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The Misery Index April 2, 2009

Posted by tomflesher in Academia, Economics, US Politics.
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The Misery Index is a measure of national economic health derived by adding the unemployment rate to the rate of inflation. It was famously used by Jimmy Carter to declare that Gerald Ford, under whom the rate had risen to 12.5%, had no right to run the country, and then by Ronald Reagan to declare that Carter was unfit for the presidency after it rose to over 20%. (It’s available in real time at MiseryIndex.us.) (more…)


Shovel-Ready Twins December 22, 2008

Posted by tomflesher in Academia.
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My Macroeconomic Theory final had an extra credit question asking us to apply one of the models from the class to the Obama stimulus proposal. I’m something of an econeophyte, but I do remember this coming up in, inter alia, Alan Harvey’s Demand Side Economics podcast (which I listened to mainly to balance EconTalk, which I listen to mainly because Russ Roberts is brilliant).

In addition, I am a twin. Why this is relevant will become clear behind the cut.


Quickie: Change-in-Government Roundup December 2, 2008

Posted by tomflesher in Canada.
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Quick roundup of news and editorials about the leadership crisis in Canada.

Background: After spending $300 million for an election to congeal his minority into a majority government, Stephen Harper made little progress and ended up with another minority government. This appeared to be well and good, despite the fact that a coalition of the left-wing parties plus the Bloc Quebecois could easily defeat the Conservative government in a confidence motion if it decided to do so. However, because Harper failed to deliver an economic stimulus package in his fall budget, the coalition is attempting to take over as government.