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Fairly Recently: Must- and Should-Reads, and Writings... (April 23, 2019)

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  1. Brandi Neal: Illustrator Tyler Feder's ‘Work-From-Home Fashions’ Cartoon Is Relatable AF: "I work from home and it's been about a month since I've done any laundry that's included pants with zippers. It's a relief to know I'm not the only one. Illustrator Tyler Feder gets it, and she created these work-from-home looks that are way too relatable...

  2. David Anderson: Oklahoma Medicaid Expansion Is on the Ballot: "Oklahoma activists are going the same route as Utah, Idaho and Nebraska activists successfully used in the 2018 election cycle: They are trying to get enough signatures to get Medicaid expansion on the ballot...

  3. Ron White (2010): You Can't Fix Stupid

  4. Pavithra Mohan: Who is actually middle class?: "It might not feel that way, but you might actually be upper middle class...

  5. Keith Whittington: Reckoning with the Mueller Report, Volume One: "That only one of Trump’s campaign managers found himself imprisoned in the aftermath of the election or that Donald Trump’s son-in-law thought it was a 'waste of time' when a meeting failed to deliver the promised incriminating Russian government files is no cause for celebration...

  6. Ben Thompson: Uber Questions Follow-up, Luminary Launches, Luminary’s Broken Rung: "I do feel bad that yesterday’s Weekly Article, Uber Questions, was so late; in this case, the article itself got at why: I spent hours upon hours trying to craft a narrative around the numbers I could pull from Uber’s S-1, before finally realizing I was wasting my time. There was going to be no water from that stone. So that ended up being my point: there simply wasn’t anything in the S-1...

  7. Wikipedia: 5 Nanometer: "In early 2018, TSMC announced production of a 5 nm node by 2020 on its new Fab 18. In October 2018, TSMC disclosed plans to start risk production of 5 nm devices by April 2019...

  8. Wikipedia: Mississippi State Penitentiary: "Mississippi State Penitentiary (MSP), also known as Parchman Farm, is a prison farm, the oldest prison, and the only maximum security prison for men in the state of Mississippi...

  9. Oliver Miller: 50 Quotes From The Movie Aliens, Ranked In Order Of Awesomeness

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Fairly Recently: Must- and Should-Reads, and Writings... (April 21-2, 2019)

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  • Across the Wide Missouri: Is tonight the Game of Thrones episode when Tony Stark shows up? Asking for a friend...

  1. Jeffrey Adam Sachs: The “Campus Free Speech Crisis” Ended Last Year: "The evidence for a chilling effect... is sketchy at best. By contrast, the evidence for a heating effect is quite robust. Many students explain that the only reason they choose to invite controversial speakers to campus is to challenge or provoke their classmates.... Turning Point USA and Young America’s Foundation proudly tout the ability of their speakers to 'trigger' liberal students. In fact, generating student outrage, even to the point of being deplatformed, has become such a badge of honor that some speakers are fabricating deplatforming incidents where none exist...

  2. Wikipedia: Evolution of Nervous Systems

  3. Wikipedia: Apple A12

  4. Joanna Stern: This Was Supposed to Be a Samsung Galaxy Fold Video Review: "Whatever You Do, Don't Peel The Screen.... WSJ's Joanna Stern had big plans to review Samsung's first foldable phone. Then other Samsung phone screens started breaking and she accidentally began to peel off the screen protector that's not really a screen protector. Here's her non-review...

  5. Dietrich Vollrath: Fully Grown: Why a Stagnant Economy Is a Sign of Success https://books.google.com/books?isbn=022666600X

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Fairly Recently: Must- and Should-Reads, and Writings... (April 21, 2019)

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  1. Hakeem Jeffries: "House Dems remain focused on lowering healthcare costs. We also have a constitutional responsibility to check and balance Individual-1. We will fully investigate the culture of corruption at 1600 Pennsylvania Ave...

  2. Dan Witters: U.S. Uninsured Rate Rises to Four-Year High

  3. Nicholas Thompson and Fred Vogelstein: 15 Months of Fresh Hell Inside Facebook: "Scandals. Backstabbing. Resignations. Record profits. Time Bombs. In early 2018, Mark Zuckerberg set out to fix Facebook. Here's how that turned out.... Zuckerberg plausibly declared that he knew nothing about Definers. Sandberg, less plausibly, did the same. Numerous people inside the company were convinced that she entirely understood what Definers did, though she strongly maintains that she did not. Meanwhile, Schrage, who had announced his resignation but never actually left, decided to take the fall. He declared that the Definers project was his fault; it was his communications department that had hired the firm, he said. But several Facebook employees who spoke with WIRED believe that Schrage’s assumption of responsibility was just a way to gain favor with Sandberg. Inside Facebook, people were furious at Sandberg, believing she had asked them to dissemble on her behalf with her Definers denials. Sandberg, like everyone, is human...

  4. Rob Price: Facebook Says It 'Unintentionally Uploaded' 1.5 Million People's Email Contacts without Their Consent: "If you entered your email password, a message popped up saying it was 'importing' your contacts without asking for permission first. Facebook has now revealed to Business Insider that it "unintentionally" grabbed 1.5 million users' data, and is now deleting it...

  5. Steven T. Dennis: Mitt Romney Mueller Report Reaction: 'Sickened' by Trump: "Senator cites ‘the extent and pervasiveness of dishonesty’.... 'I am sickened at the extent and pervasiveness of dishonesty and misdirection by individuals in the highest offices of the land, including the President'...

  6. Coming on Friday: BEA: News Release Schedule: "Gross Domestic Product, 1st quarter 2019 (advance estimate)...

  7. Matt Strassler: A Non-Expert’s Guide to a Black Hole’s Silhouette

  8. Matt Strassler: The Black Hole `Photo’: Seeing More Clearly

  9. Andy Matuschak and Michael Nielsen: Quantum Computing for the Very Curious |

  10. Andy Matuschak and Michael Nielsen: How the Quantum Search Algorithm Works: "This essay is an example of what Andy Matuschak and I have dubbed a mnemonic medium–it’s like a regular essay, but incorporates new user interface elements intended to make it almost effortless for you to remember the content of the essay...

  11. Pauline Grosjean

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"Unexpected Convergers" since World War II

What countries outside of those already-rich Anglo-Saxon settler colonies and the North Atlantic economies have "converged" or are "converging". What are the "unexpected converters:? These:

 

High-Income Non-North Atlantic Convergers: Japan, South Korea, Singapore, Hong Kong, Taiwan:

Singapore US

South Korea US

Japan US

 

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Fairly Recently: Must- and Should-Reads, and Writings... (April 18, 2019)

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  • Note to Self: Is it really INBOX ZERO if one has snoozed 365 messages? Asking for a friend...

  • Comment of the Day: Tracy Lightcap: "Well, it had to happen sooner or later. Someone would resurrect Enoch Powell. Just to remind folks what people thought when he was still around: http://www.private-eye.co.uk/covers/cover-182. Yep. An unrepentant racist and a constant figure of fun for everyone with a head on their shoulders and anything resembling civic virtue...

  • Comment of the Day: Once again RJW is the first... and, I fear, perhaps the only... person on the internet to understand me: Robert Waldmann: Fascism: "'weapon-or-strong' should be 'weapon-our-strong'. Also great hyphenated fascism there. But then I read the Scruton quote. Ugh. Please don't do that again...

  • Comment of the Day: Robert Waldmann: "The problem, as you note, is that, when they are right, MMTers have a whole lot of company.... They may have contributed something... but you provide no evidence that they have...


  1. Legal Eagle: Real Lawyer Reacts to My Cousin Vinny

  2. Wikipedia: Michael Perelman

  3. William Shakespeare: Richard III

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Fairly Recently: Must- and Should-Reads, and Writings... (April 12, 2019)

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  1. Peter Diamond (1965): National Debt in a Neoclassical Growth Model

  2. Barack Obama: 2010 State of the Union

  3. 2 Thessalonians 3:10: "For even when we were with you, this we commanded you, that if any would not work, neither should he eat...

  4. 1 Corinthians 11:5: "But every woman that prayeth or prophesieth with her head uncovered dishonoureth her head: for that is even all one as if she were shaven. For if the woman be not covered, let her also be shorn: but if it be a shame for a woman to be shorn or shaven, let her be covered. For a man indeed ought not to cover his head, forasmuch as he is the image and glory of God: but the woman is the glory of the man. For the man is not of the woman; but the woman of the man. Neither was the man created for the woman; but the woman for the man. For this cause ought the woman to have power on her head because of the angels...

  5. Acts 4:34: "Neither was there any among them that lacked: for as many as were possessors of lands or houses sold them, and brought the prices of the things that were sold, and laid them down at the apostles' feet: and distribution was made unto every man according as he had need...

  6. 1 Enoch 7: "It happened after the sons of men had multiplied in those days, that daughters were born to them, elegant and beautiful. And when the angels, (3) the sons of heaven, beheld them, they became enamoured of them, saying to each other, Come, let us select for ourselves wives from the progeny of men, and let us beget children.... Then their leader Samyaza said to them; I fear that you may perhaps be indisposed to the performance of this enterprise; And that I alone shall suffer for so grievous a crime. But they answered him and said; We all swear; And bind ourselves by mutual execrations, that we will not change our intention, but execute our projected undertaking.... Then they took wives, each choosing for himself; whom they began to approach, and with whom they cohabited; teaching them sorcery, incantations, and the dividing of roots and trees. And the women conceiving brought forth giants, Whose stature was each three hundred cubits. These devoured all which the labor of men produced; until it became impossible to feed them; When they turned themselves against men, in order to devour them; And began to injure birds, beasts, reptiles, and fishes, to eat their flesh one after another, and to drink their blood...

  7. Kevin Hartnett: Mathematicians Discover the Perfect Way to Multiply: "By chopping up large numbers into smaller ones, researchers have rewritten a fundamental mathematical speed limit...

  8. Joe Light: The Tax Law’s Big Winner Is the Millionaire CEO: "Cutting the top marginal rate was always going to help the wealthy the most...

  9. Gene Birz: Stale Economic News, Media and the Stock Market: "I find statistically and economically significant relationship between stale news stories on unemployment and next week’s S&P 500 returns. This effect is then completely reversed during the following week. These findings show that investors are affected by salient information and support the hypothesis that investors overreact to stale macroeconomic news reported in newspapers...

  10. Angela Lashbrook: The Next Wellness Trend Should Be Google Spreadsheets: "How focused planning—and color-coded rows and columns—can make stress melt away...

  11. David Murphy: Lock Down Your Social Media Data With the PlusPrivacy Chrome Extension

  12. Talia Lavin: I wrote up a guide to what to do if you’re targeted by the right-wing smear machine. (Remember that your relative importance doesn’t matter AT ALL; they love crushing the defenseless even more.)...

  13. John Lovett: "See but ending the Skywalker saga gives us the movie we all want: PORGS vs. EWOKS: DAWN OF JUSTICE...

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What Are Our Plans?

Signing of the Constitution by Louis S Glanzman Teaching American History

The Council on Foreign Relations asked me to come be on a panel on a small conference they were running on the "democratic recession". They were even willing to spring for a JetBlue mint-class lie-flat bed-seat on a nonstop. So I went Video here. Transcript here.

