… And getting hotter!

We know that the fat cats are living it up at our expense, but don’t they realize that a backlash could be forthcoming? A day of reckoning, so to speak? Like maybe a revolution of sorts? All history courses in our elementary schools cover mankind’s revolutions – the bloody ones as well as the bloodless ones – and some of that history covers the uprisings of this nation’s forefathers. As long as there are causes there will be effects, so let’s hope and pray that the causes of travail in this country can be treated in sensible and non-violent ways. But there will be actions taken by the downtrodden – you can count on it – and it would be well to remember that many, many of our breadwinners have been taught how to handle firearms by our armed forces.

What’s stuck in their craws is jobs, because there aren’t many. In some localities there aren’t any. Well, the “terrorist threat” created a few, didn’t it? Didn’t the number of security firms increase from nine in 2001 to about 34,000 today? That’s a few thousand jobs, admittedly, but it’s difficult to give this effort a high mark because, first of all, this “business of fear” produces nothing that could generate economic benefits, and secondly, it has raised the ire of so many travelers who’ve been frisked, groped and ripped off by TSA personnel.

The latest hoax that’s supposed to create jobs and terrorize U.S. citizens is “global warming”. Maybe last week’s Articles 32 and 33 threw some light on the matter, and maybe they didn’t, but here’s the warning that James Glassman of the Wall Street Journal offered some time ago. He said: “The U.S. could meet the Kyoto targets only by sharply increasing the price of fossil fuels. … The growth of gross domestic product in the U.S. would be cut by more than half as the businesses moved offshore to escape the high tax.”

Prophetic, huh? And so as businesses continue to move offshore, so do jobs, thereby exacerbating our economic woes. There’s only one way to halt the slide and that’s to revitalize our shipbuilding industry. It’s the only industry that can provide massive and instant employment, and in case you’ve been led to believe that revitalization is impossible because we can’t compete with overseas labor, or that maybe Americans aren’t as smart as Asians, take another look at our Vol. IX, Art. 33 commentary. Its title is “Think Outside the Box(ships)!”, and the last paragraph reads like this:

“So why have U.S. shipyards fallen by the wayside? Could it be a lack of talent? Hardly. William O. Gray submitted a very interesting letter to the editors of MARINE LOG, and he reminded us of the American geniuses who made invaluable contributions to the shipbuilding industry during the declining years of the U.S. yards:
• D. K. Ludwig, Elmer Hahn and W. Edwards Deming pioneered simpler design and manufacturing efficiency.
• Early LNG vessels were designed by Jim Henry.
• Bulkers and self-loaders were designed by Ole Skaarup.
• … and, of course, there was Malcom McLean.

“[No, it’s not a lack of talent that pushes us to the rear of the pack. It’s a lack of leadership.]”