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I have "delusions of adequacy."
Interests: economics, policy, theatre, music, hiking, geocaching
Recent Activity
We are constantly being lectured about how we need to cut down on our use of plastics so we can save the oceans. It's like lecturing everyone who shows up at a meeting on time about how horrible it is to be late all the time. To all my friends who use plastics, let me quote Robin Williams from Good... Continue reading
Posted 6 days ago at EclectEcon
Via Daily Alert, a daily news aggregator with news (good, bad, otherwise) about Israel: Germany's Merkel Admits Threat to Jews German Chancellor Angela Merkel, who was interviewed by CNN's Christiane Amanpour in Berlin, condemned the rise of anti-Semitism in the country, saying Germany "always had a certain number of anti-Semites among us, unfortunately." Merkel also condemned the fact that, "there... Continue reading
Posted May 29, 2019 at EclectEcon
Once again, EclectEcon has been named one of the top 100 economics blogs. Continue reading
Posted May 22, 2019 at EclectEcon
Recent correspondence with my sister reminded me of a special cheer my dad and the students from Albion College used to chant, (and still do!) "Io Triumphe!"* After essentially being kicked out of Hannibal Junior College and then being told by a chemistry prof after two years at Drury College (Springfield, MO) that he would never get his degree there,... Continue reading
Posted Apr 19, 2019 at EclectEcon
There is little doubt in my mind: the film Strange Brew captures the unique essence of the Canadian Cultural Identity. But even though this film was a minor commercial success, there are many people in the culture industry who claim they absolutely NEED subsidies from the rest of us taxpayers to help preserve the national cultural fabric, whatever the heck... Continue reading
Posted Mar 30, 2019 at EclectEcon
Not everyone responds the same way to changes in incentives, but some do. An example sent by my friend Jack: Overheard at a shopping mall today: Two mothers, looking around 16 years old, one with three young kids about a year apart, the other with two. The one with three says to the other “ you should have another one.... Continue reading
Posted Mar 23, 2019 at EclectEcon
Have you ever thought of getting away from it all and starting over again? Think it through carefully. It isn't easy finding a new place to live when you have very little money and no references. It isn't easy finding a new job when you have no credentials or work history. And it isn't easy striking out alone when you're... Continue reading
Posted Mar 18, 2019 at EclectEcon
It snowed last night!!! Yea!!! It isn't much snow, but we're late in the season and since tomorrow is St. Patrick's Day, why not? Here are links to my previous Snow Stomp Art (although this was really more Snow-Shuffle Art): Happy St. Patrick's Day, 2019 (this post) Spring is Sprung You Wanted Spring? Too Cold to Build a Snowman Simply... Continue reading
Posted Mar 16, 2019 at EclectEcon
The recent scandals involving wealthy people trying to use bribes to open a "side door" into universities for their children amused me. The problem for me went beyond the moral issues, the impact on their children, and the general amount of unspoken favouritism shown in the admissions process. So why did it amuse me? Because if parents want to bribe... Continue reading
Posted Mar 14, 2019 at EclectEcon
My sister recently decided to embark on a programme of studies for a divinity degree, beginning with a course on the Old Testament. She wrote to ask me why I decided to go to theological seminary in 1965. Here is what I answered (only slightly edited): This is somewhat embarrassing. Oh well, here goes: As an undergraduate in the early... Continue reading
Posted Mar 6, 2019 at EclectEcon
Many states in the US have something like nolo contendere, which I gather means the defendents admit they did it and they'll pay a fine, but they don't want a record of having pled guilty or of having been found guilty. This plea has cleared up a tonne of court time in the US, as I understand it. The plea... Continue reading
Posted Mar 4, 2019 at EclectEcon
From JR, my favourite drug-dealer. TV Viewing Tied to Cognitive Decline in Those Over Age 50 By Amy Orciari Herman Edited by André Sofair, MD, MPH, and William E. Chavey, MD, MS Adults over age 50 who watch several hours of television daily may be at increased risk for cognitive decline, according to a longitudinal study in Scientific Reports. Researchers... Continue reading
Posted Mar 2, 2019 at EclectEcon
