Posts by Steve Verdon

Steve Verdon
About Steve Verdon
Steve has a B.A. in Economics from the University of California, Los Angeles and attended graduate school at The George Washington University, leaving school shortly before staring work on his dissertation when his first child was born. He works in the energy industry and prior to that worked at the Bureau of Labor Statistics in the Division of Price Index and Number Research.

The Incoherent Nature of Nancy MacLean’s Narrative

A Duke history professor uncovers “stealth plan” by “fifth columnists” who are seeking to overthrow democracy in the U.S. for their plutocrat masters.

Estimates of the Trade and Welfare Effects of NAFTA?

I am going to construct a complicated mathematical model of the economy, and then I’m going to calibrate it using some actual data, and in the end I will be able to tell everyone how much better or worse off they are given various changes in the economy. And it will be totally and completely true. Trust me, it’s math and therefore science.

Trump’s Economic Ignorance Costing the U.S. Jobs

Trump’s attempt to fix the balance of trade will almost surely end up leaving us all worse off.

More on Megaprojects

Megaprojects are not a partisan thing. Megaprojects are large projects typically costing more than $1 billion and often tens of billions of dollars and impacting the lives of tens of thousands of people if not millions.

Donald Trump’s Plan to Increase the Trade Deficit

Yet another example of why Trump and his views on Trade and the economy are contradictory and even incoherent. Not only should Trump be building his Great Trump Wall™ in Mexico he should be furiously working against any and all foreign investment in the U.S.

How to Make Cars

There are two ways (at least) to have cars in America.

The New Trump Tax

Yet more incoherent economic policy from the Tweeter in Chief. A border tax will mean that Americans will undoubtedly pay for at least part of the Great Wall of Trump™.

The Great Wall of America

The Great Wall of Trump™ is almost surely going to be a disaster, the question remains how big of a disaster will it be.

The Minimum Wage

The minimum wage has been a big part of this year’s election cycle, mainly due to Bernie Sander’s campaign and his idea of a national minimum wage. There has been lots of discussion of this, but most of it is just, well, bad. There are really two things that one can point to as to why wages above the market wage can be good.

Libertarians Are to Blame for Donald Trump’s Racialized Rhetoric?

The idea that Donald Trump has gotten his racialized rhetoric from libertarians is simply errant nonsense. The libertarian view, broadly speaking, is not defined by Murray Rothbard, Llewellyn Rockwell, and Ron Paul and those who share their views. This is but a small and even fringe group of what could be called the libertarian community.

Good Bye Peak Oil Hypothesis

Remember Peak Oil? Whatever happened to that idea?

Donald Trump’s Bad Reasoning on NAFTA

Donald Trump engages in some nice post hoc ergo propter hoc by implying that the decline in manufacturing jobs in North Carolina is due to NAFTA. Ignoring that other factors are more likely playing a far greater role in the loss of manufacturing jobs.

Ross Kaminsky: Protectionism is Political Pandering

It is a misguided and foolish attempt to try and buy votes without appearing to buy votes.

“Compassionate” Protectionism

There’s nothing compasssionate about protectionism.

Follow Up on My Mercantilism Post

Responding to comments on this morning’s post.

The Resurgence of Mercantilism

On the left and the right, there’s been a resurgence of a long-ago discredited economy theory.

The Micro Economics of the Financial Crisis

The Financial Crisis was not a problem of macroeconomics, but a cluster of microeconomic problems all acting together.

So…That Stimulus

A report card for the 2009 Stimulus Bill.

Rush Limbaugh: Shut Up

So I was nice and oblivious to the whole Limbaugh-Fluke controversy then I stumble upon it today and…geez. Limbaugh has managed to take a reasonable point and twist it and also come off looking like one of the biggest morons on the planet. First off, taking “the pill” is not dependent on how many sexual […]

Rick Santorum the Irrelevant Candidate

Rick Santorum’s good day in Iowa doesn’t change the truth about his campaign.

