👓 U.S. Stocks Battered by Trade, Yield Concerns: Markets Wrap | Bloomberg

Read U.S. Stocks Battered by Trade, Yield Concerns: Markets Wrap by Sarah Ponczek , Vildana Hajric , and Luke Kawa (Bloomberg)

U.S. stocks plunged, with the Dow Jones Industrial Average tumbling almost 800 points, as a litany of concerns wiped out the rally in risk assets.

Trade-sensitive shares sank as angst mounted that the U.S. and China made no meaningful progress on the trade front this weekend. Financial shares got hammered as the yield curve continued to flatten, with the latest nudge from a hawkish comment by a Federal Reserve official.

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👓 Not my shoes | Music for Deckchairs

Read Not my shoes by Kate BowlesKate Bowles (Music for Deckchairs)
Disrupt your industries, if that is what you are in business to do, but do not disrupt the bonds that tie employees, however loose or unspoken they may be.
—Isabel Berwick, 'Workplace communities matter–now more than ever'

Kate has a fantastic parable here. I highly recommend everyone reads it. While she talks about her daughters and their shoes and applies it to inequity in higher education, it applies to nearly every facet of our lives. We need to fix these problems, not only to improve equity within our economy, but to improve our humanity and our lives.

Highlights, Quotes, Annotations, & Marginalia

In this future, we’re all being asked to accept that the sticker price of our success is indifference to how things turn out for others. Of course, this isn’t a novelty, and it’s barely a disruption; this is how the demands of profit have needed work to be managed for a long time.  

December 03, 2018 at 09:01AM

It’s treating someone else’s wellbeing, someone’s lost job, someone’s public dressing-down, someone’s stolen idea as somehow not your problem, not your shoes.  

December 03, 2018 at 09:01AM

This is what higher education is currently saying to its long-term casual staff. While universities are underfunded for teaching and expected to compete globally on the basis of research, then the revenue from teaching will be diverted into research. This isn’t a blip, and there won’t be a correction. This is how universities are solving their funding problems with a solution that involves keeping labour costs (and associated overheads like paid sick leave) as low as possible. It’s a business model for bad times, and the only thing that makes it sustainable is not thinking about where the human consequences are being felt.  

This last sentence is so painful…
December 03, 2018 at 08:58AM

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👓 Books of the year: economics | Economist Espresso

Bookmarked Books of the year: economics (Economist Espresso)
Radical Markets: Uprooting Capitalism and Democracy for a Just Society. By Eric Posner and E. Glen Weyl. Princeton University Press; 368 pages
Do the rich world’s problems stem from an overdose of liberal principles, or their insufficiently bold application? Glen Weyl and Eric Posner argue that the ideals of thinkers such as Adam Smith, John Stuart Mill and Henry George can still inspire radical change. Such luminaries were unafraid of challenging the status quo. Following suit, the pair suggest expanding and refining markets, putting them to work for society as a whole. Property may not be theft, for example, but it is monopoly. Every individual should put a value on each item she owns, down to the last pencil, and be taxed on her total declared wealth. The twist: she must stand ready to sell any item at its declared value, should a buyer emerge. Such policies are so radical that they are unlikely ever to be adopted. But they may help jolt liberals out of their hand-wringing.

This is certainly an intriguing way of doing taxes. Reminiscent of the way that claiming races are done in horse racing.

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👓 Special measures: well-being | Economist Espresso

Read Special measures: well-being (Economist Espresso)
How should society’s progress be measured? GDP tends to be used as a proxy. But its imperfections are widely known: it focuses on market-oriented production, for instance, and ignores how the gains from that output are distributed. Today experts gather in Seoul to discuss work on alternative measures led by Joseph Stiglitz and Jean-Paul Fitoussi, two eminent economists, and commissioned by the OECD, a group of mostly rich countries. Their report recommends adding a number of indicators to policymakers’ dashboards, including measures of inequality, environmental sustainability, happiness and trust. Economic insecurity—such as income buffers available to people when trouble strikes—also matters. If governments had considered insecurity during the 2007-08 financial crisis, they would have provided their economies with more support, and continued to do so even after GDP started to recover. But, as the report says, “what you measure affects what you do.”
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👓 Stakhanovite movement | Wikipedia

