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Date: 2022-01-27 Page is: DBtxt003.php L0700-II-GND-2019CR-analysis-01a
INTERESTING IDEAS
THE GREEN NEW DEAL
TVM analysis of the Congressional Resolution of 2019

1. Note that this is a 'Resolution' of Congress and not a 'Bill'. This is an important distinction, but the fact that it was voted on and passed with a vote of ... ayes and only ... nays is encouraging. It is worthy of note that the vote was almost 100% along party lines.
2. It should also be noted that this Resolution has been referred to the following committees:
  • Committee on Energy and Commerce,
  • Committee on Science, Space, and Technology,
  • Committee on Education and Labor,
  • Committee on Transportation and Infrastructure,
  • Committee on Agriculture,
  • Committee on Natural Resources,
  • Committee on Foreign Affairs,
  • Committee on Financial Services,
  • Committee on the Judiciary,
  • Committee on Ways and Means, and
  • Committee on Oversight and Reform,
This suggests that the Green New Deal is intended to have very broad scope and address not only the little things at the margin, but the major systemic issues of the socio-enviro-economic system.

There is no reference to labor, which may be a simple oversight. This needs to be addressed in the future as the initiative goes forward.

THE WHEREAS SECTION
3. The first part of the 'WHEREAS' section of the resolution describes the many reasons why a Green New Deal is needed according to the experts of the IPCC in 2018.
  1. human activity is the dominant cause of observed climate change over the past century;

  2. a changing climate is causing sea levels to rise and an increase in wildfires, severe storms, droughts, and other extreme weather events that threaten human life, healthy communities, and critical infrastructure;

  3. global warming at or above 2 degrees Celsius beyond preindustrialized levels will cause:
    1. mass migration from the regions most affected by climate change;
    2. more than $500 billion in lost annual economic output in the United States by the year 2100;
    3. wildfires that, by 2050, will annually burn at least twice as much forest area in the western United States than was typically burned by wildfires in the years preceding 2019;
    4. a loss of more than 99 percent of all coral reefs on Earth;
    5. more than 350 million more people to be exposed globally to deadly heat stress by 2050; and
    6. a risk of damage to $1trillion of public infrastructure and coastal real estate in the United States; and

  4. global temperatures must be kept below 1.5 degrees Celsius above preindustrialized levels to avoid the most severe impacts of a changing climate, which will require:
    1. global reductions in greenhouse gas emissions from human sources of 40 to 60 percent from 2010 levels by 2030; and
    2. net-zero global emissions by 2050;
4. Whereas, because the United States has historically been responsible for a disproportionate amount of greenhouse gas emissions, having emitted 20 percent of global greenhouse gas emissions through 2014, and has a high technological capacity, the United States must take a leading role in reducing emissions through economic transformation;

5. Whereas the United States is currently experiencing several related crises, with—
  1. life expectancy declining while basic needs, such as clean air, clean water, healthy food, and adequate health care, housing, transportation, and education, are inaccessible to a significant portion of the United States population;

  2. a 4-decade trend of wage stagnation, deindustrialization, and antilabor policies that has led to—
    1. hourly wages overall stagnating since the 1970s despite increased worker productivity;
    2. the third-worst level of socioeconomic mobility in the developed world before the Great Recession;
    3. the erosion of the earning and bargaining power of workers in the United States; and
    4. inadequate resources for public sector workers to confront the challenges of climate change at local, State, and Federal levels; and

  3. the greatest income inequality since the 1920s, with—
    1. the top 1 percent of earners accruing 91 percent of gains in the first few years of economic recovery after the Great Recession;
    2. a large racial wealth divide amounting to a difference of 20 times more wealth between the average white family and the average black family; and
    3. a gender earnings gap that results in women earning approximately 80 percent as much as men, at the median;
6. Whereas climate change, pollution, and environmental destruction have exacerbated systemic racial, regional, social, environmental, and economic injustices (referred to in this preamble as ‘‘systemic injustices’’) by disproportionately affecting indigenous peoples, communities of color, migrant communities, deindustrialized communities, depopulated rural communities, the poor, low-income workers, women, the elderly, the unhoused, people with disabilities, and youth (referred to in this preamble as ‘‘frontline and vulnerable communities’’);

