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The world of the laid-off techie.

The world of the laid-off techie. "Human resource experts say the underemployment trend in the current economic cycle is just starting to emerge. Many workers got the ax when mass layoffs peaked in the summer and fall of 2001, and they coasted on several months of severance and unemployment insurance, which generally lasts six months. With the tech job market still in the doldrums, they're now considering new gigs as waitresses, bartenders, forklift drivers or baby sitters--anything to pay the rent. " I wish the media hadn't/didn't focus so much attention on the suits who seem to only be able to "fail upwards" versus the folks in the trenches. (via /.)
posted by owillis on Feb 11, 2002 - 64 comments

 

How geeks can do away with cash and be their own banks. We've been around the topic of alternative economics a few times before on MeFi, but this piece from the reliably clever Shift makes it all clear to me. How you can do it, and why. And it actually suggests that programmers are the best people to manage a new money system. There's even a Bay Area monetary guru to hand. Does this make as much sense to anyone else as it does to me?
posted by theplayethic on Feb 6, 2002 - 6 comments

Wealth Spawns Corruption. Socialist economies could be more at risk from corruption than Liberal ones. Ironically, wealth condensation poses the greatest danger to economies that impose constraints on the accumulation of great wealth - broadly speaking, Socialist economies. Liberal economies that maintain free and unrestricted trade are less susceptible.
posted by stbalbach on Jan 28, 2002 - 8 comments

The "Pardon Effect" - economic theory applied to the death penalty

The "Pardon Effect" - economic theory applied to the death penalty Pardons increase homicide rates. "The pardon effect is a matter of simple market economics... pardons reduce the chances that convicted killers will pay the ultimate price for committing murder. Thus a pardon represents a decrease in the cost of committing the crime and is accompanied by an increase in the homicide rate. Conversely, if you increase the "cost" of committing murder by executing a larger share of convicted killers, then economic theory suggests that the murder rate will fall" . The chairman of the economics department at the University of Colorado claims to have the data to support the theory from their analysis of all 6,143 death sentences handed out between 1977 and 1997 in the United States.
posted by Voyageman on Jan 24, 2002 - 23 comments

Crime in the Suites.

Crime in the Suites. William Greider claims that the Enron collapse demonstrates the failure of market orthodoxy.
posted by Ty Webb on Jan 22, 2002 - 29 comments

CD prices to drop

CD prices to drop due to competition from the net? "(We) believe music software CD prices may soon permanently decline to $9.99 given weak sell-through of new artists and continued Internet piracy that appears unstoppable."

Is there an economic model for competition from piracy pushing prices down? This seems to contradict the rhetoric about the rest of us paying more because of pirates.
posted by NortonDC on Dec 28, 2001 - 53 comments

What do Greenspan, Enron and the number 11 all have in common? Economist and NYT colimnist Paul Krugman notes with not too much irony that "Just one month ago the James A. Baker III Institute presented Alan Greenspan with its Enron Prize." (a big wince over regretable timing, and the emphasis is mine) No big conspiracy here, but the general thrust of Krugman's column (NYT link) is that somethings got to give if things are to again get real (good). Lots of interesting under-reported economic factoids in the article make for enlightening reading.
posted by BentPenguin on Dec 14, 2001 - 3 comments

The Nash equilibrium

The Nash equilibrium
So at the present time I seem to be thinking rationally again in the style that is characteristic of scientists. However this is not entirely a matter of joy as if someone returned from physical disability to good physical health. One aspect of this is that rationality of thought imposes a limit on a person's concept of his relation to the cosmos....from John F. Nash Jr.'s autobiography for the 1994 Nobel Prize for Economics.
posted by riley370 on Dec 12, 2001 - 8 comments

Walk for Capitalism

Walk for Capitalism is scheduled for this weekend (Sunday, December 2nd) in over 100 cities around the world. One of the few rallies actually for something, and certainly first global campaign for capitalism in history. Will you stand up for the principles set forth in their position statement?
posted by dagny on Nov 29, 2001 - 34 comments

White House predicts budget deficits until 2005.

White House predicts budget deficits until 2005. Uh... cause of the war, not monster tax cuts to businesses and billionaires... yeah, that's the ticket!
posted by mattpusateri on Nov 28, 2001 - 19 comments

Recession? What recession?

Recession? What recession? "An economic research group declared Monday that the United States has been in a recession since March of this year." It's official.
posted by shoepal on Nov 26, 2001 - 7 comments

Does an appearance in the 1997 Disney flop "Flubber" make a classic T-bird worth more?

