Thursday, June 24, 2010

Shrewd Rude Interlude

The Morning Joe Rebuttal for June 24th, 2010


1) The shrewdness of the Obama move to put Patraeus on the front line of the Afghanistan struggle is dawning on all of us as the first full day of the new era concludes. We looked at polls galore today that were all bleak, but didn’t take into account this latest matrix fix that will surely shore up yea versus nay by this time next week.

I saw all the polls, and I just thought we were looking at last week’s news a second time. That is the lack of efficacy of polls when it’s this thick out there. The fact that no one on the Morning Joe show offers a time context and just starts racing to momentum analysis shows how quickly they can be distracted from complex thinking and reduced to misinformative algebra.

Even Chuck Todd should have been able to build a case for ‘what you're looking at is the baseline that the fix will move polls up from’. Chuck Todd had a moment of weakness when his theory heaped on the conventional wisdom that the administration better have some answers quick because we’re witnessing erosion and it’s now critical.

So wrong. I'm so used to Chuck being a step ahead, I don’t even know how to react. This is sine wave pattern, and the Patreaus and Barton effects are already moving the needle the other way.

2) Anyone who want to get a hold on the situation on the ground in Afghanistan should watch the Zbigniew Brzezinski segment a few times until you can quote from it. This guy has it pasted together as a single narrative when most, including Richard Haas are just not able to clearly describe the moving parts singularly.

It’s troubling that we are all beginning to remember Mr. Brzezinski was the guy who baited the Russians into the first modern Afghan war. He and Charlie Wilson armed the opposition and 15 long years later, the Russians left, the global political objective of sinking the Soviet Union was successful, but 2 million souls were lost.

It’s sort of like asking BP to clean up the spill. Afghanistan is a chaos spill that dates back to a manufactured Soviet invasion that Zbigniew Brzezinski authored. We have paid a very dear price in the long run for our reconnaissance by fire approach to getting things to break our way. But, there is no better expert on the Afghanistan and Central Asian turmoil than that architect.

In a way, it appears that America’s shortcoming is our pursuit of shortcuts and our denial of the true cost of things. What’s next for an underinvested America trying to use technology or bribes or neighbor armies to do its biding? Probably Mr. Brzezinski, should he be asked would advocate the use of a mercenary army to accomplish our goals. That mercenary army wouldn’t be your typical cast of South Africans, Germans and former Rhodesians, but instead the Chinese army in a trade for lithium mineral rights.

Oh wait, that’s already happening.

3) Is there some reason why the Erin Burnett segment isn’t ever put on the replay website? Today Erin brought to bear a simple theory that helps the bell curve of the population not be so emotional about outsourcing jobs. Jobs are a perishable good in America. They have a shelf life. We are at this point the number one new economy innovator. China and Japan and Germany might have rehoused the industrial and materials based economies we dominated in economic cycles past. Russia and India may have legions of code writers ready to escalate any new cyber intellect into the next ebay, google or twitter. But we are where whats going to work next comes from.

The Russian President Medvedev made the Khrushchev - Disneyland move of our lifetime because he realizes that. He visited Twitter. He wonders how to be a system innovator and not a gas pipeline baron, then ponders why his economy for all of its intellect wealth and many of the same infrastructures as the US has about the same chance as Mongolia of patenting what comes next in the world’s innovation march.

You could cheaply paraphrase it 'trickle down theory'. But its more of a compartmentalization of core components in the global economy and the life spans of those compartments as they go from their global adoption to their commoditization to their obsolescence. And until Stanford and MIT are commoditized, I think were safe.

They have great universities the world over, but Stanford and MIT and about 100 American universities like them are chief collecting points for intellectual innovation that breeds those clutch evolutionary movements of the technology/commerce curve.

No other place can collect the human equivalent of cloud computing like those places.

Thanks Erin, that’s twice you’ve made this point on the Morning Joe show, but the new format allowed it to not be set to Bad Company, so it might have stuck.

That’s all for today, see you tomorrow.

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