7. Whereas, climate change constitutes a direct threat to the national security of the United States—
  1. by impacting the economic, environmental, and social stability of countries and communities around the world; and

  2. by acting as a threat multiplier;
8. Whereas the Federal Government-led mobilizations during World War II and the New Deal created the greatest middle class that the United States has ever seen, but many members of frontline and vulnerable communities were excluded from many of the economic and societal benefits of those mobilizations; and

9. Whereas the House of Representatives recognizes that a new national, social, industrial, and economic mobilization on a scale not seen since World War II and the New Deal era is a historic opportunity—
  1. to create millions of good, high-wage jobs in the United States;

  2. to provide unprecedented levels of prosperity and economic security for all people of the United States; and

  3. to counteract systemic injustices:
CREATING THE GREEN NEW DEAL
10. it is the duty of the Federal Government to create a Green New Deal
  1. A. to achieve net-zero greenhouse gas emissions through a fair and just transition for all communities and workers;
  2. B. to create millions of good, high-wage jobs and ensure prosperity and economic security for all people of the United States;
  3. C. to invest in the infrastructure and industry of the United States to sustainably meet the challenges of the 21st century;
  4. D. to secure for all people of the United States for generations to come—
    1. clean air and water;
    2. climate and community resiliency;
    3. healthy food;
    4. access to nature; and
    5. a sustainable environment; and
  5. E. to promote justice and equity by stopping current, preventing future, and repairing historic oppression of indigenous peoples, communities of color, migrant communities, deindustrialized communities, depopulated rural communities, the poor, low-income workers, women, the elderly, the unhoused, people with disabilities, and youth (referred to in this resolution as ‘‘frontline and vulnerable communities’’);


THE GREEN NEW DEAL MOBILIZATION
11. the goals described in subparagraphs (A)through (E) of paragraph (1) (referred to in this resolution as the ‘‘Green New Deal goals’’) should be accomplished through a 10-year national mobilization (referred to in this resolution as the ‘‘Green New Deal mobilization’’) that will require the following goals and projects—
  1. A. building resiliency against climate change-related disasters, such as extreme weather, including by leveraging funding and providing investments for community-defined projects and strategies;
  2. B. repairing and upgrading the infrastructure in the United States, including—
    1. by eliminating pollution and greenhouse gas emissions as much as technologically feasible;
    2. by guaranteeing universal access to clean water;
    3. by reducing the risks posed by climate impacts; and
    4. by ensuring that any infrastructure bill considered by Congress addresses climate change;
  3. C. meeting 100 percent of the power demand in the United States through clean, renewable, and zero-emission energy sources, including—
    1. by dramatically expanding and upgrading renewable power sources; and
    2. by deploying new capacity;
  4. D. building or upgrading to energy-efficient, distributed, and ‘‘smart’’ power grids, and ensuring affordable access to electricity;
  5. E. upgrading all existing buildings in the United States and building new buildings to achieve maximum energy efficiency, water efficiency, safety, affordability, comfort, and durability, including through electrification;
  6. F. spurring massive growth in clean manufacturing in the United States and removing pollution and greenhouse gas emissions from manufacturing and industry as much as is technologically feasible, including by expanding renewable energy manufacturing and investing in existing manufacturing and industry;
  7. G. working collaboratively with farmers and ranchers in the United States to remove pollution and greenhouse gas emissions from the agricultural sector as much as is technologically feasible, including—
    1. by supporting family farming;
    2. by investing in sustainable farming and land use practices that increase soil health; and
    3. by building a more sustainable food system that ensures universal access to healthy food;
  8. H. overhauling transportation systems in the United States to remove pollution and greenhouse gas emissions from the transportation sector as much as is technologically feasible, including through investment in—
    1. zero-emission vehicle infrastructure and manufacturing;
    2. clean, affordable, and accessible public transit; and
    3. high-speed rail;
  9. I. mitigating and managing the long-term adverse health, economic, and other effects of pollution and climate change, including by providing funding for community-defined projects and strategies;
  10. J. removing greenhouse gases from the atmosphere and reducing pollution by restoring natural ecosystems through proven low-tech solutions that increase soil carbon storage, such as land preservation and afforestation;
  11. K. restoring and protecting threatened, endangered, and fragile ecosystems through locally appropriate and science-based projects that enhance biodiversity and support climate resiliency;
  12. L. cleaning up existing hazardous waste and abandoned sites, ensuring economic deveopment and sustainability on those sites;
  13. M. identifying other emission and pollution sources and creating solutions to remove them; and
  14. N. promoting the international exchange of technology, expertise, products, funding, and services, with the aim of making the United States the international leader on climate action, and to help other countries achieve a Green New Deal;
INCLUSIVE CONSULTATION, ETC
12. a Green New Deal must be developed through transparent and inclusive consultation, collaboration, and partnership with frontline and vulnerable communities, labor unions, worker cooperatives, civil society groups, academia, and businesses; and

