Capital Account -- 1/12/12

What's preventing the US economy from recovering? Could it be…wait for it…education? We've heard the president and other leaders talk about the need to invest in education to keep the US from slipping further behind other nations, but does that even make the grade? Is the "right kind" of education lacking, keeping US workers behind by toiling for increasingly rich elites? Is the herd mentality that we have seen throughout history in the human species something that can be, if not changed, then at least ameliorated? What if our students were taught to think for themselves? What if they were taught that the way to success was not something you could provide in a blueprint, and that no one is entitled to success, but has to earn it? Could these TBTF banks be littered with employees who, coming from all the same top schools, have the same flawed group-think ideology and sense of entitlement? Really, are we just building a society full of sheep, with a hand full of shepherds that makes less and less room for the entrepreneur – the independent thinker? We will speak with Reggie Middleton, entrepreneurial investor and independent analyst, who has been contemplating these issues aloud on his boombustblog. He conducted an interesting educational experiment with his kids that he will be talking to us about, and has gone from taking on the banks and the insurers, to the school system. Plus, can you imagine if doing your monthly budget meant filling a multi-billion dollar hole? That's what the US treasury does every single month. It released december's deficit numbers today. The deficit was 86 billion dollars. This number has not been positive since 2008. So how can we change this? How is this nation going to start saving money again? Well, even though NASA's taking the prize on this occasion, we don't want you to think that it's rocket science. We'll explain.