Relevant and even prescient commentary on news, politics and the economy.

Students who Whine Like This are not Long for Class

The Battle of Late January has ended, as Amazon yields, gracelessly: We have expressed our strong disagreement and the seriousness of our disagreement by temporarily ceasing the sale of all Macmillan titles. We want you to know that ultimately, however, we will have to capitulate and accept Macmillan’s terms because Macmillan has a monopoly over […]

Cui Bono? The Kindle

John Scalzi makes a clear case that Amazon’s determination to subsidize the Kindle is coming at the expense of Authors’s and their Publishers: This asinine jockeying over electronic book prices has very little to do with what’s actually good or useful for anyone other than the manufacturer of a piece of hardware… who also happens […]

What is competition?

rdan A reader commented that market share statistics do not reflect whether competition occurs in a health insurance market. To stress a point he stated competition occurs when companies >1, and many states have competition of >2 major players, which makes for a more competitive market than a monopoly allows. Competition to me means that […]

Morgan Stanley Plans to Turn Downgraded Loan CDO Into AAA Bonds

by divorced one like Bush Well, well, well, seems our Robert will have some more thinking to do. Via C & L to Radamisto who want’s to know if we have ADD or what comes the Bloomberg story that the money from money machine is being restarted. Morgan Stanley plans to repackage a downgraded collateralized […]

I Wish I TA’ed Monopolistic Competition instead of Economic Development

Everyone should read Joe Wilcox’s update, based on the release of more court docs, on the ongoing saga of Why Vista Sucked on Release. (Short version: because Intel asked.) Teaser quote, which would look fine in Mankiw or Krugman’s next Macro text: Based on the available information, I come to an easy conclusion: One monopoly […]

The Efficiency of the Private Sector

by cactus The Efficiency of the Private Sector Recently, the wife and I moved to a new state. When you do that, you need to get a new driver’s license, plus re-register your vehicles. The whole process, including taking the written (well, computerized) exam, from the moment we walked in until the moment we walked […]

Two Hours Later, All is Well

As noted last week, we are in Montreal, and Videotron was scheduled today to install telephone, television, and internet services. They came through with flying colors. Around 12:50, I called them, wondering when they were coming by. The representative noted that they were scheduled to arrive “sometime during the day,” not specifically in the morning […]

Pluralising Anecdotes

In the grand tradition of cactus, I have arranged with Videotron for telephone, television, and internet service at our apartment in Montreal starting on Tuesday morning. If all goes well, I hope to blog about it on Tuesday. If all does not go well, I’ll be blogging it sometime after the opening ceremonies of the […]