Wednesday, 24 July 2013

Forget "crack" cocaine, Reaganomics hurts kids.

Back in the '80s there was public concern, and even the evening medical drama's included plot lines involving crack addicted mothers birthing crack babies. Some scripts even had babies that would not stop crying because they were coming down from the last high their mother had and were entering withdrawal.

However a long running study, examining these so called crack babies has completed and released its findings, the effect of in-utero-crack exposure is... negligible.

What was interesting was that study pointed to a much greater cause for failure to develop - Poverty.

Since then, Reaganomics, destroyed much of Americas manufacturing sector as pundits professed the great new hope of America's economic landscape "services". Especially, financial services, insurance, banking and investment.  But for some this was double speak, for predatory lending, gambling on Wall Street and by 1999 this meant with depositors money. Bain Capital is one such company, that bought companies and low low prices, loaded them up with debt, arrangments which were stable as long as the business maintained orders for production. But as competition out sourced it became harder to compete with cheap 2nd and 3rd world imports. So such manufacters closed. and the investment bankers laughed all the way to their Camen Islands banks, on the sale of the plant, land and buildings that gave people place to make friends, build things and earn a living.

This week the City of Detroit filed for bankruptcy. If America doesn't build a plan revitalise US manufacturing, Detriot will be just the beginning, the rest of America will be next.

While I have started this post with the US as the exemplar, New Zealand has many of the same issues. We call Reaganomics "Rogernomics", after The finance minister Sir Roger Douglas. He didn't his knighthood until after he set in motion a similar  wave of outsourcing, manufacturing receivership's and shutdowns.

Also this week our Ministry of Health as stated the proposed drug testing regime will cost $14m while it will save only $6m. From memory, this much better than Florida's experience.

But still the narrative survives. The poor are painted as addicts, as governments spend more money that it saves to drug test the jobless.  Clearly is easier to blame poverty on the poor, than accept responsibility for stealing their opportunities, freedom, and even there dignity.
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