Blogging the Bookshelf

Blogging my bookshelf – one book at a time

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Entries Tagged as 'economics'

The Limitations of Economic Forecasts – “The Signal and the Noise: The Art and Science of Prediction”, Nate Silver

November 19th, 2012 · Comments Off on The Limitations of Economic Forecasts – “The Signal and the Noise: The Art and Science of Prediction”, Nate Silver · Economics, Policy, quote

Instead, economic forecasts are blunt instruments at best, rarely being able to anticipate economic turning points more than a few months in advance. Fairly often, in fact, these forecasts have failed to “predict” recessions even once they were already under way: a majority of economists did not think we were in one when the three […]

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A Bank Run in Louisianna – “Huey Long”, T. Harry Williams

September 12th, 2012 · Comments Off on A Bank Run in Louisianna – “Huey Long”, T. Harry Williams · Economics, Policy, Politics, Psychology, Social Psychology

(The first man in line in a bank run) soon appeared (at the opening of the bank), waving a check for $18,000 and confident that he, at least, would get his money. Entering the office, he was startled to see Governor Long behind the desk. Huey was waving a check himself. “The state of Louisiana […]

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Tell ‘em anything. But for Sweet Jesus’ sake don’t try to improve their minds – “All the King’s Men” – Robert Penn Warren 

June 29th, 2012 · Comments Off on Tell ‘em anything. But for Sweet Jesus’ sake don’t try to improve their minds – “All the King’s Men” – Robert Penn Warren  · Campaigning, Political Communication, Politics, Progressive Politics

“What we need is a balanced tax program. Right now the ratio between income tax and total income for the state gives an index that-“ “Yeah,” I said, “I heard the speech. But they don’t give a damn about that. Hell, make ‘em cry, make ‘em laugh, make ‘em think you’re their weak erring pal, […]

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The Bank is Something Else Than Men – “The Grapes of Wrath” – John Steinbeck 

June 14th, 2012 · Comments Off on The Bank is Something Else Than Men – “The Grapes of Wrath” – John Steinbeck  · Economics, Policy, Politics, Quotes

The bank is something else than men. It happens that every man in a bank hates what the bank does, and yet the bank does it. The bank is something more than men, I tell you. It’s the monster. Men made it, but they can’t control it.

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The ‘Abominable “No” Man’ – “Inside the Canberra Press Gallery: Life in the Wedding Cake of Old Parliament House” – Rob Chalmers

May 26th, 2012 · Comments Off on The ‘Abominable “No” Man’ – “Inside the Canberra Press Gallery: Life in the Wedding Cake of Old Parliament House” – Rob Chalmers · Economics, Policy, Politics, Quotes

The more influential businesspeople did not turn up at the front counter in William Street; they went to Canberra to see the Minister for Agriculture and Commerce, McEwen. What they did not know was that McEwen would have made up his mind in advance of seeing any delegation whether he could revise a licensing decision […]

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Smith on the Balance of Trade – “On the Wealth of Nations”, P.J. O’Rourke

May 15th, 2012 · Comments Off on Smith on the Balance of Trade – “On the Wealth of Nations”, P.J. O’Rourke · Economics, Policy, Politics

Smith wrote: ‘There is no commercial country in Europe of which the approaching ruin has not frequently been foretold.. from an unfavourable balance of trade,’ Smith wrote, making the news in the New York Times and the Washington Post very old news indeed. ‘Nothing,’ Smith wrote, ‘can be more absurd than this whole doctrine of the […]

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Central Banking and the Money Supply – “On the Wealth of Nations”, P.J. O’Rourke

May 15th, 2012 · Comments Off on Central Banking and the Money Supply – “On the Wealth of Nations”, P.J. O’Rourke · Economics, Policy, Politics

A central bank is the institution that controls the supply of a country’s money. This would be a straightforward matter if it weren’t for three facts: Money is imaginary. Banking doesn’t involve money. And a central bank isn’t a bank.

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Liberty and Property – “On the Wealth of Nations”, P.J. O’Rourke

May 14th, 2012 · Comments Off on Liberty and Property – “On the Wealth of Nations”, P.J. O’Rourke · Economics, Philosophy, Policy

Any definition of liberty that is not based on a right to property and a right to the same rights as all other people have is meaningless. What we have is ours, and nobody can push us around. This is practically all we mean when we say we are free. Other rights derive from these, […]

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Dogs – “On the Wealth of Nations”, P.J. O’Rourke

May 13th, 2012 · Comments Off on Dogs – “On the Wealth of Nations”, P.J. O’Rourke · Humanism, Philosophy, Quotes

“Nobody,” Adam Smith wrote in Wealth, “ever saw a dog make a fair and deliberate exchange of one bone for another with another dog.

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Smith and Society – “On the Wealth of Nations”, P.J. O’Rourke

May 13th, 2012 · Comments Off on Smith and Society – “On the Wealth of Nations”, P.J. O’Rourke · Economics, Progressive Politics, Quotes

We must treat other people with respect due equals not because we are inspired by principle or filled with fraternal affection but because we’re pathetic and useless. Smith wrote that an individual “stands at all times in need of the co-operation and assistance of great multitudes, while his whole life is scare sufficient to gain […]

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