JAMES KWAK ~ ECONOMISM

~ BEATROI ~ Bad Economics And The Rise Of Inequality

~ E-ROTPT-PCAM-BAT-TA-TDIOAE101T-ETTABTDVNHTITRW ~ Economism – Rests On The Premise That – People, Companies, And Markets – Behave According To – The Abstract – Two-Dimensional Illustrations Of An Economics 101 Textbook – Even Though The Assumptions Behind Those Diagrams Virtually Never Hold True In The Real World

~ EIAILTWPMSOR-BICTAO-‘E’-ECBAPRT ~ Economism Is An Interpretive Lens Through Which People Make Sense Of Reality – Because It Claims The Authority Of – “Economics” – Economism Can Be A Powerful Rhetorical Tool

~ WSEACSMP-ITWTMOJTESO-ATITIG-WETFOAATCI ~ While Superficial Economic Arguments Can Serve Multiple Purposes – In Today’s World They Most Often Justify The Existing Social Order – And The Inequality That It Generates – While Explaining The Futility Of Any Attempt To Change It

~ RARWQTSMAATITST-ITS-EILAI ~ Reducing All Real-World Questions To Simple Models And Answering Them In The Same Terms – In This Sense – Economism Is Like An Ideology

~ TCJFGDOW-INLTTSHWDBG-OTTSOTFIRFTPOTS-I-IIN-EC-BIITNOOAESTPTGGTTGN ~ The Common Justification For Great Disparities Of Wealth – Is No Longer That The Social Hierarchy Was Dictated By God – Or That The Survival Of The Fittest Is Required For The Progress Of The Species – Instead – Inequality Is Necessary – Even Celebrated – Because It Is The Natural Outcome Of An Economic System That Provides The Greatest Good To The Greatest Number

~ TAOETPAASRTRDIOSOIS ~ The Ability Of Economism To Pass As Abstract Science Rather Than Rhetorical Device Is One Source Of Its Strength

~ EIAIBOISEAEP-ACUPOTW-WCBCQAE-DWMAUF ~ Economism Is Also Influential Because Of Its Sedative Elegance And Explanatory Power – A Clean, Uncluttered Picture Of The World – Which Can Be Communicated Quickly And Easily – Dispensing With Messy And Uncooperative Facts

~ ASSOAC-BOAUA-HBSWICS ~ A Small Set Of Abstract Concepts – Based On Admittedly Unrealistic Assumptions – Has Become So Widespread In Contemporary Society

~ IALETMACITAWOSADC-TIIITRWOPAI ~ It’s A Lost Easier To Make A Case In The Abstract World Of Supply And Demand Curves – Than It Is In The Real World Of People And Institutions

~ IGPPWTBUTAISOS-WTSTIOTG-OPIWAFIOTW ~ Ideas Gain Power Precisely When They Become Useful To An Important Segment Of Society – When They Support The Interests Of That Group – Or Provide It With A Favorable Interpretation Of The World

~ EEBPAOSHTCUBEPTTA ~ Economism Exists Because People And Organizations Saw How They Could Use Basic Economic Principles To Their Advantage

~ AWFFBMEIP-MDCRTEI ~ As Wealthy Family Foundations Became More Engaged In Politics – Many Devoted Considerable Resources To Economic Ideas

~ BBTPO-PT-SI-AWP-TECTAJDUE-ASOTET-T-CCTBUWEFTPOPTO ~ Befuddled By The Popularity Of – Progressive Taxes – Social Insurance – And Welfare Programs – These Entrepreneurs Concluded That Americans Just Didn’t Understand Economics – And Set Out To Educate Them – Today – Commentators Continue To Blame Unfamiliarity With Economics For The Popularity Of Policies They Oppose

~ MICWDNSIEIARATVOE ~ Many Influential Commentators Who Do Not Specialize In Economic Issues Also Routinely Adopt The Vocabulary Of Economism

~ TMNEBMIASWOPADSAEI ~ The Media Normalize Economism By Making It A Standard Way Of Presenting And Discussing Social And Economic Issues

~ TFTCCWOUSBFE101-DTPVOE-IOTATSR ~ The Fact That Candidates Can Win Office Using Sound Bites From Economics 101 – Demonstrates The Political Viability Of Economism – Inspiring Others To Adopt The Same Rhetoric

~ EFBAAEDTAAAWODAFTRI ~ Economism Functions Both As An Effective Debating Tool And As A Way Of Distracting Attention From The Real Issues

~ ATPOE-TPRITBBAWEP-R-LIBASIAM-YMWYD-EPTPJFT-W-T-A-RS-ALFTWPOV-H-WHRMMSTP-TDHTPTPLADBNP-NPP ~ According To The Principles Of Economism – The People Raking In The Big Bucks Are Worth Every Penny – Remember – Labor Is Bought And Sold In A Market – You Make What You Deserve – Economism Provides The Perfect Justification For The – Winner-Take-All – Reward Scale – At Least From The Winner’s Point Of View – However – Wages Have Risen Much More Slowly Than Productivity – This Divergence Highlights The Possibility That Pay Levels Are Determined By Negotiating Power – Not Pure Productivity

~ ECRPFS-AGTINJTWBAOPWRFAIITSM ~ Excessive Compensation Reduces Profits For Shareholders – A Group That Includes Not Just The Wealthy But Also Ordinary People Whose Retirement Funds Are Invested In The Stock Market

~ ALTSTT-TCBMBI-CCETMDTMTBBHTCITLR ~ Awards Linked To Short-Term Targets – That Can Be Manipulated By Insiders – Can Cause Executives To Make Decisions That Maximize Their Bonuses But Harm The Company In The Long Run

~ FC-WSGWHBACPQ-ERTQFTPSTTAROT-IWTCLMPTPIS ~ For Centuries – Who Should Get What Has Been A Central Political Question – Economism Removes The Question From The Political Sphere To The Abstract Realm Of Theory – In Which The Competitive Labor Market Provides The Perfect, Indisputable Solution

