Commentary

Encyclopædia Britannica’s president Jorge Cauz (left) announced on Tuesday that his company would no longer print its 129-pound, 32-volume sets of its iconic print encyclopedias. He put the best face possible on the decision:

Everyone will want to call this the end of an era, and I understand that. But there’s no sad moment for us. I think outsiders are more nostalgic about the books that I am…

The print set is an icon. But it’s an icon that doesn’t do justice to how much we’ve changed over the years.

transactionIn an economic transaction, who should be the one saying thank you — the buyer or the seller? Or in an employment relationship, who should be thanking the other — the employer or the employee?

Senator Jim DeMint (R-S.C., left) introduced the Energy Freedom & Economic Prosperity Act (EFEPA) in February and then offered his bill as an amendment to the Transportation Bill last week. Had it passed it would have eliminated all energy tax credits not only for wind, solar, biomass and biofuels but for coal, oil and natural gas as well. Said DeMint:

The continuing boom in North Dakota seemingly has no end. Last June oil production from the Bakken Formation exceeded 11 million barrels a month. In February it reached 16 million with estimates that by late spring North Dakota could be producing more oil than either California or Alaska. That’s more than double what the state produced just two years ago. 

When Lakshman Achuthan (left), co-founder of Economic Cycle Research Institute (ECRI) appeared on CNBC to defend his prediction last September of an “imminent” recession, challenges came from many observers, including Tom Keene and Ken Prewitt of Bloomberg and Jon Stewart of The Bonddad Blog. Each pointed to an array of economic indicators that appeared to make Achuthan’s prediction appear almost silly: jobs data improving, auto sales increasing, homebuilders stock prices bouncing, consumer sentiment positive, and others.

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