Does an appearance in the 1997 Disney flop "Flubber" make a classic T-bird worth more? Or less?
posted by kcmoryan on Nov 23, 2001 - 3 comments

Here's

Here's an interesting article about the economics of globalization.
posted by electro on Nov 13, 2001 - 12 comments

Why the world needs America to cheer up

Why the world needs America to cheer up This article claims America and New York in particular have lost faith in an economic recovery. Can any New Yorkers tell me whether this is true? A side note: The (London) Times has been excellent since 9/11 IMO, although the site desperately needs a redesign. I'll do it! Employ me!
posted by Summer on Oct 25, 2001 - 8 comments

Speaking of Tokyo Rose:

Speaking of Tokyo Rose: AOL/Time Warner, with assistance from the Bush administration, signed a "landmark deal" with China. AOL/TW gets to broadcast a Chinese-language station in the area of China that already gets Western programming (although illegally), and in exchange AOL/TW agrees to broadcast a Chinese state sponsored English language channel in Los Angeles, New York and Houston. "We are very pleased to have achieved this landmark agreement, which represents a significant step in the growing relationship between AOL Time Warner and the people of China," said CEO Gerald Levin in a statement. Why does this make my skin crawl?
posted by bclark on Oct 23, 2001 - 17 comments

Recognising "Renegage Economics"?

Recognising "Renegage Economics"? Joseph Stiglitz, who was famously cast into the wilderness by the IMF and World Bank, walked off with a share of this year's Nobel Prize for Economics, for his work on the asymmetric benefits of unrestricted "open markets": in short, the way that promoting "free trade" favours the developed nations over the developing. A calculated fuck-you to the neo-liberal mainstream, or a recognition that the critique of globalisation extends well beyond street protesters?
posted by holgate on Oct 10, 2001 - 8 comments

The Mullings Plan for Global Economic Recovery

The Mullings Plan for Global Economic Recovery - Would this plan effectively stimulate the economy and also benefit the world at large? What do you think will get us out of this slump?
posted by revbrian on Sep 9, 2001 - 11 comments

Is Wage Insurance the Answer?

Is Wage Insurance the Answer? Central to the ongoing debate on globalization is whether free trade is a good thing or not because it pits capital against labor. Like a lot of policy issues (and politics :) trade helps some but hurts others, while polarizing and often making enemies of people on either side of the debate. Wage insurance might provide a middle ground where people can come together. (more inside!)
posted by kliuless on Sep 6, 2001 - 6 comments

Percent of World Military Spending.

Percent of World Military Spending. The US and its allies dwarf the rest of the world in what it spends on defense. On the one hand I see the need to bring overwhelming force in a conflict and I think just having it is in itself stabilizing. But I can also see money and resources put to better use elsewhere (e.g. healthcare, education, basic research) the effects of which I think might even do more to affect global peace and prosperity than any loss that may obtain from a reduced defense budget. (other Thoughts of the Fortnight by J. Bradford DeLong including this draft he presented with Larry Summers! at the Fed symposium in Jackson Hole :)
posted by kliuless on Sep 1, 2001 - 36 comments

The American Worker:

The American Worker: Labor Day is coming up, so its an opportune time for the AFL-CIO to release a poll saying how unhappy workers are. But is this just a by-product of a (basically) stagnant economy with the drumbeat of layoffs ever present, business running roughshod over their employees, employees not realizing how good they have it - ready to sue at the drop of a hat, or business as usual? (plus: Unions in Hollywood doing their own thing)
posted by owillis on Aug 31, 2001 - 49 comments

Argentine Peso Crashing, Provinces Pay in 'Patacon'

Argentine Peso Crashing, Provinces Pay in 'Patacon'
The new scrip will be accepted, officials hope, until the recent US bailout makes it possible to print pesos. The IMF posted 8B dollars last week, at which time 'patacon' was being used in ATMs (Surprise!) I like the above articles noting that it "fits into a wallet like money" --- was there ever a case of design problems in emergency paper currency?
posted by rschram on Aug 27, 2001 - 6 comments

F*ckedEconomy?

F*ckedEconomy? Cuts in interest rates don't seem to be helping. Layoffs persist (and not just tech/dotcoms). The market bounces, but can it sustain itself? Some say the market will rebound in the 2nd quarter of next year, but these are the same people who saw an uptick coming this fall. Are we headed towards a recession, again? Lucent even had to sell their golf course.
posted by owillis on Jul 31, 2001 - 12 comments

Alberta will face a disastrous competitive and economic disadvantage

Alberta will face a disastrous competitive and economic disadvantage if Canada signs the Kyoto accord. Meanwhile, this year has been one of the worst for smog in Toronto. Some municipalities in Ontario are voluntarily looking towards alternate energy sources because they feel, in the long run the costs will be lower (lower health costs, avoiding higher fossil fuel costs, etc. - sorry, no link) What do you think? Is it possible to have economically viable alternative energy, and is the US setting a bad example for countries that feel they need to compete?
posted by nprigoda on Jul 24, 2001 - 12 comments

This is truly awesome.

This is truly awesome. Awesome. Awesome. Awesome. Awesome. Awesome.