But is there—or, rather, in what sense is there—a "democratic recession"?

I think you need to separate out three different meanings of democracy:

  1. Alexis de Tocqueville’s democracy: social democracy—where everybody can stand on their own two feet and look everyone else in the eye, rather than lowering their gaze and tugging their forelock.

  2. John Judis’s thing: public-square democracy—where everybody can stand up, pick up a megaphone, speak, and actually be heard.

  3. Real, political democracy—where the material and ideal interests of the people are properly represented and aggregated in the formation of the decisions that we collectively make as we govern our own destinies.

The first two—social inclusion, and the ability to speak and feel that you have been heard—are important and are valid. But they are not the Big Enchilada.

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CFR Future of Democracy Symposium: Session Two: Economics, Identity, and the Democratic Recession: Transcript and Link to Video

Council on Foreign Relations: The Future of Democracy Symposium: Session Two: Economics, Identity, and the Democratic Recession


Transcript

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Dotting i's and Crossing t's with Respect to Olivier Blanchard's "Secular Stagnation" Fiscal-Policy-in-an-Era-of-Low-Interest-Rates AEA Presidential Address

Il Quarto Stato

Consider the semi-canonical Diamond (1965) overlapping-generations model, with a wedge between the safe government-bond interest and the risky profit rate driven by risk aversion. Blanchard (2018) shows that the effects of increased debt have two effects that:

  • raise (lower) reprentative-agent utility,
    • evaluated after the resolution of uncertainties when the agent is young:
  • a direct-transfer effect that holds when the safe government-bond rate is lower (higher) than the economy's growth rate, and
  • a factor-price effect that holds when the risky average profit rate is lower (higher) than the economy's growth rate.

Robert Waldmann has convinced me that this second factor-price effect can be neutralized by a balanced-budget profit tax-funded wage subsidy.

Hence in the semi-canonical Diamond (1965) overlapping-generations model the economy is dynamically-inefficient—can be made better off by reducing its productive capital stock and introducing sustainable pay-as-you-go transfer schemes—whenever the safe government-bond rate is less than the economy's growth rate, no matter what the level of the expected profit rate:

Continue reading "Dotting i's and Crossing t's with Respect to Olivier Blanchard's "Secular Stagnation" Fiscal-Policy-in-an-Era-of-Low-Interest-Rates AEA Presidential Address" »


Fairly Recently: Must- and Should-Reads, and Writings... (April 10, 2019)

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  1. Does Inbox Zero count if one has snozzed 245 emails? Asking for a friend...

  2. No, I do not understand Netflix's valuation. And I do not understand what it was doing in "FAANG" in the first place. I suspect it was just Jim Cramer looking for a cute acronym, which is a hell of a way to run an porftfolio-assessment business: Tara Lachapelle: Netflix Valuation Tested by Disney, AT&T, Apple Apps: "Disney, AT&T and Apple are coming, and this time they are really bringing the heat...

  3. Sarah Halzack: Amazon Risks Missing Out on $35 Billion Click-and-Collect Market: "Big-box retailers are leading in click-and-collect services such as grocery pickup, and the gap may only widen...

  4. Command-Tab Plus: Application and Window Switching Done Right: "Hold Command and press Tab to display the active applications and then use the Tab key to cycle through your open apps...

  5. Olivier Blanchard: Public Debt and Low Interest Rates: "Seminar 237/281: 291 Departmental Seminar.... April 10 | 4-6 p.m. | 648 Evans Hall...

  6. Jeff Weintraub: Afterthoughts on the Communist Manifesto

  7. Max Nisen: Walgreens Earnings: Retail Apocalypse Now Threatens Drug Stores: "Prescription medications aren't as profitable as they used to be, leaving chains like Walgreens more exposed to industry headwinds...

  8. Ceteris Numquam Paribus: "This blog is for young economists, who want advice on how to proceed on their chosen path. Every week or so I'll bring you a short interview with an economist, giving suggestions on what to read, what to learn, and how to become an economist...

  9. Scott Lemieux: Our Green Lantern: "It’s getting hard to avoid the conclusion that Bernie is actually high on his own “our revolution will force Republican senators to vote for my agenda” supply...

  10. Joshua M. Brown: Is Economic Inequality a “National Emergency”?

  11. Robert Waldmann (2016): Dynamic Inefficiency

  12. CPPC: Senate Finance Committee Examines How PBMs Cause Higher Drug Prices: "Senator Wyden told the CEOs that 'you see there are not a lot of Democrats or Republicans holding rallies for spread pricing. Spread pricing is a rip off, plain and simple.' He asked them: if Congress proposes to ban spread pricing, will they support it? Three of the CEOs said yes they would, and the other two said they would remain neutral. For the first time, the Senate Finance Committee investigated PBMs and how they promote higher drug costs...

  13. Gramercy Park Hotel

  14. L'Express

  15. Sheisha Kulkarni

  16. John Le Carre: Tinker Tailor Soldier Spy (Novel) | Tinker Tailor Soldier Spy (Miniseries) | Tinker Tailor Soldier Spy (Film)

  17. Wikipedia: Ian Richardson

  18. Wikipedia: Colin Firth

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Economics, Identity, and the Democratic Recession: Talking Points

Event: Tu 2019-04-09 10-11am CFR: 58 E. 68th St., New York, NY:

Untitled 7 pages

The Data

  • 1970s a bad decade for real incomes—oil shocks, environmental cleanup, baby boom entry into the labor market
  • End of 1970s sees shift to "neoliberalism" to fix the "excesses of social democracy"
  • Since 1980: males and those with low education have seen their expectations of what their lives would be like bitterly disappointed
    • Male high school graduates down by 17%
    • Males with advanced degrees up by 25%
    • Whites have not been disappointed more economically—what William Juilius Wilson called the "declining significance of race"
      • Save, perhaps, for Black women with BAs...
    • Sociological disappointment in addition?
    • Within-household economic disappointment?
    • Other aspects of the economic besides income?
      • Occupation and occupational stability
      • Employment stability

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Fairly Recently: Must- and Should-Reads, and Writings... (April 6, 2019)

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  • Comment of the Day: John Howard Brown: "Property rights are always conditional on the allocation of social power! When the power of the Laird of a Scots clan depended on the number of clansmen who could wield pike and claymore...

  1. Wikipedia: Late Antique Little Ice Age

  2. Mark Bergen: YouTube Executives Ignored Warnings, Let Toxic Videos Run Rampant

  3. R. Leeson et al.: [, Hayek: A Collaborative Biography]: Influences from Mises to Bartley | The Hayekian Religion | The Chicago School of Economics

  4. C. E. Cubitt: A Life of Friedrich August von Hayek https://books.google.com/books?isbn=0755202430

  5. Wikipedia: Richard Neville, 16th Earl of Warwick

  6. Wikipedia: Tywin Lannister

  7. Wikipedia: John Mair

  8. Steve Knott: Battle of Gettysburg: Why J.E.B. Stuart Ends Up in Carlisle

  9. Wikipedia: Wilhelm Voigt: "The Captain of Köpenick, which shifts the focus from the event at Köpenick itself to the prelude.... The pitiful catch-22 situation of Voigt trying to earn his living honourably in Berlin: 'No residence address-no job. No job-no residence (rented room). No residence-no passport. No passport-getting ousted...

  10. Wikipedia: Walter Nicolai

  11. Adam Gopnik: How the South Won the Civil War | The New Yorker: "Now we think that the aftermath—the confrontation not of blue and gray but of white and black, and the reimposition of apartheid through terror—is what has left the deepest mark on American history. Instead of arguing about whether the war could have turned out any other way, we argue about whether the postwar could have turned out any other way...

  12. John Van Reenen: "Why @michaelgove is unfit to hold any public office:: When Justice minister he accused me and fellow academics (including some whose relations were in the Holocaust) of being "Nazi Scientists" for saying #Brexit would be costly...

  13. Matthew Townsend and Eric Martin: Who Is Winning Trump's Trade War with China? So Far, It's Mexico: "America’s imports from Mexico surge the most in seven years as Trump’s policies shift supply chains...

  14. Potch: There should be a hotline you can call where you can safely pronounce words you've only ever read out loud for the first time, and they say 'oh sweetie' and kindly explain how it's pronounced..." vagrantcow: "Google pronunciation is a thing. 2019 is on the phone, for you...

  15. Tom Joseph: The question why Mueller didn't recommend whether Trump should face Obstruction charges is baffling people. Punting the decision to HJC doesn't make sense either. The answer may be simple—Mueller knows Trump has dementia, which makes T's intent, responsibity & charges an unknown...

  16. Brian Krassenstein: "BREAKING: "Motel 6 will pay $12 million to settle a lawsuit by the Washington state attorney general over the lodging chain's practice of handing over guest lists to U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement agents...

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Fairly Recently: Must- and Should-Reads, and Writings... (April 5, 2019)

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  1. Charlotte Edwardes: Sam Gyimah: I’m Still a Tory—It’s the Party I Joined That’s Changed: "He’s faced repeated deselections and a no-confidence vote—but Sam Gyimah won’t give up. Here, the MP talks about being ‘thrown to the wolves’ and how toxic Brexiteer infighting is threatening to tear the Conservatives apart...

  2. Brooke Masters: Want to Write a Piece for the Financial Times Opinion Page?: "Think about our readers.... Write what you know.... Write clearly and accessibly.... Use specific examples.... Be pithy and sharp...

  3. Paige Harden: "Pietro is being generous, when in fact I’m just trying to articulate something that’s been percolating for awhile... Let’s take genetics AND egalitarianism seriously. Begin there, and see where it takes us...

  4. Bart Demandt: China Car Sales Analysis January & February 2019: "The market for domestic passenger car sales in China continues its decline in 2019 with 8 consecutive months of declines from July 2018 to February 2019. With two months of double digit declines in January (-16,7%) and February (-17,6%), the market doesn’t seem able to recover soon...

  5. FOLD: What is FOLD?

  6. Read Irin Carmon at New York Magazine on how Baron, Wallsten, and Barr handled the pieces of her story about CBS honcho Jeff Fager's internal defense of Charlie Rose http://nymag.com/intelligencer/2019/04/what-was-the-washington-post-afraid-of.html. After reading it, if you read it as I read it, you will conclude that newspaper managers as easily bullied as Baron, Wallsten, and Barr are not useful in their current. I wrote so to Jeff Bezos. If you wind up agreeing with me, I urge you to write Bezos as well...

  7. Steve Moore: “I’m kind of new to this game, frankly, so I’m going to be on a steep learning curve myself about how the Fed operates...

  8. James LaPorta: Top Marine General Let Emails Leak Amid Border Funding Fight so Service Families Would Not Be Forgotten: Sources: "When asked why Neller would allow internal memorandums to leak to press outlets, one Defense Department source expressed bluntly, 'Because he didn’t want the Marines and families at Camp Lejeune [in North Carolina] to get f---ed.' Six months after Hurricane Florence first made landfall at Wrightsville Beach in North Carolina, roughly an hour southwest of Camp Lejeune, the base is still waiting on funding for repairs...

