Jobless Recovery: Quiddity Misses the Point
How Many More Generations Can We Expect from Moore's Law, Anyway?

links for 2009-10-26

  • We use a parametric method to estimate the income distribution for 191 countries between 1970 and 2006. We estimate the World Distribution of Income and estimate poverty rates, poverty counts and various measures of income inequality and welfare. Using the official $1/day line, we estimate that world poverty rates have fallen by 80% from 0.268 in 1970 to 0.054 in 2006. The corresponding total number of poor has fallen from 403 million in 1970 to 152 million in 2006. Our estimates of the global poverty count in 2006 are much smaller than found by other researchers. We also find similar reductions in poverty if we use other poverty lines. We find that various measures of global inequality have declined substantially and measures of global welfare increased by somewhere between 128% and 145%. We analyze poverty in various regions. Finally, we show that our results are
  • Under what circumstances does one stick a full plastic cup of warm whiskey on the back of a toilet atop a copy of Heads in the Sand by Matt Yglesias? Who opens a two liter bottle of tonic water, pours a single drink, and deposits the bottle 8 feet above floor level atop a bookshelf, bottle cap unaccounted for, guaranteeing that the mixer is unused by other guests, so that the hosts are eventually left with a flat bottle of quinine infused sugar water?
  • Let's write its ISBN, so you can find it: 0-309-02323-8. From the foreword (by V E Suomi, Chair of the US Committee for GARP): "...we do not have a good quantitative understanding of our climate machine and what determines its course. Without the fundamental understanding, it does not seem possible to predict climate...". I believe that this is an accurate assessment of the state of knowledge at the time. From the preface (by W L Gates and Y Mintz): "Our response to the concerns [about climate variations [WMC]] is the proposal of a major new program of reseach designed to increase our understanding of climatic change and to lay the foundation for its prediction". So far so good: the report doesn't believe prediction can yet be done, and its response is to recommend more research, not to make predictions...
  • 1975 National Academy of Sciences report/ There also was a study by the U.S. National Academy of Sciences about issues that needed more research.[20] This heightened interest in the fact that climate can change. The 1975 NAS report titled "Understanding Climate Change: A Program for Action" did not make predictions, stating in fact that "we do not have a good quantitative understanding of our climate machine and what determines its course. Without the fundamental understanding, it does not seem possible to predict climate." Its "program for action" consisted simply of a call for further research, because "it is only through the use of adequately calibrated numerical models that we can hope to acquire the information necessary for a quantitative assessment of the climatic impacts." The report further stated: "The climates of the earth have always been changing, and they will doubtless continue to do so in the future. How large these future changes will be, and where and how rapidly they
  • One good way to tell the difference between a member of congress who’s genuinely concerned about the long-term budget deficit and a hypocritical jackass is to ask them where they stand on the Kyl-Lincoln $250 billion budget-busting giveaway to the children of extremely rich people. The bill now has a House counterpart. Key sponsors include Rep Artur Davis (D-AL) and Rep Shelley Berkley (D-NV).
  • The current print edition of the American Prospect has a center pullout section on Inequality Goes to College. It’s worth reading, though hardly cheerful. And the Golden State is all over it. From David Kirp, “Our Two-Class System,” A2-A4 of the November 2009 American Prospect, on A4: "'The extraordinary compact between state governments and their flagship universities' has been consigned to the junkyard of history, observes Mark Yudof. As the president of the University of California who earlier ran the university systems in Texas and Minnesota, he has as cleareyed a perspective on higher education as anyone. Fifty years ago, the Golden State linked two world class universities, Berkeley and UCLA, with a scattering of teachers’ colleges and agricultural schools, building a system of public higher education that has been a world model ever since. The state’s Master Place guarantees community college for every high school graduate; solid undergraduate teaching for the top 33 percent...