Silicon Valley

Housing Affordability in California: Part 2 — Urban Land Markets

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Harvard’s William Alonso showed that the value of residential land tends to increase from the rural uses on the urban fringe1 to centers of economic activity, such as central business districts.2  read more »

Our Mad Aristos

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In the past, ruling classes sought to protect the system that secured their coveted positions. But sometimes, as in the era before the French or Russian Revolutions, some in the ruling circles stopped believing in their religion, their traditions, and their state, only to be exiled, executed, or turned into what the Soviets called “former persons.”  read more »

America Has An Oedipus Complex

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As in Sophocles’s tragedy Oedipus Rex, we are witnessing a generational drama in which inheritors kill their proverbial father to marry their mother, in this case Mother Earth. The psychology behind this pattern is above my pay grade, but many of the richest people on the planet, and their heirs, now seem anxious to disparage the economic system that created their fortunes.  read more »

Free Trade's Heavy Cost

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Free trade and open markets are great ideals. These principles, over the last few centuries, but especially since World War II, have created tremendous wealth, particularly in the developing world. But free markets were made for human society, not the other way around.  read more »

Google: Whatever Happened to ‘Don't Be Evil’?

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When Google went public in 2004, it epitomised technological and entrepreneurial genius. Two engineers had developed a remarkably powerful, easy-to-use search engine, opening the doors to vast amounts of knowledge.  read more »

California Needs a Recession

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Nowhere is better suited for flights of fancy than California, a place of miraculous growth and remarkable innovation. A backwater barely a century ago, with just over 3 million residents compared to nearly 40 million today, the Golden State has established pre-eminence over everything from agriculture and film to space travel and the internet.  read more »

California's Economy May Seem Healthy, But Just Wait for the Next Recession

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The California economy may seem healthy on the surface, with home prices soaring, Silicon Valley booming and the state government posting big multi-year state budget surpluses thanks to a massive surge in capital gains tax revenues and income tax revenues from tech stocks.  read more »

The Independent Republics of Big Tech Are the Biggest Threat to Democracy

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The Department of Homeland Security revealed last week that it was creating a Disinformation Governance Board to distribute "best practices" for countering disinformation.  read more »

Foreign Threats Demand a Muscular Domestic Response

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With our natural resources, our productive capacity, and the genius of our people for mass production we will...outstrip the Axis powers in munitions of war.
Franklin Roosevelt, Message to Congress, Jun 10, 1941  read more »

The Tech Breakdown

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The record meltdown of Meta stock earlier this month suggests turbulence in the tech world and a difficult period ahead for the company formerly known as Facebook. But even as Meta’s stock has fallen, the record profits being posted by fellow oligarchical tech firms Google, Microsoft, Apple, and Amazon indicates that Silicon Valley’s hegemony is far from over.  read more »