GOALS AND PROJECTS
13. To achieve the Green New Deal goals and mobilization, a Green New Deal will require the following goals and projects:
  1. A. providing and leveraging, in a way that ensures that the public receives appropriate ownership stakes and returns on investment, adequate capital (including through community grants, public banks, and other public financing), technical expertise, supporting policies, and other forms of assistance to communities, organizations, Federal, State, and local government agencies, and businesses working on the Green New Deal mobilization;
  2. B. ensuring that the Federal Government takes into account the complete environmental and social costs and impacts of emissions through—
    1. existing laws;
    2. new policies and programs; and
    3. ensuring that frontline and vulnerable communities shall not be adversely affected;
  3. C. providing resources, training, and high-quality education, including higher education, to all people of the United States, with a focus on frontline and vulnerable communities, so that all people of the United States may be full and equal participants in the Green New Deal mobilization;
  4. D. making public investments in the research and development of new clean and renewable energy technologies and industries;
  5. E. directing investments to spur economic development, deepen and diversify industry and business in local and regional economies, and build wealth and community ownership, while prioritizing high-quality job creation and economic, social, and environmental benefits in frontline and vulnerable communities, and deindustrialized communities, that may otherwise struggle with the transition away from greenhouse gas intensive industries;
  6. F. ensuring the use of democratic and participatory processes that are inclusive of and led by frontline and vulnerable communities and workers to plan, implement, and administer the Green New Deal mobilization at the local level;
  7. G. ensuring that the Green New Deal mobilization creates high-quality union jobs that pay prevailing wages, hires local workers, offers training and advancement opportunities, and guarantees wage and benefit parity for workers affected by the transition;
  8. H. guaranteeing a job with a family-sustaining wage, adequate family and medical leave, paid vacations, and retirement security to all people of the United States;
  9. I. strengthening and protecting the right of all workers to organize, unionize, and collectively bargain free of coercion, intimidation, and harassment;
  10. J. strengthening and enforcing labor, workplace health and safety, antidiscrimination, and wage and hour standards across all employers, industries, and sectors;
  11. K. enacting and enforcing trade rules, procurement standards, and border adjustments with strong labor and environmental protections—
    1. to stop the transfer of jobs and pollution overseas; and
    2. to grow domestic manufacturing in the United States;
  12. L. ensuring that public lands, waters, and oceans are protected and that eminent domain is not abused;
  13. M. obtaining the free, prior, and informed consent of indigenous peoples for all decisions that affect indigenous peoples and their traditional territories, honoring all treaties and agreements with indigenous peoples, and protecting and enforcing the sovereignty and land rights of indigenous peoples;
  14. N. ensuring a commercial environment where every businessperson is free from unfair competition and domination by domestic or international monopolies; and
  15. O. providing all people of the United States with—
    1. high-quality health care;
    2. affordable, safe, and adequate housing;
    3. economic security; and
    4. clean water, clean air, healthy and affordable food, and access to nature.
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TVM REVIEW & COMMENTARY
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COMMENTARY ON THE GND GOALS
10. It is the duty of the Federal Government to create a Green New Deal

These words could be unfortunate. 'We the People' are enthusiastic about individual liberty and freedom to innovate and live ones life without the the involvement of government. At the same time, there is no question that people like to have leadership and the best results when things are organized and there is constructive coordination.