~ OOTCPOEITTA-VVB-AU-YCMTAEUAS-A-DD-TITHTDPFWATMSWOIPTSMDETOE ~ One Of The Core Principles Of Economism Is That Taxes Are – Very, Very Bad – As Usual – You Can Make The Argument Easily Using A Supply-And-Demand Diagram – The Idea That Higher Taxes Discourage People From Working And Therefore Make Society Worse Off Is Probably The Single Most Deeply Entrenched Tenet Of Economism

~ TOIIHFPITUSOTPSY-WNOIIESOG-TEEMRIT1950A1960-APWTTROMIIW70%OH ~ Taxes On Investment Income Have Fallen Precipitously In The United States Over The Past Seventy Years – With No Obvious Increase In Either Savings Or Growth – The Economy Expanded Most Rapidly In The 1950s and 1960s – A Period When The Tax Rates On Most Investment Income Were 70 Percent Or Higher

~ TROCGHHLIEOSOOEG ~ Tax Rates On Capital Gains Have Had Little Impact Either On Savings Or On Economic Growth

~ MPABUOTTR-MHBFDABNOSCIROR-BOPR-SA-‘SWILOAE’ ~ Many People Are Blissfully Unaware Of Their Tax Rates – Most Human Beings’ Financial Decisions Are Based Not On Sophisticated Calculations Involving Rates Of Return – But On Primitive Rules – Such As – “Save Whatever Is Left Over After Expenses”

~ LTRITAOMTTGHTB-RTCATTPS ~ Lower Tax Revenues Increase The Amount Of Money That The Government Has To Borrow – Reducing The Capital Available To The Private Sector

~ TSMSTLITWISAGDHUTS-LPKMOTSDNAMTTWM ~ The Simple Model Saying That Lower Investment Taxes Will Increase Savings And Growth Doesn’t Hold Up To Scrutiny – Letting People Keep More Of Their Salaries Does Not Always Motivate Them To Work More

~ AGISAMBWWOCAOSTWDNTTPSTLAE-ASTQOWTAWDOWFWEFOGAHWIFT ~ A Government Is Simply A Mechanism By Which We Organize Certain Aspects Of Society That We Do Not Trust The Private Sector To Look After Effectively – And So The Question Of Whether Taxes Are Worthwhile Depends On What Functions We Expect From Our Government And How Well It Fulfills Them

~ TGPOAWITSTBOWPBIEP ~ The Greatest Power Of A Worldview Is To Set The Boundaries Of What People Believe Is Even Possible

~ ERMFTPHBIACWBIAWOE-IFC ~ Economism’s Rosy Model Failed To Predict How Both Individuals And Companies Would Behave In A World Of Ever-Increasing Financial Complexity

~ I2008-WRTLTACMDNMETCFTIMPU-I-P-SBLBPACTMTIGIWTDLDAWR-SOATMS ~ In 2008 – We Relearned The Lesson That A Competitive Market Does Not Magically Ensure That Capital Flows To Its Most Productive Uses – Instead – Profit-Seeking Behavior Leads Both People And Companies To Maximize Their Individual Gains In Ways That Distort Lending Decisions And Waste Resources – Sometimes On A Truly Monumental Scale

~ TMTNCALAMCTE-A-CRASTLTETTBWSTNCI ~ The Megabanks That Nearly Collapsed Are Larger And More Complex Than Ever – And – Capital Requirements Are Still Too Low To Ensure That Those Banks Will Survive The Next Crisis Intact

~ IARWLM-TADCCL ~ In A Real-World Labor Market – Trade Agreements Do Create Clear Losers

~ TGAOEHBT-RAPI-AAL-E-T-U-SN-FFSTW ~ The Great Achievement Of Economism Has Been To – Repackage A Political Ideology – As A Lightweight – Easy-To-Use – Seemingly Neutral – Framework For Seeing The World

~ BCTSOAT-EDTTIADAA-TWSITWII-IYDA-YMNUE101 ~ By Claiming The Status Of Absolute Truth – Economism Denies That There Is Any Debate At All – The World Simply Is The Way It Is – If You Don’t Agree – You Must Not Understand Economics 101

~ EPAIRIOCPI-PCTOAAA-WPOTTM ~ Economism Plays An Important Role In Our Contemporary Political Institutions – Prioritizing Certain Types Of Analyses And Arguments – While Pushing Others To The Margins

~ FASTBR-CMANE-TMAB-PDPI-TPEF-MP-SC-A-SAESOR ~ For A Society To Become Rich – Competitive Markets Are Not Enough – There Must Also Be – Pluralistic Democratic Political Institutions – That Prevent Elites From – Monopolizing Power – Suppressing Competitors – And – Seizing An Excessive Share Of Resources

~ U-IWTANWTDBWTO ~ Ultimately – It Will Take A New Worldview To Do Battle With The Old

DAVID GRAEBER ~ DEBT – THE FIRST 5,000 YEARS ~ 2011 + 2012

~ IOTORCHTFSOFMEPDIWOZ-TTCHNAT-ANW ~ In Order To Obtain Refinancing Countries Have To Follow Some Orthodox Free-Market Economic Policy Designed In Washington Or Zurich – That Their Citizens Had Never Agreed To – And Never Would

~ IWABDTITCADC-ATAIT-WGE-THNCOTCPA ~ It Was A Bit Dishonest To Insist That Countries Adopt Democratic Constitutions – And Then Also Insists That – Whoever Gets Elected – They Have No Control Over Their Country Policies Anyway

~ FTOY-TSBRAPHLTTFOCBCAD-OAB-IP-DP-A-R-R-TSOS-TSOV-TSODCIS ~ For Thousands Of Years – The Struggle Between Rich And Poor Has Largely Taken The Form Of Conflicts Between Creditors And Debtors – Of Arguments About – Interest Payment – Debt Peonage – Amnesty – Repossession – Restitution – The Sequestering Of Sheep – The Seizing Of Vineyards – The Selling Of Debtors’ Children Into Slavery

