Saturday, September 18, 2010
Friday, September 17, 2010
Elizabeth Warren has been asked by President Obama to help start the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau. This is only fitting: she thought it up in the first place.
The knowledge class has a critical, even alienated side. This is only one side of the story, though, and not even half. Most members of the knowledge class work within existing social institutions to make them work better for the common good. They tend to be earnest, a bit nerdy, not stylish, but, to my mind, wholesome in trying to use their smarts for all. They are not only trying to understand the big picture in some depth, but trying to make it better, too.
If you wanted a name and a face for that branch of the knowledge class, I nominate Elizabeth Warren.
Thursday, September 16, 2010
The boom in prisoners comes mostly from imprisoning drug dealers. I am all for imprisoning people who commit crimes, and drug dealers, as a group are vile.
Still, I think we should legalize marijuana and tax it heavily. In fact, I would be happy to dedicate the pot tax to fighting the really bad drugs - there seems a certain poetic justice in that. If we extract marijuana from the war on drugs, we can devote our prisons to the worse criminals.
Wednesday, September 15, 2010
I am OK with legally acknowledging that some rare individuals do not have a clear sex or gender. And I think it is only civil to accommodate such people in social life in nearly every situation. The condition is so uncommon that I do not think we should build an entire third-gender infrastructure.
I do think it is a mistake to claim that gender is "assigned" for most people. For the vast majority of people, gender and sex are the same. We do not have to mentally disconnect the two in all cases just because they are not clearly connected in a few rare cases.
Tuesday, September 14, 2010
The future success stories among the poor and working class who grow into the middle class will, I am confident, be mostly told by those who make the commitment to marriage (and religion) the foundation of their lives. With that strong foundation, building, saving, and investing in the family is easier and safer.
The best thing we can do for the working poor and working class is to promote the idea that a permanent commitment to marriage (and not just to your spouse) will help you make a richer and more secure life for yourself and your children.
Monday, September 13, 2010
As Elizabeth Warren and Amelia Tyagi have shown, ... most of the extra income earned by families as a result of the move to two-earner couples was consumed by higher housing prices as these families sought to buy homes in safer neighborhoods with better schools. (66)
Buying for better schools is a rational knowledge-class investment, and safer neighborhoods is a rational choice for every class.
If the cheaper places to live can make their schools better, then smart, able couples will move there. This would have the double benefit to the families of getting better schools for less, and allowing the couple (mostly the mothers) to cut back on work and invest the time in a happier life for the whole family.