The role of Government in the Green New Deal should be more like the conductor of an orchestra than the CEO of a corporate organization ... and better yet, the orchestra should be playing in a well designed concert hall which enhances the sound in a meaningful way!

GOAL ... NET ZERO GHG EMISSIONS
Goal A. to achieve net-zero greenhouse gas emissions through a fair and just transition for all communities and workers

In the TVM framework, this goal has a beneficial impact on Natural Capital as well as on Social Capital

GOAL ... GOOD, HIGH-WAGE JOBS / PROSPERITY
Goal B. to create millions of good, high-wage jobs and ensure prosperity and economic security for all people of the United States

In the TVM framework, this goal has a beneficial impact on Social Capital.

GOAL ... INFRASTRUCTURE & INDUSTRIAL INVESTMENT
Goal C. to invest in the infrastructure and industry of the United States to sustainably meet the challenges of the 21st century

In the TVM framework, this goal has a beneficial impact on Economic Capital.

GOAL ... HEALTHY SUSTAINABLE ENVIRONMENT
Goal D. to secure for all people of the United States for generations to come: (i) clean air and water; (ii) climate and community resiliency; (iii) healthy food; (iv) access to nature; and (v) a sustainable environment.

In the TVM framework, this goal has a beneficial impact mainly on Social Capital as well as on Natural Capital

GOAL ... EQUITY FOR FRONTLINE AND VULNERABLE PEOPLES
Goal E. to promote justice and equity by stopping current, preventing future, and repairing historic oppression of indigenous peoples, communities of color, migrant communities, deindustrialized communities, depopulated rural communities, the poor, low-income workers, women, the elderly, the unhoused, people with disabilities, and youth (referred to in this resolution as ‘‘frontline and vulnerable communities’’)

In the TVM framework, this goal has a beneficial impact on Social Capital.

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COMMENTARY ON GND MOBILIZATION ACTIVITIES
11. The goals described in subparagraphs (A)through (E) of paragraph (1) (referred to in this resolution as the ‘Green New Deal goals’) should be accomplished through a 10-year national mobilization (referred to in this resolution as the ‘Green New Deal mobilization’) that will require the following goals and projects

COMMUNITY RESILIENCY
Activity A. Building resiliency against climate change-related disasters, such as extreme weather, including by leveraging funding and providing investments for community-defined projects and strategies

In the TVM framework the cost not addressing climate change-related disasters is contrasted with the cost of doing all the things

UPGRADING INFRASTRUCTURE
Activity B.i. Repairing and upgrading the infrastructure in the United States by eliminating pollution and greenhouse gas emissions as much as technologically feasible

Activity B.ii. Repairing and upgrading the infrastructure in the United States, by guaranteeing universal access to clean water

Activity B.iii. Repairing and upgrading the infrastructure in the United States by reducing the risks posed by climate impacts

Activity B.iv. Repairing and upgrading the infrastructure in the United States by ensuring that any infrastructure bill considered by Congress addresses climate change

ZERO EMISSION ENERGY GENERATION
Activity C. Meeting 100 percent of the power demand in the United States through clean, renewable, and zero-emission energy sources, including: (i) by dramatically expanding and upgrading renewable power sources; and (ii) by deploying new capacity.

This is incredibly important. The use of wind and solar power generation at scale is vital as a foundation for a sustainable world. The efficiency of these technologies has improved substantially over the past few years and will probably improve further.

Conversion of steam generation systems from coal to natural gas should be minimized because while there are some economic advantages, the environmental improvement is not enough especialy as it relates to CO2 emissions.

SMART ENERGY TRANSMISSION AND DISTRIBUTION
Activity D. Building or upgrading to energy-efficient, distributed, and ‘smart’ power grids, and ensuring affordable access to electricity

The US electric power grid needs substantial upgrade. Much of the system is very old and inadequate for current needs.

Some of the recent catastrophic fires in California were apparently caused by sparks from electricity transmission infrastructure. The utility saved maintenance money but eventually it has cost $ billions and put the company into bankruptcy. This sort of corporate decision making needs to be called out and leadership held to account.