  9. Friedrich A. von Hayek: Hayek the Ethnic Bigot and the Perils of the Ad Hominem Fallacy: "I have no racial prejudices in general—but there were certain types, and conspicuous among them the Near Eastern populations, which I still dislike because they are fundamentally dishonest... a type which, in my childhood in Austria, was described as Levantine, typical of the people of the eastern Mediterranean.... I have a profound dislike for the typical Indian students at the London School of Economics, which I admit are all one type—Bengali moneylender sons. They are to me a detestable type, I admit, but not with any racial feeling. I have found a little of the same amongst the Egyptians—basically a lack of honesty in them...

  10. Matthew Buckley: "Back when America wasn’t a fascist ethnostate, this statement alone would have been grounds for impeachment. But that was when we were a nation of laws: Aaron Rupar: TRUMP threatens to close border with Mexico as soon as this weekend, then rants about immigration during Oval Office meeting with NATO secretary general: "What we have to do is Congress has to meet quickly & make a deal... to be honest with you, we have to get rid of judges...

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Collecting Talking Points...

San Francisco from Abovee Berkeley

Is it worth while to try to collect all of the "talking points" I have prepared over the years?


Talking Points:

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Fairly Recently: Must- and Should-Reads, and Writings... (April 3, 2019)

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  1. Glory M. Liu: Research

  2. Wikipedia: Cara cara Navel Orange

  3. Glory M. Liu: Rethinking the “Chicago Smith” Problem: Adam Smith and the Chicago School, 1929–1980

  4. Paul Krugman (2013): The Neo-Paleo-Keynesian Counter-Counter-Counterrevolution

  5. Burnt Oranges with Rosemary

  6. Andrew M. Childs et al. (2002): Exponential Algorithmic Speedup by Quantum Walk: "We construct an oracular (i.e., black box) problem that can be solved exponentially faster on a quantum computer than on a classical computer.... We show how to implement the quantum walk efficiently in our oracular setting...

  7. Caffe Luxxe

  8. Barry Ritholtz: Math, Money, and Making a Difference: "MIT alumnus James Simons is a mathematician and founder of the highly quantitative investment firm Renaissance Technologies where he served as CEO for over 30 years before becoming board chair...

  9. Lucas Kwan Peterson: For Cramped New York, an Expanding Dining Scene: "In the city that never sleeps, as they say, the marquees of Times Square nearly make one forget the concrete dystopia of what is seemingly an unlivable urban wasteland. Surrounded by rats, black trash bags and graffiti-tagged storefronts on Broadway Street, New York’s primary thoroughfare, I wondered aloud if I would be able to find a decent meal in what was surely a culinary heart of darkness. In Los Angeles, we’re spoiled by the breadth and quality of our dining options...

  10. Mike Idsin: The Educational Admissions Scandal Widens Dramatically: "Wealthy parents would approach a person affiliated with a national organization, technically incorporated as a nonprofit, known by the initials NAR.... The individual would then provide a list of other people in the communities in question who, for a payment often topping 1 million, would permit the family to modify their mailing address in such a way that guaranteed entry into the exclusive schools. The details of the mailing-address system are complex and relate to systems often criticized by advocates, where complex laws dictate a precise and convoluted geographic zone where this address-modification scheme is permissible. The family would in most cases have to physically live in the location 'sold' by the counterparty, who would use the money to flee the jurisdiction.... A significant commission, often 5-6% of the payment, would go to the NAR agent(s)...

  11. Facebook defines "some passwords" = 600000000 passwords: Pedro Canahuati: Keeping Passwords Secure: "As part of a routine security review in January, we found that some user passwords were being stored in a readable format within our internal data storage systems...

  12. Noah Smith: Trump's Industrial Rebirth Is a Dead End: "There's no future in the U.S. for old-line manufacturers that dominated the mid-20th century economy...

  13. 2016: Monday Smackdown: Debating Societies, Talking Points, and Choosing Our Governors

  14. 2013 Monday Smackdown: No, Amity Shlaes Has No Idea What She Is Talking About. Why Do You Ask?: WTF!?!?!?!? Weblogging: Galbraith's claim that Coolidge did not know—i.e., did not know enough to feel he could challenge Mellon's talking points—and did not care—i.e., thought the US headed for disaster but did not bother to learn enough to think he had an informed enough view to challenge Mellon--seems to me to hit the nail on the head. Certainly Herbert Hoover thought so...

  15. 2006: Avadim Hayinu l'Pharaoh b'Mitzrayim: For a 'normal' California teenager like George Allen was once to sign up with the Confederacy is weird and creepy. For a half-Jewish California teenager to sign up with the Confederacy...

  16. 2009: Paul Krugman Urges Greg Mankiw to Pay More Attention to Quality Control: To me, the thing to note about the economists-the Mankiws, the Lucases, the Beckers, the Barros, and all the rest-who have pledged allegiance to the Republican Party this year is how much they have stopped thinking like economists.... I still remember being convinced by Rick Ericson when I had just turned 18 that thinking like an economist required that one always pay attention to three key principles: market equilibrium, individuals responding to incentives, cost-benefit tradeoffs.... I thought that Chicago-School economists believed in these principles too...

  17. 2005: Why Oh Why Are We Ruled by These Idiots? (Social Security Edition): It is a clown show,... The administration's Social Security gurus shove Bush out there with talking points saying that passing the Bush plan is essential because if we don't the Social Security trust fund balance will hit zero in 2041, and big benefit cuts will then be necessary—and then they roll out a plan in which the Social Security trust fund balance hits zero in 2030...

  18. 2008: Every Time I Try to Crawl Out, They Pull Me Back in!: Called on forty minutes' notice, I trot over to the J-School studio to be a talking head on BBC/Newsnight about Fannie and Freddie. I have my talking points ready: The chance that American taxpayers will actually lose any money if Ben Bernanke and Henry Paulson decide that Fannie and Freddie need government support is very low.... Nevertheless, there is now a risk that Fannie and Freddie will need some form of government support in the next month.... And what do I find also on BBC/Newsnight when I get there? I FIND THAT I AM ON WITH GROVER-FRACKING-NORQUIST!! I FIND THAT I AM ON WITH GROVER-FRACKING-NORQUIST!!! WHO HAS THREE POINTS HE WANTS TO MAKE: Barack Obama wants to take your money by raising your taxes and pay it to the Communist Chinese. Oil prices are high today and the economy is in a near recession because of Nancy Pelosi.... Economic growth is stalling because congress has not extended the Bush tax cuts.... I am not paid enough to deal with this lying bullshit...

  19. Wikipedia: Richard Neville, 16th Earl of Warwick

  20. Olivia Nuzzi: Trump Aides Fear He Is Overselling His ‘Exoneration’: "'There will be plenty of unfavorable things about the president in the full report, which we think will eventually come out, so let’s not go overboard saying there’s no wrongdoing. Let’s move on', one senior White House official told me...

  21. Mark Bergen: YouTube Executives Ignored Warnings, Let Toxic Videos Run Rampant: "Proposals to change recommendations and curb conspiracies were sacrificed for engagement, staff say...

  22. Aaron Rupar: On Twitter: "TRUMP during NRCC speech: 'If you have a windmill anywhere near your house, congratulations, your house just went down 75 percent in value. And they say the noise causes cancer. You tell me that one, okay? Rerrrr rerrrr!'...

Continue reading "Fairly Recently: Must- and Should-Reads, and Writings... (April 3, 2019)" »


Greenspan and Wooldridge Argue the American Love and Embrace of Capitalism Is the Key...

Il Quarto Stato

The world as a whole is much richer than it was three centuries ago. Back then, at the end of the long era since the invention of agriculture, the typical human lived on two dollars a day, had a life expectancy at birth of 25, and was protein deprived in utero. Mothers worldwide no longer run a one-in-six chance of dying in childbed. Literacy in no longer a rare accomplishment. Less than one in six humans worldwide live like all of our pre-industrial ancestors—and even those less-than-one-in-six likely have some access to the village smartphone.

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Fairly Recently: Must- and Should-Reads, and Writings... (March 31, 2019)

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  • Hoisted from the Archives: What I Wrote in Advance of the FOMC's September 2018 Meeting: "What a difference six months makes! And now the Fed really wishes it had not raised interest rates in the second half of 2018 and yet is unwilling to move them now back to the summer-of-2018 level. Why they are unwilling I do not know...

  1. Wikipedia: The Old Man & the Gun

  2. Stephen King (2014): Joyland https://books.google.com/books?isbn=1781168490

  3. A close encounter of the fourth kind: A Valentines Day gift gone horribly wrong, a Komodo Dragon, and Sharon Stone’s husband’s toes https://www.sfgate.com/news/article/Editor-stable-after-attack-by-Komodo-dragon-2911601.php

  4. Australian cork hat/Monty Python: https://www.evernote.com/l/AAEEa4uqACJLEYfDQosMH6ib2nx5-sYDbycB/image.png http://www.montypython.net/scripts/bruceskit.php

  5. Lindsay Ellis finds a disaffected dwarf in New Zealand https://youtu.be/Qi7t_g5QObs?t=1285

  6. Wikipedia: Alasdair MacIntyre: "1970. Herbert Marcuse: An Exposition and a Polemic.... 1971. Against the Self-Images of the Age: Essays on Ideology and Philosophy.... 1981... After Virtue...

  7. Douglas 'Skoryy' Hayden: On Twitter: "I'm here for Jacobin's 'Four Legs Good, Two Legs Better' special edition... Matthew Yglesias: On Twitter: "The joke is that after the revolution instead of building a better society they’re going to start killing their enemies and then each other?... Jacob T. Levy: On Twitter: "Bookmarking this for the next time someone says 'nuh-uh, it only refers to Haiti and therefore has nothing to do with the French Jacobins'... XLProfessor: On Twitter: "Seriously? All the revolutionaries were killed with this thing and some soldier made himself emperor...

  8. [John Holbo: On Twitter: "It's weirder than a Jekyll-Hyde sort of split. It isn't strange that 'good' people have a 'bad' side. But it's strange that a genuinely broad-minded mentality can be trapped inside a narrow-minded mentality without one or the other utterly cancelling...

  9. Douglas Preston: The Day the Dinosaurs Died: "More than 99.9999 per cent of all living organisms on Earth died, and the carbon cycle came to a halt.... Earth itself became toxic... ten trillion tons of sulfur compounds... combined with water to form sulfuric acid, which then fell as an acid rain that may have been potent enough to strip the leaves from any surviving plants and to leach the nutrients from the soil. Today, the layer of debris, ash, and soot deposited by the asteroid strike is preserved in the Earth’s sediment as a stripe of black about the thickness of a notebook. This is called the KT boundary, because it marks the dividing line between the Cretaceous period and the Tertiary period...

  10. David Glasner: Arthur Burns and How Things Fell Apart in the 1970s: "Thus, in 1973, even without an oil shock in late 1973 used by Burns as an excuse with which to deflect the blame for rising inflation from himself to uncontrollable external forces, Burns’s monetary policy was inexorably on track to raise inflation to 7%...

