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I will grant that the 90% debt/gdp trigger is most likely non-existent, but the rest of their book does yeoman's work in cataloging financial crises. It's a useful antidote to the mass psychological amnesia that is perpetually recurring. "Our new investments our safe and returns will never fall" inevitably leads to "what perfidy caused this?" The cycle has been repeated in remarkably similar ways for nearly a millenium now. We should appreciate the detailed financial history they have created, and chide them for the dubious massaging of the data. Just don't overstate its political implications.
H1-B visas never fail to bring out the nationalist grief on
Population growth is also endogenous to technological advancement. Increasing the amount of people integrated in a society, increases the chance that we advance.
Endogenous growth theory, Paul Romer is going to win a Nobel prize for it one day. Learn it. Free movement of labor has been crucial to the advancement of humanity.
The Post Office has successfully paid this $5 billion bill every year since it was passed in 2005. I'd say their business model is still wildly successful. Their problem, as previously pointed out, is that since the Republicans in Congress saddled them with these payments, the Postal Service has been unable to invest in further modernization.
So, since they've been required to actually pay what they promised their employees, unlike a lot of other pensions these days, they now can't make money. Huh. That doesn't strike me as the model of success we should be pushing for.
It might be a good investment to allow/encourage the post office to create a network of state issued email addresses, or whatever other scheme of modernization we might come up with. That's the kind of risky change that large bureaucratic organizations with massive legacy labor costs typically aren't good at. I'm all for letting them experiment. I'm not for throwing money at or trying to force a revival an archaic model of 6-day-a-week service for fewer and fewer first class mail and more and more direct marketing.
With the conversation between Morozov and Johnson as a starting point, I'd like to pose some questions to
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What's interesting to me are the new unconventional methods of restraint China always seems to be a pioneer in. It seems protesters throwing leaflets out of taxi cabs is a growing fear, so taxis are restricted in being able to travel around Tiananmen and will their windows locked, with some having control handles removed altogether.
I was present in China during the Arab Spring, when it was feared protest would spread. Any mention of a meetup place for protesters would all of a sudden shoot up the priority list for construction repairs. Many areas were cordoned off with armadas of street sweet sweepers.
Paranoia is an extremely inefficient use of ingenuity.
In shortages like this, the logistics of gasoline make it difficult to really up capacity even by significant price raises. The gasoline market is highly segmented. It's not very easy to divert supplies from elsewhere and ship gasoline in the quantities needed, unlike with things like food and water.
What "price gouging" can do, however, is eliminate hoarding and frivolous use. $8.00 a gallon really makes you think twice whether you need that generator running 24 hours a day. That can help to calm down the shortage.
The puzzling thing is that gas stations seem to be much to afraid of being seen reaping a windfall profit by raising prices. So instead, we get lines miles long, essentially a gasoline lottery.
; but the chances of the poll averages being wrong in this case were incredibly small.
I'm not sure that's exactly knowable. Sure, the numbers are way better than contradictory pundit guts, but for instance, we had no way of knowing if a "Bradley Effect" would have been in play. Response rates for polling firms consistently came in below 10%. Polling is getting harder and harder in an age where fewer people have landlines and polling cell phones is restricted. As of now, state polls are good guides. They will be right up until they aren't, and then the science will change.
I'm not saying that the probability of systematic error is large, just unknowable. It was a perfectly reasonable and scientific position for a Republican to say "Romney's chances are equal to the probability of error in the polls, and I hope that probability is large."
We care about Nate Silver and people that do what he does for two reasons: 1) They definitively point out that most pundits are full of crap and unwilling to realize that polling, not their guts, describe what's happening in the short run in the most accurate way currently possible. 2) For partisan reasons. Democrats love Silver because his numbers provided a security blanket to liberals afraid for Obama. To be fair, had the election turned out different and Nate's numbers called it for Romney, Republicans would be lionizing him as well, and we'd all be mocking whatever the Democratic version of "Unskewed Polls" had been. That popular media figures skew left really helps Silver's celebrity this time around.