IMPROVEMENT IN BUILDING EFFICIENCY
Activity E. Upgrading all existing buildings in the United States and building new buildings to achieve maximum energy efficiency, water efficiency, safety, affordability, comfort, and durability, including through electrification

Buildings in the USA are inefficient by world standards. This has been caused in part by a history of very low energy prices which made efficient heat management unnecessary. This needs to change, but retrofitting a huge built inventory of buildings is a big task. It should, hoever, be undertaken sooner rather than later, and new buildings should be world class in terms of environmental efficiency.

IMPROVING PRODUCTION EFFICIENCY / CLEAN MANUFACTURING
Activity F. Spurring massive growth in clean manufacturing in the United States and removing pollution and greenhouse gas emissions from manufacturing and industry as much as is technologically feasible, including by expanding renewable energy manufacturing and investing in existing manufacturing and industry

IMPROVING PRODUCT EFFICIENCY
There is no reference in the GND Resolution to improving product efficiency. One of the major issues in the modern socio-enviro-economic system is the way products have been designed. Most products are designed to be profitable for the manufacturer and the owner of the brand. The only transactions about which there is much data and conversation is the transaction where the producer sells to the buyer who is the user or consumer.

Most products look good. Whether or not they will last and perform well is not so clear. A surprising number of products do very well for the length of time where warranty applies, but fail soon after that. Durability is not profitable for the producer ... and that is the main driver of economic decision making in the corporate organization.

Products that are designed to be ingested ... food products and beverages ... need to be good for the user. It is said that 'you are what you eat', and most Americans in recent years are eating a very large amount of unhealthy but profitable food. This has to be discouraged ... not so much be regulation and by responsible metrics and decision making at the corporate level.

IMPROVING AGRICULTURE
Activity G. Working collaboratively with farmers and ranchers in the United States to remove pollution and greenhouse gas emissions from the agricultural sector as much as is technologically feasible

Activity G.i. Supporting family farming

Activity G.ii. Investing in sustainable farming and land use practices that increase soil health

Activity G.iii. Building a more sustainable food system that ensures universal access to healthy food

IMPROVING TRANSPORT
Activity H. Overhauling transportation systems in the United States to remove pollution and greenhouse gas emissions from the transportation sector as much as is technologically feasible.

Activity H.i. Investing in zero-emission vehicle infrastructure and manufacturing.

Activity H.ii. Investing in clean, affordable, and accessible public transit.

Activity H.iii. Investing in high-speed rail.

IMPROVING ENVIRONMENTAL CONDITIONS
Activity I. Mitigating and managing the long-term adverse health, economic, and other effects of pollution and climate change, including by providing funding for community-defined projects and strategies

ENVIRONMENTAL REMEDIATION
Activity J. Removing greenhouse gases from the atmosphere and reducing pollution by restoring natural ecosystems through proven low-tech solutions that increase soil carbon storage, such as land preservation and afforestation

Activity K. restoring and protecting threatened, endangered, and fragile ecosystems through locally appropriate and science-based projects that enhance biodiversity and support climate resiliency

Activity L. Cleaning up existing hazardous waste and abandoned sites, ensuring economic deveopment and sustainability on those sites

Activity M. Identifying other emission and pollution sources and creating solutions to remove them

ENABLING US MORAL AND TECHNOLOGICAL LEADERSHIP
Activity N. Promoting the international exchange of technology, expertise, products, funding, and services, with the aim of making the United States the international leader on climate action, and to help other countries achieve a Green New Deal

ISSUES ... COMMENTARY ON GOALS AND PROJECTS
13. To achieve the Green New Deal goals and mobilization, a Green New Deal will require the following goals and projects.

ISSUES ... THE MATTER OF SOCIAL EQUITY
Issue A. Providing and leveraging, in a way that ensures that the public receives appropriate ownership stakes and returns on investment, adequate capital (including through community grants, public banks, and other public financing), technical expertise, supporting policies, and other forms of assistance to communities, organizations, Federal, State, and local government agencies, and businesses working on the Green New Deal mobilization.

