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Jobs — a ‘Shibboleth’ of Politics 2015 5 28 Lawrence Gold

May 28, 2015

(“Shibboleth” is a Biblical term meaning a password that one must have to survive. There’s a story . . . . .

For the purpose of this piece, “jobs” is the Shibboleth of politicians, which if neglected leads to political demise and if used boosts ones political credibility. Onward.)

While so many politicians make a rallying cry of, “Jobs!”, gigantic missing pieces can be seen in their approach to the issue.

In brief, their approach is to encourage “job creation” within the existing employment framework. Growth of the existing social infrastructure is the means; “Productivity” is the measure of success. They’re trying to generate jobs by creating more of what’s already being created; said another way, they’re trying to generate jobs by generating solutions to the same old problems — solutions that exist in such abundance that competition is an issue.

Here’s a way to bring more intelligence to bear on the matter: Solve new problems that aren’t being solved by the old approaches. Educate people to be able to do so.

To do so requires the application of intelligence in new ways — new learning on top of old learning — or replacing old learning.

The key: education

Solutions to emerging problems require education quite beyond that required to solve old problems.They require a quantum leap of inspiration, understanding, and willingness.

While Congress balks at funding education and at lessening the burden of student debt, it also fails to address emerging problems that have arisen out of old solutions — for example, soil and water pollution levels from the use of pesticides, herbicides and chemical fertilizers. That’s just one example. Overfishing of the seas is another example. Water pollution from “fracking” is another example. The drain of funding the prison system (and of incarcerating ‘perpetrators’ of victimless crimes).

One of the problems of that approach is the entrenchment of those who own the means of production (e.g., pharmaceutical companies, chemical companies like Du Pont and Monsanto, telecommunications companies, the banks, energy companies, the university system, the medical establishment, political parties, the legal system, the prison system, etc.). Entrenched interests interfere with emergent developments unless they, themselves, profit from it, while balking (as people do) at the changes required to bring them on-line, or while actively blocking them — to the public detriment during times of converging crises. (A crisis is a turning-point.)

Planned obsolescence and poor design are commonplace because companies want to sell more of what they already produce, instead of solving new (or old, unsolved) problems.

In today’s climate of converging economic, health, political, ethical and environmental crises, such behavior is criminal, but treated as within the acceptable practices of Capitalism — and that is sick Capitalism.

To overcome the multiple challenges facing us, today, we must outgrow — and allow others to outgrow — the methods and attitudes of the past. That outgrowing includes attitudes toward, and methods of, education (development of the functional abilities — faculties — of individuals).

The days when “profits” justified behaviors across the ethical spectrum are past. Unethical behaviors (though widely tolerated) are no longer justified by the profit motive, although entrenched interests may wish differently and act in limited-mental-capacity self-interest — portending dire consequences for humanity at large. What constitutes ethical behavior, itself, is due for an upgrade.

So, while, “Jobs!” may be a rallying cry, a new approach to “jobs” is called for — one involving tackling the unhandled crises facing us. A new approach to education is called for — education in new directions, and new definition of “education” — and new ethics (really, sound morality). As crises get handled in new ways, new jobs form to be filled by the educated elite; as they move into new positions of responsibility, an “updraft” forms within the job market, calling for further education of those lower in the hierarchy of competency or those in related disciplines, so that even those lowest in the economic food chain rise. New job positions form to solve problems newly undertaken.

Simplified, a tetrad (unit of four) of action-areas is called for, not just a single approach (“Jobs!”). That tetrad consists of:

identification of crisis areas to be addressed
education for competency to surmount those crises
ethics that support emerging areas of development
efficient and effective implementation supported by the current
power structure

Full-Spectrum Somatics