~ FTLFTY-WRR-PIHB-WTRDOTDR-CTDARTL ~ For The Last Five Thousand Years – With Remarkable Regularity – Popular Insurrections Have Begun – With The Ritual Destruction Of The Debt Records – Cancel The Debts And Redistribute The Land

~ AAWROWTWHPACRISOBVORAW ~ Arguments About Who Really Owes What To Whom Have Played A Central Role In Shaping Our Basic Vocabulary Of Right And Wrong

~ TNNAVM-A-TWTOFOM ~ There’s Nothing New About Virtual Money – Actually – This Was The Original Form Of Money

~ ITCSV-TSATM-TAAEADOP-HRR-H-TWBTAHABI ~ In That Common Sense View – The State And The Market – Tower Above All Else As Diametrically Opposed Principles – Historical Reality Reveals – However – They Were Born Together And Have Always Been Intertwined

~ NOIIMTMDP-MADAOTSAETST ~ Not Only Is It Money That Makes Debt Possible – Money And Debt Appear On The Scene At Exactly The Same Time

~ SOTVFWDTHCDTUAMTRCAD ~ Some Of The Very First Written Documents That Have Come Down To Us Are Mesopotamian Tablets Recording Credits And Debits

~ TSOMFEABWAFWOB-TPIWTLTFITAS-WWNCVMCF ~ The Story Of Money For Economists Always Begins With A Fantasy World Of Barter – The Problem Is Where To Locate This Fantasy In Time And Space – What We Now Call Virtual Money Came First

~ B-ATBLAKOABOTUOCOPM-IHMBWPWAUTCTDWFOROATHNATC ~ Barter – Appears To Be Largely A Kind Of Accidental Byproduct Of The Use Of Coinage Or Paper Money – It Has Mainly Been What People Who Are Used To Cash Transactions Do When For One Reason Or Another They Have No Access To Currency

~ A-TFRWF-’F’-IAKHL-LM-’RTM’ ~ Amargi – The First Recorded Word For – “Freedom” – In Any Known Human Language – Literally Means – “Return To Mother”

~ SCM-MRS-NCCWTO-AL-IALTFWWRT ~ States Created Markets – Markets Require States – Neither Could Continue Without The Other – At Least – In Anything Like The Forms We Would Recognize Today

~ C-MWNITOTIOBBN-SNWHNRTEIBITFP ~ Clearly – Money Was Not Invented To Overcome The Inconveniences Of Barter Between Neighbors – Since Neighbors Would Have No Reason To Engage In Barter In The First Place

~ TSASA-CTTS-AT-DTEFITK-OTPOOTCB-NEF-IOTGTHOTC-MFSWT-PSWTTW-MABIEAASE ~ To Support A Standing Army – Coins To The Soldiers – And Then – Demands That Every Family In The Kingdom – Obliged To Pay One Of Those Coins Back – Now Every Family – In Order To Get Their Hands On The Coins – Must Find Some Way To – Provide Soldiers With Things They Want – Markets Are Brought Into Existence As A Side Effect

~ DTDLA-TTEOSAMASO-THRITETOITC-SSTATBWM ~ Despite The Dogged Liberal Assumption – That The Existence Of States And Markets Are Somehow Opposed – The Historical Record Implies That Exactly The Opposite Is The Case – Stateless Societies Tend Also To Be Without Markets

~ WIEO-OTLFTY-MHBE-ACOTS ~ Whatever Its Earliest Origins – Of The Last Four Thousand Years – Money Has Been Effectively – A Creature Of The State

~ MIC-ICBBIBBPCA-TSMETAADTLT ~ Money Is Credit – It Can Be Brought Into Being By Private Contractual Agreements – The State Merely Enforces The Agreement And Dictates The Legal Terms

~ AOTISTGBTSSOO-’SC’-TESAO-TNORKEWOBW-OWWSBBBTDODAOTOM-WWDFPBBTDOODAOAE ~ All Of This Is Said To Go Back To Some Sort Of Original – “Social Contract” – That Everyone Somehow Agreed On – Though No One Really Knows Exactly When Or By Whom – Or Why We Should Be Bound By The Decisions Of Distant Ancestors On This One Matter – When We Don’t Feel Particularly Bound By The Decisions Of Our Distant Ancestors On Anything Else

~ TBBSAM-BGAM-INITTHC ~ The Battle Between State And Market – Between Governments And Merchants – Is Not Inherent To The Human Condition

~ ‘F’-CTRAATRFTEOD ~“Freedom” – Came To Refer Above All To Release From The Effects Of Debt

~ AHRABOSVOR-IS-TDRIATROAM-BDIWHWSBHNYBR ~ All Human Relations Are Based On Some Variation On Reciprocity – If So – Then Debt Really Is At The Root Of All Morality – Because Debt Is What Happens When Some Balance Has Not Yet Been Restored

~ WEA-C-WOCF ~ We Are All – Communists – With Our Closest Friends

~ NRMOWWWTLIAPWNDLAOA ~ No Reasonable Man Or Woman Would Want To Live In A Place Where Neighbors Don’t Look After One Another

~ GASCADFCABOSF:TCBS ~ Gold And Silver Coins Are Distinguished From Credit Arrangements By One Spectacular Feature: They Can Be Stolen

~ MCSC ~ Military-Coinage-Slavery Complex

~ MATHFE-ITNEAL-AASEOGAS ~ Markets Appear To Have First Emerge – In The Near East At Least – As A Side Effect Of Government Administrative Systems

~ WUTATCAMATST-B-IMWTCREWBCAO-WMAWOEGTTMOM-CIFAFTAOUMTGMM-TEWTDTIBESKOFODFRM ~ We’re Use To Assuming That Capitalism And Markets Are The Same Thing – But – In Many Ways They Could Equally Well Be Conceived As Opposites – While Markets Are Ways Of Exchanging Goods Through The Medium Of Money – Capitalism Is First And Foremost The Art Of Using Money To Get More Money – The Easiest Way To Do This Is By Establishing Some Kind Of Formal Or De Facto Monopoly

