Burke, Craxton, Kolstad, Onda; Some Paper (a “deep and subtle discussion of discount rates”); 2016.
<quote>First, we discuss the social cost of carbon (SSC) and how it could be improved, including the consideration of catastrophes, nonmarket damages, impacts in developing countries, growth versus level effects, adaptation, and the use of discount rates. We then turn our attention to the integrated assessment models (IAMs) used in the computation of the SCC, arguing that, in addition to the need for incorporating the latest scientific understanding, we need to examine leading models’ consideration of uncertainty, the aggregation of heterogeneous agents, and technology options. Finally, we look at ways to improve climate policy design, in particular through the use of ex post analyses, insights from behavioral economics, the consideration of technology policy, and considerations specific to the developing world. With significant time and resources, we believe that progress can be made and many of these gaps filled.</quote>
tl;dr → it’s a book promo. The experts are wrong; manufacturing jobs were not “good jobs” anyway; labor jobs are were dull, dirty, dangerous & very low status-sweaty-laborious. Better can be done absent the fear of fear itself and-or the failure of imagination.
vice president and director of the Open Society Project at the Niskanen Center.
Brink Lindsey, Steven Teles; The Captured Economy: How the Powerful Enrich Themselves, Slow Down Growth, and Increase Inequality; Oxford University Press; 1 edition; 2017-11-01; 232 pages; ASIN:019062776X: Kindle: no, paper: $24+SHT.
icreased income inequality
skill-biased technological change
productivity growth slowdown
rising college wage premium
declining prime-age labor force participation
low intergenerational relative mobility
declining absolute mobility
relative stagnation is not collapse
death of despair
were defined by resistance to The Man
The Industrial Revolution
modern economic growth depended on large inputs of unskilled, physically demanding labor.
The Current RevolutionModern Era
<quote>our country’s most technologically dynamic industries—the ones that account for the lion’s share of innovation and productivity growth—now make little use of American manual labor.</quote>
Conservatives and libertarians have tended to dismiss the issue of class.
Agrarian work was hard, cruel, dirty-dangerous-dreary, but it was nature, and God’s Plan cannot be questioned or modified.
Factory work is hard, cruel, dirty-dangerous-dreary, but it is defined by The Man, who could make it stop if he wanted.
<quote>The low productivity of traditional agriculture meant that mass oppression was unavoidable; the social surplus was so meager that the fruits of civilization were available only to a tiny elite, and the specter of Malthusian catastrophe was never far from view. Once the possibilities of a productivity revolution through energy-intensive mass production were glimpsed, the creation of urban proletariats in one country after another was likewise driven by historical necessity. The economic incentives for industrializing were obvious and powerful, but the political incentives were truly decisive. When military might hinged on industrial success, geopolitical competition ensured that mass mobilizations of working classes would ensue. No equivalent dynamics operate today. There is no iron law of history impelling us to treat the majority of our fellow citizens as superfluous afterthoughts. A more humane economy, and a more inclusive prosperity, is possible. For example, new technologies hold out the possibility of a radical reduction in the average size of economic enterprises, creating the possibility of work that is more creative and collaborative at a scale convivial to family, community, and polis. All that hold us back are inertia and a failure of imagination—and perhaps a fear of what we have not yet experienced. There is a land of milk and honey beyond this wilderness, if we have the vision and resolve to reach it.</quote>
Children of Israel
in the wilderness
<quote>The creation of the working class was capitalism’s original sin. </quote>
<quote>We must remember that, even in the halcyon postwar decades, blue-collar existence was a kind of bondage.</quote>
<ahem>not in chronological order</ahem>
The Wagner Act of 1935
institutionalized mass unionization, a regime for collective bargaining on wages and working conditions.
1940-1944 (during World War II), the Federal government actively promoted unionization in war production plants.
the legal structure
massed bargaining power against management
suppressed wage competition among workers across whole industries
wages were negotiated wages roughly 10 to 15 percent above market rates, as well as a whole raft of workplace protections.
legal advantages enjoyed by labor at the height of its powers have diminished very little since then.
Taft-Hartley Act in 1947, survived a veto by President Truman.
The concept of collective action
1936–37, sit-down strike at General Motors
1940-1944, strikes were “discouraged”
1945, 5M workers went on strike at least once.
1950 “Treaty of Detroit”
Charlie Wilson’s General Motors
Walter Reuther’s United Automobile Workers.
Collective action declined as the adversarial relationship with the work and mangement ceased.
then → <quote>Class warfare, then, was no mere metaphor or abstract possibility: it was a daily, lived reality.</quote>
<quote>As work softened, moving out of hot, clanging factories and into air-conditioned offices, the fellow-feeling born of shared pain and struggle inevitably dissipated.<quote>
WHEN? The “Molly Maguires” episode in the Pennsylvania coal fields
1877 the Great Railroad Strike
the Ludlow Massacre
1952-04, Harry Truman’s nationalized the U.S. steel industry, hours before a strike, during the Korean War.
1964, the “Ad Hoc Committee on the Triple Revolution”, a memorandum, to President Johnson, concerning mass unemployment from automation & its affluence.
<quote><snip/>whites in Rust Belt states made the difference in putting the incompetent demagogue Donald Trump into the White House<quote>
<quote>We have come to the end of the working class.</quote>
<quote>The dynamic sectors that propel the whole system forward, and on which hinge hopes for continued improvement in material living conditions, don’t have much need today for callused hands and strong backs—and will have less need every year going forward.</quote>
<quote> Their successors, by contrast, are just an aggregation of loose, unconnected individuals, defined in the mirror of everyday life by failure and exclusion. They failed to get the educational credentials needed to enter the meritocracy, from which they are therefore excluded. That failure puts them on the outside looking in, with no place of their own to give them a sense of belonging, status, and, above all, dignity.</quote>
<quote>In pursuing the technical efficiency of mass production regardless of its human costs, the class system created by industrial capitalism divided people along very stark lines: those who work with their brains and those who work with their bodies; those who command and those who obey; those who are treated as full-fledged human beings and those who are treated as something less.</quote>
<quote>If the capitalist class system wasn’t about narrowly defined exploitation or oppression, it was most certainly about domination.</quote>
<quote>And as mass affluence prompted a cultural turn away from mere material accumulation and toward self-expression and personal fulfillment as life’s highest desiderata, the terms of that deal only grew more excruciating.</quote>
Daniel Bell; writing in Some Article; (as a reporter); Fortune; 1950+?; unspecific.
Andrew Cherlin, a sociologist (a historian of the present day)
Jefferson Cowie, a historian (a sociologist of the past)
Benjamin Harrison, President, United States, speaking in 1889.
Fritz Lang, Metropolis
Adam Smith, Wealth of Nations
H. G. Wells, in The Time Machine
<quote>people without a four-year college degree, since those are the people now most likely to be stuck with society’s lowest-paying, lowest-status jobs </quote>
<quote>the individuals who would have taken the industrial jobs we used to have.</quote>
skill-biased technological change
innovation that increases the demand for highly skilled specialists relative to ordinary workers. e.g. farm work → factory work is different than factory work → office work.
Richard Feldman, Michael Belzold; End of the Line: Auto Workers and the American Dream; University of Illinois Press; 1990-10-01; 320 pages; ASIN:0252061489: Kindle: no, paper: $2+SHT.
tl;dr → an oral history of Ford’s Michigan Truck Plant