Tuesday , January 18 2022
Home / Tag Archives: Current Affairs

Tag Archives: Current Affairs

Who has been loneliest during the pandemic?

That question is the topic of my latest Bloomberg column.  The wealthy can fly to the sun, meet outdoors, test regularly, and find many other workarounds.  Poorer individuals tend to be working together in public-facing service jobs.  That has a Covid downside, but it does make them less lonely.  So who are the biggest loneliness losers? …it’s pointless to debate which group is loneliest. Still, I might argue for some sympathy for Northerners in midlevel jobs who work alone or...

Read More »

Japan facts of the day

Compared with the previous year, the survey showed a drop in the number of people who wanted to work and study abroad, work with foreigners in Japan and learn foreign languages. Most notably the percentage of those who wanted to “use English for a job” declined from its 2020 peak by 10.6 points to 38 per cent. And: …the support for the ruling Liberal Democratic party among young people was higher than in other generations. That, said Junji Nakagawa, a professor at Chuo Gakuin...

Read More »

Where are the Variant Specific Boosters?

I wasn’t shocked at the failures of the CDC and the FDA. I am shocked that our government still can’t get its act together in the third year of the pandemic. Consider how lucky, yes lucky, we have been. Here’s Eric Topol: …the original vaccines were targeted to the Wuhan ancestral strain’s spike protein from 2019. The spike protein, no less the rest of the original SARS-CoV-2 structure, is almost unrecognizable now in the form of the Omicron strain (see antigenic...

Read More »

Noah Smith Substack interviews me

Here is the interview.  Here is one excerpt: N.S.: So how would you generally describe the zeitgeist of the moment, if you had to give a simple summary? What do you think are a couple of most important trends in culture and thought right now? My impression has been that we’re sort of in a replay of the 70s — a period of exhaustion after several years of intense social unrest, where people are looking around for new cultural and economic paradigms to replace the ones we just...

Read More »

Today’s labor market report

Unemployment is at 3.9%, and can’t get much better.  In the new report just 199,000 jobs were added.  Job growth is slowing and that is a pre-omicron phenomenon.  Labor force participation has not been so low since 1977.  The great economic myth of the last thirteen or so years is that you can get the labor market to pre-Covid Trump administration levels and keep it there just by having enough “aggregate demand.”  I am all for sufficient aggregate demand, to be clear, but I...

Read More »

On the Responsibility of Universities to their Students

Emily Oster in The Atlantic: Many universities have announced a pivot to remote learning for at least part of January, among them UCLA, Columbia, Duke, Yale, Stanford, and Michigan State. The list goes on. This move—in response to the rapid spread of the Omicron variant—feels like a return to March 2020, when virtually all U.S. universities closed for in-person learning, sending students home for spring break and telling them not to come back. At that point, keeping students away from...

Read More »

Is the Beijing Consensus collapsing?

From my latest Bloomberg column: The more dramatic developments have come from China itself. China did effectively wield state power to build infrastructure, manage its cities and boost economic growth. And most advocates of the Washington Consensus underestimated how well that process would go. But along the way, China became addicted to state power. Whenever there was a problem in Chinese society, the government ran to the rescue. The most dramatic example was the extreme use of fiscal...

Read More »

Arnold Kling’s proposal for regulatory reform

To improve our agencies’ performance, we need to think about restructuring the federal bureaucracy itself. I propose we do so by creating two positions within the executive branch that operate in tension with each other. The first would be the chief operating officer, charged with managing the administrative agencies. The second would be the chief auditor, charged with leading a watchdog agency that monitors the administrative state for effectiveness and abuses of authority. Both the...

Read More »

Mary C. Daly understands the median voter theorem

Ms. Daly…has shifted her tone particularly dramatically in recent weeks… As recently as mid-November, she had argued that the Fed should be patient in removing its support, avoiding an overreaction to inflation that might prove temporary and risk unnecessarily slowing the recovery of the labor market. But incoming data have confirmed that employers are still struggling to hire even as consumer prices are rising at the fastest clip in nearly 40 years. Rising rents and tangled...

Read More »

Texas, Utah, and Idaho fact of the day

The Texas population grew by about four million people in the past decade—far more than any other state in raw numbers, and enough as a percentage to make it the third-fastest-growing state in the nation over that period, behind Utah and Idaho. Here is the full story, mostly about Texas.  Mobility trends are one simple way to try to predict how America will evolve.  For the pointer I thank the excellent Samir Varma. The post Texas, Utah, and Idaho fact of the day appeared first on Marginal...

Read More »