Carpe Diem

Wednesday afternoon links

1. The 5 Most Influential Data Visualizations of All Time

2. Study: Less Fewer Than 10% of Indian MBA Graduates Are “Employable”

3. CHART of the Day: U.S. Exports to China Surged to an all-time monthly record high in October of almost $11 billion.

4. Payroll data compiled by Bloomberg on 1.4 million public employees in the 12 most populous states show that California has set a pattern of lax management, inefficient operations and out-of-control costs. A state psychiatrist was paid $822,000, a highway patrol officer collected $484,000 in pay and pension benefits and 17 employees got checks of more than $200,000 for unused vacation and leave.

5. Antidote to Obamacare?  Concierge medicine, often thought of as a luxury for the rich, is affordable for everyone and might even be the salvation of the American health-care system.

6. Markets in Everything: Professors Set Prices for Their Online Courses.

7. Markets in Everything: The garden robots are coming.

20 thoughts on “Wednesday afternoon links

  1. Here’s one for ya”

    “Rep. Peter Welch (D-VT) is circulating among colleagues a letter to President Obama, to affirm their support for his no-hostage strategy — and beyond that for him using extraordinary means to prevent the U.S. from defaulting on its debt obligations.

    “We fully support your view that Congress should not ‘play this game,’” the letter reads. “Threatening default on our nation’s debt is an economic weapon of mass destruction that will have immediate and catastrophic consequences for the economy as well as America’s standing in the world. In the event the Speaker follows through on his reckless threat, we would support your use of any authority available to you, including the 14th amendment, to preserve America’s full faith and credit and prevent further damage to our economy.”

    • That’s right, running trillion-plus dollar deficits year after year isn’t akin to an “economic weapon of mass destruction that will have immediate and catastrophic consequences for the economy as well as America’s standing in the world.” No, the real threat is trying to force the Democrats to do something about that deficit spending.

      Pathetic.

  2. Looking at the “Top Visualizations” link, one of the charts shown is the French March on Moscow in 1812. This is one of my favorite pictures (we have a version of it in the office). In this one chart, it is really amazing to see what a massive tragedy and defeat this was for the French in Russia.

  3. There’s more to that FRED graph than meets the eye…

    From Zero Hedge: October US Exports Plunge By Most Since January 2009 As Trade Deficit With China Hits Record

    The boost to GDP from the declining US trade deficit is over. While the September trade deficit number was revised further lower, to $40.3 billion from $41.5 previously, October saw a pick up to $42.2 billion, slightly less than the expected $42.7 billion, but a headwind to Q4 GDP already. As a result, expect a modest boost to Q3 GDP in its final revision, even as Q4 GDP continues to contract below its consensus of sub stall-speed ~1%. The reason for the decline: a 3.6% decline in exports of goods and services. This was the biggest percent drop in exports since January 2009 as the traditional US import partners are all wrapped in a major recession. What helped, however, was the offsetting drop in imports by 2.1%, the lowest since April 2011, as US businesses are likewise consumed by a concerns about the global economy.

    • The drop in October’s export numbers may be a bit overdone, what with Superstorm Sandy disrupting activity all over the nation (in fact, the FRB said the storm was the main reason for weak Production numbers in October).

      We may see a rebound in exports and imports as activity was shifted towards November and December.

      The tl;dr version: it bears watching, but don’t hit the panic button quite yet.

      • The drop in October’s export numbers may be a bit overdone, what with Superstorm Sandy disrupting activity all over the nation…“…

        You mean it wasn’t Bush’s fault this time?!?!

        Just kidding you jon

        We may see a rebound in exports and imports as activity was shifted towards November and December“…

        Yeah, I also hope this isn’t indicative of any trend…

  4. i used to use concierge medicine in SF. it was wonderful. (and, alas, does not seem to be available here)

    the docs were unhurried, knew you, took all the time you wanted, were there for preventative stuff and (for a fee) would actually do house-calls to cure hangovers.

    (unit of IV saline and a vitamin shot)

    http://www.carepractice.com/weekend-recovery/

    btw, that works incredibly well.

  5. “Fewer Than 10% of Indian MBA Graduates Are “Employable””

    “Use fewer if you’re referring to people or things in the plural (e.g. houses, newspapers, dogs, students, children).

    Use less when you’re referring to something that can’t be counted or doesn’t have a plural (e.g. money, air, time, music, rain).”

    My comment: 10% is a fixed amount or singular.

      • peak-

        while you are correct that it is “less than 10%” and that mark has incorrectly altered it, that’s not precisely why.

        fewer is for individual things that can be counted. fewer cars.

        less is for the uncountable and for solitary numbers, and measurements (including time)

        10% is an measurement. so you would say less than 10% or less than 5 hours.

        the singular vs plural dichotomy is not actually quite the right guideline there.

        from the OED

        “people often don’t know when to use less and when to use fewer in a sentence. Here’s how to get it right.

        Use fewer if you’re referring to people or things in the plural (e.g. houses, newspapers, dogs, students, children). For example:

        People these days are buying fewer newspapers.
        Fewer students are opting to study science-related subjects.
        Fewer than thirty children each year develop the disease.

        Use less when you’re referring to something that can’t be counted or doesn’t have a plural (e.g. money, air, time, music, rain). For example:

        It’s a better job but they pay you less money.
        People want to spend less time in traffic jams.
        Ironically, when I’m on tour, I listen to less music.

        Less is also used with numbers when they are on their own and with expressions of measurement or time, e.g.:

        His weight fell from 18 stone to less than 12.
        Their marriage lasted less than two years.
        Heath Square is less than four miles away from Dublin city center”

        http://oxforddictionaries.com/words/less-or-fewer

  6. @Concierge Medicine

    “Bliss has pitched a plan to help Medicare save money. “We’d love to do that,” he says. “We think we could do it for $100 per patient and save them 20 to 30 percent of their health-care costs. But Medicare won’t recognize us.”

    Are these guys really naive enough to believe that Medicare and Obamacare are about providing people with healthcare?

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

You may use these HTML tags and attributes: <a href="" title=""> <abbr title=""> <acronym title=""> <b> <blockquote cite=""> <cite> <code> <del datetime=""> <em> <i> <q cite=""> <strike> <strong>