we only could’ dissertation. One worthy even uses Boulder,CO as a template for Nevada County, apparently ignorant of the extensive workshop put on by our ERC last January that also featured Boulder in its unsuccessful attempt at a ‘how to’ for us. It turned out then and does still today that Boulder and Nevada County have almost nothing in common save some H. Sapiens inhabitants.
Many of us in Nevada County have known for years (at least a generation?) that STEM is the third and now wobbly leg of our local economy, the other two being tourism and the retirees. (I don’t want to include government because it brings to mind shuttered socialist towns like Lakeview, OR.) But the promotion of STEM employment here is a longstanding effort that is made difficult by our politically correct econut faction and the obstacles they place and maintain in the path of any development. That kind of opposition is endemic across the state, but it really impacts low population rural counties, especially those off the beaten path and not in the armpit of a coastal urban area.
Among other things, I would like to see the establishment of a technical high school in the county that would form a tight bond with our local Sierra College campus and also expand its STEM curriculum. The NC Technical High School would focus on preparing kids for degree and certification based STEM careers. Such a high school would most likely require a merit based entrance exam such as the existing SESF sponsored TechTestJr taken annually by county eighth graders. No feel good politically correct or artsy-fartsy curriculum paths would be offered, there are already enough of those in our county. NCTHS would draw in the elite kids who can, and as such would also be an attractant for the kind of parents who see value in putting their offspring into educational programs that lead to rewarding wealth generating careers. Who knows what would follow such a successful initiative?
I predict that the Left would oppose this approach because promoting such highly discriminating education does not guarantee a reliable klatch of liberal voters upon matriculation.
[14dec12 update] The post conference drumbeat about green jobs from Obama and Kerry is getting louder again. These socialists, as the many failed before them, continue to believe that imposing government mandated markets to supply unwanted products to enable citizens and businesses to comply to unneeded regulations counts as creating new jobs.
Any fool (well, not quite) knows that with a gun you can force people to do what they would not do if not forced. Were I a tyrant I could mandate that life-sized paper mache statues of me would be placed at every city street corner. Since inclement weather is rough on such artifacts, new ones would have to be emplaced every time it rains. The businesses and towns would be required to buy them, and the manufactories would be subsidized to keep supplying them. The requirement for implementing such an enterprise would create thousands of jobs in the land, but to what productive end?
This is effect is doubly true when forcing private individuals and commercial enterprises to dance to the tidal wave of new green laws and regulations that are supposed prevent a global warming catastrophe. Our know-nothing elites even argue that these mandates will also induce economic growth. Nothing could be further from the truth. Were these diktats shown to actually create wealth, no government guns would be required. That they don’t and cannot explains why force must be used to guarantee the required response from the rest of us.