Reference: SCREWED–The Roots of Populist Rage…

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Scary New Wage Data

David Cay Johnston | Oct. 25, 2010 04:35 AM EDT

Now for some really scary breaking news, from the latest payroll tax data.

Every 34th wage earner in America in 2008 went all of 2009 without earning a single dollar, new data from the Social Security Administration show. Total wages, median wages, and average wages all declined, but at the very top, salaries grew more than fivefold.

Not a single news organization reported this data when it was released October 15, searches of Google and the Nexis databases show. Nor did any blog, so the citizen journalists and professional economists did no better than the newsroom pros in reporting this basic information about our economy.

The new data hold important lessons for economic growth and tax policy and take on added meaning when examined in light of tax return data back to 1950.

The story the numbers tell is one of a strengthening economic base with income growing fastest at the bottom until, in 1981, we made an abrupt change in tax and economic policy. Since then the base has fared poorly while huge economic gains piled up at the very top, along with much lower tax burdens.

A weak foundation cannot properly support a massive superstructure, as the leaning Tower of Pisa shows. The latest wage data show the disastrous results some of us warned about, although like the famous tower, the economy only lists badly and has not collapsed.

Measured in 2009 dollars, total wages fell to just above $5.9 trillion, down $215 billion from the previous year. Compared with 2007, when the economy peaked, total wages were down $313 billion or 5 percent in real terms.

The number of Americans with any wages in 2009 fell by more than 4.5 million compared with the previous year. Because the population grew by about 1 percent, the number of idle hands and minds grew by 6 million.

These figures show, far more powerfully than the official unemployment measure known as U3, how both widespread and deep the loss of jobs was in 2009. While the official unemployment rate is just under 10 percent, deeper analysis of the data by economist John Williams at shows a real under- and unemployment rate of more than 22 percent.

Balance of article below the line…

Continue reading “Reference: SCREWED–The Roots of Populist Rage…”

Who’s Who in Peace Intelligence: Paul Johnston

Alpha I-L, Peace Intelligence

Paul Johnston is a Major in the Intelligence Branch of the Canadian Forces.  He graduated with an Honours BA in Military and Strategic Studies from Royal Roads Military College and earned an MA in War Studies from the Royal Military College.  He has served in Germany, the Middle East, and various intelligence billets at the tactical, operational and strategic levels, in many cases providing intelligence support to Canadian Forces involved in peace keeping operations.  Many of his writings, which have been published in a wide variety of journals including Parameters and the RAF Air Power Review, are available on his website:

No Cloak and Dagger Required: Intelligence Support to UN Peacekeeping

The Book
The Book

Review: Religion, The Missing Dimension of Statecraft

5 Star, Consciousness & Social IQ, Diplomacy, Religion & Politics of Religion

Religion Statecraft5.0 out of 5 stars Need Undersecretary of State for Culture & Religious Dialog

August 4, 2007

Douglas Johnston

Amazon sometimes eats reviews when editions change. I bought and read this at the same time that I bought and read the same author's book on “Faith-Based Diplomacy,” and I just want to say, after reading the books and also hearing him speak, he is on to something very very important. I believe that we need an Undersecretary of State for Cultural and Religious Affairs just as we need an Undesecretary of State for Democracy and an Undersecretary of Defense for Peacekeeping. America is completely out of touch with the world, and genuine faith, not the American Fascist faith of the fundamentalist right, is a compelling moral advantage that we have lost sight of.

Here are some other books I recommend:
Faith-Based Diplomacy: Trumping Realpolitik
God's Politics: Why the Right Gets It Wrong and the Left Doesn't Get It (Plus)
The Left Hand of God: Taking Back Our Country from the Religious Right
The Republican War on Science
Tempting Faith: An Inside Story of Political Seduction
American Fascists: The Christian Right and the War On America

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Who’s Who in Peace Intelligence: Douglas Johnston

Alpha I-L, Peace Intelligence
Doug Johnston
ICRD Home Page

Dr. Douglas Johnston is the President and founder of the International center for Religion and Diplomacy (ICRD).  The Center's mission is to address identity-based conflicts that exceed the reach of traditional diplomacy by incorporating religion as part of the solution.

