Some Longer form reading to start your weekend:

• S&P 500 Caps Biggest Weekly Decline in 2012 on Economy (Bloomberg)
• The Great Bond Conundrum (Barron’s)
• Time to put the doomed euro out of its misery (Telegraph)
• A Little Independent Energy Experiment on the Prairie (Smithsonian) see also What’s wrong with corn ethanol? (BoingBoing)
• There’s No There There: Low Tax Rates and Economic Growth (Social Science Research Network) see also Britain’s Experience in Raising the Top Tax Rate (Economix)
• Clouds on Solar’s Horizon (NYT)
• Lawrence Lessig on How We Lost Our Democracy (Rolling Stone)
Born This Way: The new weird science of hardwired political identity. (NY Mag)
• Bonnie Raitt’s Amazing, Omnivorous, Adult-Contemporary Career (Atlantic)
• What Does It Mean to Be Human? (Brain Pickings)

What are you reading?
Copper Price Hits a 3-Month Low  

Source: WSJ

Category: Financial Press

Please use the comments to demonstrate your own ignorance, unfamiliarity with empirical data and lack of respect for scientific knowledge. Be sure to create straw men and argue against things I have neither said nor implied. If you could repeat previously discredited memes or steer the conversation into irrelevant, off topic discussions, it would be appreciated. Lastly, kindly forgo all civility in your discourse . . . you are, after all, anonymous.

19 Responses to “10 (Longer) Weekend Reads”

  1. Sechel says:

    Michio Kaku on Solar Power, which is a great follow-up on the Times Solar energy piece
    -in short , low efficiency and storage. We’re a decade early on Solar.

  2. NeutralObserver says:

    Good synopsis of our labor market problems contrasted with Germany, Japan and Denmark, even includes some data…

    “Rather than firing people, they just work fewer hours in Germany or cut bonuses in Japan, while in Denmark people are retrained to keep them in the effective labor supply. Japanese and/or German labor market institutions are probably a couple of steps too far for the US, as these are quite alien to the hire and fire culture. However, the Danish model is quite ‘doable.’ Pity it isn’t done. ”

  3. RW says:

    It’s not a long read but its good to know there is a specific term for a widely used approach to agnotology and dishonest debate.

    The Gish Gallop, named after creationist Duane Gish, is a debating technique of drowning the opponent in such a torrent of half-truths, lies, and straw-man arguments that the opponent cannot possibly answer every falsehood in real time.

    The gallop will consist of as many points as possible, and even old and worn out arguments are useful in overwhelming the respondent and bamboozling the audience. The technique also takes advantage of the “one single proof” fallacy, since if a respondent only manages to refute 99 out of 100 points there is still one point that proves the galloper correct.

    The galloper takes to heart Joseph Stalin’s advice that “quantity has a quality all its own.”

    NB: Creationism doesn’t provide much in the way of scientific facts so the Gallop is relatively easy to debunk, at least if you really want to debunk it and can figure out a way to stop the galloper from continually moving the goal posts. It took the wealth of valid material in climate science and devoted agnotologists such as Christopher (Lord) Monckton or Bjørn Lomborg to raise The Gallop to heights where only an expert can detect probable error in real time much less disentangle the web of deceit woven in support; e.g., for your long reading pleasure, take a few days to wander around the vast site created by the biologist, Kåre Fog whose sole purpose was to debunk all of Lomborg’s Errors one-by-one; a Herculean task (more accurately Sisyphean since Lomborg is as skilled at moving the goal posts as he is at misrepresenting and misinterpreting research).

  4. PeterR says:

    Oh, Bonnie Raitt . . .

    So smooth, gentle and sweet, especially “I Can’t Make You Love Me.”

    I still have an LP or two of hers someplace.

    Thanks for the link Barry, and have a good weekend.


  5. Greg0658 says:

    “Born This Way” was an interesting crackle … (what we desire to spend cash on)
    hardwired political identity is an interesting subject over my lifetime .. who made who .. genes & environment or teachers

    imo a blank slate to be filled but I might be wrong … TB’erP I think when and if we reach singularity as a tribe (about another 1000 years) – whos gotta be the next boggieman then .. ya know for FM(disaster)CitBPtP

  6. VennData says:

    Another right wing shill gets their half-baked nonsense into the WSJ Opinion Page. This time: Gov’t regulations sunk the Titanic…

    “…But that’s not true. In the Board of Trade’s post-accident inquiry, Carlisle was very clear as to why White Star declined to install extra lifeboats: The firm wanted to see whether regulators required it. As Carlisle told the inquiry, “I was authorized then to go ahead and get out full plans and designs, so that if the Board of Trade did call upon us to fit anything more we would have no extra trouble or extra expense…”

    Well that settles it, of course you wait until after you’ve set sail to find out if you canhave the right lifeboat capacity. And there’s no way anyone who wanted to keep the decks clear would blame others in an inquiry after the fact…. LOL. The WSJ Opinion Page.