Cash for Clunkers: Not Much

The popular program was even less successful than we initially thought.

July PCE

Thank goodness, the July PCE numbers look pretty good compared to recent months. Lets hope it is something that will continue.

Well…It Could be Worse

Updates to the Gross Domestic Product numbers for quarter two aren’t good, but they could have been worse. Still, the risk of recession is considerable.

Fears of Another Global Recession

The signs are not good.

Another Round of QE3?

Will the Fed announce another round of Quantitative Easing?

Yay! Debt Hits 100% of GDP and Other Good News!

Don’t worry be happy!

The Second Great Contraction

Harvard economist Kenneth Rogoff says we’re undergoing much more than a mere recession.

What Recovery?

Following on Doug’s cheery post about the weak state of the economy here are some more things to consider.

The Impact of the U.S. Defaulting

Christine Lagarde believes the impact could be large and global.

UCLA Forecast: More Slow Growth

More slow economic growth, the L-shaped recession.

The Myth of Shovel Ready Jobs, Again

What was that, a joke about shovel ready jobs not being so shovel ready. Yeah unemployment a topic ripe for great comedy.

And I Thought California Was in Bad Shape

Illinois is so hard up for revenues it is considering selling ad space on license plates.

U.S. in Worse Shape than Greece

We might be looking at a potential fiscal crisis.

Enact a Credible, Long-term Plan for Fiscal Consolidation

Is it possible to address the U.S. fiscal situation?

Economic Horror Show

And even more bad news.

We Are On the Verge of Great, Great Depression

All in all, not looking like it will be a fun summer.

Is Lack of Investment Holding Back the Recovery?

People and businesses are sitting on cash out of fear, creating a vicious cycle.

Warren Christopher Dead at 85

Former Secretary of State under President Bill Clinton Warren Christopher has died

100 Saved Body Scans Now On-Line

A Florida courthouse illegally saved 35,000 images from security scanners.

How Would I Solve the Deficit

Here’s my plan for creating a budget surplus of $126 billion by 2015 and $592 billion by 2030.

A Note to Krugman: Don’t Be So Stupid

Krugman links to a story at Think Progress about how firefighters let a house burn down because the owner didn’t pay the fee. Paul, baby, next time do a bit of fact checking. This isn’t the market failing, it was a government run fire department. You can tell from this part of the Think Progress […]

Mortgage Foreclosure Fiasco

Banks are faced with a huge number of foreclosures and that resources they’ve allocated towards handling them was woefully inadequate.

The Roots of Foolishness (Wonkish)

Well so much for the predictions of “robust growth”. Roots of evil (wonkish) As Brad DeLong says, sigh. Greg Mankiw challenges the administration’s prediction of relatively fast growth a few years from now on the basis that real GDP may have a unit root — that is, there’s no tendency for bad years to be […]

The Risk of a Fiscal Crisis

The CBO sees a clear threat of a fiscal crisis during the next two decades unless we’re saved by magic ponies.

Krugman vs. The Actuaries on Medicare

Paul Krugman’s Medicare projections don’t line up with what the actuaries are telling us.

Unemployment Duration

Most research shows that unemployment benefits/insurance increases the duration of unemployment.

CPI Declines Again…Deflation?

The Bureau of Labor Statistics is reporting that the CPI declined 0.1% last month. This makes for the third straight month that the CPI has declined. Is there reason to think that there is widespread deflation in the economy?

Did the Stimulus Work?

Nobody can really say whether the stimulus worked — or even define “worked” — but that doesn’t stop them from issuing pronouncements.

The Lie of Shovel Ready Jobs

President Obama was shocked –SHOCKED! — to learn that bureaucracy and contracting hassles delay construction projects.

How Stupid Can Cops Be?

Some cops apparently still haven’t figured out that it’s legal to take pictures in public places — even of cops.

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