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always good to get tipped on a new mr. diety. i wish you'd do it more regularly, norm, i wonder what you might have against the show. really.

re: accuracy- mr.deity says he "thinks" abe and sara were "in their 80's" when they had isaak. this didn't sound right so i looked it up (i'm in my own house with my library and my new wifi laptop, you're stuck with me now). i pulled out an edition of the pentateuch i don't often consult and- not kidding- it fell open to genesis 21.5 "abraham was 100 years old when his son isaac was born."

the place was marked with a handwritten sheepskin mezuzah scroll i had been using as a bookmark 5 years ago- the last time i used this particular edition.

purely anecdotal.

(i'm in my own house with my library and my new wifi laptop, you're stuck with me now)

I was surprised to see you back so soon, believing that you were hold up in a cave somewhere in the west bank mumbling can you hear me now. But no, a laptop, wifi, you've come a long way. You know you're always welcome here, and though a little on the strange side a valuable edition to the community.

I don't dislike Mr. Diety, I'm simply too lazy these days to keep up.

i keep telling you, i haven't lived in a cave for years. i do miss it sometimes, though, which i guess makes me "a little on the strange side".

thanks for the words of welcome. i would like to welcome you, too, back to the world of blogging- if you're interested. not that your recent posts haven't been interesting, just so few and far between.

re: Have a nice day

I didn't laugh, or cry, I SCREAMED.

Seriously folks, you're killing me.

Mr. Deity spars a few with the Phrayngula crowd in that thread.

Not a single one is in America.

Oh Dear god!

Pardon my french. At least we still make Chevys. Maybe we can get back into steam train production. If ever there was an argument that free trade is destroying the first world. You are looking at it.

At least we still make Chevys... If ever there was an argument that free trade is destroying the first world. You are looking at it.

Funny you should mention Chevys. Companies like GM being profoundly incompetent certainly doesn't help the USA "stay competitive in the global market". It also doesn't help that Wall Street basically made off with billions of dollars, scot-free. Or that, in the US, CEOs make over 300 times more than average full-time workers, and private equity and hedge fund managers make over 16,000 times more than the average worker. It's true.

"Free Trade" is a fascinating topic, though, because it provides good examples of severe global problems that can only be practically improved by taking into consideration existing economic structures (since striving for a global Worker's Revolution, hee hee, probably won't yield the desired results.)

One interesting point is that thanks to the US relying on India for such things as call centers, software development, and electronics manufacturing, the influx of money into their economy has caused wages to rise significantly.

The effects on the First World middle and lower classes are far less beneficial of course, since thanks to outsourcing those workers have to compete with people who will work for pennies on the dollar.

How do you solve the problem? Re-establish trade barriers? For starters, there may be other solutions that are more politically viable (leaving aside the huge problem of America's corporate rulers not letting the politicians even think about it, or think about much at all.) There is also the fact that the USA in particular is not equipped with the factories or infrastructure required to provide for itself, and it hasn't been for many years. Even if trade barriers are "phased in" and they do end up benefiting the First World, this would probably cause immediate major problems in the Third World, and the USA can't exactly afford to cause any more messes for other countries as a consequence of its own mistakes...

I do agree that "Free Trade", as implemented, was a bad idea. The question is, what can we do about that?

I do agree that "Free Trade", as implemented, was a bad idea. The question is, what can we do about that?

Actually I couldn't read the column on my other computer without my NYT account, and once i did I realized this is a bit less of a free trade issue since the plants have moved to where the demand is rather than to where the cheap labor is (china being the possible exception).

So this may actually just be a case of our campaign finance and lobbying laws destroying our economy. Old guard industry protecting themselves and pushing all innovation to other countries.

But I do find free trade to be a fascinating topic since in so many cases it is so clearly a negative on the American economy. Our current crash is essentially the result of replacing a manufacturing economy with a fraudulent bubble economy.

The increased economic stability in places like India are the silver lining on the cloud. Eventually one would hope that a global economy can create global prosperity. In most places the opposite is currently true.

nice to see you again...I appreciate your way of writing. its awesome!!!

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