Economics Roundtable

Technical Problems 3/9/15

The website was down several hours today, but is back up now.

May 2014 Payroll Employment

After 76 months, we finally got back to the prerecession level of payroll employment.

Click on the image to get a bigger version.


The best summary of the state of our economy is the graph (below) of employment as a fraction of population for people over 16 years old. The decrease is large, but the most troubling feature of the graph is the flat trend .

Click on the image to get a bigger version.

Graph-of-the-Year Candidates

Donald Marron likes European interest rates. Click on the image to get a bigger version. Can you find three distinct subperiods?

Brad DeLong favors the U.S. gdp gap.

Remember M1?

Money Supply M1 growth is now over 20% per year over a 12 month lag. M1 growth has touched 20% before, but not with excess reserves of $1.6 trillion. Where is M1 headed?

Click on the chart for a larger version.


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Cafe Hayek

April 20, 2015, 8:04 pm, 1458600
(Don Boudreaux)

In a speech in May 1932 presidential candidate Franklin D. Roosevelt famously said the following:

The country needs and, unless I mistake its temper, the country demands bold, persistent experimentation.  It is common sense to take a method and try it: If it fails, admit it frankly and try ...

April 20, 2015, 12:04 pm, 1458309

April 20, 2015, 8:04 am, 1458153
(Don Boudreaux)

… is from page 10 of Sheldon Richman’s essay “Monopoly and Aggression,” which appears in the April 2015 issue (Vol. 26, No. 4) of Future of Freedom (original emphasis; the quotations from Frederic Bastiat are from his 1850 volume, Economic Harmonies):

Bastiat praised the competitive market process ...

April 19, 2015, 2:04 pm, 1457934
(Don Boudreaux)

Joel Kotkin has alway been good.  But he is (in my opinion) getting even better.  His essay on the sorry state of California, in today’s Daily Beast, is a gem.  (HT Manny Klausner)  Below are several slices (but do read the whole thing):

California has met the future, and ...

April 19, 2015, 10:04 am, 1457911
(Don Boudreaux)

Does more-strict enforcement of immigration restrictions reduce crime in the U.S.?  Likely not.  (HT Tyler Cowen)

Here’s Brendan O’Neill on the utter superficiality of politics.  (HT Walter Grinder)

Congratulations to Chapman University law professor Tom Bell for winning the 2015 Charles G. Koch Outstanding Institute for Humane Studies ...

April 19, 2015, 8:04 am, 1457897
(Don Boudreaux)

… is from page 218 of Bruno Leoni’s pioneering 1963 essay “Law and Economy in the Making,” as reprinted in the appendix to the 1991 Liberty Fund edition of Leoni’s 1961 volume, Freedom and the Law:

Law, like language, is not a gadget that a man can contrive at ...

April 18, 2015, 6:04 pm, 1457755
(Don Boudreaux)

Here’s a letter to Mother Jones:

Congratulations!  You’ve well and truly slain a straw man by reporting that “[c]onservatives have long portrayed minimum-wage increases as harbingers of economic doom, but their fears simply haven’t played out” (“As Cities Raise Their Minimum Wage, Where’s the Economic Collapse the Right Predicted?” ...

April 18, 2015, 8:04 am, 1457624
(Don Boudreaux)

… is from page 223 of the late Bernard Seigan‘s excellent 1997 volume, Property and Freedom:

Human experience reveals the fallibility of [Paul] Ehrlich’s position.  Even if there will, in time, be less tonnage of each of these resources, human ingenuity will provide substitutes to satisfy needs ...

April 17, 2015, 4:04 pm, 1457399
(Don Boudreaux)

Here’s a letter to the Huffington Post:

Hillary Clinton insists that “[t]here’s something wrong when CEOs make 300 times more than the typical worker” (“Hillary Clinton Blasts Pay For CEOs, Hedge Fund Managers In Campaign Kickoff,” April 15).

Well now.  As a speaker Ms. Clinton is paid, on average, $300,000 ...

April 17, 2015, 12:04 pm, 1457234
(Don Boudreaux)

Writing recently in the Washington Post, the Cato Institute’s David Boaz makes the case for giving taxpayers greater say over how their money is spent.

Steve Horwitz argues that

[w]hile the [political] right resists same-sex marriage and the left thinks that cultural paradigm shifts are responsible for the transformation ...