~ B-1520A1650-UTOGASFMAPWTATAAPISTS-VLOTGASLVLIE-MOTGEUITII-ATOMOTSBWUSOTC-EHNPMOATAWTB-SIWFTPISFSSSAOI ~ Between – 1520 and 1640 – Untold Tons Of Gold And Silver From Mexico And Peru Were Transported Across The Atlantic And Pacific In Spanish Treasure Ships – Very Little Of That Gold And Silver Lingered Very Long In Europe – Most Of The Gold Ended Up In Temples In India – And The Overwhelming Majority Of The Silver Bullion Was Ultimately Shipped Off To China – Europe Had Never Produced Much Of Anything That Asians Wanted To Buy – So It Was Forced To Pay In Specie For Silks, Spices, Steel, And Other Imports

~ TEYOEEWLATGAET-EL-O-TNSOGASWWTPFT ~ The Early Years Of European Expansion Were Largely Attempts To Gain Access Either To – Eastern Luxuries – Or – To New Sources Of Gold And Silver With Which To Pay For Them

~ THTBPIM-EB-IC-CTBTMAIHITMA-BMOVFOVCM-T-PN-O-STKTOWOWTW ~ Taxes Had To Be Paid In Metal – Everyday Business – In Contrast – Continued To Be Transacted Much As It Had In The Middle Ages – By Means Of Various Forms Of Virtual Credit Money – Tallies – Promissory Notes – Or – Simply The Keeping Track Of Who Owed What To Whom

~ CC-WELBS-O-WPRTAT-TLBPAOS-AA-GASWUBTGTPAAPS ~ Cold Cash – Was Employed Largely Between Strangers – Or – When Paying Rents, Tithes, And Taxes – To Landlords, Bailiffs, Priest, And Other Superiors – Above All – Gold And Silver Were Used By The Government To Purchase Arms And Pay Soldiers

~ TGCTMWENTP ~ The Great Conversation That Many Were Expecting Never Took Place

~ WCTWEBWCNLIAATWBEW ~ We Cling To What Exists Because We Can No Longer Imagine An Alternative That Wouldn’t Be Even Worse

~ ASTRTWTNCOBHIPBW ~ Any System That Reduces The World To Numbers Can Only Be Held In Place By Weapons

~ ITLSOT-JANOHTRTTUOTV-NOHTRTTUWWTO ~ In The Largest Scheme Of Things – Just As No One Has The Right To Tell Us Our True Value – No One Has The Right To Tell Us What We Truly Owe

ROBERT FRANK ~ SUCCESS AND LUCK ~ 2016

~ GF&TMOM ~ Good Fortune And The Myth Of Meritocracy

~ SSHDTCEPAMLRIILOTMPOI ~ Social Scientists Have Discovered That Chance Events Play A Much Larger Role In Important Life Outcomes Than Most People Once Imagined

~ TROMHCEN ~ The Rhetoric Of Meritocracy Has Caused Enormous Harm

~ M-CI-1958-AAP-QCOA-AAOP ~ Meritocracy – Coined In – 1958 – As A Pejorative – Quickly Co-Opted As – An Adjective Of Praise

~ STTEMHEABOL-AVOTTTTDRBOT-TTAWTTTA ~ Saying That Top Earners May Have Enjoyed A Bit Of Luck – Apparently Verges On Telling Them That They Don’t Really Belong On Top – That They Aren’t Who They Think They Are

~ TROMATHCTETWSAFOHDOECBAIC ~ The Rhetoric Of Meritocracy Appears To Have Camouflaged The Extent To Which Success And Failure Often Hinge Decisively On Events Completely Beyond Any Individual’s Control

~ SMCEFMMPILTTMPR ~ Seemingly Minor Chance Events Figure Much More Prominently In Life Trajectories Than Most People Realize

~ BWATMTAHPWNAMMS? ~ But What About The Many Talented And Hardworking People Who Never Achieve Much Material Success?

~ IOTTSTSWW1%HTOII1%MTD1PMI-B-TIOCLMLWSSPDTI-TFDIE ~ It’s One Thing To Say That Someone Who Works 1 Percent Harder Than Others Or Is 1 Percent More Talented Deserves 1 Percent More Income – But – The Importance Of Chance Looms Much Larger When Such Small Performance Differences Translate Into – Thousands-Fold Differences In Earnings

~ WTAM-TPRTATAHOWITM-AENOC-ATMCTA-TMLM ~ Winner-Take-All Markets – The Prodigious Rewards That Accrue To A Handful Of Winners In These Markets – Attracts Enormous Numbers Of Contestants – And The More Contestants There Are – The More Luck Matters

~ PWBTSDOOTAA-AHAESOHTTA-MFIETMTKOENFS ~ People Who Believe That Success Depends Only On Talent And Effort – And Have An Exaggerated Sense Of How Talented They Are – May Find It Easier To Muster The Kinds Of Effort Necessary For Success

~ B-UTIOEF-MAEC-IM-FEEPTCIAIWTHNRPOS-IAATMSPMRTUTINTSETSMS ~ But Underestimating The Importance Of External Forces – May Also Entail Significant Costs – It May – For Example Encourage People To Compete In Arenas In Which They Have No Realistic Prospect Of Succeeding – It Also Appears To Make Successful People More Reluctant To Underwrite The Investments Necessary To Sustain Environments That Support Material Success

~ TFRTNSCPWEMFICTAC ~ The Fact Remains That No Society Can Prosper Without Effective Means For Its Citizens To Act Collectively

~ SGIU-ISWTAWTMIB-SSHDMEGTO ~ Since Government Is Unavoidable – It’s Surely Worth Thinking About Ways To Make It Better – Some Societies Have Demonstrably More Effective Governments Than Others

~ ‘HB’-WYTYAKWH-IETIRFWIHTH ~ “Hindsight Bias” – When You Think You Already Know What Happened – It’s Easy To Invent Reasons For Why It Had To Happen

