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Some weeks I'm lucky to make £500

As the UK coalition government plans swingeing cuts and students take to the streets to protest, one mother asks us to remember the 'Nouveau Pauvre'. Some commentators react unfavourably to her impending 'austerity Christmas'. [more inside]
posted by mippy on Dec 5, 2010 - 58 comments

Donald Duck And Glenn Beck Remixed In Cartoon (SLYT)

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. "
posted by Arthur Phillips Jones Jr on Oct 2, 2010 - 52 comments

Mountains beyond mountains

Earlier this week, Toxie, NPR's cutest toxic asset died. One of the mortgages bundled into this asset was an investment property in Bradenton, Florida, which, like many Florida homes, has never been occupied or served as anything other than a financial instrument. Boston.com's Big Picture recently took a look from above at the effects that this (and previous) housing bubbles have had on the development of Florida's cities and landscapes. How do you design a city that nobody plans to live in? (Previously)
posted by schmod on Oct 1, 2010 - 82 comments

Our new robo-signing overlords...

From his cubicle inside a sprawling beige stucco building, Stephan works as the leader of the document execution team for GMAC Mortgage. He has signed off on as many as 10,000 foreclosures in a month, according to court documents. That's barely a minute per case... [more inside]
posted by ghharr on Sep 25, 2010 - 96 comments

Not just a city in Egypt

Cairo, Illinois is mostly abandoned. It was once a thriving city of 15,000, but the Mississippi barges don't stop there anymore, and racial turmoil, including a three-year boycott of white-owned businesses that refused to hire black workers, killed the town's economy. The Cairo Project, from Southern Illinois University, is a good overview of Cairo's history and its current situation. Can punk label Plan-it-X start a rebirth by moving to Cairo and opening a coffeeshop? If it helps, there's still good barbecue.
posted by escabeche on Jun 12, 2010 - 54 comments

One Last Cry

After more than 160 years of treating patients, historic St. Vincent's Hospital in New York City's Greenwich Village filed for bankruptcy protection on Wednesday and will close its doors to new patients. The last remaining Catholic Hospital in NYC, St. Vincent's was originally founded in 1849 to serve the poor. The effect is already being felt at other hospitals in the area. But despite the filing, there was still time for one last cry: Abigail Jancu was the the last baby ever born in St. Vincent's maternity ward.
posted by zarq on Apr 16, 2010 - 21 comments

Hipsters on food stamps

"At first, I thought, 'Why should I be on food stamps?'" said Magida, digging into her dinner. "Here I am, this educated person who went to art school, and there are a lot of people who need them more. But then I realized, I need them, too." Salon takes a look at the growing wave of young people utilizing food stamps.
posted by porn in the woods on Mar 16, 2010 - 885 comments

Skycraper Index

V, Double dip (W) or L recession? Things look bad for the EURO is the skyscraper index is right. We have heard recently about problems in the Eurozone. Is the worst over or is the worst still to come? The skyscraper index indicates: Trouble ahead. [more inside]
posted by yoyo_nyc on Jan 22, 2010 - 45 comments

Recession in the heartland of America

The recession is hitting Ohio's former steel towns hard. As other areas of the country start to revive, the recession's full force is still on display here. Since January 2008, another 10,000 manufacturing jobs have been lost, according to recent Ohio employment figures. "There were other places that were dirtier, but you didn't get shocked every 15 minutes," Tomlin says with resignation. "This is what people around here without union jobs have to do to survive."
posted by VikingSword on Dec 17, 2009 - 56 comments

Watch It Spread

The Decline: The Geography of a Recession Flash animated map showing county unemployment rates from Jan 2007 until Sept 2009
posted by hippybear on Nov 25, 2009 - 48 comments

Ivy League knockos

A year and a half ago, Henry Chung was an assistant vice president at Merrill Lynch. Now he's an NYPD patrol officer.
posted by four panels on Nov 17, 2009 - 43 comments

The new faces of day labor

It sounds like a George Lopez joke. “Times are so bad that I saw an Anglo day laborer standing outside Home Depot the other day.” Except it’s true.
posted by Joe Beese on Nov 11, 2009 - 31 comments

Fun STD Facts

More than two dozen bacterial, viral or parasitic infections are known to be transmitted largely or exclusively through sexual contact. U.S. public health authorities focus on a limited set of these STIs. Read more about it in "Facts on Sexually Transmitted Infections in the United States" published by the Guttmacher Institute. [more inside]
posted by pick_the_flowers on Oct 22, 2009 - 38 comments