Just the best use of flash, collaborative model/data building and use of interactive interface to explain a complex issue... i.e. the interconnections of money, influence and power in boardrooms of the global economy.

Conceived designed and built by Josh ON and the FutureFarmers I think it's going to move to a more permanent and snappier URL once it's fully ready for prime-time... I hope Josh and the gang don't mind me posting it here... but it's just too good not too... It genuinely deserves a lot of praise and attention, IMHO.
posted by blackbeltjones on Jul 19, 2001 - 24 comments


Smoking creates "indirect positive effects."

Smoking creates "indirect positive effects." A report from tobacco giant Philip Morris concluded that the Czech government saved money because of the "indirect positive effects" of the early deaths of cigarette-smokers. PM makes about 80 percent of the cigarettes smoked in the Czech Republic. Said a Philip Morris spokesman: "Tobacco is a controversial industry, but we are still an industry and sometimes we need some economic data on our industry."
posted by tranquileye on Jul 17, 2001 - 39 comments

The Economics of Aesthetics

The Economics of Aesthetics Warning, free registration is required
This article points out an interesting problem with calculating how much a product is worth... How much is aesthetics worth to the consumer? How do you even calculate that? (via Signal vs. Noise.)
posted by chason on Jul 12, 2001 - 1 comment

B.C.'s top commodity: marijuana

B.C.'s top commodity: marijuana New police statistics suggest marijuana has become one of B.C.'s largest industries -- even bigger than logging -- with annual production valued at $6 billion.

...Imagine 6 billion in lost tax revenues...
posted by cburton on Jul 7, 2001 - 27 comments


Optimism:

Optimism: Was the bust really a Bust (See below)? Douglas Rushkoff doesn't think so. But then, he's a pretty optimistic guy, if you ask me. (Warning, his article links to MetaFilter... Does that count as a self-link?)
posted by LAM on Jul 5, 2001 - 6 comments

Is the downturn over?

Is the downturn over? Looks like the dotcom downturn is levelling. Have most of the bad ideas seem to have shaken out of the market?
posted by TNLNYC on Jul 5, 2001 - 23 comments

It's about time.

It's about time. "Canada and the 33 other governments negotiating the proposed hemispheric free-trade pact finally released a draft version of the deal on Tuesday, almost three months after they made a promise to do so... At a trade ministers' meeting in Buenos Aires the first week of April, Canada pushed for the release of the document, which contains many bracketed sections, or areas on which there is no agreement."
posted by tranquileye on Jul 3, 2001 - 1 comment

the arrogance of wealth

the arrogance of wealth from of all places the notoriously faux-american national post.

"Be nice to business and rich people. They pay the bills."

excuse me, but i don't see any millionaires paying my bills.
posted by will on Jul 3, 2001 - 111 comments

"At some point

"At some point Yahoo! will shift emphasis towards a billing relationship, that is as good as fact. What they need to decide, however, is whether to lead with a subscription or ISP model."
posted by grambo on Jun 28, 2001 - 14 comments

Currently, consumer personal debt is at an all time high, and at the same time we're being inundated with ads asking us to "live richly" and pay for all those "priceless" moments with credit. Credit card companies have maintained a steady stream of advertising that focuses on living in the now, and worrying about the consequences later. Without discounting personal responsibility, should credit card companies be left to advertise their message unfettered, or does anyone think they are too good and perhaps somewhat responsible for the high consumer debt levels?
posted by mathowie on Jun 20, 2001 - 51 comments

Another problem with the alternative minimum tax.

Another problem with the alternative minimum tax. One of the problems with this tax was discussed back in May when it was realized that the AMT would substantially cut into the tax rebates of many. Now there is a new twist: People who did not cash out stock options before the downturn and are now sitting on a tax bill larger than all their assets combined.
posted by Nothing on Jun 19, 2001 - 6 comments

The global distribution of income is becoming ever more unequal.

The global distribution of income is becoming ever more unequal. One of the proposed solutions? More charity by the ultra-rich.
posted by schoolie on Jun 18, 2001 - 10 comments

Vive la California!

Vive la California! France passed by California in rankings of world economies.
posted by msacheson on Jun 15, 2001 - 21 comments

Vote for Sweatshop Retailer of the Year

Vote for Sweatshop Retailer of the Year As the Retail Council of Canada is poised to present its annual Retailer of the Year Award to another of their favourite corporations, the Maquila Solidarity Network is ready to follow suit with our second annual "Sweatshop Retailer of the Year Awards." Categories include Sweatshop Retailer of the Year Award, Sweatshop Smokesceen Award and Sweatshop Transparency Award. Voting is open until June 17th.
posted by elgoose on Jun 9, 2001 - 4 comments

Let the American Boycott of CO2-Denying Corporations Begin

Let the American Boycott of CO2-Denying Corporations Begin Great Op-Ed Piece in the NYTimes by T. Friedman: Using the Market to Defeat Republican's Kyoto Dismissal: Mega-dittos Rush!
posted by ParisParamus on Jun 1, 2001 - 19 comments

Abolish corporate taxes!?