  11. Thor Berger and Per Engzell: Immigration, Inequality and Intergenerational Mobility in the US: "There are striking regional variations in economic opportunity across the US. This column proposes a historical explanation for this, showing that local levels of income equality and intergenerational mobility in the US resemble those of the European countries that current inhabitants trace their origins from. The findings point to the persistence of differences in local culture, norms, and institutions...

  12. Charles Gaba: Three-Legged Stool: The Motion Picture

  13. Timothy Garton Ash: On Twitter: "Remember the Brexit battle bus £350m a week for the NHS? Brexit has already cost us £360m a week...

  14. Angry Staff Officer: On Twitter: "For Confederate Heritage Month, here's Virginia-native General Winfield Scott, senior officer in the US Army at the outset of the Civil War, whose strategy eventually won the war and who kept his oath to his country...

  15. Miles Kimball: In Honor of Alan Krueger

  16. Alexander Stephens, Vice President of the Confederacy: On Twitter: "The Declaration of Independence was fundamentally wrong.... The Confederate States are founded upon exactly the opposite ideas. Its foundations are laid, its cornerstone rests upon the great truth that the Negro is not equal to the white man; that slavery, subordination to the superior race, is his natural and moral condition...

  17. Cassandra Khaw: On Twitter: "A routine reminder that we do not have flying cars, but we have the means to access all of the world's knowledge with a few clicks of a keyboard, communicate with people thousands of miles away in an instant, and are working on artificial burger meat. Also, the world is going to end catastrophically very soon as a result of climate change and capitalism, but a cyberpunk present wouldn't be complete without impending doom...

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Hoisted from the Archives: What I Wrote in Advance of the FOMC's September 2018 Meeting

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What a difference six months makes! And now the Fed really wishes it had not raised interest rates in the second half of 2018 and yet is unwilling to move them now back to the summer-of-2018 level. Why they are unwilling I do not know:


Hoisted from the Archives: Next week the Federal Open Market Committee—the principal policymaking body of the United States's Federal Reserve system—is overwhelmingly likely to raise the benchmark interest rate it controls, the Federal Funds rate that governs short-term safe nominal bonds, by one quarter of a percentage point from the range of 1.75-2% per year to the range of 2-2.25% per year. That would make it a little more expensive to borrow and spend and a little more attractive to cut spending and save. Thus there would be a little less spending in the economy, and so a few fewer jobs. Economic growth would be a little slower. The economy would be a little less resilient in the face of adverse shocks to resources or confidence that might generate a recession. These are all minuses—small minuses from a 25 basis point increase in the Federal Funds rate, but minuses.

Continue reading "Hoisted from the Archives: What I Wrote in Advance of the FOMC's September 2018 Meeting" »


I Said "Pass the Baton" to Those Further Left than I, Not "Bend the Knee"

Pass the baton olympics Google Search

Last night at dinner at Iyesare, Noah Smith admonished me for not making it clear that I said "pass the baton" to those further left, not "bend the knee". So here I make that clear, and repost:

Carville-Hunt "Two Old White Guys" Podcast:

Al Hunt: Brad, your critique is brilliant.... Your solution that worries me. Turn it over to the left, and then try to make their proposals slightly more palatable. I don't see how that becomes in any fashion a winning coalition, legislatively or politically.

Brad DeLong: I said: pass the baton, right? I said: pass the baton.

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Why Isn't the Federal Reserve Buying Recession Insurance?: No Longer Fresh at Project Syndicate

Hundred Dollar Bill Peel and Stick Jumbo Size Removable Wall Decal 100 Dollar Bill Google Express

No Longer Fresh at Project Syndicate: The Fed Should Buy Recession Insurance: The next global downturn may well not be yet at hand: odds that the North Atlantic as a whole will be in recession in a year are now down to about one-fourth. German growth may well be positive this quarter. China might be rebounding this quarter. The U.S. is definitely slowing to 1% growth or so this quarter, but it is not yet clear that this slowdown will be more than a blip.

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Fairly Recently: Must- and Should-Reads, and Writings... (March 26, 2019)

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  1. Shelly Hagan and Wei Lu: San Francisco's `Super Rich' Lead a Widening U.S. Wealth Divide: "The Income Gap Is Getting Worse in American Cities. U.S. income gap between top 5% and middle 20% grew by 118,000. Boise City, Idaho, and Knoxville, Tennessee, have robust gaps: The tech hub’s 'super-rich versus middle-class' gap swelled by $118,000 to $529,500 over the past five years, as the top 5 percent of households earned $632,310 in 2017, compared with $102,785 for the middle class, according to the Bloomberg analysis of U.S. Census data...

  2. Richard Samans: Better Labor Standards Must Underpin the Future of Work: "As technology and deregulation continue to shape the labor market, maintaining strong worker protections is as important as ever...

  3. Hess Chung and Eric Engen (20134): Identifying the Sources of the Unexpectedly Weak Economic Recovery Using the FRB/US Model

  4. Abhijit V. Banerjee and Esther Duflo: The Economic Lives of the Poor

  5. Daniel Alpert: What the Federal Reserve Got Totally Wrong about Inflation and Interest Rate Policy: Getting Real About Rents

  6. Jared Bernstein: On the Economy

  7. Katrin Gödker, Peiran Jiao, and Paul Smeets: Investor Memory: "Self-serving memory bias... distorts beliefs and drives investment choices. Subjects who previously invested in a risky stock are more likely to remember positive investment outcomes and less likely to remember negative outcomes. In contrast, subjects who did not invest but merely observed the investment outcomes do not have this memory bias. Importantly, subjects do not adjust their behavior to account for the fallibility of their memory...

  8. Wired: How Animators Created the Spider-Verse

  9. Mark Thoma: Links (3/24/19)

  10. Ben Thompson: Apple’s Services Event: "The problem, though, is that there will never be a product like the iPhone again; Apple may have found its product future (good for developers and customers), but its financial future is less certain (not so good for Wall Street)...

  11. Data For Progress: A Green New Deal. New Consensus: Green New Deal

  12. Menzie Chinn: "Stop Stephen Moore from being appointed to the Fed. Here is a non-exhaustive recounting of Moore’s reign of error...

  13. Marina Hyde: Get Set for Brexit: Indicative Day–The One Where the Grand Wizards Turn on Each Other: "On Sunday it was all looking so good for the Brexit ultras. Then came Monday, and that parliamentary vote.... Like all initiatives handled by Oliver Letwin since the 1980s, it promises to go spectacularly wrong in ways we haven’t even thought of yet, but let’s pretend otherwise before the shitstorm gets properly under way on Wednesday...

  14. Catherine Rampell: The Op-Ed that Got Stephen Moore His Fed Nomination Is Based on Two Major Falsehoods: "Trump has nominated to the world’s most powerful central bank a guy who has trouble telling whether prices are going up or down, and struggles to remember how the most famous Fed chair in history successfully stamped out inflation. But hey, Republican senators still seem keen on him because 'the establishment' keeps pointing out how inept he is...

  15. Nick Timiraos: @NickTimiraos: "Ben Sasse supports Moore: 'Steve’s nomination has thrown the card-carrying members of the Beltway establishment into a tizzy, and that says little about Steve and his belief in American ingenuity, but a lot about central planners’ devotion to groupthink'...

  16. Catherine Rampell: Stephen Moore Could Inflict More Long-Term Damage than Any of Trump’s Other Nominations: "President Trump has made a lot of ill-advised nominations. But perhaps no single choice could inflict more long-term damage than the one he announced Friday: Stephen Moore, Trump’s pick to join the Federal Reserve Board...

  17. Jo Walton (2010): The Suck Fairy

  18. Martin Cahill: A Stunning Debut: Arkady Martine’s "A Memory Called Empire"

  19. UCL Institute for Innovation and Public Purpose: @IIPPUCL_: "Watch as @bankofengland Chief Economist Andy Haldane explores 10 monetary myths that will help present and future generations to rethink and reframe the way we organise our economies, our financial systems and our societies https://www.youtube.com/watch?time_continue=1&v=Ul0pTVl8l98...

Continue reading "Fairly Recently: Must- and Should-Reads, and Writings... (March 26, 2019)" »


The Fed Board Unmoored: Live at Project Syndicate

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Live at Project Syndicate: The Fed Board Unmoored: "In December 2015, the right-wing commentator Stephen Moore, US President Donald Trump’s pick to fill a vacancy on the US Federal Reserve Board of Governors, savagely attacked then-Fed Chair Janet Yellen and her predecessor, Ben Bernanke, for maintaining loose monetary policies in the years following the 'Great Recession'.... On December 26, 2018, he savagely attacked Yellen’s successor, Jerome Powell, for raising interest rates to unwind the very approach that he had condemned three years earlier. 'If you cut engine power too far on a jetliner', he warned, 'it will stall and drop out of the sky'. Moore complained that after having 'risen by 382 points on hopes that the Fed would listen to Trump and stop cutting power', the Dow Jones Industrial Average had “plunged by 895 points” on the news of another interest-rate hike. This, he concluded, was evidence that 'the Fed’s monetary policy has come unhinged'...

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Fairly Recently: Must- and Should-Reads, and Writings... (March 25, 2019)

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  1. Margaret Leslie Davis: The Quest to Acquire the Oldest, Most Expensive Book on the Planet: "The price of the book when it left the printer’s workshop was believed to be about thirty florins, equivalent to a clerk’s wages for three years...

  2. George A. Akerlof: Sins of Omission and the Practice of Economics: "Economics, as a discipline, gives rewards that favor the 'Hard' and disfavor the 'Soft', Such bias leads economic research to ignore important topics and problems that are difficult to approach in a 'Hard' way—thereby resulting in 'sins of omission'.... Greatly increased tolerance in norms for publication and promotion... [is] one way of alleviating narrow methodological biases...

  3. Wikipedia: Quantum Logic Gates

  4. Andy Matuschak: "I want to expand the reach of human knowledge and ability...

  5. Michael Nielsen: Neural Networks and Deep Learning

  6. Michael Nielsen: Interesting problems: The Church-Turing-Deutsch Principle: "Deutsch... propose[d] a revision of the Church-Turing thesis... that every physical process can be simulated by a universal computing device...

  7. Alain Aspect: The future of Quantum Technologies: The Second Quantum Revolution

  8. Barbara Tuchman: “A Single British Soldier…”: "'What is the smallest British military force that would be of any practical assistance to you?' Wilson asked. Like a rapier flash came Foch’s reply, 'A single British soldier—and we will see to it that he is killed'...

  9. Michael Andersen: Six Secrets From the Planner of Sevilla’s Lightning Bike Network: "Sevilla, Spain: It went from having about as much biking as Oklahoma City to having about as much biking as Portland, Oregon. It did this over the course of four years...

  10. I wish it were so, but I see only one professional Republican economist—Greg Mankiw—coming out in opposition to Moore. The rest are very quiet. All honor to Greg Mankiw, yes, but where are the others?: Brendan Greeley: Swift Pushback on Stephen Moore, Trump's Latest Pick for the Fed: "Stephen Moore drew swift and unusually pointed criticism after President Donald Trump picked him to be a governor of the U.S. Federal Reserve, with at least one prominent Republican economist calling on the Senate to block the appointment. 'He does not have the intellectual gravitas for this important job', Greg Mankiw, a Harvard professor who was chairman of the White House Council of Economic Advisers under President George W. Bush, wrote in a blog post on Friday. 'It is time for senators to do their job. Mr. Moore should not be confirmed'...