Detroit and the Economy

Last week in Detroit, where unemployment is close to 30%, one third of all households are in poverty, and whole neighborhoods have been abandoned, chaos ensued as an estimated 15,000 to 30,000 people lined up in the hopes of getting federal aid. 65,000 applications were taken for a new program that will fund only 3,500 people (via).
posted by HP LaserJet P10006 on Oct 11, 2009 - 83 comments

gravity

Saturn is no more. "Other industries could learn from the Saturn Corporation. Certainly GM is taking what they have learned from their Saturn investment and incorporating it into their existing plants and facilities where practical. It will not be an overnight experience. Like Saturn, it will take time, investment and a strong commitment to regain the role of world leader in the automobile industry."
posted by plexi on Sep 30, 2009 - 89 comments

In Debt We Trust

A government stimulus can overwhelm the impact of a credit crunch, and the innate dynamic of a productive economy can re-assert itself after such a crisis, leading to renewed growth. But this not merely a crisis of liquidity. It is one of excessive private debt, on a scale that is also unprecedented. Economist Steve Keen on the global debt bubble. [more inside]
posted by HP LaserJet P10006 on Sep 20, 2009 - 55 comments

mapping the recession

Recession Road Trip
Similar to Andrew Sullivan's Views From Your Recession & Sickbed, Christina Davidson has been touring across the country collecting and documenting individuals' tales of how the recession is affecting them, such as in Full Grown Boy Lost, in Las Vegas.
posted by kliuless on Sep 19, 2009 - 12 comments

The Ghost Fleet of the Recession

A gigantic fleet of semi-abandoned cargo and container ships has been photographed east of Singapore. Meanwhile, the ship-breaking yards at Alang are booming, and the shipping industry is looking for ways to weather the storm. As the recession slashes demand, it seems the shipping industry may be heading for dry dock...
posted by vorfeed on Sep 14, 2009 - 47 comments

Misdirection

"What do you get when you combine the worst economic downturn since the Depression with the first black president? A surge of white racial resentment, loosely disguised as a populist revolt."
posted by cashman on Sep 12, 2009 - 696 comments

What's a city without a public library?

As part of what Mayor Michael Nutter has dubbed the "Plan C" budget, the Free Library of Philadelphia (the Pennsylvania city's public library system), chartered in 1891, will close all its branches and cease all services October 2, 2009, unless measures to raise sales tax and delay some pension payments are approved by the State Legislature in Harrisburg. The closing could be a huge blow for a city whose most famous citizen, Benjamin Franklin, founded The Library Company of Philadelphia, the United States' first successful lending library, there in 1731. [more inside]
posted by ocherdraco on Sep 11, 2009 - 99 comments

Mr. Penumbra's Twenty-Four-Hour Bookstore

"Mr. Penumbra's Twenty-Four-Hour Bookstore," by Robin Sloan. 'A short story about recession, attraction, and data visualization.' (via Boing Boing) [more inside]
posted by WCityMike on Sep 11, 2009 - 18 comments

Dark Stores

The recession has seen the closure of many stores - from small local outfits to famous longstanding chains. Brian Ulrich's Dark Stores chronicles the ghostboxes of America, and the Guardian's Recession Monitor Flickr pool shows the view from the other side of the Atlantic. [more inside]
posted by mippy on Aug 28, 2009 - 16 comments

Cemented

This fall, law students are competing for half as many openings at big firms as they were last year in what is shaping up to be the most wrenching job search season in over 50 years.

Had I seen where the market was going, I would’ve gone to a lower-ranked but less expensive public school,” [a second year law student at Penn] said. “I’m questioning whether law school was the right choice at all."
posted by plexi on Aug 26, 2009 - 214 comments

Recession over in France and Germany

The economy is abjectly terrible, right? It's so bad that nowadays, a picture is only worth 200 words. On the other hand, the recession is over in Germany and France, and in the United States, the unemployment rate dropped just a smidgen last month. [more inside]
posted by malapropist on Aug 13, 2009 - 39 comments

The Motor(less) City

Detroit is one of the most visually interesting cities in the world, however it is also one of the most misunderstood and misrepresented. Detroit Book of Love is a group of photographs illustrating what contemporary Detroit artists have been doing in regards to developing an understanding and appreciation for this complex and diverse city; from street portraits of the survivors, to the landscapes of wild new growth, to the industrial leftovers. As a group they show Detroit as it is, not what it should be or what it once was. [more inside]
posted by netbros on Aug 7, 2009 - 27 comments

"Walk the most cutest male Pomeranian...oh, and he wants a cute and sexy girl, send photos!"

