Matthew Yglesias (2005): The Lies, The Lies, Andrew Sullivan's Lies: "As we know, and as this letter writer to his site reminds us, Andrew Sullivan has been a pretty consistent proponent of the view that Paul Krugman is some sort of liar. At issue, are Krugman's repeated insistences that George W. Bush's economic policy is founded on a tissue of lies. Krugman is, of course, entirely correct about this. The unnoted irony here is that in his May 14, 2001 column 'Downsize', Sullivan conceded Krugman's point."
Mark Thoma sends us to Fernando Duarte and Carlo Rosa: Are Stocks Cheap? A Review of the Evidence: "[M]odels predict that we will enjoy historically high excess returns for the S&P 500 for the next five years…. [W]e analyze twenty-nine of the most popular and widely used models to compute the equity risk premium over the last fifty years. They include surveys, dividend-discount models, cross-sectional regressions, and time-series regressions, which together use more than thirty different variables as predictors, ranging from price-dividend ratios to inflation. Our calculations rely on real-time information to avoid any look-ahead bias…. The value of 5.4 percent for December 2012 is about as high as it’s ever been. The previous two peaks correspond to November 1974 and January 2009. Those were dicey times. By the end of 1974, we had just experienced the collapse of the Bretton Woods system and had a terrible case of stagflation. January 2009 is fresher in our memory. Following the collapse of Lehman Brothers and the upheaval in financial markets, the economy had just shed almost 600,000 jobs in one month and was in its deepest recession since the 1930s. It is difficult to argue that we’re living in rosy times, but we are surely in better shape now than then."
Ashok Rao: Radical Centrism and the Return of Ricardo | Pawel Morski: Mario Draghi: Your Call Is Important To Us | It's Not That Simple | Karl Smith: Childless Keynesians And The Future They Made | Jackie Calmes and Jonathan Weisman: "The nation’s unemployment rate would probably be nearly a point lower, roughly 6.5 percent, and economic growth almost two points higher this year if Washington had not cut spending and raised taxes as it has since 2011, according to private-sector and government economists" | Mark Thoma: About Those Inflation Fears: Via Cardiff Garcia at FT Alphaville, Inflation is falling everywhere | Dani Rodrik: What is wrong (and right) in economics? | Jeff Weintraub: 154 one-line rebuttals to climate-change denialists | James Heckman: Lessons from the Bell Curve | Jason Richwine: IQ and Immigration Policy |
Corey Robin: The Leopold and Loeb of Modern Libertarianism: "Speaking of the F word, we know that many fascist intellectuals read or were influenced by Nietzsche… the fascist interpretation of Nietzsche is [not] the only or correct one…. Where one road from Nietzsche… led to the fascist notion that heroic or high politics could be recreated in the modern world, another led down a different path: to the notion that heroic or high politics could not (and perhaps should not) be recreated but that it could be sublimated in the free market. Fascism and the free market, in other words, offered two distinctive answers to the labor question Nietzsche so acutely diagnosed…. While the disparity between the free-wheeling philosophy of the market and the reality of coercive capitalism has long been known, the last four decades have sharpened it…. For some on the left, today’s disparity between libertarian theories of the market and the reality of capitalism proves that the idea of the free market is a simple ideological mystification. 'Nietzsche’s Marginal Children' takes a different tack: it tries to show that the practice is built into the theory, that it is not elided there but embraced."
Ashlee Vance: Netflix, Reed Hastings Survive Missteps to Join Silicon Valley's Elite: "On a normal weeknight, Netflix (NFLX) accounts for almost a third of all Internet traffic entering North American homes. That’s more than YouTube, Hulu, Amazon.com (AMZN), HBO Go, iTunes, and BitTorrent combined. Traffic to Netflix usually peaks at around 10 p.m. in each time zone, at which point a chart of Internet consumption looks like a python that swallowed a cow. By midnight Pacific time, streaming volume falls off dramatically."