Sunday, February 28, 2016

Bring Back Welfare by Annie Lowrey in the New Yorker

Annie Lowrey writes about the failure of welfare polices in the US and the need for a social safety net to keep people out of poverty.

Bring Welfare Back in the New Yorker

As always read the comments.  They give you the truth about what people think about the issue. Most comments classist and racist opinions about giving people something for "free." Very few discuss the article topic or poverty.

Note: The Evil Black Economist has long supported a social safety net of jobs, healthcare, free education and guaranteed basic income.

Robert Gordon: The US economy will stink for decades to come for the 99%

Robert Gordon's predicts closet to zero growth for the 99% for decades. He also concludes the structure of the economy has changed and innovation will slow to a crawl. 

Robert Gordon is predicting that economic growth for 99% of the population in the US will be below 1/2 of 1% for 99% of the population. Yes things are going to stink for a generation 

Robert Gordon: End of US Economic Growth

If you remember Piketty, this paper and book are almost as big.   All the top, public economists are taking this pretty seriously: Summers(Center), Krugman (left) and Edward Glaeser (right) have all reviewed the book and supported it's conclusions

Here is the best summary

A short summary here

NYT review

A couple of old TED talks

2016 Economic Report of the President

The 2016 Economic report of the President and the council of economic Advisers was released on Monday, February 22nd, 2016.

Each year the president releases his view of the economy called the economic report of the president. It just an all around top notch piece of macroeconomic work.

There is good coverage of inequality in the economy and support for early childhood education.

For me the biggest thing I learned was how cruel the republican fiscal cuts were during the recession. They cut spending about 5% during the height of the recession at the federal and state level.

2016 Economic Report of the President 

You can view past reports here

Past Economic Reports

Sunday, February 21, 2016

White workers have 5 times the retirement savings as Black workers

The Economic Policy Institute has analyzed retirement savings data and concluded that Black workers retirements savings are one fifth of White savings.

White workers have 5 times the retirement savings of Black Workers

Friday, February 19, 2016

Reparations for US Slavery

The case for reparations for slavery in the US has become a news item in the US presidential campaign.  Bernie Sanders said he does not believe in reparations and squelched any discussion as "divisive" in an interview with  The news generated headlines.

Reparations is clearly a Black economic issue, so we though we would look close at some of the popular articles on reparations. All articles are neutral or pro-reparations and all agree actual reparations are impossible. Most articles support studying the issue.

The Evil Black Economist supports a comprehensive study of the economic damage slavery, segregation and jim-crow discrimination did to Black people in the US between 1800 and 1960.

To start, here is nice summary of the issue in a one page format: Reparations for Slavery by Constitution Rights Center

One of the most comprehensive cases made for reparations is the article by Ta-Nehisi Coates.  He has almost single-handedly put the issue into the political discourse.  Everyone should read his article.

The Case for Reparations by Ta-Nehisi Coates in The Atlantic

Reparations are Owed by Jamelle Bouie in Slate

US Slaves worth more than all industrial capital by Mathew Yglesais in Slate who quote the most interesting chart from Piketty and Zucman's paper on Capital including the value of US slaves.

A bill to study reparations has been introduced in every session since 1989 by Representative John Conyers of MIchigan.

Jamaica calls on UK to pay reparations by Rowena Mason in The Guardian

William A Darity of Duke university wrote a paper in 2008 called 40 Acres and a Mule in the 21st Century which looks at some of the issue involved.  The paper summarizes the estimated monetary damages. It also disucsses the lack of popular support.

and of course

Dave Chapelle on Reparations

Tuesday, February 16, 2016

The Center on Education and the Workforce released a report showing the Blacks tend to choose low paying college majors.  African Americans are over represented in the social service majors such as  and under represented in science and technology majors

African American college majors and earnings.

Harberger Triangle: Deadweight Loss

We had to to go back to our basic Econ 101 supply and demand graphs to better understand how taxes and subsidies can cause market inefficiencies. Here is a basic model in excel.

Excel File

There are lots of resources on the web for Harberger Triangles.

Here is one of them

NBER paper on Harberger Triangles

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