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doublejack:

azspot:

Trickle-up economics

And then you’ll pull your hair out for 30+ years as the rest of the country entirely fails to grasp this amazingly obvious fact.

"Voodoo economic policy" - George H. W. Bush, who knew it for a hustle as early as April 14th, 1980.

doublejack:

azspot:

Trickle-up economics

And then you’ll pull your hair out for 30+ years as the rest of the country entirely fails to grasp this amazingly obvious fact.

"Voodoo economic policy" - George H. W. Bush, who knew it for a hustle as early as April 14th, 1980.

But the powers that be have found turning adults into debt slaves as early as possible to be a brilliant bit of social engineering, forcing the young to stay in line lest they mar their employment prospects. And as long as the powers that be continued to be successful in pitting the young against the old rather than against their common enemies, a predatory and extractive financial services industry and a super-wealthly class that prefers to mine rather than develop the countries in which they hold investments, it’s unlikely that either group will escape the grim future that the neofeudalists are in the process of creating.

Student Debt is Crushing the Economic Future of the Young (via azspot)

Highly recommended: David Graeber’s 'Debt: The First 1000 Years'

(via wilwheaton)

"Neofeudalists" is my second favorite new term of 2013. Following very closely on the heels of "analog fetishism."

Rory Sutherland: Life Lessons From An Ad Man:

"How many problems of life can be solved actually by tinkering with perception, rather than that tedious, hardworking and messy business of actually trying to change reality? Here’s a great example from history: Fredrick the Great of Prussia was very, very keen for the Germans to adopt the potato and to eat it, because he realized that if you had two sources of carbohydrate, wheat and potatoes, you get less price volatility in bread. And you get a far lower risk of famine, because you actually had two crops to fall back on, not one.
The only problem is: potatoes, if you think about it, look pretty disgusting. And also, 18th century Prussians ate very, very few vegetables … So, actually, he tried making it compulsory. The Prussian peasantry said, ‘We can’t even get the dogs to eat these damn things. They are absolutely disgusting and they’re good for nothing.’ There are even records of people being executed for refusing to grow potatoes.
So he tried plan B. He tried the marketing solution, which is he declared the potato as a royal vegetable, and none but the royal family could consume it. And he planted it in a royal potato patch, with guards who had instructions to guard over it, night and day, but with secret instructions not to guard it very well. Now, 18th century peasants know that there is one pretty safe rule in life, which is: if something is worth guarding, it’s worth stealing. Before long, there was a massive underground potato-growing operation in Germany. What he’d effectively done is, he’d re-branded the potato.
It was an absolute masterpiece.”

Rory Sutherland: Life Lessons From An Ad Man:

"How many problems of life can be solved actually by tinkering with perception, rather than that tedious, hardworking and messy business of actually trying to change reality? Here’s a great example from history: Fredrick the Great of Prussia was very, very keen for the Germans to adopt the potato and to eat it, because he realized that if you had two sources of carbohydrate, wheat and potatoes, you get less price volatility in bread. And you get a far lower risk of famine, because you actually had two crops to fall back on, not one.

The only problem is: potatoes, if you think about it, look pretty disgusting. And also, 18th century Prussians ate very, very few vegetables … So, actually, he tried making it compulsory. The Prussian peasantry said, ‘We can’t even get the dogs to eat these damn things. They are absolutely disgusting and they’re good for nothing.’ There are even records of people being executed for refusing to grow potatoes.

So he tried plan B. He tried the marketing solution, which is he declared the potato as a royal vegetable, and none but the royal family could consume it. And he planted it in a royal potato patch, with guards who had instructions to guard over it, night and day, but with secret instructions not to guard it very well. Now, 18th century peasants know that there is one pretty safe rule in life, which is: if something is worth guarding, it’s worth stealing. Before long, there was a massive underground potato-growing operation in Germany. What he’d effectively done is, he’d re-branded the potato.

It was an absolute masterpiece.”

The “Foundation for Economic Education” tried to get cute with some specious libertarian bullshit this Labor Day.

The guy in the picture was a manual laborer, in his youth. He eventually got a logo too.

Everyone wants to believe they are middle class. But this eagerness has led the definition to be stretched like a bungee cord — used to defend/attack/describe everything. The Drum Major Institute places the range for middle class at individuals making between $25,000 and $100,000 a year.
Ah yes, there’s a group of people bound to run into each other while house-hunting. 
—Dante Chinni

Everyone wants to believe they are middle class. But this eagerness has led the definition to be stretched like a bungee cord — used to defend/attack/describe everything. The Drum Major Institute places the range for middle class at individuals making between $25,000 and $100,000 a year.

Ah yes, there’s a group of people bound to run into each other while house-hunting. 

—Dante Chinni

jtemple:

The hypocrisy in Silicon Valley’s big talk on innovation
Silicon Valley loves to talk big about innovation; it’s just not as good at following through.
In fact, “innovation” is something of a magic word around here, shape-shifting to fit the speaker’s immediate needs. So long as semiconductors and coding are involved, people will staple it to anything from flying cars to the iFart app. Other times it’s just code for “jobs,” used to justify asking for government favors one day and scolding them for meddling in the free market the next.
"Lower our payroll taxes because … innovation."
"Drop that antitrust inquiry because … innovation."

jtemple:

The hypocrisy in Silicon Valley’s big talk on innovation

Silicon Valley loves to talk big about innovation; it’s just not as good at following through.

