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I have "delusions of adequacy."
Interests: economics, policy, theatre, music, hiking, geocaching
Recent Activity
A friend associated with the local hospital system sent me this, in response to the graphs I posted here. There have been zero reported cases to date of laboratory-confirmed influenza since Aug 30th, 2020 in London [Ontario]. For comparison, last year for the same period there were a total of 105 cases (75 influenza A and 30 influenza B) in... Continue reading
Posted 4 hours ago at EclectEcon
Presumably because people are taking more care, trying to avoid Covid-19, and also because some people with flu are misdiagnosed as having mild Covid-19, the reports of flu cases in Canada have been much lower than in the past (see this for the full site). Two salient graphs [ILI stands for Influenza-Like Illnesses]: Continue reading
Posted yesterday at EclectEcon
Many, many thanks to everyone who offered recommendations on the blog, on Facebook, and elsewhere when I asked for them here. Here's a summary of the responses: Mrs. Maisel seems to be a big favourite. Knives Out was another popular recommendation. The Expanse (sci-fi, which isn't my cup of tea, but it received several recommendations) Jack Ryan (also several recommendations)... Continue reading
Posted 3 days ago at EclectEcon
Please read the post before making recommendations! We've had Amazon Prime for years but we never bothered trying to look for Amazon Prime videos on our Smart TV. Several years ago, we tried Netflix for two months and didn't watch anything on it because we never came across anything that looked as if it might appeal to us, so we... Continue reading
Posted 4 days ago at EclectEcon
These data are from the US. I can't find a comparable study using Canadian data (I'll be surprised if there isn't something comparable out there, though). Excess deaths (the number of deaths observed in a jurisdiction above and beyond the number experienced in the same jurisdiction during the previous five years) is a pretty interesting measure of the impact of... Continue reading
Posted Dec 24, 2020 at EclectEcon
I finally received my MixcderE9 active noise canceling headphones from Ali Express today. I was so excited! I charged them up a bit, using the standard Samsung USB cord, and turned them on. Then I put them on and started some Vivaldi on my iPhone. Wow!! Automatic connection and they sounded great! A half hour later I realized that the... Continue reading
Posted Dec 22, 2020 at EclectEcon
When I was shopping this morning (at Geezer Hour), one of the Christmas songs playing was "Have Yourself a Merry Little Christmas". I liked the somewhat melancholic sense that "from now on our troubles will be out of sight" and "from now on our troubles will be far away." The sentiment seemed to be that yeah, okay, things aren't great... Continue reading
Posted Dec 20, 2020 at EclectEcon
Snow during the night! So I made a trumpet (stylized) to promote tomorrow evening's Christmas Carol and Holiday Song sing-along, with me playing my trumpet and people singing from the balconies. Here's the announcement that was distributed last evening: My previous snow stomp art: Trumpet for the Balcony Chorus (this post) 2020 -- Spiraling Wear me The Meaning of Life... Continue reading
Posted Dec 17, 2020 at EclectEcon
The MSM (mainstream media) are still all over Doug Ford, Premier of Ontario, because of the rising case numbers in our province. The media members and everyone in North America need to know that the case numbers are very impressively low compared with nearly every other jurisdiction in North America. Look at and compare the numbers and graphs for the... Continue reading
Posted Dec 5, 2020 at EclectEcon
Susan's Story and 2605 are companion novels about what happens when Fred Young is missing and presumed dead after the attacks on the World Trade Centre in 2001. In 2605, Fred Young, a successful mortgage-bond specialist, is late for his meeting with Cantor Fitzgerald in the World Trade Centre on 9-11. He had fantasized about getting away from it all... Continue reading
Posted Dec 4, 2020 at EclectEcon
My latest mystery novel, Shrink-Wrapped Murder, has just been published! Several of my friends read pre-publication versions and said it's my best yet! It's available on all the Amazons in both Kindle and paperback formats. To order it from, you can use this link. To order it from, you can use this link. But better yet, click on... Continue reading
Posted Dec 2, 2020 at EclectEcon
I loved all the snow yesterday and I kept hoping it wouldn't rain and get too warm. I got lucky! It kept snowing and didn't get too warm, and so I went out to do my next snow stomp art project last evening. I spent some time sketching what I wanted to do, but of course when I actually get... Continue reading
Posted Nov 23, 2020 at EclectEcon