In 2004 he was recognized with the Golden Candle Award of the Open Source Solutions Society:

OSS '04: To Dr. Douglas M. Johnston, president and founder of the International Center for Religion and Diplomacy, for his path-finding efforts with regard to  Preventive Diplomacy as well as Religion and Conflict Resolution.  Among his many works, two stand out for defining a critical missing element in modern diplomacy: Religion, the Missing Dimension of Statecraft (Oxford University Press, 1994), and Faith-based Diplomacy:  Trumping Realpolitik (Oxford University Press, 2003).  He has restored the proper meaning of faith qua earnestness instead of faith qua zealotry, and this is a contribution of great importance.

Dr. Johnston is a distinguished graduate of the US Naval Academy and holds a Masters degree in Public Administration and a Ph.D. in Political Science from Harvard University. He has a broad range of executive experience, including assignments in government as Director of Policy Planning and Management in the Office of the Secretary of Defense, and later as Deputy Assistant Secretary of the Navy. In academia, he taught international affairs and security at Harvard University and was the founder and first director of the Kennedy School's Executive Program in National and International Security. In the military, he served in the U.S. nuclear submarine service and retired as a Captain in the Naval Reserve.

Dr. Johnston has edited and authored several books, including Religion, the Missing Dimension of Statecraft (Oxford University Press, 1994); Foreign Policy into the 21st Century: The U.S. Leadership Challenge (CSIS, 1996); and Faith-based Diplomacy: Trumping Realpolitik (Oxford University Press, 2003).
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Dr. Johnston's hands-on experience in the political/military arena coupled with his work in preventive diplomacy, has guided the work of ICRD since its inception. In 2007, he received The Founding Spirit Award for Faith by The Washington Times at its 25th anniversary celebration and in 2008 was identified in a leading Christian journal as “The Father of Faith-based Diplomacy.”

“Life is a miracle and should be treated as such.”
Douglas Johnston

Review: Faith-Based Diplomacy–Trumping Realpolitik

5 Star, Diplomacy, Leadership, Peace, Poverty, & Middle Class, Religion & Politics of Religion, Truth & Reconciliation, Values, Ethics, Sustainable Evolution

Amazon Page
Amazon Page

5.0 out of 5 stars Award-Winner, Mind-Altering Information, Useful, Scholarly,

April 29, 2004
Douglas Johnston
Let's start with the award. I was so impressed with this book that it received one of the ten Golden Candle Awards for most constructive and innovative work in the Open Source Intelligence (OSINT) field. It represents the second book in a body of work that may eventually be worthy of a Nobel Peace Prize. The citation reads:To Dr. Douglas M. Johnston, president and founder of the International Center for Religion and Diplomacy, for his path-finding efforts with regard to Preventive Diplomacy as well as Religion and Conflict Resolution. Among his many works, two stand out for defining a critical missing element in modern diplomacy: Religion, the Missing Dimension of Statecraft (Oxford University Press, 1994), and Faith-based Diplomacy: Trumping Realpolitik (Oxford University Press, 2003). He has restored the proper meaning of faith qua earnestness instead of faith qua zealotry, and this is a contribution of great importance.

With a foreword by no less than The Honorable Lee H. Hamilton, today a leader of the 9-11 Commission, the book drives a stake in the heart of secular “objective” negotiation and focuses on how faith (not zealotry, but earnest faith) can alter the spiral of violence in such places as Sudan, Kashmir, and the Middle East.

The editor and contributing author has assembled a multi-national and multi-religion cast of experts whose work in the aggregate completely supports the premise of the book: that the 21st Century will be about religion instead of ideology, and that what hopes we might have for reconciling “irreconcilable differences” lie in the balanced integration of religious dialog and conflict prevention, rather than in pre-emptive military action and unilateralist bullying.

I found two core concepts especially relevant to national security: the first is that we need an Office of Religious and Cultural Intelligence within the Central Intelligence Agency, and we need, as the authors suggest, to put religious attaches into every Embassy. The second, and this is a truly core concept, is “The price of freedom is cultural engagement–taking the time to learn how others view the world, to understand what is important to them, and to determine what can realistically be done to help them realize their legitimate aspirations.”

This is a brilliant, scholarly, practical, world-changing book. It joins Max Manwaring's various books, but especially “The Search for Security,” Joe Nye's earlier books on understanding the world and engaging the world with soft power, and George Soros as well as the several other books on my standard national security reading list. The conclusion of the book lists a number of means by which religion can impact on diplomacy and state-craft, and I for one have become a believer–this book completely altered my perspective on the role of religion as a peacemaker of substance and day-to-day practicality.

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