~ HBOWPFWPOUSO ~ Hindsight Bias Operates With Particular Force When People Observe Unusually Successful Outcomes

~ TME ~ The Matthew Effect

~ WTAM-GDTCF-RDLOAPTORP-RTTBHCITHOAFTP ~ Winner-Take-All Markets – Generally Display Two Characteristic Features – Rewards Depend Less On Absolute Performance Than On Relative Performance – Rewards Tend To Be Highly Concentrated In The Hands Of A Few Top Performers

~ B-EP-ASMC-WWAWEBETAH-B-TWRB-TMTAH-ITCP ~ Because – Enormous Prizes – Attract So Many Contestants – Winners Will Almost Without Exception Be Enormously Talented And Hardworking – But – They Will Rarely Be – The Most Talented And Hardworking – In The Contestant Pool

~ E-HUTH-IAGM-TMMYST-TMLTB-AIYSTEM-ABI ~ Events – Highly Unlikely To Happen – In Any Given Moment – The More Moments You String Together – The More Likely They Become – And If You String Together Enough Moments – All But Inevitable

~ METAHPFTAASMOMS-MOTASLLTTW ~ Many Extremely Talented And Hardworking People Fail To Achieve Any Significant Measure Of Material Success – Many Of Them Are Simply Less Lucky Than The Winners

~ TITSASTMWWOBTAL-IHCA-MWNHEBRCHTNBB-EAAH ~ This Isn’t The Same As Saying That Most Winners Win Only Because They Are Lucky – In Highly Competitive Arenas – Most Would Not Have Even Been Realistic Contenders Had They Not Been Both – Extremely Able And Hardworking

~ TWAOPTATFTBLMBUTTKOFNTIFP ~ Those Who Are Overly Prone To Attribute Their Failures To Bad Luck May Be Unreceptive To The Kinds Of Feedback Needed To Improve Future Performance

~ TBOFB ~ The Burden Of False Beliefs

~ TIODOPLTTAO-THBBIAHDC-TLBOCOIIBTWCBU ~ There Is One Dimension Of Personal Luck That Transcends All Others – To Have Been Born In A Highly Developed Country – The Lucky Beneficiaries Of Centuries Of Intensive Investment By Those Who Came Before Us

~ IBBIAGEIOOTLTTCHTA-FTALIHMSPMRTPTTRTSTINTMAGE ~ If Being Born In A Good Environment Is One Of The Luckiest Things That Can Happen To Anyone – Failure To Appreciate Luck’s Importance Has Made Successful People More Reluctant To Pay The Taxes Required To Support The Investments Necessary To Maintain A Good Environment

~ TFTAADTBCEP-ORTARWP-STOCBBCARIFFO ~ The Fact That Americans Are Driving The Best Cars Ever Produced – On Roads That Are Riddled With Potholes – Suggests That Our Current Balance Between Cars And Roads Is Far From Optimal

~ PWFMHTAALTTWTAAGOTSA ~ People Will Fight Much Harder To Avoid A Loss Than They Would To Achieve A Gain Of The Same Amount

~ OCPOPAPSHBDC-NJFPAMIF-BAFTWT ~ Our Current Patterns Of Private And Public Spending Have Been Deeply Counterproductive – Not Just For Poor And Middle-Income Families – But Also For The Wealthy Themselves

~ EPIWAEPFTEPOTVSTP ~ Extensive Public Investment Was An Essential Precondition For The Economic Prosperity Of Those Very Same Tax Protesters

~ POSOCAAT ~ Public Opinion Shifts One Conversation At A Time

~ TRSBFTALPRISHMIHTSTPINTSTSOLATFG ~ Tax Resistance Spawned By Failure To Appreciate Luck’s Pivotal Role In Success Has Made It Harder To Sustain The Public Investment Needed To Support The Stock Of Luck Available To Future Generations

~ ATPIT-IFOAPCT-WPABOFAE ~ Abandoning The Progressive Income Tax – In Favor Of A Progressive Consumption Tax – Would Produce A Better Outcome For Almost Everyone

~ PWETAAAOTP-ANJHBOTF-TAMLTP-TIPBMOTBSSATE ~ People Who Enjoy The Admiration And Affection Of Their Peers – Are Not Just Happier Because Of That Fact – They’re Also More Likely To Prosper – That’s In Part Because Most Of The Biggest Economic Success Stories Are Team Efforts

~ IMBIYITALRIYS-IOBPWTBOYFHDS-ESTTWMYFH-TMFTOTBOYMAMYMLTPIPMT ~ It May Be In Your Interest To Acknowledge Luck’s Role In Your Success – If Only Because People Will Think Better Of You For Having Done So – Evidence Suggests That This Will Make You Feel Happier – The Mere Fact That Others Think Better Of You May Also Make You More Likely To Prosper In Purely Material Terms

~ TWHT-TASTSAEAFTBL-MBPAISC-BOB-IIOITEMRA ~ The Widespread Human Tendency – To Attribute Success To Skill And Effort And Failure To Bad Luck – May Be Psychologically Adaptive In Some Cases – But On Balance – It’s In Our Interest To Embrace More Realistic Attributions

~ CTPB-PWINOFMPTGW-BAFETC ~ Contrary To Popular Belief – Private Waste Is Not Only Far More Pervasive Than Government Waste – But Also Far Easier To Curtail

~ APBMRAOWRFCPOT-TCCFWSSOGABTFTF-A-TACSOOCAAT ~ Although Popular Beliefs May Remain At Odds With Reality For Considerable Periods Of Time –The Consensus Can Flip With Surprising Speed Once Good Arguments Begin To Find Their Footing – And – Those Arguments Can Spread Only One Conversation At At Time

CHRISTOPHER STEINER ~ AUTOMATE THIS

~ BLU-ACAWDST-AWPMAMOOWUTCOAWCLTOW-OWIPTS ~ But Left Unsupervised – Algorithms Can And Will Do Strange Things – As We Put More And More Of Our World Under The Control Of Algorithms We Can Lose Track Of Who – Or What – Is Pulling The Strings

