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 -
Wealth Spawns Corruption
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 that maintain free and unrestricted trade are less susceptible.
posted by stbalbach
on Jan 28, 2002 -
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 -
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 -
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 -
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 -
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 -
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 -
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 -
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 -
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 -
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 -
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 -
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 -
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 -
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 -
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 -
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 -
"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 -
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 -
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 -
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 -
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 -
"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 -
¿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
posted by donkeysuck
on Apr 20, 2001 -
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 -
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 -
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 -
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 -
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 -