Read Stakhanovite movement (Wikipedia)
The term Stakhanovite originated in the Soviet Union and referred to workers who modelled themselves after Alexey Stakhanov. These workers took pride in their ability to produce more than was required, by working harder and more efficiently, thus strengthening the Communist state. The Stakhanovite Movement was encouraged due to the idea of socialist emulation. It began in the coal industry but later spread to many other industries in the Soviet Union. The movement eventually encountered resistance as the increased productivity led to increased demands on workers.
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👓 Alexey Stakhanov | Wikipedia

Read Alexey Stakhanov (Wikipedia)
Alexsei Grigoryevich Stakhanov (Russian: Алексе́й Григо́рьевич Стаха́нов; 3 January 1906 – 5 November 1977) was a Russian Soviet miner, Hero of Socialist Labor (1970), and a member of the CPSU (1936). He became a celebrity in 1935 as part of what became known as the Stakhanovite movement – a campaign intended to increase worker productivity and to demonstrate the superiority of the socialist economic system.
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👓 How Japan’s prime minister plans to cope with daunting demography | The Economist

Read How Japan’s prime minister plans to cope with daunting demography (The Economist)
The reforms he has in mind are not bold enough
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👓 Why men who make less than their wives lie about their earnings | The Economist

Read Why men who make less than their wives lie about their earnings (The Economist)
Social norms have failed to keep pace with changes in the workplace
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👓 The American Dream Is Alive. In China. | New York Times

Read The American Dream Is Alive. In China. (New York Times)
Imagine two poor 18-year-olds, one in the U.S., the other in China. Who has a better chance of success? Are you sure?

The US used to pride itself on things like upward mobility… where’s the leadership on the American Dream these days?

👓 Hackers Are Stealing Influencer Instagram Accounts By Promising Lucrative Brand Deals | The Atlantic

Read How Hackers Are Stealing High-Profile Instagram Accounts (The Atlantic)
In the Wild West of “influencer” marketing, there are few protections and plenty of easy marks.

Of the multi-billion dollar business and the issues with needing to give away one’s password to be tracked within this field, the real loss here seems to be that Instagram isn’t building infrastructure for their users to take advantage of these opportunities. Even if they were only taking a small fraction of the income for facilitating the market, they’re missing out on hundreds of millions.

It’s not mentioned here, but the fact that there are businesses built around the idea of “link in bio” means that Instagram really isn’t innovating on their platform.

Is Instagram really so deaf to the needs of their userbase?

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👓 Ibn Khaldun | Wikipedia

Read Abū Zayd ‘Abd ar-Raḥmān ibn Muḥammad ibn Khaldūn al-Ḥaḍramī (Wikipedia)
Ibn Khaldūn (/ˈɪbən kælˈduːn/; Arabic: أبو زيد عبد الرحمن بن محمد بن خلدون الحضرمي‎, Abū Zayd ‘Abd ar-Raḥmān ibn Muḥammad ibn Khaldūn al-Ḥaḍramī; 27 May 1332 – 17 March 1406) was a Tunisian Arab historiographer and historian. He is widely considered as a forerunner of the modern disciplines of historiography, sociology, economics, and demography.

Concerning the discipline of sociology, he described the dichotomy of sedentary life versus nomadic life as well as the inevitable loss of power that occurs when warriors conquer a city. According to the Arab scholar Sati’ al-Husri, the Muqaddimah may be read as a sociological work. The work is based around Ibn Khaldun’s central concept of ‘aṣabiyyah, which has been translated as “social cohesion”, “group solidarity”, or “tribalism”. This social cohesion arises spontaneously in tribes and other small kinship groups; it can be intensified and enlarged by a religious ideology. Ibn Khaldun’s analysis looks at how this cohesion carries groups to power but contains within itself the seeds – psychological, sociological, economic, political – of the group’s downfall, to be replaced by a new group, dynasty or empire bound by a stronger (or at least younger and more vigorous) cohesion. Some of Ibn Khaldun’s views, particularly those concerning the Zanj people of sub-Saharan Africa,[27] have been cited as a racist,[28] though they were not uncommon for their time. According to the scholar Abdelmajid Hannoum, Ibn Khaldun’s description of the distinctions between Berbers and Arabs were misinterpreted by the translator William McGuckin de Slane, who wrongly inserted a “racial ideology that sets Arabs and Berbers apart and in opposition” into his translation of the Muqaddimah.  

November 09, 2018 at 11:09PM

He believed that the reason why non-Arabs were accepted as part of Arab society was due to their mastery of the Arabic language.  

November 09, 2018 at 11:21PM

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