Sustainable Politics depends on Trust

But when it comes to politics, where over 300 million people are affected, and the issues are many, complex and interdependent, systematic trust building is necessary.  Often, what is promised simply cannot be delivered in a short timeframe due to the complexity of the task and unanticipated roadblocks.  In this case, the best tool for building systematic trust is transparency.  It doesn’t help that the media likes to quote leaders out of context, taking promises made years ago and contrasting it with a shortfall clip of today, without explaining the complexities and direction change in between.  Adding to this are the emotional attachments to each political party’s historical branding.  To combat this requires a place where facts are displayed for all to see.   This would at least provide some basis for objective examination, even if political affiliations tend to be based on emotion rather than intellect.

Obama started pushing transparency in his administration with his Declaration of Transparency.  The reviews are mixed.  It’s better than before, but this TIME article criticizes the lack of total transparency by the administration on the item of White House visitor logs.  Indeed, even when it comes to transparency, there are many gray zones since there are national security concerns around transparency.  But federal program performance should be visible, and to a large extent, it is more visible today. provides information on where the government is spending money, while provides various data sets from government agencies. tracks recovery dollar funded projects and results, and the coming-soon will provide reviews of agency performance that will be taken into consideration as the White House makes budgetary plans.

Today’s issues are complex and increasingly interrelated.  Transparency should a priority factor in trust building.  Everyone will have their own opinion when it comes to politics; check out this Bloomberg piece on CEO ratings of Obama’s performance.  So it’s imperative to provide all the information necessary so that people can make an informed opinion.  It's the essence of good, sustainable politics in today's skeptic environment.

The Money Fix and the Unemployment Paradox

The monetary system operates on the premise of scarcity.  Less money is issued than needed in order to maintain the value of money.  So while there is plenty of work to be done, and plenty of desire to work, there is currently a lack of jobs.  Why the unemployment paradox?  This movie, The Money Fix, explains how money is created and its systemic deficiency that creates the unemployment paradox.  Communities are solving the problem by bartering.

The movie provides a good explanation of how money is created by the federal bank, gives compelling interviews of community bartering systems, and explores money scarcity as the reason for the unemployment paradox.  It is weak on explaining the finer details of some of its assertions, such as the assertion that someone in the system has to eventually go bankrupt due to the scarcity in the money supply.  Nonetheless, it is an interesting watch.