• FeaturedKrugman chart

    Bad Chart Thursday: Paul Krugman’s EXCEL-lent Adventure

    If you follow economist Paul Krugman’s op-ed column in the New York Times, you may have noticed that he occasionally creates his own graphs using the sophisticated stylings of Microsoft Excel (or perhaps Google Sheets). I recognize the generic look, especially the default colors (red and blue), because I use the limited chart-making options in spreadsheet programs as well. The…

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  • Skepticism

    Wine Pricing

    Last month, the NYT reported that wine dealer Rudy Kurniawan was convicted of fraud after successfully passing off regular wine he’d mixed in his kitchen as sought-after, top-end bottles. This man swindled wine collectors out of large amounts of money, made a mockery of those who are supposed to be able to catch these things, and raised an obvious question:…

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  • AI: Economic Stimulation

    Wednesday’s Afternoon Inquisition always comes courtesy of the previous week’s Comment o’ the Week, which was tmarie: +++ Everyone knows the economy is… well, not awesome right now. I’m learning to be a little more careful with my spending, but I’m still seemingly overwhelmed with my financial obligations: student loans, car payment, bills bills bills, and of course all the…

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  • Bostonist: Psychics Loving the Boom Times

    Oh, look, the Boston Globe discovers a 4-month old story and does nothing to make it any smarter. This inspired my post today on Bostonist, which begins . . . Here’s an interesting story: as the economy plunges into a recession and people panic over the prospect of lost jobs and money, psychics continue to make big money. Well, okay…

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