US unemployment shot up sharply during the Great Recession of 2008-2009. Since then, it has dropped back to more normal levels. Is unemployment now low enough? Let’s look at some facts. Multiple unemployment metrics The unemployment rate is defined as the percentage of the overall labor force that is jobless. Simple enough, right? Not really. … Continue reading Has unemployment dropped enough since the Great Recession?
Some people believe that corporations in a capitalist economy wield tremendous power. Hollywood movie plots reinforce this view by depicting corporations as powerful and shadowy entities. Is this accurate? Not really. In the real world, (a) corporations wield far less power than imagined, (b) consumers and employees hold more power than they think, and (c) … Continue reading With capitalism, who holds power?
Most products and services have become more affordable over the past half century due to lower prices or wages growing faster than prices. But not all products and services are more affordable. College stands out as a stark exception. Why has college become less affordable? Skyrocketing college cost First, let’s look at some data to … Continue reading Why is college expensive?
One reason people don’t like capitalism is because they think it is unfair. One reason people think capitalism is unfair is because they believe that crony capitalism is the same as free-market capitalism. It is not. In fact, crony capitalism is closer to the opposite of free-market capitalism. What is crony capitalism? Crony capitalism is … Continue reading Crony Capitalism ≠ Capitalism
Some people justify Big Government by claiming that it helps the Little Guy. This romantic view is largely political salesmanship. Big Government is more about helping politicians, government workers, and powerful special interest groups than the Little Guy. Let’s look at how government policies harm the Little Guy. Little Guy realities Before we begin, let’s … Continue reading Government helps the Little Guy?
You may have seen headlines saying that CEO’s make 300 times more money than the average worker. These can be deceptive. The data may not be comparable, or cherry-picked for “wow” factor based on only the largest companies. I realize this post may be unpopular, even though it is not a full defense of CEO … Continue reading Are CEO’s overpaid?
The more I ponder the topic of capitalism, the more convinced I become of the importance of businesses. I used to think of businesses as generally a good thing because they provide jobs, but I see now that it’s much more. Everyone should want a business-friendly environment. Not because it helps businesses, but because it … Continue reading Why we should be pro-business
A couple of my recent posts discussed the immense prosperity gains much of the world has seen over the past couple centuries. The long-term track record of free-market capitalism is quite good and quite clear. However, some people say that the American middle-class has stagnated, and is little better off today than in the 1970s. … Continue reading Is middle-class stagnant?
My posts don’t normally get into politics. I do point out problems caused by Big Government, and warn people to be on guard against expanding government, but I don’t normally get into the D versus R thing. However, in this post I will discuss the fact that Democrats keep calling Trump a totalitarian. They claim … Continue reading Who is Totalitarian?
People have become tremendously more prosperous over the past two centuries, at least those who live in countries that practiced something like free-market capitalism for a sustained period. In my last post, we looked at how incomes have grown in different parts of the world. In this post, the time machine will take us back … Continue reading Prosperity Time Machine (2 of 2)