The Security Value of Inefficiency

For decades, we have prized efficiency in our economy. We strive for it. We reward it. In normal times, that’s a good thing. Running just at the margins is efficient. A single just-in-time global supply chain is efficient. Consolidation is efficient. And that’s all profitable. Inefficiency, on the other hand, is waste. Extra inventory is … Read more The Security Value of Inefficiency

Hot Dogs, the Jewish American Fast Food

Many think that fast food was invented by Ray Kroc when he opened his first McDonald’s in Des Plaines, Illinois, in 1955. But it is probably Nathan Handwerker who deserves the distinction, argues his grandson Lloyd Handwerker in his new book Famous Nathan (in 2014 Handwerker made a documentary film with the same name). Nathan … Read more Hot Dogs, the Jewish American Fast Food

Universities Sowing the Seeds of Their Own Obsolescence

The media blitz during these last several weeks revealed a generation that is poorly educated and yet petulant and self-assured without justification. When mobs tore down a statue of Ulysses S. Grant and defaced a monument to African-American veterans of the Civil War, many people wondered whether the protesters had ever learned anything in high … Read more Universities Sowing the Seeds of Their Own Obsolescence

We’re All Living in Youngstown Now

Today’s professional white collar workers are about to get the same treatment as steel and auto workers received in the 1970s and 80s. Back then the narrative was unequivocal. Manufacturing was dominated by overpaid highly unionized workers who were lazy and entitled. Wages and benefits were too high. Productivity and innovation were being stifled by … Read more We’re All Living in Youngstown Now

The ‘Diversity’ Trap

A shallow, reductive version of diversity that first gained a foothold in progressive political spaces has rapidly spread across American institutions and the corporate world. It values skin color and other inherited characteristics above all else, largely ignores class issues, and overlooks the benefits of real diversity, like the anti-fragile resilience created by fostering people … Read more The ‘Diversity’ Trap

The Cloud over the Future of America’s Downtowns

America’s downtowns were on a roll. Starting to revive in the 1980s and ’90s after years of decline, they had grown to become regional engines again: destinations for entertainment, residential neighborhoods in their own right, and homes to growth in business sectors as industries like technology startups began to cluster there. Some downtowns were downright … Read more The Cloud over the Future of America’s Downtowns

The Woke Tech Giants Teach Us How To Deal With Systemic Racism

Essentially every form of discrimination on the basis of race in economic matters has been banned by law in the United States since at least the 1960s. That’s sufficiently long ago that the number of people old enough to have living memory of the days when racial discrimination was legally tolerated is rapidly diminishing. Today, … Read more The Woke Tech Giants Teach Us How To Deal With Systemic Racism

John Cochrane Rightly Objects to the Mobthink of Krugman, Wolfers, Yellen, and Other Economists

These times, it is already trite to observe, are sad and dangerous, filled as they are with roving bands of rabid “Twitter Robespierres.” Liberalism – true liberalism – is rejected, in deed if not always in word, by many who once called themselves “liberal.” Humanity’s brutality, we see again, is never far from the surface … Read more John Cochrane Rightly Objects to the Mobthink of Krugman, Wolfers, Yellen, and Other Economists

UC Berkeley History Professor’s Open Letter Against BLM, Police Brutality and Cultural Orthodoxy

I am increasingly alarmed by the absence of diversity of opinion on the topic of the recent protests and our community response to them. In the extended links and resources you provided, I could not find a single instance of substantial counter-argument or alternative narrative to explain the under-representation of black individuals in academia or … Read more UC Berkeley History Professor’s Open Letter Against BLM, Police Brutality and Cultural Orthodoxy

First Family, Then Freedom

Without stronger kin, the American way grows fatally weak. . . . We should be concerned about the falling fortunes of the family in this nation because, as Thomas Klingenstein has noted, such a downfall poses a very real threat to the health of the American way of life. Consider three key elements of our … Read more First Family, Then Freedom

Reason Matters: Defund Professors, Not Police

We are now reaping the whirlwind of irrationality led by the so-called “educated-class”. . . . It seems that almost everybody is angry these days, and there are a lot of good reasons for it. Injustices have abounded in the last few months. Bad cops have killed helpless citizens, rioters and looters have disrupted legal … Read more Reason Matters: Defund Professors, Not Police

Tired of ‘Winning’ Yet?

Republicans should stop making excuses for the president’s lies, threats, and abuses — or stop wrapping themselves in the mantle of patriotism. . . . Steyn was leaning on a classic political trope, in effect: “The other side is a bunch of rat bastards, and therefore it not only is morally acceptable for us to … Read more Tired of ‘Winning’ Yet?

Rioting for fun & profit

There is nothing unChristian about getting angry once in a while. Perhaps one might say it gets less Christian the more it happens. But the injustices of this world are real; they are not props in a game show. Righteous indignation is not an impossibility. The idea that one’s anger justifies bad behaviour is, however, … Read more Rioting for fun & profit

The Virus’s Uneven Path: Working-class communities face mounting economic stress

In this miserable Covid-19 spring, it’s tempting for remote workers to vent our frustrations with being hemmed in, forced to stare at screens while unable to do much else other than walk around the block or go to Costco. Yet the pain felt by the teleworking middle class is dwarfed by that of working-class Americans. … Read more The Virus’s Uneven Path: Working-class communities face mounting economic stress

What About the Rotten Culture of the Rich?

