Economics

The Great Conservative Suicide Pact

Donald-Trump-AP-768x512.jpg

Republicans have been celebrating their good fortune as Democrats vying for the presidential nomination propose free medical care for undocumented people and the elimination of private health insurance, and open borders, not to mention reparations for slavery and the near-term elimination of fossil fuels. Add it up, and it may be enough to keep Doctor Demento in the White House for four more years.  read more »

The Dangerous Rise Of The Woke Corporation

11-05-2017_Nike_Factory_Store,_Retail_Park,_Albufeira_(1).JPG

It would be comforting if Nike’s decision to ditch its “Betsy Ross” flag sneakers at the behest of former NFL quarterback and social justice warrior Colin Kaepernick was exceptional, but, sadly, it is not. Increasingly, many of our most powerful companies eagerly kowtow to the purveyors of political correctness — such as those who compared the revolutionary banner to the Nazi swastika flag or that of the Confederacy.  read more »

Why Can’t It Be Like That Now? Remembering What We Had and Could Have Again

voices-of-guinness-cover.jpg

‘But why can’t work be like that now?’ my colleague Julia asked when I told her about my research into the former Guinness brewery at Park Road in West London. After working on the project for the best part of a decade and a half, it’s sometimes difficult to sum up quickly. Over that time, I’ve looked at thousands of photographs, scores of staff magazines, and hundreds of documents, and I’ve talked to dozens of workers. But Julia’s question cut straight to the heart of the book.  read more »

Relief for the Weary: New Premium Bus Lines vie for Short-Hop Flyers

a1.jpg

During a summer vacation season marked by long security lines and record-setting air traffic, it is easy to overlook a trend in U.S. ground travel that is winning converts from those who would otherwise fly: the rapid expansion of bus lines offering first- and business-class service on short-hop routes.  read more »

High Performing Midwest Cities Need to Learn How to Attract National Talent

salesforce-tower-indianapolis-300x195.jpg

My latest column is online in the Indianapolis Business Journal. Obviously it’s about Indianapolis, but similar arguments apply to basically every other basically well-performing Midwest city. They are completely parochial talent sheds and need to attract from further afield. Here’s an excerpt:  read more »

California Can’t Afford To Be An Economic One-Trick Pony

1200px-Googleplex_HQ_(cropped).jpg

For the past decade, the soaring stock prices and nosebleed valuations of Silicon Valley’s IPOs and unicorns has been a boon for California, helping create a record budget surplus of almost $22 billion.

Yet this bonanza has occurred just as the state’s overall job creation, once among the country’s leaders, has slowed to a more middle of the road status, well below the rates for key competitors such as Nevada, Arizona, Washington State and Texas.  read more »

The Stockton Sandwich

screen-shot-2019-06-27-at-1.59.09-am.jpg

I just spent a few days in Stockton, California visiting old family friends. They’re a recently retired Lutheran pastor and his wife who relocated from Southern California and returned to their hometown. Being lifelong members of the church has many benefits, but making lots of money isn’t one of them. They run a lean operation and found a modest three bedroom two bath fixer upper for $195,000 and proceeded to do almost all the renovation work themselves.  read more »

Ranking the Best & Worst Transit Agencies

1200px-BRT_stop_King_Rd_San_Jose.jpg

The nation’s worst-managed transit systems lose 65 cents for every dollar they spend on operating costs, fill only 42 percent of their seats, carry the average urban resident just 40 round trips per year, use more energy and spew out more greenhouse gases per passenger mile than the average car, carry fewer than 14 percent of low-income workers to work, and lost 4 percent of their customers in the last four years.  read more »

Judenrein Europe

Warszawa_-_Muzeum_Historii_Żydów_Polskich_POLIN_(9).jpg

Some people go their whole lives without seeing a ghost; me, I see them all the time.

Detective Bernie Gunther in Phillip Kerr’s Greeks Bearing Gifts

Last month the German commissioner for “Jewish Life in Germany and the Fight Against Antisemitism” used his impressively titled office to advise German Jews against wearing kipahs in public. The commissioner’s response to a surge of anti-Semitic violence in his country was a sheepish acknowledgment that Germany is once again a dangerous country for Jews. And as Germany goes, so goes Europe.  read more »

Is There A Future For Transit-Oriented Development in Orange County, CA?

oc photo.jpg

California was once a state of great builders, and its legacy of grand construction projects remains plenty visible today. Major infrastructure investments like the California Aqueduct enabled the sprawling metropolises of the Southern California desert to thrive, becoming some of the most prolific economic and cultural centers in the world. The Golden State pioneered highway construction, linking its cities with each other and the rest of the nation. And perhaps the most iconic symbol of California, the Golden Gate Bridge, was a remarkable civil engineering feat of its time.  read more »