Archive for the ‘economics’ Category

Pimp My Walker.

Wednesday, October 15th, 2008

Reason TV has an animated cartoon at their site called “Pimp My Walker” explaining the generational income shift that occurs with Social Security. A simplistic but accurate description of how Social Security works.

Ron Paul had the best fair way to deal with Social Security which is to allow people to choose to opt out of security.

Update: Below is part 2 of a Five Part series at reason TV:

Whining About Pelosi

Wednesday, October 1st, 2008

Yesterday, the House of Representatives voted down the $700 billion bailout of the financial industry. The bailout happened because constituents were overwhelmingly calling their congressmen complaining about the legislation in addition many members were opposed ideologically to the idea of the bailout.

Right before the speech Nancy Pelosi made a silly partisan speech blaming small government ideology and the Bush administration for the current financial mess. The vote failed and Republicans like Eric Cantor blamed Pelosi’s speech. Stop your whining! You would think people would take a $700 billion expenditure more seriously.

Update 1:

Bailing Out Investors Bad Decisions

Tuesday, September 30th, 2008

The United States is economy is in pretty bad shape right now. The economy is in such poor shape right now that we must hand over at least $700 billion to the Treasury Secretary to purchase bad debt from Wall Street.

The reason many people say we need a bailout is to make up a string of bad decisions made on Wall Street. From what I understand the problem is that Wall Street firms continued to create securities consisting of worthwhile and worthless mortgages that eventually created convoluted securities than no wants any more. If no one continues to buy these securities, banks on Wall Street will lose lots of money, which it feared will create a credit crisis that will mean it will be more difficult for consumers and businesses to borrow money.

I remain unconvinced that this bill is a good idea. $700 billion is a lot of taxpayer money equal roughly the cost of Iraq war to date. The federal government does not have this kind of money to spend over a short period of time due to Congress inclination not to limit spending or raise taxes this bill will probably largely be financed through government spending which will push us further into an economic crisis. Sure the bill may not actually cost $700 billion, some people think the government will actually make money off the bailout but the bailout could alternatively cost more than $700 billion since 700 billion is just a figure basically made up by the Treasury Secretary.

The bailout goes against the way capitalism works. Capitalism is a system of economics based on profit and loss. Traditionally in capitalism, people who are more productive and make a profit are rewarded, the opposite side of the coin is that people have to take losses when they make bad decisions. The people who invested in mortgage securities whose worth is not clear made bad decisions. If you take away the downside of bad decisions, you will just encourage people to engage in riskier decisions without any regard to whether or not they will be profitable; economists call this moral hazard.

The House of Representatives did vote down the bailout yesterday but the bill is not completely dead. It appears as the bill will be reintroduced in the House of Representatives on Thursday after Congress returns from the Jewish holiday.

Update 1:

Obama: Let’s Prop Up Failing Corporations

Monday, September 1st, 2008

Obama has a new ad called “Revitalize” in which the narrator criticizes John McCain for not supporting government loans to the auto manufacturing companies. There is no reason to support loans to car manufacturers who are not able to meet the demands of the manufacturers; American car manufacturers will be able to get loans from private businesses if they deserve them. All these loans would do is to funnel money from taxpayers to big inefficient corporations.

Drivin’ Down The Block

Monday, July 7th, 2008

Kevin Drum has a post pointing out that for the first time since 1983 the number of vehicle miles driven is down as compared to the previous year. This is a sign of how Americans have changed their behavior as a result of high gas prices.

Atmosphere On Job Satisfaction

Wednesday, April 30th, 2008

Hip-Hop DX.com has an interview with atmosphere with some interesting insights.

I’m committed for being who I am 150% of the time, whether it’s on record, in an interview or ordering coffee, eating, sleeping, I’m committed to being me. It’s your issue to make people relate to me or recognize me, or make me their friend, or hate me or think I suck. I can’t put any thought into what can I do to make people think I suck, or make people think I’m cool. The minute I do that I don’t know that I can necessarily do this job. I’d have to go find a new job, and not on some martyr me shit, but on some like, the reason I like this job more than any other job is not because I get to travel, it’s not because I get to smoke as many cigarettes as I want, any time that I want. It’s because it feels purposeful, and I don’t mean that what we do has this higher purpose. I mean like, this, compared to driving a delivery truck is soothing me. This makes me fucking happier than shit. Driving a delivery truck would make me happy too, much more than working a cash register…so it’s just the elements of this job that I love, I try to stick to in order to keep me in check and keep me from taking this for granted. That makes me a loser now, anyone who takes their job for granted is a fucking loser. If you come to terms that you deliver newspapers, and that’s what you do and you take that for granted and fuck that off? Then you’re a loser, cause you’ve got something that someone would kill to have. That’s how I see it, I don’t want to be a loser.

Slug of Atmosphere has a point here in his approach to the jobs we choose in life.

The Economkics of Hustlin’

Thursday, February 22nd, 2007

Below is a video of Spoken Word Poet Tommy Bottoms talking about the economics of hustling; both street and stock hustling. Video gives a good introduction to the world of economics:

Link via Stephen Dubner

Update: In a similar thought here is a video of Freakonomics author Steve Levitt explaining, in both street and economic terms, the organizational structure of crack dealers. After hearing Levitt’s talk it becomes apparent that crack dealing is a lot less glamorous than one would think from listening to the crack raps of Young Jeezy or The Clipse.