  11. Paul Krugman Twitter: https://twitter.com/paulkrugman/with_replies

  12. Stephen Moore Twitter: https://twitter.com/search?vertical=default&q=Stephen%20Moore&src=typd

  13. Wikipedia: Battle of Mycale

  14. Wikipedia: Battle of Plataea

  15. Roman expeditions to Sub-Saharan Africa

Continue reading "Fairly Recently: Must- and Should-Reads, and Writings... (March 25, 2019)" »


Monday Smackdown/Hoisted from Others' Archives from Six -and-a-HalfYears Ago: Dan Drezner on Chuck Lane

Clowns (ICP)

Every time I try to get out, they drag me back in...

Now I am being told that nobody with any audience ever thought 15/hour in California was a really bad idea. So time to recall this:

Monday Smackdown/Hoisted from Others' Archives: A correspondent asks me for help: Chuck Lane is being used as an authority on the California's 15/hr by 2023 minimum wage proposal. And Chuck Lane says:

A hot concept in wonkdom these days is “evidence-based policymaking.”… Gov. Jerry Brown and the state’s labor leaders have announced legislation to raise the state’s minimum wage… to $15 per hour…. Whatever else might be said about this plan, it does not represent an exercise in evidence-based policymaking. To the contrary: There’s a total lack of evidence that the potential benefits would outweigh potential costs—and ample reason to worry they would not…

Dan Drezner: Why I Don’t Need to Take Charles Lane Seriously: "The Washington Post’s Chuck Lane wrote an op-ed arguing in favor of Jeff Flake’s amendment...

...to cut National Science Foundation funding for political science. In fact, Lane raised the ante, arguing that NSF should stop funding all of the social sciences, full stop. Now, I can respect someone who tries to make the argument that the opportunity costs of funding the social sciences are big enough that this is where a budget cut should take place.  It’s harder, however, to respect someone who: 

Continue reading "Monday Smackdown/Hoisted from Others' Archives from Six -and-a-HalfYears Ago: Dan Drezner on Chuck Lane" »


The Fed Should Buy Recession Insurance: Now Not Quite so Fresh at Project Syndicate

Hundred Dollar Bill Peel and Stick Jumbo Size Removable Wall Decal 100 Dollar Bill Google Express

Now Not Quite so Fresh at Project Syndicate: The Fed Should Buy Recession Insurance: If the United States falls into recession in the next year or two, the US Federal Reserve may have very little room to loosen policy, yet it is not taking any steps to cover that risk. Unless the Fed rectifies this soon, the US–and the world–may well face much bigger problems later.

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This Has Certainly Been One Crazifying Fed Tightening Cycle...

FRED Graph FRED St Louis Fed

This has certainly been one crazifying Fed tightening cycle.

The 10-year nominal Treasury rate is only 0.2%-points higher than it was back in mid-2015, when liftoff appears imminent. the 10-year real rate is back where it started at 0.65, after having gone as low as zero and as high as 1.1%. And—unless it is triggered by strong good growth news—any further increase in the federal funds rate would invert the yield curve, which the Federal Reserve has decided not to do.

I really wish I had some idea of just what the Federal Reserve plans to do to fight the next recession, whenever the next recession come along. It has know since at least mid-2010 that the bond market believes that secular stagnation—at least in its effect on long-term interest rates—is a very real thing.

Presumably the Fed still believes that when the next recession comes it has one job: to drop the 10-year real Treasury rate so that expanded construction and exports can take up some of the emerging labor-market slack and so cushion the downturn. But I have no idea what policies it thinks it will pursue that will accomplish that...

Continue reading "This Has Certainly Been One Crazifying Fed Tightening Cycle..." »


A Baker's Dozen of Books Worth Reading... (2019-03-21)

The Vela

  1. The Vela https://www.serialbox.com/serials/the-vela
  2. Barbara Chase-Ribaud: Sally Hemings; A Novel https://books.google.com/books?isbn=1569766797
  3. Annette Gordon-Reed: Thomas Jefferson and Sally Hemings: An American Controversy https://books.google.com/books?isbn=0813933560
  4. Kevin O'Rourke: A Short History of Brexit https://books.google.com/books?isbn=0241398339
  5. E.M. Halliday: Understanding Thomas Jefferson https://books.google.com/books?isbn=0060957611
  6. Guy Gavriel Kay: A Song for Arbonne https://books.google.com/books?isbn=1101667435
  7. Harriet Beecher Stowe: A Key to Uncle Tom's Cabin https://books.google.com/books?isbn=1557094934
  8. Keri Leigh Merritt: Masterless Men https://books.google.com/books?isbn=110718424X
  9. Gareth Dale: Karl Polanyi: A Life on the Left https://books.google.com/books?isbn=0231541481
  10. Philip Auerswald: The Code Economy: A Forty-thousand-year History https://books.google.com/books?isbn=0190226765
  11. John Judis: The Nationalist Revival: Trade, Immigration, and the Revolt Against Globalization https://books.google.com/books?isbn=099974540
  12. Richard Baldwin: The Globotics Upheaval: Globalization, Robotics, and the Future of Work https://books.google.com/books?isbn=0190901772
  13. Patricia Crone: Pre-Industrial Societies: Anatomy of the Pre-Modern World https://books.google.com/books?isbn=1780748043

Continue reading "A Baker's Dozen of Books Worth Reading... (2019-03-21)" »


Fairly Recently: Must- and Should-Reads, and Writings... (March 21, 2019)

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  1. David Warsh: Austerity is Defunct: "Long-term stagnation is a real possibility...

  2. Wikipedia: Gregor MacGregor

  3. Andy Matuschak and Michael Nielsen: Quantum Computing for the Very Curious: "Presented in an experimental mnemonic medium, which makes it almost effortless to remember what you read...

  4. Remaniacs Podcast

  5. Laura Tyson and Susan Lund: The Blind Spot in the Trade Debate: "Digital flows and services.... As governments assess their external balances and competitive positions, hammer out trade deals, and set national policy agendas, they need to look beyond manufacturing and agriculture...

  6. Notice anyone missing from Clive Crook's list of Brexit villains? That's right: no Johnsons, no Farages, no ERGs. Somehow the right-wing nutjobs whom he has spent so much of his career carrying water for have no agency, and so are not worth mentioning as bearing responsibility. Bless their little hearts: Clive Crook: Britain’s Next Great Brexit Mistake: "No great regard for the EU.... Cameron’s bungling.... Rarely... did May miss a chance to make things worse.... This pitiful result... the Remain majority in Parliament chose to let it happen...

  7. Casey Newton: Instagram's Reckoning Arrives

  8. Petitions: Revoke Article 50 and remain in the EU: "The government repeatedly claims exiting the EU is 'the will of the people'. We need to put a stop to this claim by proving the strength of public support now, for remaining in the EU. A People's Vote may not happen-so vote now...

  9. Robert Shrimsley: No words: "We're close to a gangrene moment" said one senior European Commission official...

Continue reading "Fairly Recently: Must- and Should-Reads, and Writings... (March 21, 2019)" »


Fairly Recently: Must- and Should-Reads, and Writings... (March 20, 2019)

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  1. Jennifer Jensen Wallach (2002): The Vindication of Fawn Brodie: "Julian Bond... articulated the feelings of many black Americans when he said: 'Through all my life, as long as I have known there was a Thomas Jefferson, I have known there was a Sally Hemings. And I have known, not in a... scholarly way... I know this relationship existed and while, I cannot prove it, I don't find it at all odd that it might have, or could have, or actually did happen. A man who owns slaves is not far away from one who will sleep with his slave.... Brodie noted that: /The unanimity with which Jefferson male biographers deny him even one richly intimate love affair after his wife's death suggests that something is at work here that has little to do with scholarship, especially since they are so gifted in writing about every other aspect of his life'...

  2. Fawn M. Brodie (1971): Jefferson Biographers and the Psychology of Canonization: "The women who have written about Jefferson in Paris see neither inhibitions nor 'hangups', nor an absurd preoccupation with the god of reason; they also read the Cosway letters without preconceptions about Jefferson's lack of masculinity.... One could continue, in describing the varied biographical treatment ofJefferson's intimate life, by discussing the ancient, controversial story of Sally Hemings. The documentation is so scattered and complicated, however, that it deserves a small volume in itself, and simply cannot be adequately reported in this essay.... Malone, who finds the story even more abhorrent than does Peterson, devotes a whole appendix in his new volume to a discussion of the evidence. He holds that the father of Sally Hemings's children may have been Peter Carr, but that it was more likely to have been his dissolute brother Samuel. 'It is virtually inconceivable', he writes ofJefferson, 'that this fastidious gentleman whose devotion to his dead wife's memory and to the happiness of his daughters and grandchildren bordered on the excessive could have carried on through a period of years a vulgar liaison which his own family could not have failed to detect'.... The unanimity with which Jefferson male biographers deny him even one richly intimate love affair after his wife's death suggests that something is at work here that has little to do with scholarship, especially since they are so gifted in writing about every other aspect of his life...

  3. E. M. Halliday (2001): Understanding Thomas Jefferson https://books.google.com/books?isbn=006175546X

  4. The very sharp John Lukacs on what I call "fascism"—proletarian ethnoi that need to fight enemies foreign and domestic with economic cleavages within the ethnoi papered over, rather than proletarian classes that need the economic system unrigged. For some reason he calls it "nationalism", which I think is properly something different: there may well be elective affinity between belief in the nation-state as a political and sociological community and fascism, but it is certainly not an identity: John Lukacs: The Duel: The Eighty Day Struggle Between Churchill and Hitler: "The principal force of the twentieth century is nationalism...

  5. Brilliant from my freshman roommate Robert Waldmann: Robert Waldmann: The Transformation of Left Neoliberalism: " We should want a small state, but the key is a small surface area not a small volume. Shrinking the state by drilling so there are private-sector salients worsens the problem...

  6. David Brooks: The Case for Reparations: "Sitting, for example, with an elderly black woman in South Carolina shaking in rage because the kids in her neighborhood face greater challenges than she did growing up in 1953...

  7. Brishen Rogers: Beyond Automation: The Law & Political Economy of Workplace Technological Change: "Companies are, however, using new information technologies to exercise power over workers in other ways, all of which are enabled by existing employment laws...

  8. Phil Lord and Rodney Rothman: Screenplay: Spider-Man: Into the Spider-Verse

  9. Abhijit V. Banerjee and Esther Duflo (2007): The Economic Lives of the Poor

  10. Wikipedia: Greek to me: "It may have been a direct translation of a similar phrase in Latin: 'Graecum est; non legitur'...

  11. Daniel Davies: One-Minute MBA

  12. David Leonhardt: Trump’s Trade Grade: "'He set out to fix a non-problem (a trade deficit) and created real ones including international conflict, higher consumer prices and gross inefficiency'...

  13. George Magnus: China Leadership Monitor: "Before the 1980s and again since 2012, when reforms were suppressed or stifled and inputs were boosted, but without any improvements...

