Saturday , June 23 2018
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Economy

Getting their retaliation in first

Titanic-lifeboat

Only an economist could think that the problem facing the passengers on the Titanic was that too few of them had learned marine engineering – if only a few of them had learned to fix the hull plates that had been torn apart by a passing iceberg, they might have gone …

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Testing Goldilocks from two sides

Flying too close to the sun

The children’s story of Goldilocks famously gave astronomy the “Goldilocks Zone” – the band around a star where it is not too hot and not too cold for water to exist in liquid form.  More recently, the idea of a Goldilocks Zone has been introduced to the economics of oil.  …

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The fourth industrial revolution is cancelled

Recession desk

Earlier today, mainstream journalists were trumpeting the dawn of a new age of prosperity.  For the first time in three years, wages had, they forecast, risen faster than inflation.  It wasn’t to be, alas.  While inflation had fallen to 2.9% wages had only risen by 2.8%; leaving Britain’s workforce that …

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Recession guaranteed

Recession

Not only is Theresa May’s magic money tree real, but it just produced a really bad harvest.  To understand why, we need to understand what makes modern currency valuable. It used to be that coins actually contained precious metals.  Then, when banknotes first appeared, they could be exchanged for precious …

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What Marx got wrong changes everything

Energy theory of value

The word “Marxist” today is more a term of abuse than the name of a particular school of economic and social ideas.  The political right throws the term at anyone who has the temerity to suggest that the state might have some role to play in refereeing the rules by …

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Dining at the virtual restaurant

Virtual restaurant

Among the more pernicious lies put about by the government and its apologists in the mainstream media is the one that blames the retail apocalypse on online shopping.  For while it is true that online retailers have experienced a small increase in traffic, this in no way accounts for the …

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Economists baffled by UK snowstorm

Snow

Following the fateful conjoining of Atlantic Storm Emma and The Beast from the East on Thursday, people have once again been behaving in a manner wholly inconsistent with the models used by politicians and central bankers to determine economic policy. In Newport, for example, as temperatures plummeted on Wednesday night, …

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Economic failure

Recession 2018

It is a decade since the world was plunged into the worst economic crisis in living memory.  Its impact is still being felt today.  Most obviously, the election of Donald Trump and the UK decision to leave the European Union would have been unimaginable in the years before the crash.  …

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Unexpected inflation in the bagging area

Supermarket bagging area

No politician wants to be associated with inflation.  The trouble is that no politician wants to be associated with budget reductions either.  So while a government might cut benefits and services aimed at people who do not vote (like young people) or people who do not support them (like disabled …

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Trickle down extremism

Trickle-down economics

Trickle down is, perhaps, the greatest of the lies perpetuated by economists.  At its heart is the claim that when states conduit currency into the bank accounts of the very rich, it will – through investment and growth – make its way into the pockets of everyone else.  So, for …

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