Norm in The Wave
Let’s look at free trade. It was the left and some unions that rose up in November1999 to protest globalization, leading to 40,000 people protesting and riots in Seattle at the WTO conference. (Wiki at https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/1999_Seattle_WTO_protests). China’s admission to the WTO at the end of 2001 (under the Bush administration) basically led to the wipe out of the American steel (and coal) industry since China could make steel much cheaper and efficiently (the American steel industry had not upgraded for decades). A lot of Trump support comes from the areas where people were affected. Cheap Chinese furniture also wiped out the entire North Carolina furniture industry along with others.
NAFTA, which was pushed hard by the Clintons and the Republicans, led to the movement of industry to Mexico with no penalty on the corporations. There are estimates that at least 3 million jobs were lost. On the other hand, free trade has allowed the American consumer to buy cheap at the cost of American jobs. So there is a yin-yang. Now this is not the first time that our industries have been savaged. Both my parents were garment workers and my father (a presser) was still doing some work into the early 1970s as that industry was on life-support. Some industries are gone due to technology (printing). With 80% of our jobs being service, Trump’s promise to bring back dead or dying manufacturing is a myth. The coming threat is that service jobs are being savaged by robots and technology. The largest growth of jobs currently are low wage home health care workers. As I reach my dotage I expect to be taken care of by a home health care robot, a long-term threat to even these jobs.
Now there is no little irony in that my relative loves single payer and I believe the entire nation would love single payer if it were gradually extended. (There are ways to pay for it and remember that every advanced Western nation has such a system – and rumors that people die under it because of long waits is belied by examining the death rates of these countries.) Remember, most people are insured by their employer, not Obama care. More irony is that early assaults on Hillary Clinton began when she was assigned the job under her husband of shepherding in a health care system in the early 90s and was savaged for urging that it be single payer. She has apparently learned her lesson and came off to the right of Bernie Sanders on this issue.
CB 14 Education Committee Meets
The joint committees will follow up with politicians and Department of Education officials as an advocate for the schools. One common theme that emerged is the school safety issue around the schools -- from broken sidewalks to unsafe traffic patterns. Some schools don’t have an after school program. Another has seen a major spike in children from Central America with little or no English in the home yet have not received the services needed to address this issue. Another issue that emerged was the question of how many homeless children from shelters attend Rockaway schools, as these children often need a high degree of services and schools with high numbers are under resourced. While the numbers of shelter children are not high, it was pointed out that there are a high number recently of shelter students who have moved into housing in Rockaway, a sign that schools with these children may need some extra support in assisting with the transition.
CB14, whose members are appointed by elected officials, addresses a wide variety of concerns related to Rockaway and education is often left on the margins. The activation of the education sub-committee in reaching out to CEC 27 should bring more focus on the schools.