  14. Jonathan Bernstein: 2020 Elections: Far Left Won’t Take Over the Democratic Party: "It lost five of six presidential elections through 1988. The Democratic Leadership Council of that era was split...

  15. SF Eater: Ginto Izakaya Japonaise

  16. Ramen Shop

  17. Iyasare

  18. *Gregory Travis *: 737 MAX Article

  19. Juliane Stockman: @JulianeStockman: "If you haven't subscribed to @tressiemcphd https://thefirstand15th.substack.com, you need to.... I'm gonna have to journal about this months' essay. Hell, I'm probably gonna take it into therapy to process it. It packs a wallop...

  20. John Harwood: @JohnJHarwood: "Trump/GOP promised lasting 3+% growth from self-financing tax-cuts. Mainstream economists predicted brief deficit-fueled growth burst...

Continue reading "Fairly Recently: Must- and Should-Reads, and Writings... (March 20, 2019)" »


The Disjunction Between Production and Distribution: An Outtake from "Slouching Towards Utopia?: An Economic History of the Long Twentieth Century 1870-2016

Il Quarto Stato

KILLING YET MORE OF MY DARLINGS! (sob!)


In the world as it stood in 1870–and even more so in 1914—there was a huge disjunction between the growing effective economic power of the human race and the proper distribution of this potential wealth. Science, technology, and organization were clearly wreaking miracles. The rewards, however, were not going to the scientists and the engineers and the workers, but to the landlords and the financiers and to the organizer-entrepreneurs. The sociological contribution of this latter group in creating organizations and setting them in motion was mighty. Best friends Karl Marx and Friedrich Engels probably put it best in 1848:

The business class, during… scarce 100 years, has created more massive and more colossal productive forces than have all preceding generations together. Subjection of Nature’s forces to [hu]man[ity], machinery, application of chemistry to industry and agriculture, steam-navigation, railways, electric telegraphs, clearing of whole continents for cultivation, canalisation of rivers, whole populations conjured out of the ground—what earlier century had even a presentiment that such productive forces slumbered in the lap of social labour?…

However, the benefits of greater human power to harvest fruits from nature and organize persons did not trickle down. There were, broadly speaking, as of 1870 three views about why it did not trickle down; and about what, if anything, ought to be done about it:

Continue reading "The Disjunction Between Production and Distribution: An Outtake from "Slouching Towards Utopia?: An Economic History of the Long Twentieth Century 1870-2016" »


Fairly Recently: Must- and Should-Reads, and Writings... (March 17, 2019)

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  1. Jason Furman: Review of Kim Clausing: "Open: The Progressive Case for Free Trade, Immigration, and Global Capital": "If I had to assign policymakers one up-to-date guide to the latest economic policy issues on taxes and trade it would be this one...

  2. Facundo Alvaredo, Lucas Chancel, Thomas Piketty, Emmanuel Saez, and Gabriel Zucman: World Inequality Report 2018: "The World Inequality Lab seeks to fill a democratic gap...

  3. This Federal Reserve interest-raising cycle: not just an ex-post but an ex-ante mistake: Adam Ozimek and Michael Ferlez: The Fed’s Mistake: "The Fed made a numerically significant error in underestimating the amount of labor market slack...

  4. Wikipedia: Philip Auerswald

  5. Langston Hughes: Let America Be America Again

  6. Wikipedia: Metric

  7. Dmitry Grozoubinski: Dmitry's Guide To Writing A No-Deal Is Project Fear Article: "Are you a Tory Lord who once had to share a cab with a Hungarian? An Oxbridge chancer who wants to be on telly? Just write an article about No-Deal being 'Project Fear.' How? This guide can help!...

  8. Dan O'Sullivan: Pigs (A Million Different Ones): "The internet is now the world’s largest subduction zone, where an endless column of young, mostly white males are overtaken and crushed by the unstoppable force of far-right extremism. Violent misogyny, Islamophobia, anti-Semitism, gay-bashing, anti-black racism-you name it, you can find it, in ever more plentiful amounts online. The biggest tech platforms you can name-Facebook, Google, YouTube, Twitter, Reddit-serve up this kind of poison on an industrial scale, mushrooming and expanding at a rate that makes catching up with the spread almost impossible. The early neo-Nazi webforum Stormfront is on life support, largely because there is no need for the far-right to stay in an online cul-de-sac.... We as a society are going to be living with the effects of this radicalization for the rest of our lives...

  9. Maria Lawton: Bacalhau à Gomes Sà

  10. Dan Murphy: The Entire Economy is Fyre Festival.: "Izabella Kaminska: 'Search LinkedIn.... 41 results for 'chief future officer', 44 for 'chief joy officer', 52 for 'chief happiness officer', 63 for 'chief thinking officer', 170 for a 'chief vision officer', 197 futurists and 354 futurologists...' [155 Retweets, 363 Links] Does this many likes and retweets make me an influencer, an evangelist, or a thought leader?...

  11. Karl Rodbertus (1850): Overproduction and Crises

  12. The Points Guy: JetBlue Mint From New York to San Francisco

  13. Impossible Burger

  14. Wikipedia: Jack o' Kent

Continue reading "Fairly Recently: Must- and Should-Reads, and Writings... (March 17, 2019)" »


The Fed Should Buy Recession Insurance: Fresh at Project Syndicate

Hundred Dollar Bill Peel and Stick Jumbo Size Removable Wall Decal 100 Dollar Bill Google Express

Fresh at Project Syndicate: The Fed Should Buy Recession Insurance: If the United States falls into recession in the next year or two, the US Federal Reserve may have very little room to loosen policy, yet it is not taking any steps to cover that risk. Unless the Fed rectifies this soon, the US–and the world–may well face much bigger problems later. The next global downturn may still be a little way off. The chances that the North Atlantic as a whole will be in recession a year from now have fallen to about one in four. German growth may well be positive this quarter, while China could rebound, too. And although US growth is definitely slowing–to 1% or so this quarter–this may yet turn out to be a blip. Let’s hope so. Because if the next downturn is looming, North Atlantic central banks do not have the policy room to fight it effectively... Read MOAR at Project Syndicate

Continue reading "The Fed Should Buy Recession Insurance: Fresh at Project Syndicate" »


Fairly Recently: Must- and Should-Reads, and Writings... (March 13, 2019)

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  1. Marne Levine: How Did I Get Here?

  2. Sean Illing: "Fascism: a Warning" from Madeleine Albright

  3. Neil Cummins: The Missing English Middle Class: Evidence From 60 Million Death And Probate Records: "Despite the great equalisation of wealth over the 20th century, most English have no significant wealth at death...

  4. David H. Autor: Work of the Past, Work of the Future: "A disproportionate polarization... shunting non-college workers out of specialized middle-skill occupations into low-wage occupations... diminishing the set of non-college workers that hold middle-skill jobs in high-wage cities... attenuating... the steep urban wage premium for non-college workers...

  5. Paul Krugman (2015): On Econoheroes: "Look at hits on Google News. If you put in “mankiw economy” you get about 5200 hits, many of them involving debates at the recent economics meetings. If you put in “stephen moore economy” you get 65,700 hits. If you put in “stiglitz economy” you get 43,800. I see this as a real asymmetry...

  6. Sanjiv Das, Kris Mitchener, and Angela Vossmeyer: Bank Networks and Systemic Risk in the Great Depression: "The Global Crisis brought attention to how connections among financial institutions may make systems more prone to crises. Turning to a major financial crisis from the past, this column uses data from the Great Depression to study risk in the commercial banking network leading up to the crisis and how the network structure influenced the outcomes. It demonstrates that when the distribution of risk is more concentrated at the top of the system, as it was in 1929, fragility and the propensity for risk to spread increases...

  7. Alicia Sasser Modestino: Is the "Skills Gap" ReaL?: "Since the Great Recession, employers have cited a skills gap in which workers lack the education and experience needed to fill vacant jobs. While job requirements increased for many openings during the recession, the inverse has happened as the labor market has recovered...

  8. Lee Harris: Murderbot Will Return in… "Network Effect". A Full Novel by Martha Wells

  9. Matthew Yglesias: Great Tariff Debate of 1888: Trump’s Love of the McKinley Tariff: "Trump’s side won, and it was an unpopular disaster...

  10. Karl Smith: [Why Centrists Have to Become More Partisan(https://www.bloomberg.com/opinion/articles/2019-03-11/why-centrists-have-to-become-more-partisan): "In America’s polarized political climate, credibility within the party is a prerequisite for getting anything done...

  11. James Fallows: ET302: Is the Boeing 737 Max 8 to Blame?: "No one knows for sure—but here is where experts will be looking for clues...

  12. Herman Melville: Moby-Dick: "Ahab: 'Aye, aye! and I’ll chase him round Good Hope, and round the Horn, and round the Norway Maelstrom, and round perdition’s flames before I give him up. And this is what ye have shipped for, men! to chase that white whale on both sides of land, and over all sides of earth, till he spouts black blood and rolls fin out. What say ye, men, will ye splice hands on it, now? I think ye do look brave'...

  13. Ernst Renan: What Is a Nation?: "The essence of a nation is that all of its individual members have a great deal in common and also that they have forgotten many things. No French citizen knows whether he is a Burgund, an Alain, a Taifala, or a Visigoth. Every French citizen has forgotten St. Bartholomew’s Day and the thirteenth-century massacres in the Midi...

  14. Wikipedia: Cauchy Distribution

  15. Anna Mikusheva: Weak Instrumental Variables

  16. Max Roser and Esteban Ortiz-Ospina: Global Extreme Poverty

  17. Isaiah Andrews and James H. Stock: Weak Instruments and What to Do About Them

  18. Philip Auerswald: The Code Economy: A 40000-Year History

  19. Absolute lunacy from a politician who is the essence of a twit: Nigel Farage: The Betrayal of Brexit Is One of the Most Shameful Chapters in Our Country’s History: "498 MPs voted to trigger Article 50.... They all knew that the consequence was that the UK would leave the EU on March 29 2019, with or without a deal. And yet now they have decided to claim the vote was meaningless.... We are living through one of the most shameful chapters in our country’s history...

Continue reading "Fairly Recently: Must- and Should-Reads, and Writings... (March 13, 2019)" »


Modern Economic Growth: Eagle's-Eye View Slides

https://www.icloud.com/keynote/0uV-761YfOFH171v7LfWSara


#teachingeconomics #teachinggrowth #teachinghistory #moderneconomicgrowth #highlighted #berkeley
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Fairly Recently: Must- and Should-Reads, and Writings... (March 11, 2019)

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  1. KJV: John 5: "Now there is at Jerusalem by the sheep market a pool, which is called in the Hebrew tongue Bethesda, having five porches. In these lay a great multitude of impotent folk, of blind, halt, withered, waiting for the moving of the water. For an angel went down at a certain season into the pool, and troubled the water: whosoever then first after the troubling of the water stepped in was made whole of whatsoever disease he had...

  2. Edward Luce: Ivanka Trump and the Rise of the Stepford Daughter: "The first daughter’s drive to improve the skills of American workers mainly involves photo-ops. Washington’s most surreal event this week—an absurdly high bar—was Ivanka Trump’s roll-out of her workforce development council. It opened with her father calling the chief executive of America’s largest smartphone company 'Tim Apple'. Tim Cook barely flinched...

