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You cannot have the creation of large scale manufacturing employment without, again, an industrial policy.

This is, of course, an incomplete prescription. The USA must have an appropriate industrial policy, one that is specifically tailored to encourage wind power. The fact is that the USA does have several industrial policies that, at least partially, coordinate:

  1. We have a de-industrialization policy that is written into trade agreements and into subsidies given to financial corporations that favor the dismantling of high wage manufacturing industries and shipping the manufacturing operation and jobs to low wage countries. Minimizing the number of high wage jobs in the USA minimizes the "leakage" of money into wages for the bottom 95% and makes that money available for the top few percent.

  2. We have a legacy fossil fuel energy policy that is fiercely defended by a sizable Congressional Contingent and that can afford to be a significant player in the campaign finance "pick your pimp" pageants that we in the USA call elections.  Thorstein Veblin noted, in Absentee Ownership and Business Enterprise (1923), that efficiency of industry is only a part of generating a profit and that the income of an owner is more highly determined by the overall damage, or sabotage, that he can inflict on the industrial process at large. (Capital as Power Nitzan and Bichler, 2009, p 219 and following.) The on again, off again nature of PTC subsidies and the difficulty of obtaining appropriate feed in rates for wind energy are cases in point of the infliction of such damage. (Microsoft's treatment of potential rivals, including IBM, Netscape, etc., is another example of such damage or sabotage.) The fossil fuel industry would like to sell the last barrel of oil and hundred cubic feet of natural gas at the highest possible price and allowing policies favorable to competitors does not favor that. If competitive energy sources are developed, the fossil fuel industry wants to own them so that it can control the timing of their introduction so as maximize their profits.

  3. The US industrial policy is to allow industrial policy to be determined by struggle and cooperation between the strongest corporate interests, the vector sum of which end up being enacted into legislation and/or agency policy. The fluctuating outcome of that power process is, de facto, THE NATIONAL INTEREST. Other players, for instance NGOs such as The Sierra Club, can affect things at the margin but remain powerless to change the nature of the system. Individuals in the bottom 95% are, if lucky, sheep to be shorn by this system, if unlucky, lambs to be slaughtered.  But every two years they are privileged to cast their vote for which of two preselected pimps they wish to "represent" them to the corporate interests in Congress. They can always take solace in the thought "I don't have to pay for THAT!" The corporations are only too happy to pick up that tab and, in fact, wouldn't have it any other way. Public campaign finance would be Socialism.  It would be the end of "The American Way of Life!"  

"It is not necessary to have hope in order to persevere."
by ARGeezer (ARGeezer a in a circle eurotrib daught com) on Mon Nov 9th, 2009 at 08:55:02 PM EST

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