Bush points to a bigger set of problems
Last nights news conference with President Bush gave me a little hope, but also made me realize the enormity of the issues that confront the United States. Energy, Social Security and our financial stability are dominating the news.
- Last nights news conference with President Bush gave me a little hope, but also made me realize the enormity of the issues that confront the United States. Energy, Social Security and our financial stability are dominating the news.
Oil prices continue to rise and the President has just admitted to the American people that there is nothing he can do about the shock at the pump. That portends a very large crisis in the coming year because this former oil man is distancing himself from the policies that he created and the worldview to which he subscribes. Bush knows that domestic oil production will not meet domestic demand. International supply cannot cope with increased demand from India, China and the United States. Price is going higher. I also think he realizes that technology and efficiency are not going to get us out of the current fix we are in. “Clean” coal, ethanol, LNG are not going to last forever and nuclear is an option that most Americans are not yet prepared to deal with. Preparing for the inevitable crisis that will occur he is trying to point the finger in another direction by saying “its not my fault we have nto had an energy policy for the past 10 years.” When the crisis occurs his network of power will probably not last very long. They are to dependent on the petroleum industry.
- Demographics are a major factor influencing the power and health of any society. Our demographics especially as it relates to aging don’t look good. While we are not as bad off as Europe, our society will become increasingly divided into two camps—a large percentage of old white retirees and young ethnically diverse workers. They are not going to be able to pay for all the programs of the retirees. Imagine a country divided along age, racial and ethnic lines.
- Demographics and Energy problems mean economic problems. Since the problems of these two areas will not be addressed the first half of the 21st Century will mean lower growth economically. The political and social implications of this are huge and I’m just beginning to imagine a society where there is no economic growth and the pie keeps getting smaller and the slice that each of us get decreases every year. What will that look like?