Today I'm reprising a talk I did last year with Professor Elizabeth Robison's Sociology class. We'll be discussing a brief history of agriculture and food production in the U.S. Key points are how the capital requirements, political dynamics, and technology developments have combined to make food production anything but the success story free market advocates … Continue reading Big Ag, Big Food, and the Commons -revisited
Note: These are my notes from my presentation/discussion at the LCC Centre for Engaged Inclusion today and also for use in my Comparative Systems class. If embedded slides don't display, use this link to download or open in new tab: https://docs.google.com/presentation/d/1mBMlzdxBwCIqJ7hPlQ-P-Co59AyYJ55eol53Avj40JM/edit?usp=sharing
I've always found putting things in historical perspective and looking at the long-term trend of things usually illuminates a lot of policy discussions. It's easier to see "what's really happening" if you look at the long-term trend. Taxes, tax rates, and the government budget are often hot topics of policy debate. So is the future … Continue reading So Who Pays For the Government and How?
It's Rick Snyder's incredible flip-flop here in Michigan on so-called "Right to Work" legislation and his claims that it's about "freedom" that brings me back to blogging. Lately I've been getting increased questions about what "Right to Work" really means. So, let me try to cut through the Orwellian rhetoric and explain. So called "Right … Continue reading Is “Right to Work” About Freedom?
A very interesting video by an Irish economist explaining how the current reduce government spending ("austerity") approach to the Eurozone debt and currency crisis is doomed to fail. It is doomed because cutting government spending in a recession only makes the recession worse, which in turn, reduces tax collections which then makes the government deficits … Continue reading David McWilliams Explains Why Austerity Is Doomed In Europe
Today's post is an excerpt of something I wrote for another site. This year, in addition to my teaching duties at the college, I'm leading a project to update our college strategic plan. As part of that project I'm writing and editing a series of "briefing papers" (long blog posts, actually) about issues of strategic … Continue reading Student Debt + Stagnant Real Wages = Colleges Need to Focus On Student Success
I'm not the most regular blogger. I really do strive to post daily, it often doesn't work out. Sometimes my schedule pinched. Other times, health issues get in the way (ever try to write with a toothache?). But then there are times when the news makes me so angry I can't find civil words that … Continue reading Occupy Wall Street Meets Fahrenheit 451 – Whose Property Rights?
Following up on yesterday's post about the Global Top Incomes Database, I thought I'd give an example. Here's what I created: So what are we looking at? The blue line shows almost a century of the average income of the bottom 90% of American earners (in constant, real 2008 dollars - scale on right side). … Continue reading The Top 0.1% Vs. Rest of Us Throughout the 20th Century
Any student, researcher, or #OWS protestor interested in income distribution and income growth should definitely be aware of this resource: The World's Top Incomes Database. (hat tip to Krugman, from whom I learned about it). It's a very powerful database combined with a very easy to use interface that allows you to extract exactly the … Continue reading Awesome Resource – The World Top Incomes Database
I'll be talking tomorrow to a bunch of students about income distribution, student loans, and other things of interest to the #OWS crowd. These are some graphs I've collected from other sources that I'll use. No time to write much analysis today. It's mostly just the graphs. From Paul Krugman: The true age of spectacular … Continue reading Quickie – Some Graphs