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EclectEcon
I have "delusions of adequacy."
Interests: economics, policy, theatre, music, hiking, geocaching
Recent Activity
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Nearly two months ago, on a whim we bought a kitchen gadget called a "Spiralizer". As my Facebook friends know from all the photos I have posted, we have used the Spiralizer quite a bit and for the most part are more than pleased with it. [see this and this]. Over these two months, we have spiralized zucchini, eggplant, broccoli... Continue reading
Posted 7 hours ago at EclectEcon
Wise words from P.J. O'Rourke: All politicians hate people. Politics is a way to gain power over people without justification for having that power. Nothing in the 11,000-year history of politics—going back to the governing elites of Mesopotamia—indicates that politicians are wiser, smarter, kinder, more moral, or better skilled at any craft (aside from politics) than we are. But political... Continue reading
Posted yesterday at EclectEcon
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For reference, my Shakespeare problem is set out here. Related articles Well at Least I Wouldn't Struggle to Learn My Lines.... Continue reading
Posted yesterday at EclectEcon
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This weekend is "Civic Holiday" weekend in Ontario. Monday is an official holiday. Many people plan short holidays, trips to the cottage, family get-togethers, etc. during the Civic Holiday weekend. Apparently most of our neighbours have deserted the parking garage, as Ms Eclectic ably demonstrates: Related articles What's open, what's closed for the Civic Holiday What is open and closed... Continue reading
Posted 2 days ago at EclectEcon
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There's a new Sherlock Holmes film out that was filmed mostly in East Sussex: Hailsham, Eastbourne, etc. It doesn't have Benedict Cumberbatch in it, but I still want to see it (and Ian McKellen is no one to disparage). Here [via Kath] is a photo of an article about the film: Related articles Ian McKellen Redefines Our Dear "Mr. Holmes"... Continue reading
Posted 3 days ago at EclectEcon
My sister wrote yesterday that their financial advisor is pessimistic about economic and market outlooks for the next several months. She asked what I think. Here is what I sent her, somewhat edited: I'm REALLY bad at this sort of thing, but here goes: I think all the financial markets are over-heated. The reason is that interest rates are SO... Continue reading
Posted 4 days ago at EclectEcon
Thomas Sowell is one of the top economics-policy writers. I've been reading his pieces for nearly 35 years. His recent column on how minimum wage laws cause disproportionate unemployment among teens and especially among minority teens is compelling [via Marilyn]. His concluding few paragraphs: In European welfare states where minimum wages, and mandated job benefits to be paid for by... Continue reading
Posted 5 days ago at EclectEcon
Please, if you think the minimum wage should be raised, read these two items about "unintended consequences", both via Wonkbook at The Washington Post. BARRO: New York's new fast-food minimum wage makes no sense. "The raise would apply only to fast-food workers, and only if they work for a chain with at least 30 locations. A wage increase applying to... Continue reading
Posted 6 days ago at EclectEcon
Last night I went out to Fanshawe Pioneer Village on the NE edge of London, Ontario, to see Jason Rip's original script about the impact of WWI on a small southern Ontario town. The play is "The Big Lad". It was amazing. There is one final performance tonight. Go see it! The story is about life in a small farming... Continue reading
Posted 6 days ago at EclectEcon
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From Terence Corcoran: Maybe you missed the news last week, which is that Canada under Stephen Harper’s Conservative government has just regained its title as the most reputable nation in the world. According to the Reputation Institute’s annual report, Canada remains at the top of a 55-nation list for perceived trust, admiration and respect, based on a survey of 48,000... Continue reading
Posted 7 days ago at EclectEcon
Every person I know who has used Uber has been extremely pleased with it. The cars are clean, the drivers are polite and generally quite knowledgeable, and the smartphone app lets both driver and customer know what's what. So why is there a problem with allowing Uber to compete with taxis and with limousine services? As most of you know,... Continue reading
Posted 7 days ago at EclectEcon
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If you want to reduce the probability of divorce, marry in your late 20s. But the important thing, for Wolfinger, is that "we do know beyond a shadow of a doubt that people who marry in their thirties are now at greater risk of divorce than are people who wed in their late twenties. This is a new development." And... Continue reading
