people are empty spaces
weighted by conjecture
and consequence.
conscience, or lack thereof,
is the new hard currency
in a soft flesh economy.
morality and its relative
absence are indicative of
of the phenomena we have
been conditioned to accept
to be socioeconomic status.
we seek to fill one another
with only more void, with
fabricated values that are
understood (or made
to be understood) to be
the only true option.
this life is not a life; it is
a single, drawn out infomercial
and everyone is trying
to sell you something.
—  nav k, stability is just a word

Human Capital & Conditional Convergence

What about human capital?

Well, there’s no doubt that higher levels of education correlate with higher levels of economic output.  But just like physical capital, human capital is subject to diminishing returns.

The United States has a well educated workforce and that’s good, but it’s possible for a country to invest too much in education.  It helps an economy to have some PhD’s - at least I hope it does, but how much extra growth would we get if we required everyone to have a PhD?  Probably not that much.
Income Inequality, Social Mobility, and the Decision to Drop Out Of High School
New research from Melissa Kearney and Phillip Levine finds that greater income gaps between those at the bottom and middle of the income distribution lead low-income boys to drop out of high school more often than their counterparts in higher inequality areas, suggesting that there is an important link between income inequality and reduced rates of upward mobility.

The Founding Fathers were so united in their opposition to paper money that they included this little gem in the Constitution, under Article I, Section 10:

“No State shall … make any Thing but gold and silver Coin a Tender in Payment of Debts …”

#constitution #money #gold #silver #tender #economics #monetarypolicy #founders #foundingfathers #history #liberty

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The House of Representatives Just Fashioned A Heavily Overspending, Pork-Filled Defense Bill

The House of Representatives Just Fashioned A Heavily Overspending, Pork-Filled Defense Bill

By Against Crony Capitalism

May 2, 2016

The House of Representatives Just Fashioned A Heavily Overspending, Pork-Filled Defense Bill


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No one in Washington really seems to care about reining in the size of government. (There is a tiny minority.) The Dems want welfare and corporate welfare. The Republicans want corporate welfare and “defense” spending. There is no real effort to save money…

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Seriously, though, I suspect that the real reason the whole “maybe the real treasure was the friends we made along the way” trope falls flat for modern audiences isn’t because we’re a bunch of horrible cynics - it’s because most of us are flat broke. Friends are nice and all, but treasure of the gold-and-jewels variety would really help with next month’s student loan payment, y’know?


Let’s begin with a choice.

Say there’s a check in the mail. It’s meant to help you run your household. You can use it to keep the lights on, the water running and food on the table. Would you rather that check be for $9,794 or $28,639?

It’s not a trick question. It’s the story of America’s schools in two numbers.

That $9,794 is how much money the Chicago Ridge School District in Illinois spent per child in 2013 (the number has been adjusted by Education Week to account for regional cost differences). It’s well below that year’s national average of $11,841.

Why America’s Schools Have A Money Problem

Map: Alyson Hurt and Katie Park/NPR
Illustration: LA Johnson/NPR
Photo: Tim Lloyd/St. Louis Public Radio
McDonald’s counters Fight for $15 with automation
Calls for a minimum-wage hike nationwide and in Illinois are increasingly met with businesses’ use of technology to cut costs.

Liberals, one day you will understand math and business. 

If people need to make a living wage, they should work on their skill set. Make themselves worth more to their employer. They shouldn’t strive to work for the minimum.

The solution to creating more jobs is not more than doubling the cost to hire them.

Plants force fungal partners to behave fairly

Do plants operate according to economic criteria? They do, when they are mutualized with fungal partners that demonstrate differing degrees of cooperation. “Carbs for phosphates,” that’s the deal between plants and mycorrhizal fungi, which can only feed themselves together with a partner: The plant supplies the fungus with carbohydrates and is ‘paid back’ in phosphates. Additional phosphates are extremely attractive for the plant, as they allow it to grow better.

Plants react intelligently to their environment: if they can choose between more cooperative and less cooperative fungal partners, they supply the latter with fewer nutrients and thus force them to cooperate more. Based on these findings, scientists believe that plants could also be used to test market and behavioral theories.

Alicia Argüello, Michael J. O'Brien, Marcel G.A. van der Heijden, Andres Wiemken, Bernhard Schmid, Pascal A. Niklaus. Options of partners improve carbon for phosphorus trade in the arbuscular mycorrhizal mutualism. Ecology Letters, 2016; DOI: 10.1111/ele.12601

The researchers studied the plants in the greenhouse. Credit: Image: ©UZH

Trickle Down Religion

Zeus Priest: You see, if you sacrifice in the name of Zeus, your sacrifice will eventually trickle down all the way to Artemis and she will aid you in the hunt.

Worshipper: But why can’t I just sacrifice directly to Artemis for a good hunt? Why do I have to go through Zeus first?

Zeus Priest: But if we just give sacrifice to lesser gods and goddesses, they would get lazy. This world is carried on the back of Atlas, not Amphitrite. If you want a socialist pantheon, go join Hades in the fucking Underworld.