Daily Digest

Daily Digest 5/5 - The Psychology Of Fraud, Austerity Is Strangling Europe, The Human Predicament Explained Through Chemistry

Saturday, May 5, 2012, 10:43 AM
  • Psychology Of Fraud: Why Good People Do Bad Things
  • May Day Around The World
  • Reasons Abound For Ebb In Job Growth
  • Where Do We Go From Here?
  • Austerity Is Strangling Europe
  • Fiscal Policy: Cliff Diving
  • Data Trove Reveals Scope Of Law Schools' Hiring Of Their Own Graduates
  • Discrepancies on Medical Bills Can Leave a Credit Stain
  • Inter-Regional Trade Movements of Petroleum to and from the former Soviet Union Region: Part 8
  • 94 Elements Examines The Human Predicament Through Chemistry

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Economy

Psychology Of Fraud: Why Good People Do Bad Things (jdargis)

Over the past decade or so, news stories about unethical behavior have been a regular feature on TV, a long, discouraging parade of misdeeds marching across our screens. And in the face of these scandals, psychologists and economists have been slowly reworking how they think about the cause of unethical behavior.

May Day Around The World (jdargis)

In cities all around the world, people took to the streets for May Day demonstrations, protests, and rallies. Members of the Occupy movement, leftists, labor groups, students and more made their voices heard from Jakarta to Berlin, and from Lagos to Seattle. Frustration with financial institutions, sluggish economies, and harsh austerity measures were aired, and some rallies became violent, resulting in a number of arrests.

Reasons Abound For Ebb In Job Growth (jdargis)

Instead, for reasons that are unclear, workers continue to peel off the labor force. An estimated 342,000 Americans dropped out of the job market altogether in April. That is why the unemployment rate fell to 8.2 percent from 8.1 percent — not because more workers found jobs, but because so many people left the work force.

It’s just one month of data, and the survey numbers are not precise. Still, the figures fit into a longer-term trend.

Where Do We Go From Here? (jdargis)

Just as sober economists understood that the burst of economic growth and hiring at the end of late 2011 and start of 2012 was probably fleeting, there is reason to think the weak growth of the last two months may not last, either. The true underlying trend may be somewhere between the good news of January and February (caused in part by warm weather, which pulled forward various spending) and the disappointing news of March and April (because some spending that would normally have happened then instead happened earlier).

Austerity Is Strangling Europe (jdargis)

In my time in office, Belgium, Germany, France and Luxembourg initiated a debate about security policy in Europe at the “Chocolate Summit” in 2003. Today we again need a solid core of states to push the integration process forward. More Europe, not less Europe: that must now be the goal. And the political leadership in the nation states has the responsibility to promote the European idea aggressively to the public.

Fiscal Policy: Cliff Diving (jdargis)

The economic impact of this fiscal cliff is a matter of some debate. The Congressional Budget Office reckons that the combined effects of the sequester and the expiring tax cuts would add up to 3.6% of GDP in fiscal 2013. But David Greenlaw of Morgan Stanley, which puts the total effect at almost $700 billion at an annual rate, argues that the calendar-year impact is much larger, at around 5%. Others think the effect would be smaller, noting that some people will not experience the full tax hit until they file their returns in 2014.

Data Trove Reveals Scope Of Law Schools' Hiring Of Their Own Graduates (jdargis)

The new data do not include any information about the number of graduates in part-time or full-time jobs, nor any salary information. Their release followed mounting public pressure by transparency advocates and Congressional leaders to improve the quality and amount of law school consumer information available.

The new data are available on the ABA's Web site in two forms. Users can search individual schools' employment reports for the class of 2010, or they can download a spreadsheet that includes employment information for all 200 ABA-accredited law schools.

