Evening Links 8-12

August 12, 2009

Who talks jumpers off the Golden Gate?  Ironworkers.  And they’re ridiculously good at it. (SF Chronicle)

Inflation and the fall of the Roman Empire (ar.to)  Very interesting.  The transcript of a speech delivered in 1984.

Build a bridge, demolish it, rebuild it — The Chinese way to boost GDP (dnaindia)  Already some economists are calling the end of the recession because GDP has stopped falling.  But that’s a less than perfect indicator.  GDP measures activity, even if that activity isn’t productive.  Exhibit A: Cash for Clunkers.  Borrowing to boost auto production increases economic activity in the present, but reduces it in the future, when debt incurred to finance it today has to be paid back…

The quarter-life crisis (WaPo)  Some readers will poo-poo this piece, arguing that today’s twenty-somethings are just whiny whippersnappers.  Perhaps.  But compared to generations past, their post college years can be fraught with upheaval.  Today it’s not uncommon for college grads to have as many as half a dozen jobs before they reach 30.

Lawmakers seek “Clunker” vouchers for out of stock cars (WSJ)  “Customers trading in older cars under the program are getting vouchers worth $3,500 or $4,500, depending on the fuel-economy standards of the trade-in, to buy a new car. But if a buyer wants a particular model or color that isn’t in stock, the voucher can’t be used.” No points for guessing which state the congressmen pushing this proposal are from.

Incoming AIG CEO begins tenure with two week vacation (NakedCapitalism)

Volume of ‘subdivision’ vacant lots overwhelms banks (AJC)  Great first line: “You think it’s hard selling a house these days? Try unloading a subdivision.” No surprise this is from metro Atlanta…

Cow gives birth to calf with two heads (Telegraph)

How did he get up there? (Click to enlarge in new window)



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More importantly . . . how does he get back down?

Posted by Rob Randhava | Report as abusive

Ever tuned up Solzhenitsyn’s 1978 Harvard Commencement speech? If not, it’s a must read, and you’ll contemplate the phase “the more things change…” since he gave the speech 30 years ago.

Posted by Andrew | Report as abusive

By the way, does it make be a hopeless history nerd if my primary name for Istanbul is still Constantinople? Or would I only qualify if I kept minting my own coins with my profile stamped in them (and then debasing them repeatedly)?

Posted by Andrew | Report as abusive