~ JWOBOCFSANBSABFPOCC ~ Jobs We Once Blamed Other Countries For Stealing Are Now Being Snatched Away By Faceless Piles Of Computer Code

~ ITSM-HHLBRTIO-TAOTMN ~ In Today’s Stock Market – Humans Have Largely Been Reduced To Interested Observers – The Algorithms Own The Market Now

~ NSTAWSFTTB ~ News Services That Are Written Specifically For The Trading Bots

~ TINWTUTIOGATFCTTNH-TSAWSCBWIF ~ There Is No Way To Understand The Implications Of Giving Algorithms The Full Control That They Now Have – The Speed At Which Something Can Go Wrong Is Frightening

~ SADTOYASPVRR-AOTCCHI-ITCWOT ~ Some Algorithms Developed Thousands Of Years Ago Still Play Very Real Roles – Albeit Ones Their Creators Couldn’t Have Imagined – In The Computerized World Of Today

~ AOWWWKTEFTNTBEOM ~ Algorithms Only Work When We Know The Exact Factors That Need To Be Examined Or Manipulated

~ TWP-PANITATTITN-A-SIOTFTM ~ To Work Properly – Predictive Algorithms Need Instructions That Allow Them To Ignore The Noise – And – Zero In On The Factors That Mater

~ TWI-A-I-W-NSFC-P0TCTW-TJHABCOTROA ~ Those Who Imagine – Art – Innovations – Words – Novel Strategies For Companies – Products That Change The World – Their Jobs Have Always Been Considered Outside The Reach Of Algorithms

~ SPATTCROBWCTT-TNITACI-TABCC-WNL-H-TTADA ~ Smart People Assume That This Creeping Revolution Of Bot Workers Can’t Touch Them – The Notion Is That Algorithms Can’t Innovate – That A Bot Can’t Create – We’re Now Learning – However – That These Are Dangerous Assumptions

~ ACBTTETQAOOOC ~ Algorithms Can Be Taught To Evaluate The Quality And Originality Of Others’ Creations

~ AWPDAABAA? ~ At What Point Does An Algorithm Become An Artist?

~ TVOAIAITS-AAUTSMAMIOD-DMILT-IKA-RL ~ The Value Of Algorithms Is All In Their Speed – Algorithms Allow Us To Squeeze More And More Into Our Days – Doing More In Less Time – Is Known As – Removing Latency

~ M-S-T-HAGT-FBOW ~ Money – Speed – Technology – Have Always Gone Together – For Better Or Worse

~ THABITHOAPF-SOPTWMTGF-H-ATPWDT ~ Technology Has Always Been In The Hands Of A Privileged Few – Some Of Those Who Make The Greatest Fortunes – However – Are The People Who Democratize Technology

~ GTS ~ Gaming The System

~ AWCTIPASATWHAAWRIH ~ Algorithms Will Continue To Invade Professions And Skill Areas That We Have Always Assumed Will Remain Inherently Human

~ TPMBHEWNBTTGR ~ The Predictions Made By Human Experts Were No Better Than Those Generated Randomly

~ TACT ~ Technical Automated Compatibility Testing

~ PDB ~ Paging Dr. Bot

~ WMSTBRUOIF-TTITIABSBA-ATRCAYTC ~ While Medicine Seems To Be Rather Unhackable On Its Face – The Truth Is That It’s Already Been Shaken By Algorithms – And The Real Changes Are Yet To Come

~ IASBGNOH-CAAITNOWDAAP ~ In A Small But Growing Number Of Hospitals – Consulting An Algorithm Is Task Number One When Diagnosing Any Admitted Patients

~ TJFPRSTAPMACE ~ The Jobs For People Reading Scans, Tests, And Patient Metadata Are Certainly Endangered

~ T-C-A-A-TGSED ~ They’re – Cheap – Accurate – And – They Get Smarter Every Day

~ AOU-WOBATE-CB-C-T-A-CLAAIAZ ~ All Of Us – When Observed By A True Expert – Can Be – Categorized – Tagged – And – Catalogued Like An Animal In A Zoo

~ PCPRC-EHWAPIETLTAAS ~ People’s Core Personalities Rarely Change – Exceptions Happen When A Person Is Exposed To Long-Term Abuse And Stress

~ AWGO-OVMGVAD-BTWIWWS-TSWLTOS-RTS-TSGAACATHAOUPLAAUP ~ As We Get Older – Our Vocabulary May Grow Varied And Dense – But The Way In Which We Speak – The Structures We Lend To Our Sentences – Remains The Same – Those Structures Give Away Amazing Clues As To How Any Of Us Process Logic And Act Under Pressure

~ HTSRAAUITMIEK ~ How The Speech Recognition Algorithms Are Used In The Markets Isn’t Exactly Known

~ TPFBI-B-S-AE-P(TR)-ICH ~ The Potential For Bots In – Business – Service – And Even – Politics (Think Robocalls) – Is Clearly Huge

~ WLCPTTFTOTFH-WBCSM-S-LC-A-HC? ~ Why Leave Customers Prone To The Fickle Treatment Of Their Fellow Humans – When Bots Can Secure More – Satisfaction – Lower Costs – And – Happier Customers?