We used to joke on Wall Street that you should marry a trader at another firm, trade with only each other, and by end of the year one would have made a lot of money and the other lost the exact same amount. The winner would be paid a big bonus, and the loser only … Read more What About the Rotten Culture of the Rich?

Local Broadcasters Forget Journalism Ethics, Air Amazon PR Fluff Instead

While US journalism is certainly in crisis mode, it’s particularly bad on the local level, where most local newspapers and broadcasters have been either killed off or consolidated into large corporations, often resulting in something that’s less news, and more homogenized dreck (see: that Deadspin Sinclair video from a few years back). Data suggests this … Read more Local Broadcasters Forget Journalism Ethics, Air Amazon PR Fluff Instead

The Conservative Case for the U.S. Postal Service

The Postal Service is financially burdened by a mandate to pre-fund its retiree’s healthcare benefits decades in advance—a requirement that does not apply to any other branch of government (or private corporation). This directive had placed the Postal Service in a precarious financial position even before the economy was shut down due to COVID-19, so … Read more The Conservative Case for the U.S. Postal Service

The Great Pizza Arbitrage Scheme Of 2020 Is Spotlighting The Strangeness Of Food Delivery Services

Food delivery services always felt a bit wonky to me. I’m usually not terribly old fashioned about most things, but I generally understood that some restaurants delivered and some did not and that that was mostly fine. Along came food delivery services to bring us food from places that didn’t deliver and that was mostly … Read more The Great Pizza Arbitrage Scheme Of 2020 Is Spotlighting The Strangeness Of Food Delivery Services

Heritage Foundation: More than half of all U.S. counties report zero COVID-19 deaths

More than half of all U.S. counties have reported no coronavirus-related deaths, an analysis by the Heritage Foundation shows. In light of the data, the Heritage Foundation created a National Coronavirus Recovery Commission to offer policy solutions to lawmakers to avert an economic depression “regardless of whether COVID-19 is suppressed in the next several months … Read more Heritage Foundation: More than half of all U.S. counties report zero COVID-19 deaths

Delivering when it matters: Quick-service restaurants in coronavirus times

With much of the world’s population being asked or required to stay home and follow physical-distancing guidelines, once-bustling restaurants and cafés now sit empty. Although a few quick-service restaurants (QSRs) are seeing heightened demand in takeout and delivery—several US pizza chains, for instance, are hiring thousands of workers as orders spike—most other QSRs have experienced … Read more Delivering when it matters: Quick-service restaurants in coronavirus times

Plague-proof the U.S. with nursing home and hotel pairings?

One of my bored-in-quarantine activities is mocking Facebook friends for their faith in various Utopian government-run schemes for winning the war against the evil coronavirus. Most of these schemes require a perfectly efficient government, the elimination of the Constitutional rights of healthy young people, and a perfectly compliant population (including the 22 million undocumented). Usually … Read more Plague-proof the U.S. with nursing home and hotel pairings?

No students. No graduation. ‘Total devastation’ in college towns during coronavirus pandemic

Before the closures, no one could have imagined that for Clemson’s (South Carolina) 50-year-old downtown district. The football team’s run of championship contenders and a 30% rise in enrollment since 2010 propelled a surge on College Avenue after the 2008 economic recession and road construction that discouraged traffic through the area. Now, the open parking … Read more No students. No graduation. ‘Total devastation’ in college towns during coronavirus pandemic

U.S. Secret Service: “Massive Fraud” Against State Unemployment Insurance Programs

A well-organized Nigerian crime ring is exploiting the COVID-19 crisis by committing large-scale fraud against multiple state unemployment insurance programs, with potential losses in the hundreds of millions of dollars, according to a new alert issued by the U.S. Secret Service. U.S. Secret Service: “Massive Fraud” Against State Unemployment Insurance Programs Related Posts‘Experts’ Float Trial … Read more U.S. Secret Service: “Massive Fraud” Against State Unemployment Insurance Programs

Kitchen Nightmares In The Restaurant Apocalypse of 2020

Restaurants never run themselves. The work routine cannot be established and then left on autopilot. The work is endless and thankless. Five percent of it, perhaps, has something to do with cooking; the other 95 percent is cleaning, budgeting, ordering, hiring, managing, filling out paperwork and paying taxes. A restaurant is not a big dinner … Read more Kitchen Nightmares In The Restaurant Apocalypse of 2020

As Food Supply Chain Breaks Down, Farm-To-Door CSAs Take Off

Images of some American farmers dumping milk, plowing under crops and tossing perishables amid sagging demand and falling prices during the deadly coronavirus pandemic has made for dramatic TV. But it’s not the whole story. “We had a reporter call here and say, ‘We want to see some produce rotting in the field and milk … Read more As Food Supply Chain Breaks Down, Farm-To-Door CSAs Take Off