Posted Jul 27, 2015 at EclectEcon
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On Saturday, I visited with friends at the Masonville Starbucks and then walked home along the Thames Valley Trail.* Along the way, I used my iPhone to take a few photos. I have never seen double-layered thistles before, and I fell in love with them. And of course I am enamoured of the Fibonacci sequences and formations in these flowers.... Continue reading
Posted Jul 26, 2015 at EclectEcon
Back in the days of rec.sport.baseball, Gary Huckabay advocated the use of cameras and computers to call balls and strikes for baseball games. He knew the technology could do it, but also knew it would take some time to be accepted. Now it will be tried in an independent baseball league for a couple of games on an experimental basis.... Continue reading
Posted Jul 25, 2015 at EclectEcon
When this question first occurred to me, I assumed (following a mid-70s National Lampoon article about Canada) that the answer would be "tapioca". 8-) And let's face it: the question assumes there IS such a distinctive thing as "Canadian cuisine" [what, poutine? what else?] But after looking at the list of the most common ingredient in many cuisines, [via King],... Continue reading
Posted Jul 25, 2015 at EclectEcon
The death of Sandra Bland has left me wondering, "Well what SHOULD I do if the police stop me?" Fortunately, Time has an answer: ... [H]ere are some things for all of us to consider: 1.You have the right to remain silent. That is true whether you’ve just been temporarily detained or formally arrested. ... 2. You do not have... Continue reading
Posted Jul 24, 2015 at EclectEcon
Posted Jul 20, 2015 at EclectEcon
When there is little or no good competition, people providing a service tend to have less incentive to do a good, pleasant job. Or, as Scott Sumner says, ... government offices don't have to compete for customers as private companies do, so they don't care very much about customer relations. Of course some private monopolies suffer from the same problem.... Continue reading
Posted Jul 20, 2015 at EclectEcon
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Regular readers of EclectEcon know that I try to avoid swearing here and on Facebook. At home, around friends, and in the classroom my Edward Hyde side emerges, in a sense. In this list, I use all but "Gosh" and "Darn" with varying and sometimes great frequency. Almost a billion tweets, from October of 2013 to November of 2014, were... Continue reading
Posted Jul 17, 2015 at EclectEcon
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I am really, really tempted to get one of these. If it is available at a sizable price reduction for Amazon Prime Day, I'll be tempted even more. I loved using a real Segway 5 years ago, and those rental units were limited to only about 12 mph. But the more I think about it, 40mph sounds a little dicey... Continue reading
Posted Jul 15, 2015 at EclectEcon
So it's a trumped up shopping holiday. So what if there are good sales and good prices? And even if you aren't a member of Amazon Prime, this might be a good time to try out their 30-day free trial. Continue reading
Posted Jul 15, 2015 at EclectEcon
The concern about anthropogenic global warming (AGW) has been challenged by a Northumbrian mathematician. From the Washington Post [via Jack]: This week, warnings of an impending “mini ice age,” set to hit in the 2030s, have been circulating in the media. ... The ice age idea got rolling last week when researcher Valentina Zharkova, a professor of mathematics at Northumbria... Continue reading
Posted Jul 14, 2015 at EclectEcon
Some years ago, while we were living in Clinton, Ontario, a group from Investigation Discovery came to Vanastra (a small village just south of Clinton) to film the story of Steven Truscott., a young teen who was unjustly convicted of the murder of a classmate, likely on the basis of the trumped-up testimony of a pathologist. A number of my... Continue reading
Posted Jul 14, 2015 at EclectEcon
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Shakespeare without words? Gimme a break. As my Shake-o-phile grand says, "His language is perfect." or words to that effect. In Act 5 of “Love’s Labor Lost,” one character scoffs at pedants: “They have been at a great feast of languages, and stolen the scraps.” The latest Shakespeare fashion, at least in the Washington area, is to invite people to... Continue reading
Posted Jul 13, 2015 at EclectEcon
My take: Iran signed an NPT [a non-proliferation treaty] long ago (see this), albeit under the Shah. Iran breaches NPT US and the west try to negotiate something to be able to enforce the original NPT. US and the west agree to weakened conditions of original NPT. and the US and the West believe Iran will honour the new agreement.... Continue reading
Posted Jul 13, 2015 at EclectEcon