Italian Falls: Jamie Oliver’s Chain Goes into Receivership Saturday, May 25th, 2019

When he appeared as a scruffy Essex lad playing the “we can cook” theme for people of a certain non-culinary demographic in the 1990s, Jamie Oliver was something of a revelation. He was the Naked Chef, positively oozing with enthusiasm and keen to push the accessible, easy meal for the cooking..

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Central America’s Besieged Women Friday, May 24th, 2019

Across Honduras, El Salvador, and Guatemala, women who seek to escape poverty by launching small businesses often find that success brings more suffering – and not just for them, but also for their children. Beyond having to contend with a culture of machismo, weak protection by the state leaves..

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The Myth of Climate Wars? Thursday, May 23rd, 2019

In the years leading up to Syria’s civil war, the country endured three consecutive record-breaking droughts. By forcing internal displacement, the droughts arguably contributed to the social tensions that erupted in popular protests in 2011. But that does not mean that the Syrian conflict is a..

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Fools’ Errands Wednesday, May 22nd, 2019

Albion Winegar Tourgée may be best known now, though not in his lifetime, as the lead attorney in the Plessy v. Ferguson case, which was a set-up, a staged incident, with the cooperation even of the railroad company, to get a man arrested for sitting in the wrong car, take the matter to court, and..

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How Inflation Could Return

Debates about inflation in advanced economies have changed remarkably over the past decades. Setting aside (mis)measurement issues, concerns about debilitatingly high inflation and the excessive power of bond markets are long gone, and the worry now is that excessively low inflation may hamper..

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Robo-Apocalypse? Not in Your Lifetime Tuesday, May 21st, 2019

Will the imminent “rise of the robots” threaten all future human employment? The most thoughtful discussion of that question can be found in MIT economist David H. Autor’s 2015 paper, “Why Are There Still so Many Jobs?”, which considers the problem in the context of Polanyi’s Paradox...

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Looking Back at 100

This is my 100th column for Project Syndicate. It comes nearly 20 years after my first. As is the case with most milestones, it offers a good opportunity to take stock, to look back on what I have written, and to see what it says about the world over these two decades and where we may be..

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Voter Turnout Will Decide Europe’s Fate Monday, May 20th, 2019

European voter turnout is in deep crisis. Since the early 2000s, the share of voters in national elections has fallen to 66% on average, which means that the birthplace of democracy now ranks below average globally. The situation is even worse in European Parliament elections: in 2014, turnout was..

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The Roots of European Division Friday, May 17th, 2019

Governments in some countries on the periphery of the European Union are staunchly opposed to immigration on nationalist grounds. And yet their constituents are increasingly worried about the opposite threat: that their friends and family members will pick up and leave. In fact, Hungarians, Poles,..

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Buddha’s Teaching Way To World Peace Thursday, May 16th, 2019

The present world is filled with different kinds of sufferings, including terrors attacks resulting in mass annihilation caused by possible use of various kinds of dreadful arms, ammunitions and nuclear weapons. The Christchurch mosque shooting in New Zealand on 15 March 2019 left 51 people dead...

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A Carbon Dividend Is Better than a Carbon Tax Wednesday, May 15th, 2019

Climate change is the world’s most urgent problem, and in the United States, the left, at least, is taking it seriously. Earlier this year, Representative Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez of New York and Senator Edward Markey of Massachusetts, both Democrats, introduced a Green New Deal (GND) resolution,..

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Is Australia Next?

As Australia prepares for federal elections on May 18, it probably looks to outsiders like an oasis of stability and sanity among Western democracies that have gone haywire. There are no widespread populist revolts, no “yellow vests” or agitators calling for a Brexit-style retreat from the..

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Where Lyme Disease Came From and Why It Eludes Treatment Tuesday, May 14th, 2019

A new book called Bitten: The Secret History of Lyme Disease and Biological Weapons by Kris Newby adds significantly to our understanding of Lyme disease, while oddly seeming to avoid mention of what we already knew. Newby claims (in 2019) that if a scientist named Willy Burgdorfer had not made a..

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America’s Illusions of Growth

National politics in the United States has become enslaved to macroeconomic indicators that have little bearing on true wellbeing. For many commentators, the snapshot growth rate of 3.2% for the first quarter of 2019, coupled with a decline in the unemployment rate to 3.6% in April, implies that..

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The performance and achievements of Indian IT and pharma sector during the last two decades have been hailed and appreciated both by the Government of India and people. Certainly, both these sectors have been important prime movers of Indian economy and also job generators. Due to their exposure to..

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Weaponizing Cyber Law Monday, May 13th, 2019

Having watched popular protests, from the color revolutions in the former Soviet Union to the Arab Spring, challenge their counterparts’ power, the world’s autocrats have been adopting legal measures aimed at incapacitating civic groups, including pro-democracy movements and human-rights NGOs...

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Mr. Orbán Goes to Washington Friday, May 10th, 2019

On May 13, US President Donald Trump will host Hungarian Prime Minister Viktor Orbán at the White House. According to some pundits, Trump will try to use the meeting to dissuade Hungary – ostensibly a US ally – from establishing deeper ties with China and Russia. Don’t hold your..

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Putting Growth in its Place

After leaving Goldman Sachs in May 2013, I had the privilege of chairing an independent City Growth Commission to study the geographical imbalances of the British economy. Our task was to determine why London and the southeast had become so dominant, and how the economic performance of other major..

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Globalizing the Fight Against the Pandemic Friday, May 29th, 2020

The COVID-19 pandemic began less than six months ago, but we have already learned a great deal about the disease. Scientists around the world are looking at new and..

Who Has the World’s Largest Economy? Thursday, May 28th, 2020

Cooperate with China or Suffer Thursday, May 28th, 2020

Regulating in a Pandemic Wednesday, May 27th, 2020

A Chronicle of a Lost Decade Foretold Wednesday, May 27th, 2020