Showing posts with label nepotism. Show all posts
Showing posts with label nepotism. Show all posts

Sunday, June 22, 2014

Are we saving too much for retirement?

Another graphic novel in the Booth Capital Ideas magazine. This is just page one, click on the link to see all four pages. It's an interesting conversation between an economist (Matt), who thinks about intertemporal choice, and a psychologist (Dan), who thinks about how you imagine your future self. It really works best as a four page spread so you can follow all the arrows as they jump around.

Friday, March 21, 2014

A World Without Banks?

A graphic short story in this month's "capital ideas."  Click on the link or the image to read the whole thing (4 panels). If you can find the print magazine, the visual quality is much better. I think it does a great job of making economic ideas visual without too many talking heads and big balloons full of text. More of these to come in future "Capital Ideas." More work from this unusually talented graphic novelist here. (My side of this "debate" is a bit captured here.)

Thursday, February 6, 2014

Favorite Book

My favorite book is back, via the University of Chicago press, in both electronic and print form. A consequence of digital technology, books that once were permanently out of print now can be found again. E-books and short-batch print are great innovations. (Most if it is also on Google Books, a great place to sample.)

I won't pretend objectivity -- or that this has much of anything to do with economics or finance.

What's so great about the book? The writing for one. Sit back and enjoy. Read between the lines too for the breathtaking primary-source scholarship.

This is a book about dead white men and their ideas in an unfashionable time -- the Medici as grand dukes, not the republic and early renaissance. Start right in on p.6-9 with the realities of why the republic did not work, in the circumstance of 16th century Florence. But if you didn't like unfashionable ideas, you wouldn't be here.

It's greatest lesson, to me at least, is empathy. It forces you to work hard to understand how people saw things, and not to fall prey to that common habit of reading our own values and judgments on historical characters. Decisions that make little sense from modern sensibilities become inevitable if you really understand the circumstances, knowledge and mindset of people at the time.

Friday, July 26, 2013

From Livestock to the Stock Exchange

From Livestock to the Stock Exchange. © Sally Cochrane All Rights Reserved

Artist's description: This is a brief visual history of trade, reading left to right. The first "money" was cattle, represented by the cheese. Ancient Mesopotamians kept track of their cattle exchanges on cuneiform tablets like receipts (we have some at the Oriental institute of Chicago!). The root of the word "pecuniary" comes from the root "pecu" meaning "cattle." Cowrie shells were another early form of currency for trade, and beaver fur, which was very valuable, was used in barter when Europeans discovered the New World. The coins and stock ticker tape represent the modern end of the history. July 2013. 8"x 16" oil on canvas.

Original here with many other sizes.

Sally says the beaver fur was inspired by a Russ Roberts EconTalk podcast, interviewing Timothy Brook on his book Vermeer's Hat. "Part of the book talked about how valuable beaver fur was for making hats that ended up in the Netherlands during Vermeer's lifetime." I don't know how many other artists listen to EconTalk while painting...

Saturday, May 25, 2013


My daughter Sally is at the Grand Central Academy of Art in New York. This is one of her still lives (yes, it's a painting). See if you can figure out what it means. Then click on the figure for an explanation. Don't miss "ceci n’est pas une mol├ęcule d’histamine." 

Yes, this has nothing to do with economics. It's just cool.

Saturday, September 1, 2012


This has nothing to do with economics or finance, but it's way cooler...If you or your teenage children are into young-adult fiction.

My wife  Beth's young adult novel, Monstrous Beauty, published by Farrar, Straus and Giroux, will be released September 4.

Fierce, seductive mermaid Syrenka falls in love with Ezra, a young naturalist. When she abandons her life underwater for a chance at happiness on land, she is unaware that this decision comes with horrific and deadly consequences. Almost one hundred forty years later, seventeen-year-old Hester meets a mysterious stranger named Ezra and feels overwhelmingly, inexplicably drawn to him. For generations, love has resulted in death for the women in her family. Is it an undiagnosed genetic defect . . . or a curse? With Ezra’s help, Hester investigates her family’s strange, sad history. The answers she seeks are waiting in the graveyard, the crypt, and at the bottom of the ocean—but powerful forces will do anything to keep her from uncovering her connection to Syrenka and to the tragedy of so long ago.

There will be a launch party at 57th street books in Chicago, Tues. Sept. 4, at 6 PM. A second larger coming out will happen at the Plimoth Plantation, Plymouth MA (the book is set in Plymouth, and partly on the plantation) Sept. 7, at 5 pm, information here.

Then Beth will be off on Macmillan's Fierce Reads Tour with three other YA authors.
  • September 18: Changing Hands Bookstore, Pheonix
  • September 19: Tattered Cover, Denver
  • September 20: Left Bank Books, St. Louis
  • September 21: Joseph-Beth Booksellers, Cincinatti
  • September 22: Next Chapter Bookshop, Milwaukee
  • September 23: Malaprop’s Bookstore, Asheville 
For a taste of Beth's mermaid lore, try the extra short story "Men Who Wish to Drown" on, (cover art to the left).

Monstrous beauty at Amazon and the publisher's website 
Visit Beth at her blog and on Twitter

(My plot suggestion, "Syrenka, Libertarian Mermaid" went nowhere. I guess I'd better keep my day job!)