Powered by TypePad

« Rocks, Paper, Scissors....Oh, Shoot! | Main | Good Debunking By The WSJ »

April 29, 2005



"But it ["producing a comprehensive U.S. response - encompassing immigration, intellectual property law and educational policy - to focus on developing our talent in a flat world"] would also require Mr. Bush to do something he has never done: ask Americans to do something hard."

Is Friedman kidding? What does he think we're doing, knitting? Potholders? Indeed Bush has asked hard things of the American people, most notably staying the course in the Middle East. Followed by considering a "situation"/"crisis" that won't really be felt for decades in the sacrosanct insurance program we call Social Security. While reexamining the politically correct (and therefore dangerous-to-question) concepts of "social promotion" in schools and the supposed impossibility, or at least injustice, of gauging educational success through standardized testing, in an effort to pull public schools out of the death spiral. And undertaking action, some kind of action, to address the problem of illegal immigration - provoking a national debate on the subject that cuts across party lines along the way to deciding what that action should be.

Sheesh. Which party, again, has no big ideas?

And then, picking nits a bit: "'You have to look at where Shanghai was just three years ago, see where it is today and then extrapolate forward. Compare the pace and trajectory of talent-building within their population and businesses and the pace and trajectory here[,]'" says John Hagel III, author of the book Friedman recommends in his article. Doesn't this statement call to mind a "hockey stick" graph? To me it seems he implies that whatever pace China and India are hitting now, they'll continue at least to hit into the future, and whatever trajectory their pace generates now, it's infinite-upward. What about a future inflection point, for heaven's sake?


Just a quick note about your conservation comment (love that "going nuclear", by the way. Hey, didn't Bush "go nuclear" last night?).

Conservation has not, does not, and will not save gas. In fact, we would use more gas. Think a moment, if we have a more efficient use of gas we make it more attractive to use gas. If it is more attractive to use any energy source, more will be used.

The way to encourage less use of gasoline would be to make engines less efficient, not more.

Just a note.


The way to encourage less use of gasoline would be to make engines less efficient, not more.

I like the way you are thinking - it reminds me of a suggestion that the greatest single mechanism to increase driver safety and reduce traffic fatalities would be a requirement that upon each steering column there be mounted an eight inch bayonet pointed at the driver.

Keith, Indianapolis

'"It's no wonder that the second Bush term is shaping up as "The Great Waste of Time."'

Does anyone wonder how a judgement can be made on the Presidents second term when he is just a little over 4 months into it? A little more than 8% of his 2nd term has passed, and already it's a "Great Waste of Time." It's no wonder the Democrats are having problems with anything requiring a committment more than several weeks.

Wonder what crystal ball Tom Friedman is gazing into to come up with this pronouncement? Or perhaps it's a different form of crystal that he's partaking in???



Maybe it's the same crystal ball that others (to be fair, not Friedman at all) used in determining Afghanistan was a quagmire in October 2001.

Hey, everyone was thinking about that cheap shot -- I just saved y'all from having to say it.


Friedman is almost as hung up on his dream of the "Green Manhattan Project" as Andrew Sullivan is on gay marriage. Since Bush isn't drinking his brand of eco-disaster Kool-aid fast enough, Friedman regards him as a failure.


"the flattening of the global economic playing field..."


Friedman is promoting the theme of his latest tome, in which the most noted attribute is mangled metaphors. Apparently he wasn't reading his own newspaper while slaving away on his word processor constructing his tribute to the American idiom.

And Friedman is complaining about a great waste of time...as compared to, what, blow jobs in the Oval Office from White House interns? Talk about being out of touch. By what second term standard is Friedman measuring?


Substitute Japan for China and India and Friedman could have written this article 20 years ago.

Seriously, is he actually arguing that the educational systems in these countries are more conducive to promoting ecomomic growth than our admittedly creaky system here?

And one last point - compare Friedman's essay with Brooks the day before about the negative population time bomb facing China and other countries.


[if Bush really went nuclear and promoted conservation]

hmmmm, last time I looked at a geological map, most of the oil production in the USA was located in a big red state, close to Mexico, fond of hats ... can't remember the name?

The comments to this entry are closed.