  3. Madeline Peltz: Tucker Carlson's interviews on 'Bubba The Love Sponge'...

  4. Benjamin Dreyer: Jeanine Pirro was permanently banned from Leonard’s of Great Neck after she tried to walk out with a table floral arrangement from a bat mitzvah she wasn’t even attending. So grain of salt on the constitutional scholarship...

  5. The Vela: A Leisurely Extinction

  6. Paul N. Van de Water: [More Evidence of Post-ACA Slowdown in Health Care Spending(https://www.cbpp.org/blog/more-evidence-of-post-aca-slowdown-in-health-care-spending): "In early 2010 we projected that federal debt would reach 289 percent of gross domestic product (GDP) by 2048; we now project 113 percent of GDP. Over half of that improvement stems from lower health care costs; the rest largely reflects lower interest rates. Although health care costs remain a major driver of future increases in federal spending, that shouldn’t obscure how much their projected costs have fallen in recent years...

  7. Nyum Bai: Our Menu —

  8. August (1) Five: Menu

  9. Marica Restaurant: Current Food & Drink Offerings

  10. Pete Buttigieg: On Pence's support of Trump: "How could he allow himself to become the cheerleader of the porn star presidency. Is it that he stopped believing in scripture when he started believing in Donald Trump?...

  11. Tobias S. Buckell: What Tools Does a Professional Fiction Writer Use?

  12. Microeconomic Insights: About: "Microeconomic Insights is a home for accessible summaries of high quality microeconomic research which informs the public about microeconomic issues that are, or should be, in the public’s eye...

  13. Emma Hyman

  14. KJV: Song of Moses and Miriam

  15. Wikipedia: Al Hunt

  16. Alfred, Lord Tennyson: Ulysses: "Tho' much is taken, much abides; and tho'/We are not now that strength which in old days/Moved earth and heaven, that which we are, we are...

Continue reading "Fairly Recently: Must- and Should-Reads, and Writings... (March 11, 2019)" »


Carville-Hunt "Two Old White Guys" Podcast

Carville-Hunt "Two Old White Guys" Podcast:

Albert Hunt

Edited for Coherence and Clarity

https://www.pscp.tv/w/1OwxWOzBQgkxQ?q=alhuntdc

Al Hunt: Brad Delong, a Rubin Democrat, a mainstream, a Clinton-Obama Democrat, if you will, has said in the [intra-]democratic wars: My side has lost. We can't form any coalitions with [even] a handful of moderate Republicans. Cap-and-trade was a Republican idea. Every single Republican basically turned their back.

Uh, Brad, are you there?...

As soon as you're with us, let us know.

Brad, you hit the smiley face.

We are going to ask Brad what this means for the Democratic Party’s [position] on major economic issues.

I think we have Brad, right?

Brad DeLong: [The Machine] says I am here.

Al Hunt: Terrific. I'm talking about your vox[.com] interview. I also note that you are one of the 750 most influential economists. James and I hope to be one of the 70,000 most influential podcasters at some point. We once again have been elevated by our guests.

James [Carville], let me turn it over to you to ask the first couple of questions to Brad about his new thesis.

Brad DeLong: May I first compliment the two of you?

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Fairly Recently: Must- and Should-Reads, and Writings... (March 10, 2019)

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  1. John Quiggin: Monopoly: Too Big to Ignore: "Two hundred years after the birth of Karl Marx and fifty years after the last Western upsurge of revolutionary ferment in 1968, the term 'monopoly capitalism' might seem like a relic of outmoded enthusiasms. But economists are increasingly coming to the view that monopolies, and associated market failures, have never been a bigger problem...

  2. Mary Beard: The Public Voice of Women: "As Homer has it, an integral part of growing up, as a man, is learning to take control of public utterance and to silence the female of the species.... Telemachus... says ‘speech’ is ‘men’s business’... authoritative public speech (not the kind of chatting, prattling or gossip that anyone–women included, or especially women–could do)...

  3. Fear of Reese Witherspoon Look-Alikes on the Pill

  4. Who Will Donald Trump Turn Out To Be?: "We have very little indication of what policies Donald Trump will try to follow or even what kind of president he will be. The U.S. press corps did an extraordinarily execrable job in covering the rise of Trump—even worse than it usually does. Even the most sophisticated of audiences—those interested in asset prices and how they are affected by government policies—have very little insight into Trump's views or those of his key associates...

  5. Yes, it is time for the center-left to pass the baton. But what does that mean, concretely, for policies? Paul Krugman gives his opinion: Paul Krugman: "A few thoughts inspired by @delong's 'Brad is really saying two things...

  6. Noah Smith: Book Review: The Revolt of the Public, by Martin Gurri: "A new framework... to... think about the political chaos...

  7. Sam Bowles (2011): Is Liberal Society a Parasite on Tradition?: "Markets and other liberal institutions... enhance rather than erode... values...

  8. CPPC: Senate Finance Committee Grills Drug Executives on Rising Prices, Criticize Them for Terrible Practices: "Grassley... Wyden... bipartisan investigation into the high price of insulin...

  9. Chye-Ching Huang: Fundamentally Flawed 2017 Tax Law Largely Leaves Low- and Moderate-Income Americans Behind: "A restructuring... can fix these flaws...

  10. Andrei Markevich: Russia in the Great War: Mobilisation, Grain, and Revolutio: "The economics and politics of the Russian grain and labour markets.... It was impossible simultaneously to mobilise 15 million males into the Russian army, procure the grain to feed them as soldiers, and avoid revolution...

  11. Wikipedia: Posset: "A posset (also historically spelled poshote, poshotte) was originally a popular British hot drink made of milk curdled with wine or ale, often spiced, which was often used as a remedy...

  12. Wikipedia: IBM 1620 - : "Many in the user community recall the 1620 being referred to as CADET, jokingly meaning 'Can't Add, Doesn't Even Try', referring to the use of addition tables in memory rather than dedicated addition circuitry.... The internal code name CADET was selected for the machine. One of the developers says that this stood for 'Computer with ADvanced Economic Technology', however others recall it as simply being one half of 'SPACE-CADET', where SPACE was the internal code name of the IBM 1401 machine, also then under development...

  13. Wikipedia: Charles, Duke of Orléans: "24 November 1394 – 5 January 1465: Now remembered as an accomplished medieval poet owing to the more than five hundred extant poems he produced, written in both French and English, during his 25 years spent as a prisoner of war and after his return to France...

  14. Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez: Automation Is a Good Thing: "In a talk at SXSW, the New York Congresswoman notes that automation is a net positive when the government offers a social safety net...

  15. Marcy Wheeler: @emptywheel: "There's a belief among Russian denialists that bc there's not a Tower in Moscow w/Trump's name on it, the conspiracy didn't happen. That's now how conspiracy law works...

Continue reading "Fairly Recently: Must- and Should-Reads, and Writings... (March 10, 2019)" »


Fairly Recently: Must- and Should-Reads, and Writings... (March 8, 2019)

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  1. Dana Goldstein: What’s a Flâneuse?

  2. Robert E. Scott: Record U.S. Trade Deficit in 2018 Reflects Failure of Trump’s Trade Policies

  3. Wikipedia: Confidence and Supply

  4. Gmail Help: Search Operators You Can Use with Gmail

  5. Michael Kades testified on Capitol Hill on Thursday March 7: Michael Kades: To Combat Rising U.S. Prescription Drug Prices, Let’s Try Competition

  6. Cathy Young: Who’s Afraid of The Bulwark?: "I don’t know what The Bulwark’s endgame is, but right now, it’s among a deplorably small number of outlets that get high marks for intellectual diversity and integrity...

  7. Wikipedia: Genetic History of the British Isles

  8. Publius Baebius Italicus: Ilias Latina

  9. Marcos Zapata: Guinea Pig Last Supper: "In this historic cathedral in the heart of Cusco, Peru, hangs a one-of-a kind religious and cultural painting that depicts a very unordinary twist on an otherwise common image... https://delong.typepad.com/.a/6a00e551f0800388340240a490f815200b-pi

  10. Bill Black and Mark Steiner: Clinton-Era Official Says Left Should Lead Following Center-Right Failures

  11. Ursula Vernon: An Unexpected Honor,: "Now, you’re probably all asking what whalefall has to do with awards ceremonies, or science fiction novelettes, and the answer is: absolutely nothing. But how often do I get to tell an audience this size about whalefall? So, thanks to my publishers, my husband Kevin, and thank you all. I’m glad you liked my story. Y’all have a good night...

  12. WebPlotDigitizer: Extract Data from Plots, Images, and Maps

  13. Barry Rice: The Carnivorous Plant FAQ: "Q: How did the Venus flytrap get its name? A: Heh heh heh. Heh heh heh heh. Heh heh heh heh...

  14. Rudyard Kipling.: The Merchantmen

  15. Paolo Gerbaudo: The Age of the Hyperleader: When Political Leadership Meets Social Media Celebrity: "In an era of profound suspicion towards party bureaucracies, digital media has delivered a new type of politician.... Political influence is now measured in part through social media metrics: likes, followers, and shares. A politician’s Twitter prowess–or lack thereof–can make or break a political career...

  16. Erik Tarloff: The Woman in Black https://books.google.com/books?isbn=1947856979

  17. Doug Jones: Nature Red in Tooth and Claw: "339-321 million years ago...

  18. Doug Jones: Devonian Days: "401-380 million years ago... the Devonian: Forests are spreading. The first tree, Wattieza, is kin to ferns and horsetails. It stands 10 meters tall. No leaves yet, just fronds. The first forests will absorb carbon dioxide, and cool the planet. Life is moving onto land... the 'fishapod' discovered in 2006... with both lungs and gills...

Continue reading "Fairly Recently: Must- and Should-Reads, and Writings... (March 8, 2019)" »


An Antiplatonic Twitter Dialogue on What the Wish to "Preserve a Cultural Centrism" Actually Means

As Noah Smith says: "Please stop I give up you can have all my money":

School of Athens

Noah Smith: 🐇: Write another post! I'd be interested to know how you think Obama abandoned the cultural centrist ground, specifically.

#MMT: Moral Money Tao: @samvega: "Obama abandoned the cultural centrist ground" by moving ever further right to appease Republican leaders. Who doesn't know this?

Brad DeLong: 🖖🏻: Obama abandoned the "cultural centrist" ground because he decided to be a Black person, unlike Clinton, who decided to be a white person. See?

Noah Smith: 🐇: But his race did not change AFAIK. What did change? Did he start acting more culturally "black" in his second term? I detected no change.

Continue reading "An Antiplatonic Twitter Dialogue on What the Wish to "Preserve a Cultural Centrism" Actually Means" »


Lying Liar Kevin Hassett Lies Again...

Unnamed

I have here a transcript from a week or so ago of Kevin Hassett on Fox Business telling transparent lies. Seriously: why does he bother? What does he gain? Is it really the case that AEI will have him back after things like this? WILL banks like JPM Chase will pay him to speak to conferences?

