Up, up and away

October 14th, 2005

The CPI released it’s figures for September. Up 1.2% from last month and 5.2% on a year ago. While most of this is being driven by higher energy costs I was a little pleased to see:

The index for food, which was unchanged in August, rose 0.3 percent in September, largely reflecting an upturn in the index for fruits and vegetables.

not posting as much as i like/should

October 14th, 2005

with all the work postings will be sporadic at best. This leaves this in an awkward state where I can post (much) less but more thought out (hopefully) in their scope. Or – like tonite – when I’m getting home at 12:30 just a quick link before bed.

The Economists Voice – B.E.Press

October 9th, 2005

The Economists Voice has some interesting articles/columns on the economic impact of Katrina.
If you’ve never perused the sight there are other decent journals there. I think of the above Edward Glaesers’ Should the Government Rebuild New Orleans, Or Just Give Residents Checks? is worth some thought. Normally I just default to checks, but in this case I’m not so certain – mainly because just the other day I was trying to make a point that Afghanistan really should pay attention to its cultual history before its all lost. Parallels can be made to US cities -but that is a tangent – and not one I plan on picking up now.


September 26th, 2005

I’ve placed some papers in my public directory that I like. No real reason just felt like sharing. Though I’m probably breaking some laws on copyrights. Awfully sorry about that.

Bloged down in the Social Sciences

September 23rd, 2005

The Statistics and Social Science group at Harvard has a blog. Its well worth a peek.

The US economy and global imbalances

September 23rd, 2005

Stephan Roach of Morgan Stanley lands some stiff left jabs when it comes to playing the blame game (leading up to the joint IMF-WB meetings) for the current US account deficit and global imbealances. [Blame is placed on the legislative branch and the Federal Reserve.]

America is to blame in shaping its own destiny. Sadly, that destiny is now manifested in the form of record excesses in the US economy. That’s true of the national saving rate, the current account deficit, household sector indebtedness, the consumption share of GDP, and the bubble-prone state of asset markets. As a result of these excesses, the US now accounts for fully 70% of the world’s imbalances — well above any measure of its share in the global economy.

Ouch. Where I stand in all of this, Yes we hold alot of the blame, Yes it does not look good in the immediate future, Yes we can dig ourselves out, Yes we need to save more as individuals and on a whole.

Endnote vs. Refworks

September 19th, 2005

I spent all day in a library introduction for new grads – it was free and they fed us three times and most importantly there were drinks afterwards. Two of the sessions I went to were about a biblio software Endnote. NU is really pushing it as a way for social scientists to archive and catagorize information. From what I saw it could be quite useful, but as there is no open source version (just OSX and Windows) I’m left with the option of always researching in Windows, or nothing. Another sticking point with the software is there is no easy way to share your library or database that you construct. Seeing as most of acadamia is strengthend by the sharing of information (and really these libraries you create are another form of data set) I think this is quite unforgiveable. I was also suprised to find it only really works installed on one computer – and there is no way to remotely access it. Given these limitations I’m looking into another product, RefWorks. Its more limited as an archival system, but being web based, its cross platform – and the information is easily shared.

Back on line

September 19th, 2005

After many days I finally fixed the issue with my computer.
It meant unnecessarily removing Windows, and about 11 burned CD’s, but its done.
Many thanks goes out to Paul Greico, who helped with the burns.
….And now I can actually post some gradschool thoughts.

Economy View

September 8th, 2005

From Lex of the Financial Times online.

“In the light of the tumultuous events on the Gulf coast, the latest US productivity figures could easily get lost in the noise. But they do show a continued drift in the wrong direction. In the second quarter, non-farm productivity growth was revised down to 1.8 per cent from 2.2 per cent.

At the same time compensation growth was revised up from 3.5 per cent to 4.4 per cent. The result is that over the last four quarters unit labour costs have risen by 4.2 per cent the highest reading since 2000. And that comes as labour markets tighten with robust hiring in recent months.”

One more reason I hate Windows

August 27th, 2005

I was fooling around on the win side of my laptop this morning with fireworks, trying to make some headway one a homepage as my last one was pretty pitiful and dearly out-of-date, when low and behold I find my C:\My Shared Folder stuffed with programs/warez/video/DAT files. Somehow and somewhere there was a nice little piece of software installed and now I have the glory of wiping my partition and starting over. I’d really just get rid of it, but I need the VPN to get onto Northwesterns’ wireless – and I’m too lazy to work out the bugs in OpenVPN.