This is not at all clear, and therefore unlikely to be managed effectively. The underlying goal is good, but the manner of implementation needs simplification and clarity.

ISSUES ... SOCIAL COSTS / ENVIRONMENTAL COSTS
Issue B. Ensuring that the Federal Government takes into account the complete environmental and social costs and impacts of emissions through (i) existing laws; (ii) new policies and programs; and (iii) ensuring that frontline and vulnerable communities shall not be adversely affected.

One of the tools used by Congress to assess the likely performance of legislation is 'scoring' by the Congressional Budget Office (CBO). It is not at all clear that the methodology used by the CBO to do this work is fit for purpose. A better methodology should be implemented if not by the CBO by some independent organization that is suitably equiped to do the analysis.

In the context of this issue of scoring by the CBO, there is also the related problem of government accounting and financial reporting. Unlike corporate accounting and financial reporting, most governments including the US Government operates on a cash basis, and does not have any clarity about the difference between investment and operating exenditures. This type of accounting has been banished from the corporate business world well over a century ago, but continues in government. The most likely reason is that it is preferred by the political elite because it makes meaningful accountability almost impossible.

ISSUES ... EDUCATION
Issue C. Providing resources, training, and high-quality education, including higher education, to all people of the United States, with a focus on frontline and vulnerable communities, so that all people of the United States may be full and equal participants in the Green New Deal mobilization;

ISSUES ... RESEARCH AND DEVELOPMENT
Issue D. Making public investments in the research and development of new clean and renewable energy technologies and industries

ISSUES ... INVESTMENT
Issue E. Directing investments to spur economic development, deepen and diversify industry and business in local and regional economies, and build wealth and community ownership, while prioritizing high-quality job creation and economic, social, and environmental benefits in frontline and vulnerable communities, and deindustrialized communities, that may otherwise struggle with the transition away from greenhouse gas intensive industries

ISSUES ... COMMUNITY LEVEL DEVELOPMENT
Issue F. Ensuring the use of democratic and participatory processes that are inclusive of and led by frontline and vulnerable communities and workers to plan, implement, and administer the Green New Deal mobilization at the local level

ISSUES ... WORKER RIGHTS, EQUITY AND CONDITIONS
Issue G. Ensuring that the Green New Deal mobilization creates high-quality union jobs that pay prevailing wages, hires local workers, offers training and advancement opportunities, and guarantees wage and benefit parity for workers affected by the transition;

Issue H. Guaranteeing a job with a family-sustaining wage, adequate family and medical leave, paid vacations, and retirement security to all people of the United States

Issue I. Strengthening and protecting the right of all workers to organize, unionize, and collectively bargain free of coercion, intimidation, and harassment

Issue J. Strengthening and enforcing labor, workplace health and safety, antidiscrimination, and wage and hour standards across all employers, industries, and sectors

ISSUES ... TRADE RULES
Issue K. Enacting and enforcing trade rules, procurement standards, and border adjustments with strong labor and environmental protections.

Issue K.i/K.ii. To stop the transfer of jobs and pollution overseas / To grow domestic manufacturing in the United States

Stopping the transfer of jobs and pollution overseas and growing domestic manufacturing may or may not be the best way to improve the progress and performance of the global socio-enviro-economic system. Making the generalized assumption that this is the best way forward is likely to be a big mistake. The goal should be to do whatever is best to improve the quality of life for everyone in society taking everything into consideration. It will be progress when a me-centric analysis is replaced with a broader we-centric computation.

Most of the outsourcing of US production to low wage countries that took place in the 1980s and 1990s was done by American companies seeking to increase their profit performance. At the time much of the manufacturing infrastructure in the USA was old and expensive because of management inefficiency as well as high wage costs. Manufacturting overseas was a low cost, low investment and high profit alternative. Remaining in the USA as a manufacturer made no sense as long as the goal of business was simply to optimize for profit ... a concept promulagated by academics like Milton Friedman and embraced by the business community and many politicians at the highest levels.