If so, they have really really really really bad judgment:

7:38:49 BARTIROMO: The Atlanta Federal Reserve on Friday issued its GDP forecast for the first quarter, it’s three-tenths of a percent. What was your reaction to this? I know that this changes a lot, by the way...

7:38:59 HASSETT: Sure it does, yeah...

7:39:00 BARTIROMO: You’ll probably revise it umpteen times, but 0.3%, obviously not great for the first quarter...

7:39:05 HASSETT: Right, well there are two things going on. The first is that we started the quarter out with a 300,000 jobs number, north of 300,000. And most of the time when you do that, you end up with a 3% quarter. And so we’re gonna get jobs again this week, and if we get another really big number, and I think we’ll have a lot of confidence that something as low as three-tenths isn’t gonna happen. But there is this weird pattern in the data all the way back to 2010, that the first quarter tends to be about 1% below the average for the year. So if we think as we do at the White House that we’re gonna have about a 3% year, then right now, if you wanted me to put a number on the table, I’d say it’s probably gonna be about a 2% first quarter.

7:39:38 BARTIROMO: Okay, so is that largely because of the shutdown, or what happened in the first quarter...

7:39:41 HASSETT: No, it’s because of the seasonality thing, they don’t seasonally adjust the data correctly in Q1, it’s a weird technical thing. And you know, we could go to the blackboard, I know you’d love it, but your viewers would probably never get me invited back again...

These are lies.

2019 03 08 First Quarter GDP Seasonals numbers

Continue reading "Lying Liar Kevin Hassett Lies Again..." »


On "On Falling Neutral Real Rates, Fiscal Policy, and the Risk of Secular Stagnation:

I have been thinking about this by Łukasz Rachel and Lawrence H. Summers this week: On Falling Neutral Real Rates, Fiscal Policy, and the Risk of Secular Stagnation.

It says an awful lot of true things. The average "neutral" 10-year safe real interest rate consistent with full employment in the Global North does look like it has fallen from 4% per year in the 1990s to -0.5% per year today. That does pose a huge problem for central banks that seek to use monetary policy s as the principal depression-fighting tool: a small negative shock that reduces this rate by only a little bit more would drive an economy into territory where the central bank cannot do its job. During this period of decline, increased government debts have put perhaps 2%-points of upward pressure on the neutral rate: the actual decline has been 6.5%-points.

But I find myself uncertain on what conclusions to draw from their paper. They focus on only one of what I think are three key interest-profit-discount rates in play here:

  1. There is the (short or long) real safe interest rate on the securities of governments that issue reserve currencies and thus possess exorbitant privilege. This is down to today's -0.5% from 3% 20 years ago and 4.5% 40 years ago.

  2. There is the long-term real risky discount rate at which the cash flows accruing to owners of capital are discounted in the market—the expected return on financial investments in stocks. This is at to 5% today, up from 4% 20 years ago, down from 12% 40 years ago, and down from 6% 50 years ago.

  3. There is the societal profit rate earned by new investments in physical or intellectual capital. This is ??? to today's ???, from ??? 20 years ago and from ??? 40 years ago.

This third social profit rate is in some sense the fundamental opportunity-benefit-of-investment ground out by the real economy of production and distribution on top of which the financial superstructure is built.

The second is the quotient of profit flows over the market value stock, and takes the societal profit rate returns to society's capital and adds to them the amount of monopoly rents captured by enterprises, subtracts from them labor rents and spillover benefits, both organizational and technological, that are not captured by those who undertake the actions that generate those spillovers, and then values those cash flows at the long-term risky discount rate.

The first of safe interest rate is the second minus the liquidity and safety terms that lower the required rate of return on safe assets.

Https www brookings edu wp content uploads 2019 03 On Falling Neutral Real Rates Fiscal Policy and the Risk of Secular Stagnation pdf

Łukasz Rachel and Lawrence H. Summers focus on rate (1): the (short or long) real interest rate on the safe securities of governments that issue reserve currencies and thus possess exorbitant privilege. The problem is that the wedge between this (1) safe interest rate and the risky discount rate (2)—the rate at which risky cash flows are discounted—is worse than poorly understood by economists: it is not understood at all.

Continue reading "On "On Falling Neutral Real Rates, Fiscal Policy, and the Risk of Secular Stagnation:" »


Fairly Recently: Must- and Should-Reads, and Writings... (March 6, 2019)

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  • The Weak Instruments Problem: "This is the weak instruments problem. As you get more and more data, wz/vz is not heading for zero, and even if it were your estimated βIV0 is not headed for β, but is rather headed for β+δ...

  • I Concede: The Haters and the Trolls and the Botnets of Macedonia Have Rendered Their Verdict, and I Accept It: @AustanGoolsbee has won,_ and will represent Neoliberal Economic Academia in the next round of the 2019 Chief Neoliberal Shill Twitter Challenge. Austan Goolsbee will face off against noted ex-academic and San Francisco flaneur @Noahpinion in the semifinals of the meetup region...

  • Can I pull it out at the last minute?: I'm still behind 53-47, in spite of a million-twitter-impression day yesterday: Neoliberal: @AustanGoolsbee (5) Former CEA Chair and Professor at U Chicago vs. @delong (4) Economic Historian at Berkeley...


  1. Greg Sargent: A Centrist Democrat Explains Why It’s Time to Give The Left a Chance

  2. Assiah: "Also known as Olam Asiyah, עוֹלָם עֲשִׂיָה in Hebrew, literally "the World of Action") is the last of the four spiritual worlds of the Kabbalah —Atziluth, Beriah, Yetzirah, 'Asiyah—based on the passage in Isaiah 43:7...

  3. Wikipedia: Almost Famous: "Almost Famous is a 2000 American comedy-drama film written and directed by Cameron Crowe and starring Billy Crudup, Frances McDormand, Kate Hudson, and Patrick Fugit. It tells the story of a teenage journalist writing for Rolling Stone in the early 1970s, his touring with the fictitious rock band Stillwater, and his efforts to get his first cover story published... four Academy Awards nominations, including a win for Best Original Screenplay... 2001 Grammy Award for Best Compilation Soundtrack Album.... Roger Ebert hailed it the best film of the year as well as the ninth-best film of the 2000s. It also won two Golden Globe Awards, for Best Motion Picture–Musical or Comedy and Best Supporting Actress–Motion Picture (Hudson). In a 2016 international poll conducted by BBC, Almost Famous was ranked the 79th greatest film since 2000...

  4. KJV: Isaiah 6: "In the year that king Uzziah died I saw also the Lord sitting upon a throne, high and lifted up, and his train filled the temple. Above it stood the seraphims: each one had six wings; with twain he covered his face, and with twain he covered his feet, and with twain he did fly. And one cried unto another, and said, "Holy, holy, holy, is the Lord of hosts: the whole earth is full of his glory". And the posts of the door moved at the voice of him that cried, and the house was filled with smoke. Then said I, "Woe is me! for I am undone; because I am a man of unclean lips, and I dwell in the midst of a people of unclean lips: for mine eyes have seen the King, the Lord of hosts". Then flew one of the seraphims unto me, having a live coal in his hand, which he had taken with the tongs from off the altar: And he laid it upon my mouth, and said, "Lo, this hath touched thy lips; and thine iniquity is taken away, and thy sin purged". Also I heard the voice of the Lord, saying, "Whom shall I send, and who will go for us?" Then said I, "Here am I; send me"...

  5. KJV: Luke 10:25: "And, behold, a certain lawyer stood up, and tempted him, saying, Master, what shall I do to inherit eternal life?...

  6. hilzoy: "If Hans von Spakovsky says it, then surely it must be true! (Dissolves in giggles): 'Hans Von Spakovsky, “I haven’t seen any evidence of actual violations of the law, which is usually a basis before you start an investigation. Adam Schiff seems to be copying Joseph McCarthy in wanting to open up investigations when they don’t have any evidence of wrongdoing”...'

  7. SPECIES: "This is my personal favorite animal video of all time...

  8. Paul Waldmann: The Dishonest Smearing of Ilhan Omar: "this punishment of criticism of Israel is exactly what the freshman congresswoman was complaining about, and has on multiple occasions. The fact that no one seems to acknowledge that this is her complaint shows how spectacularly disingenuous Omar’s critics are being...

  9. Mark Milian: @markmilian: "Coinbase says it accidentally hired a group of mercenaries, who sold cyberweapons to Saudi Arabia and Sudan, and is now firing them...

  10. Robert Reich: @RBReich: "In less than a week, we've learned that the President of the United States: --Tried to block a merger to punish a news outlet --Knew about the release of illegally obtained email --Paid off a mistress, violating election law --Demanded security clearance for a family member...

  11. Bret Stephens's claims that although "people" do, he would never never use an official position to retaliate against someone who had annoyed him are worth what you think they are: Laura McGann: NYT Columnist Bret Stephens Inadvertently Explains Why Women Don’t Report Sexual Harassment...

  12. Sean Illing: Mortal Republic: Edward Watts on what America can learn from Rome’s collapse: "The Roman republic destroyed itself. Are we on a similar path?...

  13. Anna Mikusheva: What Are Weak Instruments?

  14. Charles Moore: Will the Daily Mail’s volte-face on Brexit make the slightest difference? | The Spectator: "My guess is that Mail readers will find it less fun hating the European Research Group than the ‘metropolitan liberal elite’, but the traditional key to tabloid success is the Glenda Slagg principle of kicking someone, then praising them, then kicking them all over again. My only concern for the Mail’s future lies in the fact that Geordie Greig comes from the officer class. This violates ancient Mail rules by which the Harmsworth family are remote, regal figures beloved by their serfs, and the actual dirty work is done by foul-mouthed NCOs who never leave the office. Geordie goes out to dinner, has many friends, enjoys life, and wishes to win the respect of peers (in both senses of that word). He is a talented journalist, but these are severe handicaps to running Associated’s charnel-house...

  15. Alan J. Auerbach, Martin N. Baily, Dean Baker, Robert J. Barro, Ben S. Bernanke, Jared Bernstein, Alan S. Blinder, Michael J. Boskin, Arthur C. Brooks, John H. Cochrane, Karen Dynan, Janice Eberly, Douglas W. Elmendorf, Martin S. Feldstein, Jason Furman, William G. Gale, Ted Gayer, Austan D. Goolsbee, Alan Greenspan, Robert E. Hall, Douglas J. Holtz-Eakin, R. Glenn Hubbard, Randall S. Kroszner, Alan B. Krueger, Edward P. Lazear, Lawrence Lindsey, N. Gregory Mankiw, Donald B. Marron, Peter R. Orszag, Adam S. Posen, James Michael Poterba, Christina D. Romer, Harvey S. Rosen, Cecilia Elena Rouse, Jay C. Shambaugh, Robert J. Shapiro, Betsey Stevenson, James H. Stock, Michael R. Strain, Phillip Swagel, John B. Taylor, Laura D. Tyson, Justin Wolfers, and Mark M. Zandi: Letter in Support of the Nomination of Kevin Hassett to be Chairman of the Council of Economic Advisers: "As economists we all agree that the Nation would be well served if Kevin Hassett is confirmed as Chairman of the Council of Economic Advisers...

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