Why Life in America Can Literally Drive You Insane By Bruce E. Levine, AlterNet, July 30 2013
10 U.S. to Grow Grayer, More Diverse, Minorities Will Be Majority by 2042, Census Bureau, WashingtonPost, August 14, 2008 The nation’s population will look dramatically different by mid-century, becoming more racially and ethnically diverse and a good deal older as it increases from about 302 million to 439 million by 2050, according to projections released today by the U.S. Census Bureau…Minorities, about one-third of the U.S. population, are expected to become a majority by 2042 and be 54 percent of U.S. residents by 2050.
How American Society Unravelled After Greedy Elites Robbed the Country Blind by George Packer, The Guardian, June 20, 2013 — posted on Alternet.org – In or around 1978, America’s character changed…Americans were no less greedy, ignorant, selfish and violent then than they are today, and no more generous, fair-minded and idealistic. But the institutions of American democracy, stronger than the excesses of individuals, were usually able to contain and channel them to more useful ends. Human nature does not change, but social structures can, and they did… In Washington, corporations organised themselves into a powerful lobby that spent millions of dollars to defeat the kind of labour and consumer bills they had once accepted as part of the social contract. Newt Gingrich came to Congress as a conservative Republican with the singular ambition to tear it down and build his own and his party’s power on the rubble…The large currents of the past generation – deindustrialisation, the flattening of average wages, the financialisation of the economy, income inequality, the growth of information technology, the flood of money into Washington, the rise of the political right – all had their origins in the late 70s.…American elites took the vast transformation of the economy as a signal to rewrite the rules that used to govern their behavior…There will always be isolated lawbreakers in high places; what destroys morale below is the systematic corner-cutting, the rule-bending, the self-dealing…It is no wonder that more and more Americans believe the game is rigged. It is no wonder that they buy houses they cannot afford and then walk away from the mortgage when they can no longer pay. Once the social contract is shredded, once the deal is off, only suckers still play by the rules. full text
Us vs Them: A Simple Recipe to Prevent Strong Society from Forming By James Rohrer, AlterNet.org, July 27, 2012
Conservative Southern Values Revived bySarah Robinson, Alternet.org, 2012
DC Beltway Is America’s Wealthiest, Brainiest, Most Insular Region By Steven Rosenfeld, AlterNet, November 13, 2013 …whole sections of the Washington suburbs are a unique wealthy enclave…those who are fortunate enough to live in this rarified paradise almost never have to interact with the rest of dreadful (or less privileged) humanity… Washington is an example of how the country is compartmentalizing itself into clusters of people with different backgrounds and world views…The Capitol has always been an old-fashioned company town, the company being the federal government…when it comes to generosity, the richest Americans are not known for their selfless examples. Philanthropy.com reports  that the wealthiest Americans give the least to charity…it is another dismal sign of our times when the epicenter of American democracy is also a capital of concentrated wealth and insularity. And the hometown paper brags about it.
Corporate America, meet ‘Generation C’ by Brian Solis, Washington Post, June 28 2012
America Without a Middle Class by Elizabeth Warren, Chair of the Congressional Oversight Panel created to oversee the banking bailouts, posted December 3, 2009 on Huffington Post – “Can you imagine an America without a strong middle class? If you can, would it still be America as we know it?…The crisis facing the middle class started more than a generation ago. Even as productivity rose, the wages of the average fully-employed male have been flat since the 1970s. But core expenses kept going up…The contrast with the big banks could not be sharper. While the middle class has been caught in an economic vise, the financial industry that was supposed to serve them has prospered at their expense…And when various forms of this creative banking triggered economic crisis, the banks went to Washington for a handout…Even though the tax dollars that supported the bailout came largely from middle class families — from people already working hard to make ends meet — the beneficiaries of those tax dollars are now lobbying Congress to preserve the rules that had let those huge banks feast off the middle class…America without a strong middle class? Unthinkable, but the once-solid foundation is shaking.”
Seeking a Cultural Revolution: From Consumerism to Sustainability by Matthew Berger, 2010 State of the World, Transforming Cultures, The Worldwatch Institute, Inter Press Service, January 13, 2010
Calling Radicalism by Its Name — Editorial, New York Times, April 3, 2012
How the Right Has Turned Everything Into a Culture War — And Why That’s Terrible for Our Democracy By Joshua Holland, AlterNet, February 28, 2012
Jonathan Haidt Explains Our Contentious Culture, Moyers & Company, February 3, 2012
The Social Contract by Paul Krugman, New York Times, September 22, 2011
Restore the Basic Bargain By Robert Reich, Robert Reich’s Blog, November 29, 2011
Reweaving the Fabric of our Society by Joan Blades, Living Room Conversations, posted on HuffingtonPost.com, 05/22/2012