  7. rd says:

    On tax rates and deregulation:

    We have had major tax cuts for a decade and financial sector deregulation for almost 15 years, including a virtual refusal to actually regulate or prosecute for the past decade.

    The results? I would classify them as abysmal – low GDP growth, flat personal income growth, any income growth went to only small percentage of the population, multiple asset price bubbles with subsequent collapses, massive growth in government debt, and the list goes on and on……

    As an engineer, we would have abandoned these experiments and their theoretical arguments years ago as repeatedly building bridges only to see them keep crashing into the water is generally not considered successful engineering. Unfortunately, that does not hold true for economists and politicians.

    With regards to top tax rates: I am consistently baffled as to why it makes sense that my income is subject to AMT while Mitt Romney’s is not, so I end paying a higher marginal rate and average tax rate than him. There is something very wrong with this picture.

  8. VennData says:

    “…Nigeria made contraceptives free last year, and officials are promoting smaller families…”

    Where is Nigeria’s Rush Limbaugh when you need him?

  9. Like that article above “Time to put the doomed euro out of its misery”

    “There is no mess quite so bad that official intervention won’t make it even worse.” lol, and it’s been doing that for the past few years!

    The Wall Street Ranter

  10. Jojo says:

    April 14, 2012
    Increasingly in Europe, Suicides ‘by Economic Crisis’

    TREVISO, Italy — On New Year’s Eve, Antonio Tamiozzo, 53, hanged himself in the warehouse of his construction business near Vicenza, after several debtors did not pay what they owed him.

    Three weeks earlier, Giovanni Schiavon, 59, a contractor, shot himself in the head at the headquarters of his debt-ridden construction company on the outskirts of Padua. As he faced the bleak prospect of ordering Christmas layoffs at his family firm of two generations, he wrote a last message: “Sorry, I cannot take it anymore.”

    The economic downturn that has shaken Europe for the last three years has also swept away the foundations of once-sturdy lives, leading to an alarming spike in suicide rates. Especially in the most fragile nations like Greece, Ireland and Italy, small-business owners and entrepreneurs are increasingly taking their own lives in a phenomenon some European newspapers have started calling “suicide by economic crisis.”

    Many, like Mr. Tamiozzo and Mr. Schiavon, have died in obscurity. Others, like the desperate 77-year-old retiree who shot himself outside the Greek Parliament on April 4, have turned their personal despair into dramatic public expressions of anger at the leaders who have failed to soften the blows of the crisis.

  11. Frwip says:

    ” Copper Price Hits a 3-Month Low ”

    Meh. Wake me up when copper hits a 10 years low, below $US3000/tonne, $US1.36/pound.

  12. jimcos42 says:

    Pictorial graphic by ZIP code of SF Bay Area residential real estate prices since the collapse.
    Data is from Zillow, thus probably subject to some anomalies, but the gist of it corresponds to my sense of what’s going on here.

  13. woodhenge says:

    sweet video about a 9 year old boy building an arcade out of cardboard. Has been going viral over the past few days.

  14. woodhenge says:

    Physicist debates economist, is a steady state economy in or future?

  15. Herman Frank says:

    Try this one for the early Monday morning:

    After having been exposed to assist the Greeks hiding their debt-position to access the EU, there’s now the story that Goldman Sachs is helping Angolan officials flaunt their own laws by hiding their ownership stake in an oil venture.

    Did Goldman Sachs become the “Mr. Fix It”?! What’s next? You call them to put some concrete shoes on officials you don’t like? Or perhaps they can put lead in the dice at the crap table in Las Vegas?

  16. Giovanni says:

    Born This Way seems discount anyone who actually uses their brain for something other than a paperweight to keep their skull from floating off somewhere. Maybe we’re not a measurable demographic anymore but that’s probably correlated to the present level of political discourse in our country.

    As marketers have become increasingly successful in creating a culture who has its thinking fed to them while they consume mass media and grow their Homer Simpson-like couch divots we’ve ended up with a majority of citizens who don’t think, don’t understand and don’t participate beyond yelling at their television every once in a while. To that extent sadly the authors and the scientists are correct; unused, the higher brain functions atrophy leaving the highly suggestible and reactionary lizard brain in charge of decision making.

    All is not lost forever though. While the article doesn’t touch on it there is a large and growing body of science showing that we can re-wire our brains to perform better. I recommend two books on the subject: “Social Intelligence” by Goleman (See Chapter 10, Genes Are Not Destiny) and “The Happiness Advantage” by Achor (See Chapter 4, Change Is Possible)… Of course someone would have to be willing to read a book to take advantage and re-install their higher brain functionality.