Discrepancies on Medical Bills Can Leave a Credit Stain (jdargis)

The reason is that the portion of the bill that patients owe has become a larger percentage of medical practices’ and hospitals’ revenue, said Mark Rieger, chief executive of National Healthcare Exchange Services, which offers software to help providers manage billing. “They are getting increases in their fee schedule amounts, but their revenue is declining because more of the responsibility is being shifted to patients,” he said.

Medical providers collected no more than 8 percent of their revenue from patients about 10 years ago, he said. Now, it is closer to 20 percent, or even 30 percent, in some markets.

Energy

Inter-Regional Trade Movements of Petroleum to and from the former Soviet Union Region: Part 8 (Crash_Watcher)

If all of the planned contracts and pipelines come to fruition, then they will potentially deliver increased quantities of up to 2-3 billion barrels per year from the former Soviet Union region to China, Japan and remaining Asia-Pacific region. And, from Figure 2, it is clear that the former Soviet Union region's total yearly inter-regional exports for the past fours years have only been only slightly above 3 billion barrels per year, and that these are all-time export highs. This implies that the mechanism will be in place for the majority of the former Soviet Union's petroleum exports to shift from Europe to Asia, if that is what was more profitable.

Environment

94 Elements Examines The Human Predicament Through Chemistry (jdargis)

Some people raise the prospect of "peak metal": the size of exploitable deposits in the ground divided by the rate at which the element is currently being consumed. If you do the maths, you discover that indium, probably used in the screen on which you're reading this, could run out in around 10 years. Silver could have 30 years left, tin 40 years.

Article suggestions for the Daily Digest can be sent to dd@PeakProsperity.com. All suggestions are filtered by the Daily Digest team and preference is given to those that are in alignment with the message of the Crash Course and the "3 Es."

5 Comments

Arthur Robey's picture
Arthur Robey
Status: Diamond Member (Offline)
Joined: Feb 4 2010
Posts: 2363
What a Joke.

The way I see it is that there are too many of us. We need Lebensraum.

And in view of the fact that I am squeemish I would prefer it if we did not have to slaughter women and children in order to get some. This leaves only one option. We have to go up.

Here is a piece in The Conversation.

There are many here who will say "I cannot see this plan working for me." And they are right. It is not going to work for them.  Mother Nature has a twisted sense of humour.

Professor James Lovelock seems quite sanguine about the whole affair. But then again, he gets to miss the main show.

KennethPollinger's picture
KennethPollinger
Status: Silver Member (Offline)
Joined: Sep 22 2010
Posts: 173
Congrats to Chris and Alasadir

GREAT two-part interview the other day.  You both answered some of my long-held questions about investing (gambling?),

especially what to do with money left over after buying metals.  If the global situation turns out as you two

feel/think it will, I'll be a very wealthy person; if not, well, who knows, and maybe some of the EEE community could join 

me in Costa Rica: visist www.AwarenessCenters.com, click onto Costa Rica Retreat info.

crash_watcher's picture
crash_watcher
Status: Silver Member (Offline)
Joined: Aug 12 2008
Posts: 146
RE 94 Elements ... and Asteroid mining will happen …

The EROI for continued metal mining "business as usual" or even a recycling program does not look very promising, and the EROI for an Asteroid mining adventure would be even less promising.... athough this might be a promising way to extract money from gullible investors.

Arthur Robey's picture
Arthur Robey
Status: Diamond Member (Offline)
Joined: Feb 4 2010
Posts: 2363
Food for Thought

Crashwatcher said.

Asteroid mining adventure would be even less promising.... athough this might be a promising way to extract money from gullible investors.

This is a very sticky and erronious meme.  The purpose of the exercise is not to drop anything at all down the gravity well.

Here is the purpose of the exercise.

Either that or we resort to cannibilism. It won't be the first time.

crash_watcher's picture
crash_watcher
Status: Silver Member (Offline)
Joined: Aug 12 2008
Posts: 146
RE: Food for Thought

A leg (or other "recycled parts") in the hand is worth at least two cyber-fantasies in the bush.   

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