Opinions Uncensored

What John DiIulio Said

I think this is too good to excerpt just read“Want better, smaller government? Hire another million federal bureaucrats.”
by John DiIulio. He argues that the obsession with keeping the number of Federal civilian employees low has reduced efficiency and created powerful concentrated interests...

State and Local Governments: Contributions to GDP and Employment

Two and half years ago I argued that "most of the drag from state and local governments would be over by mid-year 2012. Just eliminating the drag from state and local governments would help GDP and employment growth". This has been an important change.Here is a graph showing the contribution to...

Eurozone Manufacturing PMI at 13-Month Low, with Germany Worse than Expected, Italy and France in Contraction

The Markit Eurozone Manufacturing final data shows Eurozone Manufacturing PMI at 13-month low in August.


The rate of expansion in eurozone manufacturing production eased to its lowest during the current 14-month growth sequence in August, as companies faced slower increases in both total new orders and new export business. The final seasonally adjusted Markit Eurozone Manufacturing PMI® posted 50.7 ...

Mortgage Rates: A Long Way to Fall for a Significant Increase in Refinance Activity

I've seen some recent discussion suggesting that mortgage refinance activity might pickup significantly if mortgage rates fall just a little more. I think this is incorrect.


First, from Freddie Mac last week: Mortgage Rates Remain Low Heading Into Holiday Weekend


Freddie Mac ... released the results of its Primary Mortgage Market Survey® (PMMS®), showing average fixed mortgage rates largely unchanged amid mixed news on the housing front heading into the Labor Day weekend...

Putin Calls for Eastern Ukraine Statehood

Putin threw fat into the Ukrainian fire today by calling for Talks on Eastern Ukraine Statehood.The question at hand is" What precisely does Putin mean by "statehood" ?Russian President Vladimir Putin called on Sunday for immediate talks on the "statehood" of southern and eastern Ukraine,...

Graunt Work

Lifted from open thread Aug. 31, 2014 by Sandwichman.
My latest on the lump of labor fallacy takes the story back to the 17th century and John Graunt’s Observations on the Bills of Mortality. Graunt speculated about a certain PROPORTION of work to be done. The fallacy claim alleges the...