The Republic of T.

Black. Gay. Father. Vegetarian. Buddhist. Liberal.

Digest for August 27th through August 29th

Here are some of the people writing about some of the stuff I wish I had time to write about, for August 27th through August 29th:


  1. Reading the top-listed item, Robert Reich’s “Warning: Why Cheaper Money Won’t Mean More Jobs,” I get what Reich writes, but — because of my Buddhism, perhaps — fail to get excited about stirring up demand, as opposed to supply. What!? Make American citizens desire more, more more!!?

    My prejudice is that we all get along with ‘less,’ while continuing to encourage innovation in America. Perhaps THAT is the way to get our economy to chug along more smoothly: If we can only start to export as much as we import.

  2. I think getting along with less may not be a matter of choice for a great many Americans, but a unavoidable necessity. However, I think you’re right about changing our outlook on consumption. It’s not easy. So much of what we “consume” or use every day — not to mention the emphasis on the availability of “cheap” products — is connected to the suffering of “someone else, somewhere else” that it seems impossible not to become entangled in it somehow.

    I think some people would rather not even know, because knowing means some degree of responsibility. But, on the other hand, knowing also means the opportunity to make a different choice. Maybe that choice is to do without a certain object, or maybe that choice is acting to change the conditions that produced it. Or maybe both.

    I think that’s a frightening prospect to many people. Change on that level may mean a re-thinking of the way we live, and making serious changes in how we live. The temptation to cling to what we know — including suffering, injustice, etc. — is huge, and seems easier by comparison. Of course, if what we know is unsustainable, it seems then that it will get harder the longer we wait, and the process of change more drastic and even painful.

    Anyway, I don’t have answers. Just thoughts.