Good Times, Not Bad, Nurture Enemies of Free Market
The New York Times, "Economic Scene", September 07, 2000In a recent speech to economists gathered in Jackson Hole, Wyo., the Federal Reserve chairman, Alan Greenspan, warned that neither continued economic liberalization nor high economic growth was inevitable. Recent productivity gains have been above the norm, he said, driven by the "accelerating application of new insights" in technology. As those innovations reach their limits, he suggested, growth will drop to a lower, historically more normal level.
Rich May Get Richer, but Poor Are Also Doing Better
The New York Times, "Economic Scene", August 10, 2000The rich are getting richer, and the poor are getting poorer, right? You'll hear that riff plenty this election year, if not from the major party candidates then from Ralph Nader and Pat Buchanan. It's a populist truism, Exhibit A in the case against the economy's recent dynamism.
Waiting for perfectly "clean" opportunities to apply your principles means you could lose them altogether.
Reason, August/September 2000Poor Joe Stiglitz. Here he is, an eminent economist, on everyone's short list for a Nobel Prize. He writes a perfectly respectable New Republic cover story about the failings of the International Monetary Fund. He's particularly concerned that IMF policies make poor countries experiencing recessions poorer and more depressed. The article makes a big splash. Yet when all the publicity is over, Stiglitz has become the intellectual poster child for anti-trade, anti-growth fanatics. What happened?
The Shortsighted Site Busters
Fan sites amateur sites do more than give ideas to designers of official sites. But media companies operating on legal autopilot don't seem to see things that way.
Forbes, July 23, 2000WHEN JUSTIN KUZMANICH SET OUT TO design a Web site for the TV series That '70s Show, he knew the viewers' demographics. But he needed more: What did fans really like? What information would keep them coming back? What visual style would turn them on?
When It Comes to Enforcing Taste, It's Best to Tread Lightly
The New York Times, "Economic Scene", July 13, 2000All around the country, conflicts are brewing over aesthetics. Instead of tolerating sights they don't like -- from tacky porch furniture to innovative architecture -- more and more Americans are demanding a world free of "visual pollution." Appearance is getting the sort of regulatory scrutiny once reserved for public health and safety.
Regulation gave us media monopolies. Can consumer power shake them?
Reason, July 2000Americans hate their cable companies--for bumbling installers, on-again-off-again transmissions, peculiar channel selections, and indifferent customer service. The only thing cable subscribers hate more than the cable company is not being able to get what it delivers: multichannel selection and good reception.
Of Conservatism and Distinctiveness in the Religious Marketplace
The New York Times, "Economic Scene", June 15, 2000The Southern Baptist Convention voted yesterday to amend its official statement of faith to declare that the Bible bars women from serving as pastors. Although each Baptist congregation is autonomous and the convention cannot stop a local church from ordaining or hiring a woman as pastor, the pronouncement is generally considered an important symbol of the denomination's increasing conservatism.
Pernicious Nonsense Unrebuked
Forbes, June 11, 2000JOSEPH STIGLITZ IS A BRILLIANT MAN. His pioneering scholarship on the economics of information has put him on most economists' short list of Nobel Prize candidates. But Stiglitz has been in the news recently for reasons having nothing to do with his research. He is not only a scholar. Until recently, he was chief economist at the World Bank and, before that, a member of the president's Council of Economic Advisers.
"Joy, to the World"
A techno-celebrity's childish manifesto.
Reason, June 2000Since its earliest days, Wired magazine has always had a genius for publicity. It lost its edge somewhat when Condé Nast took over two years ago and the new crew replaced Wired’s Bay Area techno-exuberance with the New York publishing formulas that eschew ideas in favor of celebrities
Putting The Hex On Rx
Forbes ASAP, May 28, 2000The Pill Box pharmacy is the last place you'd look for radicals. A plain, freestanding structure in San Antonio's South Texas Medical Center, the shop smells of rubber and pills--splints and trusses and prescription drugs. There aren't rows of shampoos and greeting cards; it's a straightforward, and decidedly down-home, medical place.