Early in her newest book, Break ‘Em Up, Zephyr Teachout retells the story of an Amazon air hockey seller. The seller, whose air hockey table was one of the top-3 search results until Amazon introduced sponsored ads. Coincidently, despite years of sales and popular reviews, the product dropped off the search charts with their arrival—even… Continue reading
Negative externalities are an economics concept that is not often talked about, but incredibly intuitive. A negative externality is when an interaction between two parties harms a third party. If I buy new speakers from Sonos, Sonos gets money, and I get speakers. If I play them at all hours of the night, my neighbor… Continue reading
Tim Wu, a law professor at Columbia University, spent the last decade establishing himself as one of the pre-eminent antitrust thinkers. In the Master Switch and The Attention Merchants, Wu used a wide-angle lens to examine the implications of the rising information cartels on American business and society. In The Curse of Bigness, Wu takes… Continue reading
In July 1944, a little over a year before the end of WW2, President Franklin Delano Roosevelt looked tired and sick. Publicly, he was taking month-long rests under the guise of war planning. Privately, he was diagnosed with severe hypertension, heart disease, cardiac failure and acute bronchitis. The stress of leading a nation at war,… Continue reading
The New Deal, a seminal era in American history, saw government take an active role in promoting the welfare of the citizens. In The New Deal, journalist Michael Hiltzik, tells the story of the people, policies, and actions that shaped the nation.
Matt Stoller’s How Democrats Killed Their Populist Soul is the best political analysis I’ve read all year. It offers a solid argument to how economic populism fell out of the national narrative—and accelerated the decline of the American middle class. It’s hard to believe today, but seventy years ago Bernie Sander’s ideas were fairly common… Continue reading
In the early 1940s, Joseph Schumpeter, a Harvard economics professor, was researching business innovation. At this time, innovation wasn’t really something that was studied, it was just something that occurred. Outside of Bell Labs, no organization seemed interested in investigating how great ideas came to be, and how they were scaled to society. Schumpeter was… Continue reading
Human dried apricot Donald Trump was born on third and thinks he invented baseball. His followers feel forgotten in modern America. But hidden behind his insane belief that a wall will stop migration and America should ban ¼ of the world’s population are some “interesting” economic policy ideas. Donald Trump’s economic policy is interesting because… Continue reading
I like Catherine Rampell. I can’t say that I am a regular reader, but every time I am forwarded something she wrote I normally read it. That being said, this week wasn’t a good week to be Catherine Rampell. She inadvertently made a case study in the dangers of data journalism.
In May 2009 The Atlantic Magazine published an article by Simon Johnson titled, “The Quiet Coup.” Today, “The Quiet Coup” stands as one of the watershed articles on the 2008 financial crisis. Johnson, the former Chief Economist of the IMF, argued that roots of the financial crisis was not interest rates or poor people taking… Continue reading