Looking for work? Avoid this job.
posted by ocherdraco on Aug 5, 2009 - 52 comments

All You Can Eat

With Chinese buffets - an all-you-can-eat fixed price restaurant - making a killing in Manchester, a new chain of traditional English buffet-style restaurants are seeing a sharp rise in trade during a recession that is seeing 100 restaurants per month go to the wall. [more inside]
posted by mippy on Jul 29, 2009 - 67 comments

How green was my valley

How green was my valley: California's economic meltdown The fields of wheat, cotton and cantaloupe that sustained his family for three generations are gone. The land is a mess of fallow fields, cracked earth and swirling dust. (PDF - By some estimates, 12.8% of the United States' agricultural production (as measured by dollar value) comes from California, and the majority of that is in the Central Valley). However, his particular scene of devastation, Mr. Allen argues, has nothing to do with the credit crisis, the housing crash or the downturn that has California in a vice grip. It has to do with a seven-centimetre-long, semi-translucent, steel blue fish known as the Delta smelt. [more inside]
posted by KokuRyu on Jul 24, 2009 - 76 comments

Buffett's favorite leading economic indicator

Warren Buffett says his favorite economic indicator (last 30sec) is the FTSI or Freight Transportation Services Index (blue line). Since 1979, across four recessions, the index "shows a strong leading relationship to the economy", with an acceleration of freight leading the economy "by an average of approximately 4 to 5 months". Explanation of the index (recommend PDF version), most recent analysis (July 2009).
posted by stbalbach on Jul 9, 2009 - 30 comments

Ruins of the Second Gilded Age

The New York Times commissioned Portuguese photographer Edgar Martins to travel around the United States and take photographs of abandoned construction projects left in the wake of the housing and securities market collapse.
posted by acb on Jul 7, 2009 - 263 comments

Polin' on the River

Since 1870, the Hatton Ferry in Hatton, VA, has been helping people and vehicles cross the James River - under pole power [ferry is cable-assisted, and poling starts at 3:42]. Before the nation was connected by a network of bridges, pole barges like this were a common means of transportation across smaller waterways. Hatton Ferry is thought to be the very last working survivor of those thousands of the pole-driven ferries; but today, due to DOT budget constraints, it may go out of existence. [more inside]
posted by Miko on Jul 1, 2009 - 21 comments

Back to the future of food

Canning makes a comeback. Is it just another foodie trend? Or is canning back for good? [more inside]
posted by sararah on Jun 30, 2009 - 106 comments

Too Poor to Make the News

Too Poor to Make the News "The super-rich give up their personal jets; the upper middle class cut back on private Pilates classes; the merely middle class forgo vacations and evenings at Applebee’s. In some accounts, the recession is even described as the “great leveler,” smudging the dizzying levels of inequality that characterized the last couple of decades and squeezing everyone into a single great class, the Nouveau Poor, in which we will all drive tiny fuel-efficient cars and grow tomatoes on our porches.

But the outlook is not so cozy when we look at the effects of the recession on a group generally omitted from all the vivid narratives of downward mobility — the already poor. From their point of view “the economy,” as a shared condition, is a fiction."
posted by nooneyouknow on Jun 17, 2009 - 74 comments

The recession hits Williamsburg (Brooklyn) hipsters

Parents can no longer support their hipster children's lifestyle. Oh, the humanity. I realize that schadenfreude is a particularly ignoble emotional response, but how am I expected to control myself after reading: [more inside]
posted by mojohand on Jun 8, 2009 - 238 comments

UK and USA might lose AAA rating

Standard & Poor’s changed the UK's credit outlook from stable to negative a few days ago, and warned that there is a chance the UK could lose its AAA rating. Meanwhile, Moodys, another of the big 3 rating agencies, has warned that the US might also eventually lose its AAA rating. The UK announcement caused sterling to drop by 1% and the FTSE by 2%. However, many blame the same rating agencies for their part in triggering the subprime crisis. The irony of this is not lost on the Wall Street Journal, who note that "After all, those governments are jacking up spending, in part, to bail out the financial firms who gobbled up those 'AAA' asset backed securities duly blessed by the credit ratings firms." [more inside]
posted by memebake on May 26, 2009 - 38 comments

Mini Moo.

In these hard economic times, everyone's feeling the pinch. Some farmers have started downsizing to miniature cows.
posted by grapefruitmoon on May 25, 2009 - 35 comments

No Working No Die

Unemployment: good for the heart and the soul. "In studies over the past 10 years, Ruhm has consistently found death rates decline during recessions and rise when the economy expands. If unemployment rises 1 percent, he estimates the death rate will fall by about half a percent."
posted by dersins on Apr 27, 2009 - 38 comments

"Buy art. It makes you feel good!"

Are times of recession good or bad for the contemporary art market and artists? "Affordable" is becoming a leitmotif: there are events, international fairs, as well as various galleries. Some collectors and artists are sharing survival tips and tricks; and there are plenty of special offers to be had: Josh Poehlein - screenshot collages, free ; Shepard Fairey - "Obey Eye" screen print, 18 x 24 inches, signed and numbered, at a random time on April 21st: $45.00 ; Michel Gondry - your portrait, signed: $19.95 (allow 6 to 8 weeks for delivery); 'Damien Hirst' - "For the love of Paris" postcard, 10.5 x 14.8 cm, signed and sent: € 1,80 ; Banksy - original, freely usable, high-quality jpg files: free.
posted by progosk on Apr 16, 2009 - 31 comments

Medicaid cuts shut only public outpatient oncology ward in NV.