ISSUES ... MANAGEMENT OF THE COMMONS
Issue L. Ensuring that public lands, waters, and oceans are protected and that eminent domain is not abused



SOCIETY ... INDIGENOUS PEOPLES
Issue M. Obtaining the free, prior, and informed consent of indigenous peoples for all decisions that affect indigenous peoples and their traditional territories, honoring all treaties and agreements with indigenous peoples, and protecting and enforcing the sovereignty and land rights of indigenous peoples.

The idea that indigenous people can be ignored should have been discounted a very long time ago, but in practice, they are ignored almost all the time and everywhere.
In my own experience, the problem is deep. I did not realize how deep, and how broad, and how little of the problem I understood. One of my professional colleagues was writing a book about traditional law in Africa, and he had concluded that this law was better suited to local life than the various colonial laws that had been brought in from the outside. Bottom line, traditional law reaches more of a population than the 'rule of law' as practiced in most rich countries.
Doing 'right' by all people should be the default ... even if it is very difficult.

ECONOMY ... FAIR COMPETITION
Issue N. Ensuring a commercial environment where every businessperson is free from unfair competition and domination by domestic or international monopolies

This is both a good idea and a big idea. It is also a very complex idea that is almost impossible to describe in all its manifestations.

In part, it is about rule of law ... but law that is fair to all the possible parties, and not simply fair for the one party that benefits from the law (or regulation).

An important step to enabling progress in this direction is for the metrics of performance to be enhanced in a way that addresses progress and performance in a comprehensive way along the lines of TrueValueMetrics (TVM).

QUALITY OF LIFE ... HEALTHCARE
Issue O.i. Providing all people of the United States with high-quality health care

The United States has a profitable but dysfunctional healthcare system. The idea promulgated by theoretical economists that a market driven economy will give the optimum results does not work for typical healthcare transactions.
I remember my instructions to the medical staff when I took my then father-in-law to an emergency room at a hospital in Trenton, New Jersey. I told them to do whatever it takes to save his life and bring him home. I was relatively newly married, and gave the medical staff carte-blanche to rip me off as much as they wanted. After a few days, he recovered, and came back to us. And then came the bills.
But my Father in Law was a Canadian citizen and lived in Montreal, Quebec, where there is socialized medicine. All the bills were paid direectly from the Canadian system ... not from our rather modest family resources.
Did the Trenton hospital take advantage of us? I don't think so ... but I gave them the opening to do so, because I was in something of a panic, and did not want my father-in-law to die.
That was in 1969 ... over the years there have been many many examples of money being the driver of what gets delivered by the US health system. The system has been getting worse and worse for half a century and has become one of the biggest drags of the socio-enviro-economic performance of the country.
Bottom line, the US health system has become the most profitable in the world, yet the outcomes from the system are at the low end of the rich countries of the world while the costs to individuals and society are the highest in the world.
In many ways, the US healthcare system is very very good. The science has progressed in many very good and amazing ways. But while the science has progressed the management and structure of the system have not.

From a cost accounting perspective, there are many procedures that have become very low cost, but these same procedures have a high price. It is not easy to get information about the cost of healthcare, nor indeed, the price of healthcare.
QUALITY OF LIFE ... HOUSING
Issue O.ii. Providing all people of the United States with affordable, safe, and adequate housing

The real estate industry has not behaved well, yet it has also been a source of considerable wealth accumulation.

Some of the bad behaviors have been issues like 'red-lining', 'block busting', suburban sprawl, gentrification, and so on.

The real estate industry has done well for itself while at the same time creating a massive mismatch between the sort of housing that is needed and the sort of housing that has been built.

It really does not make sense that there are huge swaths of urban decay at the same time that there is a shortage of affordable housing and a huge amount of homelessness.

QUALITY OF LIFE ... ECONOMIC SECURITY
O.iii. Providing all people of the United States with economic security.

The main driver of economic security is achieved with decent wages and benefits. For most people and their jobs, there has been little per hour wage growth since around 1980 ... a period of some 40 years, and for most households in the USA household wealth has declined significantly during this time.

Consumption ... an important component of the GDP economic measure has not declined even though wages have. Strong consumption is also important in the US economy because it is consumption that enables corporate profits.

The strong level of consumption has not been achieved by people getting better wages but be enabling housholds to increase their debt ... whether is is credit card debt, student debt, or house mortgage debt.


