Society, Technology

Orwell’s Past is China’s Future — and Maybe Ours

“If you want to keep a secret, you must also hide it from yourself.” ― George Orwell, 1984   Tucked among all the news stories lat month was a remarkable series of articles in the Wall Street Journal about China’s emerging “Social Credit Score.” This term refers to a system, currently under development, through which all Chinese citizens (and probably visitors) would be assigned a score that […]

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Society, Technology

Is Automation Making Us Dumber? The Answer is No

There is an interesting genre emerging today, as otherwise smart writers start to warn us that either (a) robots are going to take over the world or (b) computers are eroding human intelligence. If we believe these authors, our future is either serving our new robot overlords or mindlessly staring at screens throughout our lives. […]

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Regulations

Michigan Just Chose the Wrong Side of History

In case you missed it, the WSJ had a pretty rough editorial yesterday correctly blasting Michigan governor Rick Snyder for caving into the car dealer lobby and banning Tesla from selling cars in the state. In this case, WSJ laid out clearly that Snyder’s decision is a bad one on just about every level: Direct sale of cars to […]

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Economics

WSJ: “Competition is for Losers”

Check out this interesting piece by Peter Thiel on capitalism and monopolies on WSJ. He has a great point that what most businesses really wish for is not great competition but its opposite. A sample: Americans mythologize competition and credit it with saving us from socialist bread lines. Actually, capitalism and competition are opposites. Capitalism […]

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Economics

The Texas Toyota Project and the Price of Jobs

I came across an interesting article in the WSJ recently about the “incentive” package Texas recently gave to Toyota in order to move its U.S. headquarters to the state The State, notes the article, put together a comprehensive set of financial incentives to make the giant automaker leave California: Texas offered Toyota $40 million to move, part […]

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Finance, Regulations

Why Insider Trading Should be Legal

I came across an interesting article on NYT’s DealBook section the other day that documented the on-going appeal against insider trading convictions on behalf of two former hedge fund traders, Todd Newman and Anthony Chiasson. The two men were prosecuted by the office of Preet Bharara’s, who has a perfect conviction record (80 for 80) in insider trading cases. DealBook notes […]

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