~ AOT-CEAC-D-G-S-S-A-E ~ All Of This – Click, Eyeball And Cursor – Data – Gets – Strained – Sifted – And – Examined

~ HWSIWSWOITPO-TIRCTSP-TBI-H-OATSTBCTTOTI-TSATWCSAE ~ How We Speak Indicates What Spot We Occupy In The Pecking Order – The Influencers Rarely Change Their Speech Patterns – Those Being Influenced – However – Often Alter Their Speech To Be Closer To That Of The Influencer – The Same Applies To Written Communication Such As E-Mail

~ WBOI-OLT ~ Words Betray One’s Influence – Or Lack Thereof

~ BATIPOTDAOAWSCLTNAI-P-M-S-M-TTMMTBM-FTNTH ~ Being Able To Identify Pecking-Order Top Dogs Automatically On A Wide Scale Could Led To New Approaches In – Politics – Management – Sales – Marketing – There’s Too Much Money To Be Made – For This Not To Happen

~ HE-WLTAAOTTTTDOUSREY-CBAEIAWTD ~ Human Error – Which Leads To Almost All Of The Thirty-Three Thousand Deaths On U.S. Roads Every Year – Could Be Almost Eliminated If Algorithms Were The Drivers

~ LAASAATAAI-TADNRHIOTPTICMPL ~ Lawyers Are As Susceptible As Anybody To An Algorithm Invasion – The Algorithm Does Not Require Health Insurance Or The Promise That It Could Make Partner Later

SIMON HEAD ~ MINDLESS ~ 2014

~ SMAMDH ~ Smarter Machines Are Making Dumber Humans

~ CBS ~ Computer Business Systems

~ ES ~ Enterprise Systems

~ BPR ~ Business Process Reengineering

~ ERP ~ Enterprise Resource Planning

~ BS ~ Balanced Scorecard

~ ‘DW’ ~ “Data Warehouses”

~ ‘DM’ ~ “Data Marts”

~ CP ~ Corporate Panoptics

~ TOOMANLFABH-BTER ~ The Objects Of Management Are No Longer Flesh-And-Blood Humans – But Their Electronic Representations

~ WHB-TNCWCSAT-TRUODS ~ We Have Become – The Numbers, Coded Words, Cones, Squares, And Triangles – That Represent Us On Digital Screens

~ KPI-TINLTTN-TMCATAP ~ Key Performance Indicators – There Is No Limit To The Number – That Management Can Attach To A Process

~ TRSOTEOE-I-TCDON ~ The Reverse Side Of The Empowerment Of Experts – Is The Complete Disempowerment Of Nonexperts

~ TLOGW-C-A-T-TMASUTMOG-AAUT-MATTWOESTG ~ The Labeling Of Goods With – Chips – And – Tags – To Monitor And Speed Up The Movement Of Goods – Are Also Used To – Monitor And Time The Work Of Employees Shifting The Goods

~ MIS ~ Management Information Systems

~ RAE ~ Research Assessment Exercise

~ EL ~ Emotional Labor

~ SABRE ~ Semi-Automatic Business Research Environment

~ AEASE ~ Abstracted Electronic And Statistical Entities

~ ATSRAC-IF-HHOIT-SEOTTME-WWIBITS ~ All The Systems Rules And Commands – In Fact – Have Human Origins In The – Superior Expertise Of The Technical, Managerial Elite – Whose Wisdom Is Baked Into The System

MATT TAIBBI ~ THE DIVIDE

~ TCOTCITCDS-OASAOHU-TOAVGOEWOTR-HBITWALT ~ The Cleaving Of The Country Into Two Completely Different States – One A Small Archipelago Of Hyperacquisitive Untouchables – The Other A Vast Ghetto Of Expendables With Only Theoretical Rights – Has Been In The Works A Long Time

~ DWCCITNCWRANSOPART-I-CWGISBTORP ~ Dealing With Corporate Crime In The New Century Would Require A New Set Of Persecutorial And Regulatory Tools – Increasingly – Companies Were Growing, In Size, Beyond The Old Regulatory Parameters

~ ATBWSCSTWTOCSAAWFCIOECIAI-IWOTTNLEOHUSKORT-CAHCWBC-ANWGA-THTBAPH-TPEUB-CC~ As The Biggest Wall Street Companies Screamed Their Way Through One Criminal Scandal After Another Without Facing Corporate Indictments Or Even Criminal Indictments Against Individuals – It Was Obvious That The Nation’s Law Enforcement Officials Had Undergone Some Kind Of Radical Transformation – Crime After Heinous Crime Was Being Committed – And Nobody Was Getting Arrested – There Had To Be A Plan Here – That Plan Ended Up Being – Collateral Consequences

~ BTSFTUTBCUWACTDWWBETCJM-TWSMACAWWSEAUENTQ ~ But They Somehow Failed To Understand That By Coming Up With A Calculus To Determine Who Was Big Enough And Important Enough To Command Jurisprudential Mercy – They Were Simultaneously Making A Calculation About Who Was Small Enough And Unimportant Enough Not To Qualify

~ TFOPBTPDAECW-AMCFS-IWBMPERLQSM-A-STOTISIAHRAAAB ~ This Failure Of Prosecuturial Backbone Took Place During An Epic Crime Wave – A Massive Criminal Fraud Scheme – In Which Banks Mass-Produced Extremely Risky, Low-Quality Subprime Mortgages – And – Sold Them Off To Institutional Sucker-Investors As Highly Rated AAA Bonds

~ TSWTSLAHPKRATTNPOHBCKTHAW-BTITABTD-TREDBOPREVIHT-AD-E ~ The Situation Was Tenable So Long As Housing Prices Kept Rising And These Teeming New Populations Of Home Borrowers Could Keep Their Heads Above Water – But The Instant The Arrow Began Tilting Downward – This Rapidly Expanding Death-Balloon Of Phony Real Estate Value Inevitably Had To – And Did – Explode

~ OTBB-WBE-NEMFCIAHCTPITEF-TWTVDOSC ~ Once The Bubble Burst – Whistle-Blowers Emerged – Nearly Every Major Financial Company In America Had Chosen To Participate In This Enormous Fraud – It Was The Very Definition Of Systemic Corruption

~ DWLLMOE-ANWACTTCWETWCP-WWLMSOW-BTOFISP-AICTLROTNFPTPTSOSFOTRFNO ~ Despite What Looked Like Mountains Of Evidence – Almost Nobody With Any Connection To The Crisis Was Even Threatened With Criminal Prosecution – We Were Letting Major Systemic Offenders Walk – Bypassing The Opportunity For Important Symbolic Prosecutions – And Instead Committing The Limited Resources Of The Nation’s Financial Police To Putting The Smallest Of Small Fry On The Rack For Negligible Offenses