It's the same snowstomp art as in the previous posting, but the warmth from the parking garage under the lawn and the sun make it so much clearer. But we're getting more snow now, as I post this. To complete destroy a cute old poem: Spring is sprung, The grass ain't riz; I wonder where the flowers is. Here are... Continue reading
Posted Mar 2, 2019 at EclectEcon
We had snow overnight but someone walked their dog on the lawn and left tracks. Fortunately (for my snow stomp art) we had another three inches of snow during the day today, so I went out tonight to do this spring. I took this picture tonight just in case the dog walker is back tomorrow morning. If not, I'll try... Continue reading
Posted Feb 27, 2019 at EclectEcon
The cold temperatures meant the snow we got last night couldn't easily be rolled into a snowman, and so I did the next best thing: I did some snowstomp art to make the introduction to "Frosty, the Snowman". A couple of "notes" about today's artwork: There are some blemishes because I slipped a couple of times on the ice that... Continue reading
Posted Feb 18, 2019 at EclectEcon
The cold temperatures meant the snow we got last night couldn't easily be rolled into a snowman, and so I did the next best thing: I did some snowstomp art to make the introduction to "Frosty, the Snowman". A couple of "notes" about today's artwork: There are some blemishes because I slipped a couple of times on the ice that... Continue reading
Posted Feb 18, 2019 at EclectEcon
In a mystery dinner theatre show for Murder for Hire last weekend, I played a knock-off of Sean Connery. The audience was almost entirely made up of young adults between the ages of 18 and 35. As I went around introducing myself, several of the younger people in the crowd pulled their phones out to google "Sean Connery". They hadn't... Continue reading
Posted Jan 30, 2019 at EclectEcon
My granddaughters suggested I make a maze with my next snow stomp art. I loved the idea and couldn't wait for the next time we had enough snow that would stay on my canvas (the condo lawn) to do it. Here it is: Actually I worked on this piece from a little after 11pm last night until nearly 1am. The... Continue reading
Posted Jan 29, 2019 at EclectEcon
We all have reasonably strong views about the world, how it operates, and how we think it should operate. These strong views, or priors, affect how we interpret events. So let me ask readers to pick an issue about which you have strong views. What would it take to get you to change your views? Example: One of my all-time... Continue reading
Posted Jan 22, 2019 at EclectEcon
Snow Stomp art for the new year: My previous snow stomp art: Let There Be Music (this post) Ommadawn The First Robin of Spring? Be My Valentine, 2018 Curling AND the Super Bowl I'm No Escher... Hark! the Herald Angel Sings Nativity Scene, 2017 Planning an Escape Caught in the Net Surf's Up Diagonally Warped in a Parallel Universe, Part... Continue reading
Posted Dec 30, 2018 at EclectEcon
A month from today, I'll be 75 years old. It has been a wonderful 75 years, filled with ups and downs, but more fantastic experiences and more happiness than I ever imagined possible. Despite my deteriorating body and mind, I look forward to many more. I used to keep my age a bit of a secret. It was probably stupid,... Continue reading
Posted Sep 20, 2018 at EclectEcon
No sooner had my novel, 2605, gone on sale than the Amazons started listing the availability of used copies of it. WTF??? I knew no copies had been printed, and was puzzled. My sons and nephews enjoyed pointing this out to me last weekend, too. So I looked at the listings. They were typically along the lines of: $22 plus... Continue reading
Posted Jul 26, 2018 at EclectEcon
The paperback versions of 2605 are available! But the Kindle version is much less expensive. You can buy the novel through,,, or probably several of the other Amazon sites. Previous links: Continue reading
Posted Jul 24, 2018 at EclectEcon
A facebook friend whom I had known some years ago wrote, I loved 2605. Interestingly enough, I was managing an operation that created Collateralized Mortgage Obligations [CMOs] and debt backed tranche products at the same time as your main character was doing similar things. I started backing away from them when I thought there was more risk than was being... Continue reading
Posted Jul 17, 2018 at EclectEcon
In a fairly straight-forward honest review, my son [David Ricardo Palmer] wrote: This book surprised me. I thought it was going to be a spy/thriller novel, but it’s not - it’s an exploration of “what if”, when you’re faced with the opportunity to start over. The protagonist becomes more likeable as the story progresses, which is a nice journey to... Continue reading
Posted Jul 13, 2018 at EclectEcon