In fact, “innovation” is something of a magic word around here, shape-shifting to fit the speaker’s immediate needs. So long as semiconductors and coding are involved, people will staple it to anything from flying cars to the iFart app. Other times it’s just code for “jobs,” used to justify asking for government favors one day and scolding them for meddling in the free market the next.

"Lower our payroll taxes because … innovation."

"Drop that antitrust inquiry because … innovation."

"It is the wretchedness of being rich that you have to live with rich people."
-Logan P. Smith

"It is the wretchedness of being rich that you have to live with rich people."

-Logan P. Smith

California, can we talk?
I really appreciate the cash. But … dude … you’re broke.
There’s no sense standing on pride here. Your credit cards are all maxed out. It’s not just your college loans, either. You’re like, 6 months behind on child support. The bank is ready to foreclose on Yosemite and I’m pretty sure the repo man is about to rip the bear off the state flag.
Please, keep the money. For your own sake.

California, can we talk?

I really appreciate the cash. But … dude … you’re broke.

There’s no sense standing on pride here. Your credit cards are all maxed out. It’s not just your college loans, either. You’re like, 6 months behind on child support. The bank is ready to foreclose on Yosemite and I’m pretty sure the repo man is about to rip the bear off the state flag.

Please, keep the money. For your own sake.

Futures look good tomorrow

unsolicitedanalysis:

Gotta buy those dips.  Look how well it’s worked out.  Hopefully nothing breaks while I’m sleeping.  Try not to ban selling stocks tonight, Europe.

(Honestly, it breaks my heart.  I’m sitting in my megabank on a conference call today unable to shake this thought that all of this could fall apart if you so much as breathed on it.  And we were talking about some inconsequential thing or other in great detail and I felt like laughing, because the market’s shitting itself in the corner of my eye on my monitor but this one little vagary was all so silly and important to everyone.  All of this negativity and sense of unavoidable disaster has dissociated me completely - just wiped me out.

In 2008 on the Lehman weekend everyone was hysterical and drunk.  This time around, there won’t even be that lurch like “this is it.”  It’s like finishing a roller coaster and getting back in line - the second time up the ramp and down the ladder feels so empty.  The thrill is gone, and all that remains is that empty sensation of falling in your stomach.  That’s kind of the workday.  I can wave my little sign and make my little arguments and absolutely no one will listen to me beyond my immediate colleagues.  I’m almost praying, practically begging for my predicted disaster to come swallow me up.  Being right would be some small consolation on my way to hell.

I have a comfortable life, a house in the suburbs, a loving wife that I respect like hell.  But it’s all built on the back of this horrible creature of an economy, carved out of the regulation and rot.  The only thing arguably worse than having a bad life is having a good life that you don’t feel entitled to or worthy of.  It feels stolen and on the verge of slipping through my fingers, and if it does disappear I wouldn’t even feel justified in mourning.  Not because I lack knowledge or skill, not because I don’t work immensely hard, but because what I know and do is worse than worthless.  It is deleterious.

White people problems, I guess.  I probably had alternatives, and I certainly have advantages.  If only such things were tangible so that I could clutch them to my chest.)

Bolded emphasis mine. The financier, he knows.

Those shallow Econ Majors and Lockean self-interest

Alan Bloom, The Closing of the American Mind:

"Wealth, as opposed to science of wealth, is not the noblest of motivations. There is nothing quite like this coincidence of science and cupidity elsewhere in the university. The only parallel would be if there was a science of sexology, with earnest and truly scholarly professors, which would ensure its student lavish sexual satisfactions.”

But why is that a problem? Presumably the student of sex would be better at sex. The aim, as in science, is both knowledge and utility. How does a pursuit of utility detract from learning? Why is self-interest necessarily a barrier to knowledge? Self-interest can be a powerful ally. A quest to turn lead into gold caused caused a greater understanding of ceramics, glass, iron, inks, gunpowder, etc. The practical aspects of alchemy led to to the basics of today’s inorganic chemistry.

Is it because you’ll be banging away at the lead, long after the data has told you it’ll never turn to gold? Also, what’s up Bloom’s value judgement here? Why is money for money’s sake a disqualifying motivation, as opposed to art for art’s sake? Wasn’t any obstacle for Oscar Wilde and he pumped out some pretty good copy. We learn science, not for it’s own sake, but for it’s pragmatic use, and so it is with wealth.

Why should we only listen to Keynes & Hayek, yet discount Soros and Buffett? Surely both are worth our time.

(via ihatethismess)
the 1940s, Look Magazine made a comic strip of Hayek’s classic book ‘The Road to Serfdom’. Hayek went on to win the Nobel Prize in Economics in 1974 and to star in viral battle raps.

(via ihatethismess)

the 1940s, Look Magazine made a comic strip of Hayek’s classic book ‘The Road to Serfdom’. Hayek went on to win the Nobel Prize in Economics in 1974 and to star in viral battle raps.