We had nice snow last night, and I arose early to do some snowstomp art on the condo lawn. The title is The title is "Wear Me". We're a high-risk household, and so we try to isolate a lot, distance, and wear masks the times when we're not isolating. My previous snow stomp art: Wear me (this post) The Meaning... Continue reading
Posted Nov 18, 2020 at EclectEcon
To hear the mainstream media talking heads, Covid-19 has been terribly mishandled in Ontario. Because I'm reading about high case loads in so many jurisdictions, I wondered how bad the situation has been in Ontario compared with other places. See the table below. First I compared it with Michigan, next door, where there was a massive lockdown early and where... Continue reading
Posted Nov 13, 2020 at EclectEcon
The title of this post came to mind when I read this morning's headline in the Democratic Party Newsletter, aka The Washington Post*: Biden plans to move fast on the pandemic and the economy Quite frankly this whole-hog determination that the federal gubmnt must do something about these two issues bothers me. Pandemic policies should be and have mostly been... Continue reading
Posted Nov 9, 2020 at EclectEcon
Is it acceptable to ask whether there really was an historical Jesus? Is it acceptable to ask whether cold fusion will ever be a possibility? Is it acceptable to ask whether Ashkenazim Jews are, on average, smarter than Sephardic or Ethiopian Jews? Is it acceptable to ask whether blacks are, on average, better athletes than whites? Is it acceptable to... Continue reading
Posted Nov 7, 2020 at EclectEcon
We decided to try to stuff two large-ish chicken breasts with asparagus, mushrooms, and brie cheese. First, not just one but lots of slices in each breast: And then put some asparagus in the slits: And then some sliced cremini mushrooms and some slices of brie: And then try to tie them shut. Hah! Trim the strings and season them.... Continue reading
Posted Oct 22, 2020 at EclectEcon
From JR, my favourite drug dealer: "Consensus science" is similar to "precautionary principle": both are terms used by pseudoscientists, regardless of their pedigree, who do not understand that science is simply the denial of the null hypothesis to support an alternative hypothesis to some degree of probability. Of course, denying consensus makes you "deplorable" in every sphere of life, including... Continue reading
Posted Oct 13, 2020 at EclectEcon
A few weeks ago I wrote about how the FED is vacuuming up liquidity by making interest payments on US commercial bank excess reserves deposited at the Fed. In that post, I noted that so long as the Fed vacuums up the excess liquidity created when they buy up additional debt (gubmnt and otherwise), I can understand why and how... Continue reading
Posted Oct 11, 2020 at EclectEcon
Nearly seven years ago, I described the competition between Keurig and Tassimo here. For a number of very good reasons, I suggested then that if this is a winner-take-all competition, Keurig would be likely to win it. It still looks that way from my perspective as the variety of disks available for Tassimo continues to diminish, as does the shelf... Continue reading
Posted Oct 7, 2020 at EclectEcon
This year and last year I participated in an international convention for The Urban Economy Forum, both as a speaker and as a member of the steering committee. Last year, not knowing what I was getting into, I prepared a 20-30 minute presentation, only to learn a few days in advance that I would have only ten minutes for my... Continue reading
Posted Oct 5, 2020 at EclectEcon
If you're like us, there are times you buy more perishable foods than you can use up before their expiration dates (the best of intentions....). Yesterday we realized we had quite of few things we wanted to use up, and so we made some crustless quiches. Ingredients: one dozen eggs 6 cups of half-and-half half a stick of butter (melted)... Continue reading
Posted Oct 3, 2020 at EclectEcon
Fifteen years ago, amidst the threat of Avian Flu, we developed a list of things we wanted to have in our house in case all the dire predictions actually came true. Fortunately they didn't, and since then we've moved into a condo. Jack suggested I develop a list of things people in apartment or condo buildings should try to keep... Continue reading
Posted Sep 29, 2020 at EclectEcon
The United States gubmnt has massively increased its indebtedness, and apparently the Fed has bought most of this debt. Why hasn't this monetization of the debt led to expectations (in the markets) of increased inflation rates a year or two from now? Here's one possible explanation, but I'm open to others. Since I'm an old-skool monetarist, I'm still thinking in... Continue reading
Posted Sep 27, 2020 at EclectEcon
The reported new cases per 100,000 in Ontario, Quebec, and Canada are shown in this graph: The blue line in the above graph is Quebec, the brown line is Canada, and the barely visible grey line is Ontario. There was a bit of a discernible rise in the number of cases/100K two weeks after Canada Day [July 1], but there... Continue reading
Posted Sep 25, 2020 at EclectEcon