Abolish corporate taxes!? Just saw this on c-span. I doubt it'll happen, but this is the view of our Treasury Secratary (and former CEO of Alcoa). It's on the frontpage of the FT, wonder if it'll make headlines in the States.
posted by kliuless on May 20, 2001 - 15 comments

"The Price Of Motherhood"

"The Price Of Motherhood" Ann Crittenden explores the contradictory nature of child-rearing in our society. "The policies of American business, government, and the law do not reflect Americans’ stated values. Across the board, individuals who assume the role of nurturer are punished and discouraged from performing the very tasks that everyone agrees are essential. " Do you agree with Crittenden's assessment? If so, what steps can be taken to find a balance between what's good for society and business and what's good for kids? (Assuming that the two are mutually exclusive.)
posted by Dreama on May 10, 2001 - 7 comments

¿Headed south anytime soon?

¿Headed south anytime soon? This fun, if somewhat depressing, little site is the work of the South to the Future gang. These wicked, evil folks have taken it upon themselves to try and educate the masses here in the SF bay area. What troubles me is despite the pervasive nature of the dang ol' Innernet on our everyday lives, I don't see a lot of people buying into causes of this nature. Maybe I am just jaded and exhausted from dodging SUVs all over town. I mean, there are a lot of hills in SF so why shouldn't people have monster 4X4s? On a lighter note, this seems to be a neat little side project of theirs.....
posted by donkeysuck on Apr 20, 2001 - 14 comments

corporate totalitarianism and the ftaa:

corporate totalitarianism and the ftaa: Activists will gather in Quebec City, Canada on April 11, 2001 to protest the upcoming Summit of the Americas (SOA) meeting. The purpose of the SOA, which will be held April 18-22, is to hammer out the first full text of the Free Trade Area of the Americas (FTAA), a proposed agreement that would turn the entire Western Hemisphere (except Cuba) into the largest international trading bloc in history.
posted by kliuless on Apr 10, 2001 - 3 comments

Voters voting their concience rather than their pocketbooks (via IHT).

Voters voting their concience rather than their pocketbooks (via IHT). Now, this is a good development IMHO. More inside.
posted by CRS on Mar 27, 2001 - 10 comments

California's Energy Crisis,

California's Energy Crisis, minute by minute. Interesting to watch, even when you feel that we're all over-reacting a bit.
posted by gazould on Mar 26, 2001 - 18 comments

The Euro.

The Euro. I have a question for all of the Euro-zone mefi members. Do regular folks in Europe think the varied governments will come together for the economic benefit of the whole or will regional differences doom the new currency?
posted by CRS on Mar 26, 2001 - 9 comments

California Blackouts Inevitable

California Blackouts Inevitable says the U.S. Govt Energy Secretary. He is against price caps. It seems there is a lack of understanding on his part to grasp a *public good* that benefits all. Having a few producers control a market with a high cost for competitors to enter the market to form true competition screams for some control. Particularly for a commodity that business and people a like use to drive the overall economy. Since the economy is in such great shape maybe we don't need these controls [sic].
posted by vanderwal on Mar 16, 2001 - 9 comments

All Good No Bad

All Good No Bad Singapore is a country where markets are perfect and it is known globally as the economic miracle. A country where politics, intellectual life and criticism is sacrificed on the altar of the market. A nightmare, should I say?
(Link courtesy of Arts & Letters Daily)
posted by asamee on Feb 24, 2001 - 0 comments

Beyond the bar code:

Beyond the bar code: Tags on retail products will send radio signals to their manufacturers, collecting information about consumer habits -- and raising privacy concerns. Radio tag technology is already here, used in fields such in livestock, freight-train cargo and highway tolls. The only barrier to widespread use is consumer products is price. When they can be made for a penny, expect to see them everywhere. From the March issue of MIT Technology Review.
posted by jhiggy on Feb 20, 2001 - 13 comments

Anti-globalisation protesters "make me want to vomit"

Anti-globalisation protesters "make me want to vomit" says Michael Moore, head of the World Trade Organisation. Which is funny, since *he* makes *me* want to vomit, too. "Because the poorest people on our planet, they are the ones that need us the most", says Mr. Moore. Oh, the sincerity in his words...
posted by tobyslater on Feb 6, 2001 - 42 comments

Is the US really entering a recession?

Is the US really entering a recession? Even with recent layoffs, the last time unemployement was this low before 1999 was 1970. And maybe a recession is not such a bad idea, what with spending outmaching saving in recent years. [more inside]
posted by croutonsupafreak on Feb 3, 2001 - 3 comments

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