Sunday, 27 November 2016
Saturday, 26 November 2016
Thursday, 24 November 2016
Sunday, 20 November 2016
As long as there is no foul play, and as long as industries aren’t being hamstrung by politicians, then every instance of failure is a good thing. It’s we the buying public that have decided the world got to a point where it had too many newspapers being printed, too many VHS recorders, too many fax machines and too many landline telephones. And that’s all fine and dandy, because the main thing the market is good at is changing its shape, pace and structure according to the aggregation of every mutually beneficial transaction that occurs in society.
Incidentally, I’ve often pondered whether the reason a lot of people are so averse to the market is because it is so proficient at dealing with failure. Many people are quite risk-averse and they are disenchanted by the nature of competition, which may be why they see the market as a cold and uncaring system, when in reality it's the opposite.
The other thing that may be a factor is that a lot of people have control freakery when it comes to society. They can't stomach a free society where individual transactions shape the landscape rather than rulers from on high. The human mind simply does not have the breadth and cognitive wherewithal to coordinate anything as dynamically complex as an economy – we have to be guided by supply and demand and the price-signals it engenders.
It is those signals that tell us about preferences for newspapers, twixes, comedy shows and mobile phones, and many people feel pretty insecure by the fact that billions of market choices based on trial and error are infinitely better at running an economy than any human minds that try to govern it.
Tuesday, 15 November 2016
Now it's fair to say that
There is a group of 7
friends sitting at a table with a big cake they are about to share. Obama's
grand plan was to invite 4 other friends around to share the cake while at the
same time promising that the 7 people's share of the cake wouldn't be any
smaller. Obama carried on maintaining that the
- It repeals all the ACA mandates and replaces current tax and spending subsidies with a universal tax credit that varies by age and geography, but is the same regardless of income.
- It ensures that the health care safety net will always be adequately funded, regardless of the number of people with private insurance.
- It allows Medicaid to compete with private insurance, since the size of the tax credit for private insurance is roughly equal to the federal contribution to a well-managed Medicaid plan.
- It allows employers to buy individually-owned insurance for their employees — insurance which they can take with them from job to job.
- It replaces all tax-favored medical accounts with a Roth Health Savings Account.
- It gives employers and employees new tools to control costs, allowing them to convert insurance benefits of marginal value, dollar-for-dollar, into take-home pay.
- It denationalizes and deregulates the exchanges and subjects competing health plans to a type of “free market risk adjustment.”
Friday, 11 November 2016
Thursday, 10 November 2016
The polls keep drastically confounding expectations, and lots of people want to know what's going on. How can something as relatively straightforward as asking people which way they will vote and collating statistics on that basis repeatedly turn out be so difficult? Like the weather, it should be impossible to nail it to an exact science, but surely the indicators should be more reliable than this, shouldn't they?
Wednesday, 9 November 2016
In the wake of the recent tribunal which declared that Uber drivers should be classed as employees with rights to the minimum wage, holiday pay and so forth, we read today that something similar is happening with Deliveroo, as riders seek to unionise and gain similar workers' rights as Uber.
"They need to ask themselves if they have a sustainable business model if they have to exploit their workers like this in order to be viable"
Of course it's true that some Deliveroo riders would go along with Clive Lewis, but their motives are highly dodgy - it's because they think a state intervention can help them earn more than the marginal value of their labour. Alas, it's a nice trick if you can pull it off, particularly if you don't care about the people providing the means by which this arrangement benefits both parties, or about the many intangible losers who don't show up on the radar but who've had an opportunity denied them.