~ TAO-CC-SDRTWSAR-TWAAGSSOTEPIAANC ~ The Architects Of – Collateral Consequences – Seemingly Didn’t Realize They Were Starting A Revolution – They Were Accelerating A Government-Sponsored Sorting Of The Entire Population Into Arrestable And Nonarrestable Classes

~ TBAT-LBODFDC-WMFTCO-ARS-TMMFBTTOB-LRMWMOAGS-HTCAOC-TOPWAS-ABF~ The Bank Admitted To – Laundering Billions Of Dollars For Drug Cartels – Washing Money For Terrorist-Connected Organizations – Allowing Rogue States – To Move Money Freely By The The Tens Of Billions – Letting Russian Mobsters Wash Money On A Grand Scale – Helping Tax Cheats And Other Crooks – The Only Penalty Was A Settlement – A Big Fine

~ PTBFSE-WTTRGIR-T-LIBOR-CFNEPITWWHMOBOSA ~ Probably The Biggest Financial Scandal Ever – Working Together To Rig Global Interest Rates – Through – London Interbank Offered Rate – Consequences For Nearly Every Person In The World Who Has Money Or Buys Or Sells Anything – A $1.5 Billion Fine

~ TLISTBAUEAB-T-SC ~ The Law Isn’t Supposed To Be About Unspoken Excuses And Behind-The-Scenes Calculations

~ TUPDL-‘U’&’I’-DRA-IML-ABIM ~ The Usual Political Descriptors Like – “Unfairness” And “Injustice” – Don’t Really Apply – It’s More Like A Breakdown Into Madness

~ ‘OPT’-AFSOTS-LMWP-IHNIYCBAFSAT ~ “Obstructing Pedestrian Traffic” – Arrested For Standing On The Sidewalk – Like Most White People – I Had No Idea You Could Be Arrested For Such A Thing

~ UTACDTD-ITW-TPCAYFJAA ~ Ultimately This All Comes Down To Discretion – If They Want – The Police Can Arrest You For Just About Anything

~ TGBRYNHO ~ The Greatest Bank Robbery You Never Heard Of

~ IWTPTFCC-SBISTIWPITTNE ~ It Was The Perfect Twenty-First-Century Crime – So Broad In Scale That It Was Practically Invisible To The Naked Eye

~ F-HBOTWOTD-T-STTABB-BODWQM-OOTRO-C ~ First – Hefty Bonuses On The Way Out The Door – Then – Sold Themselves To Another Big Bank – Billions Of Dollars Were Quietly Moved – Out Of The Reach Of – Creditors

~ TODWBGATPKGBABED ~ Trillions Of Dollars Were Being Gambled And The Pots Kept Getting Bigger And Bigger Every Day

~ TDTGAWSWOTW-WUITRAPC-TAIAPOBS-E-AFMOWSATUSG ~ The Deals The Government And Wall Street Worked Out That Weekend – Were Unprecedented In Their Reach And Political Consequence – Transforming America Into A Permanent Oligarchical Bailout State – Essentially – A Formal Merger Of Wall Street And The U.S. Government

~ EDOWSMI-SEB&R-BTOTTAOSAAITTDFNITCC ~ Every Day On Wall Street Money Is – Stolen, Embezzled, Burgled, And Robbed – But The Mechanism Of These Thefts Are Often So Arcane And Idiosyncratic That They Don’t Fit Neatly Into The Criminal Code

~ WKTPP-APTMU-ITCOTB-AMSCADAITICPEVM ~ What Keeps The Poor Poor – And Pushes The Money Upward – Is The Complexity Of The Bureaucracy – A Maze So Complex And Dispiriting And Irrational That It Can’t Possibly Even Be Mapped

~ ATFC-ALOLLTT-O&O-Y-BTH-B-NOTBTWC-NTSH-MA ~ About The Financial Crisis – A Legend Our Leaders Like To Tell – Over And Over – Yes – Bad Things Happened – But – None Of Those Bad Things Were Crimes – Nothing To See Here – Move Along

~ ITLIAUE-OALEPOT-ASP-LEBPI-WCOAB-IIMU-WHTBRCTTPN ~ If The Law Is Applied Unequally Enough – Over A Long Enough Period Of Time – At Some Point – Law Enforcement Becomes Politically Illegitimate – Whole Classes Of Arrests Become – Illegal, Improper, Morally Unenforceable – We Have To Be Really Close To That Point Now

~ TISJEETEHOMOEBODIP-B-SNQEETFAITDSMASDIJ ~ There Is Somehow Just Enough Evidence To Extract Hundreds Of Millions Or Even Billions Of Dollars In Penalties – But – Somehow Not Quite Enough Evidence To Force Any Individual To Do So Much As A Day In Jail

~ RPWGATBG-NM-HWP-IF-TBOTWTOAVEWWIALS ~ Real Police Will Go After The Bad Guy – No Matter – How Well Protected – In Fact – The Best Of Them Will Take On A Villain Even When Winning Is A Long Shot

~ TVEITALS-INATAABD-BIRE ~ There’s Value Even In Trying And Losing Sometimes – It’s Not As Tangible As A Billion Dollars But It’s Real Enough

GARY HAUGEN + VICTOR BOUTROS ~ THE 15-70-15 RULE ~ THE LOCUST EFFECT

~ 15%-IOUTCPAAFPPP ~ 15 Percent – Intent On Using Their Coercive Power And Authority For Purely Predatory Purposes

~ 15%-ITDGATSTP ~ 15 Percent – Intent To Do Good And To Serve The Pubic

~ 70%-SWTSWOTTFIGTPIDTOCAISOR ~ 70 Percent – Simply Waiting To See Which Of These Two Factions Is Going To Prevail In Dominating The Organizational Culture And Its System Of Rewards