"We're a demonstration project, if you would, of all the things that can go wrong at once." "You know Yolanda, I think most people watching this interview think to themselves that if they get cancer and they don't have health insurance that somebody’s going to take care of them," Pelley remarked. "No, no, there's nobody to take care of you," she said. [more inside]
posted by availablelight on Apr 6, 2009 - 85 comments

FileFront Bids Farewell

Dear FileFront User: We regret to inform you that due to the current economic conditions we are forced to indefinitely suspend the FileFront site operations on March 30, 2009. If you have uploaded files, images or posted blogs, or if you would like to download some of your favorite files, please take this opportunity to download them before March 30th when the site will be suspended. We would like to give a warm thank you to all of you who have been part of the FileFront communities we have built together. Your support has had a meaningful impact for all of us here at FileFront. Again, we want to give you a sincere “thank you” for your support over the years and wish you all the very best. Keep gaming alive, FileFront Management and Team.
posted by lazaruslong on Mar 26, 2009 - 34 comments

Writing Off Autocracy (?)

Twilight Of The Autocrats: Will the global economic downturn usher in a new era of democracy, or will things only get worse? [first link via]
posted by Inspector.Gadget on Mar 24, 2009 - 16 comments

One is such a lonely number...

What do the following cars have in common? The Chrysler Neon. The Daihatsu Charade. The Dodge Viper SRT-10. The Ferrari SuperAmerica. The Fiat Croma. The Hummer H2. The Hyundai Terracan. The Hyundai Trajet. The Rover 75. The CityRover. The Smart Cabrio. The Tata Safari. Give up? Each one of the cars listed above sold exactly one new (as in, not previously registered) unit last year in the UK, according to the Daily Telegraph. This makes them the most exclusive cars of 2008.
posted by clevershark on Mar 20, 2009 - 62 comments

This is indeed the time to panic

Product Panic - Bruce Sterling on industrial design in the slump.
posted by WPW on Mar 20, 2009 - 20 comments

Hidey Hole

It's scary out there. It can make you just want to hide.
posted by Joe Beese on Mar 19, 2009 - 75 comments

He really did know your name

Eddie Doyle, 69, has been laid off from his job in Boston. Who is Eddie Doyle? Nobody special, just a bartender at a bar in Boston (that used to be) called The Bull & Finch. If that doesn't sound familiar, you might have seen the outside of it in the credits of a little television show in the 80s. The show brought thousands to the bar each day but the current recession has taken its toll and the owner, who has been friends with Eddie for 40 years, had to make some tough choices. [more inside]
posted by tommasz on Mar 15, 2009 - 37 comments

Follow the flowcharts

Vizualizations and infographics to help you understand the financial crisis
posted by desjardins on Mar 14, 2009 - 14 comments

"Because the math is really complicated people assume it must be right."

They are known as “quants” because they do quantitative finance. Seduced by a vision of mathematical elegance underlying some of the messiest of human activities, they apply skills they once hoped to use to untangle string theory or the nervous system to making money. "They Tried to Outsmart Wall Street." [spoiler inside] [more inside]
posted by dersins on Mar 10, 2009 - 38 comments

Unemployment is of vital importance, particularly to the unemployed

The world's economic crisis has cost more men their jobs than women in Western countries. But in Asia and most of the developing world, the economic meltdown has a woman's face. The Toronto Star: Today, International Women's Day, women celebrate the gains made in achieving equal rights and highlight the widespread wrongs that damage the lives of the 3.3 billion females around the world. But the issue foremost in women's minds is the global recession, which has hit the most vulnerable half of humanity with exceptional force. The Bangkok Post: The latest International Labour Organization (ILO) report revealed that the global unemployment rate could rise as high as 7.1% in 2009, compared to 6% in 2008. What is worrying is that the consequences of the global crisis could come knocking on your door. What was the global economic crisis last year could easily become a global social crisis this year. [more inside]
posted by KokuRyu on Mar 9, 2009 - 7 comments

Wall Street on the Tundra

"Iceland is no longer a country. It is a hedge fund." Also: exploding Range Rovers and the environmental impacts on elves. (Pre-vi-ous-ly.)
posted by shii on Mar 4, 2009 - 86 comments

Squeeze in, get online for a better life

Newly jobless and homeless former members of the Japanese upper or upper-middle class are turning to a distinctly 21st century version of the flophouse, the net room: a tiny cubicle, rented by the day, with that all-important feature... an internet connection and a computer. [more inside]
posted by flapjax at midnite on Feb 27, 2009 - 41 comments

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