Federal Minimum Wage

Raising the Federal Minimum Wage to $15 an hour is both a good idea and a bad idea.

There are many jobs where workers should be paid a living wage, and a law requiring $15 an hour to be paid is reasonable approximation to a modest living wage. There are many jobs such as elder-care workers, child care workers, domestic workers, agricultural laborers, industrial laborors, and so on that should be able to earn a living wage, a law like this would help them.

There are also many small businesses in communities around the country which cannot remain in business if they pay their staff a $15 minimum wage. On a crude economic analysis, it might be concluded that these businesses should go out of business and be replaced by something more economically efficient. No ... because while these small businesses may be economically inefficient, these businesses are socially valuable and are essential to a stong and vibrant community.

The idea that wages whould be determined within the realities of the system is likely to be more efficient ... especially if it is combined with an idea like the Universal Basic Income below.


Universal Basic Income

A universal basic income (UBI) ... sometimes referred to as a guranteed basic income, and now named by Andrew Yang as a Freedom Dividend ... is, in fact, a great idea, and one that has been proposed over and over again going back to the 16th century in Europe.

In the modern context a UBI has a lot to commend it. It has a huge benefit for those who really need more money month by month to make ends meet. There are perhaps as many as 60% of adults of working age in the USA who are not earning enough working 40 hours a week to pay their essential bills. There are many Americans that are working 2 and 3 jobs to earn enough to stay ahead of the bill collectors. A lot of essentials have gone up in price faster than wages have gone up. Essentials like healthcare are unaffordable for most Americans at the bottom half of the economic ladder. This is outrageous and unacceptable.

The canard that poor people are lazy and free money simply enables them to be more lazy is a convenient excuse promulgated by those who worry that the cost of a program like UBI will somehow make them lose their own wealth. Certainly there is a strong case for mobilizing more financial resources to make American society better in many ways, but the current cost of America's economic dysfunction is already a cost that exists but not talked about very much.

QUALITY OF LIFE ... CLEAN WATER
Issue O.iv.a. Providing all people of the United States with clean water

QUALITY OF LIFE ... CLEAN AIR
Issue O.iv.b. Providing all people of the United States with clean air

QUALITY OF LIFE ... HEALTHY AND AFFORDABLE FOOD
Issue O.iv.c. Providing all people of the United States with healthy and affordable food

There is a need not only for healthy and affordable food in the USA, but in many other parts of the world as well.

In many cases the problem is not the availability of food, but the availability of money to buy the food. People in poverty simply do not have the money to buy the food that they need. This is systemic economic dysfunction that needs to be better understood in order to address the problem effectively.

There are other reasons why people are hungry. One of these is the disruption caused by war. There are many places (for example Yemen) where food production is fragile in the best of times, and with war, shortage of food very quickly reaches a crisis level.

Another reason for hunger is the food disruption that is being caused by climate change. The routine of rains and planting and harvest have been disrupted and crop failure has become the norm rather than the exception. Also extreme weather events are doing damage to crops, houses and infrastructure.
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One of the other issues with respect to food is the extreme waste that has become the norm in rich countries. Estimates vary, but as much as 40% of what is produced on the farm is thrown away rather than being consumed. This has been caused in part by consumer ignorance and in part by all sorts of misinformation in the supply chain and, of course, the prevailing idea that it is only profit that matters ... other issues can be ignored.

PRESERVING NATURAL CAPITAL
Issue O.iv.d. Providing all people of the United States with access to nature

For the past four hundred years the wealth of the United States of America has been derived in large part from the exploitation of natural capital. At long last it is being appreciated more and more that this exploitation has limits, and many of these limits have alreday been exceeded.

President Teddy Roosevelt had a big role in establishing the National Parks in the USA. National Parks are also important in many other countries around the world.

The valuing of nature, access to nature and the preservation of nature are all important. There is value from nature ... simply to look at it and wonder at it.

There is also value from nature because of all the complex things that nature does to recycle waste and make it useful in the complex cycle of life in all its various forms. One of the big changes that is necessary is to go from a system of linear production to one that has a circular character. This is starting to happen, but it is only at an early stage.






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