"Fusion is fifty years away, and always will be? I hate that joke. I'm really trying to get it out of the English language." Dennis Whyte, director of MIT's Department of Nuclear Science and Engineering, and winner of the 2013 Nuclear Fusion prize, may get his wish, as his talk (1h38 YT) demonstrates. [more inside]
March in August: thousands rally against Tony Abbott by taking to streets:
Thousands of protesters have taken to the streets for the latest wave of protests against the federal government.[more inside]
Demonstrations were held in cities across the country, including Sydney, Melbourne, Brisbane and Adelaide, to protest against a range of of social and economic policies being implemented by the Abbott government.
About 3,000 protesters marched through Sydney, voicing their concerns on a range of issues, from Australia's asylum seeker policies, to education cuts and the humanitarian crisis in Gaza.
Let's admit it: Britain is now a developing country.
Gender equality? The WEF ranks us behind Nicaragua and Lesotho. Investment by business? The Economist thinks we are struggling to keep up with Mali. Let me put it more broadly, Britain is a rich country accruing many of the stereotypical bad habits of a developing country.Aditya Chakrabortty discusses the increasing hollowing out of the UK economy, as well as the City as an economically distorting resource curse.
The poor in America: In need of help Some 15% of Americans (around 46.2m people) live below the poverty line, as Ms Hamilton does. You have to go back to the early 1960s—before Lyndon Johnson’s Great Society programmes—to find a significantly higher rate. Many more, like Ms Dunham, have incomes above the poverty line but nevertheless cannot meet their families’ basic monthly needs, and there are signs that their number is growing. Once upon a time the fates of these people weighed heavily on American politicians. Ronald Reagan boasted about helping the poor by freeing them from having to pay federal income tax. Jack Kemp, Bob Dole’s running-mate in 1996, sought to spearhead a “new war on poverty.” George W. Bush called “deep, persistent poverty…unworthy of our nation’s promise”. No longer. Budgets are tight and the safety net is expensive. Mitt Romney famously said he was not “concerned about the very poor” because they have a safety net to take care of them. Mr Obama’s second-term plan mentioned poverty once, and on the trail he spoke gingerly of “those aspiring to the middle class”. “Poor” is a four-letter word.
Over the last few months, a few cities around the United States have experienced their own, unique, fiscal crisis: bankruptcy. [more inside]
Mother Jones: The 10 'Occupy' candidates vying for seats in the US House Of Representatives and Senate and their prospects.
The Economist Intelligence Unit recently presented a 6 minute animated infographic summary of their global Women’s Economic Opportunity Index as designed by data visualisation agency JESS3. [more inside]
Right Wing Radio Duck "Donald's life is turned upside-down by the current economic crisis and he finds himself unemployed and falling behind on his house payments. As his frustration turns into despair Donald discovers a seemingly sympathetic voice coming from his radio named Glenn Beck. "
After the Crisis Once this economic crisis blows over, a lot of companies will need their logos redesigned. Here's a dozen or so.
Robots ruined the economy. But even robots are affected by bad financial times. Nonetheless, robots help relieve the stress of financial worries. There are worse things than a financial crisis.
A list of cut, halved, and quartered items from the Senate version of the stimulus bill was released to CNN. [more inside]
Much of the Middle East has been without reliable internet access recently due to the somewhat suspicious cutting of four seperate underwater cables, in seperate locations, within a few days of each other. The problem has been alleviated by re-routing of traffic until ships can reach the cables to repair them, a process which may take several weeks. The problem was initially believed to be caused by anchors of passing ships, but that has since been retracted and deals have already been signed by several companies for new cables. [more inside]
Did Vladimir Putin really turn around Russia's economy? Washington Post's Fred Hyatt attempts to refute the conventional wisdom that Putin was responsible for Russia's turnaround from the economic instability of the "disastrous" 90s by offering a thorough counter argument to prove that Putin's effect on the economy was just the reverse. [more inside]
Each week, David Warsh publishes a new essay about the principals of economics. Previous topics have included rock 'n' roll economics, print journalism, and game theory. He sets his task and carries it out, and he's been at it for more than five years now.
The UBS Bank calculated how long it takes an average worker around the world to earn enough to buy a Big Mac. Workers in Tokyo were the fastest: Tokyo 10 minutes, New York 13 minutes, London 16 minutes, Hong Kong 17 minutes, Paris 21 minutes, Moscow 25 minutes, Rome 39 minutes, Beijing 44 minutes, Manila 81 minutes, Jakarta 86 minutes. Is this a fair comparison? Is it something that will change people's perspective about the rest of the world?
Economic Freedom of the World: 2006 Annual Report (Summary [PDF], full table [PDF, p.13]). Winners: Hong Kong, Singapore, New Zealand, Switzerland, and the USA. Losers: Zimbabwe, Myanmar and the Congos. How free are you? And why does it matter anyway? (PDF, HTML)