an exercise in miscellany

Posts Tagged ‘economics’

Value of Life

In wild card, words & phrases on August 17, 2013 at 2:21 pm

Cost_Value_MatrixIn industrial nations, the justice system considers a human life “priceless”, thus making illegal any form of slavery; i.e., humans cannot be bought for any price. However, with a limited supply of resources or infrastructural capital (e.g. ambulances), or skill at hand, it is impossible to save every life, so some trade-off must be made. Also, this argumentation neglects the statistical context of the term. It is not commonly attached to lives of individuals or used to compare the value of one person’s life relative to another person’s. It is mainly used in circumstances of saving lives as opposed to taking lives or “producing” lives.

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Artificial Scarcity

In wild card, words & phrases on June 2, 2012 at 6:45 am

Artificial scarcity describes the scarcity of items even though the technology and production capacity exists to create an abundance. The term is aptly applied to non-rival resources, i.e. those that do not diminish due to one person’s use, although there are other resources which could be categorized as artificially scarce. The most common causes are monopoly pricing structures, such as those enabled by intellectual property rights or by high fixed costs in a particular marketplace. The inefficiency associated with artificial scarcity is formally known as a deadweight loss.

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Operation Cyclone

In history, operations and projects, wild card on March 15, 2012 at 6:41 am

Operation Cyclone was the code name for the United States Central Intelligence Agency program to arm, train, and finance the Afghan mujahideen during the Soviet war in Afghanistan, 1979 to 1989. The program leaned heavily towards supporting militant Islamic groups that were favored by neighboring Pakistan, rather than other, less ideological Afghan resistance groups that had also been fighting the Marxist-oriented Democratic Republic of Afghanistan regime since before the Soviet intervention. Operation Cyclone was one of the longest and most expensive covert CIA operations ever undertaken; funding began with $20–30 million per year in 1980 and rose to $630 million per year in 1987.

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In technology & innovatons, wild card on January 19, 2012 at 7:39 am

A superdollar (also known as a superbill or supernote) is a very high quality counterfeit United States one hundred-dollar bill, alleged by the U.S. Government to have been made by an unknown organization or government. Various groups have been suspected of creating such notes, and international opinion on the origin of the notes varies. The U.S. Government believes that these notes are most likely being produced in North Korea. Other possible sources include Iran or criminal gangs operating out of China. The name derives from the fact that the quality of the notes exceeds that of the originals. Some have estimated that 1 in 10,000 bills is a counterfeit of the quality ascribed to supernotes.

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Moore’s law

In technology & innovatons on August 15, 2011 at 8:10 pm

Moore’s law describes a long-term trend in the history of computing hardware. The number of transistors that can be placed inexpensively on an integrated circuit doubles approximately every two years.  This trend has continued for more than half a century and is expected to continue until 2015 or 2020 or later.
The capabilities of many digital electronic devices are strongly linked to Moore’s law: processing speed, memory capacity, sensors and even the number and size of pixels in digital cameras.  All of these are improving at (roughly) exponential rates as well (see Other formulations and similar laws). This exponential improvement has dramatically enhanced the impact of digital electronics in nearly every segment of the world economy.  Moore’s law describes a driving force of technological and social change in the late 20th and early 21st centuries.

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Fibonacci numbers

In money, technology & innovatons on April 22, 2011 at 12:54 pm

In mathematics, the Fibonacci numbers are the numbers in the following integer sequence: 0,\;1,\;1,\;2,\;3,\;5,\;8,\;13,\;21,\;34,\;55,\;89,\;144,\; \ldots\;
The Fibonacci sequence is named after Leonardo of Pisa, who was known as Fibonacci. Fibonacci’s 1202 book Liber Abaci introduced the sequence to Western European mathematics, although the sequence had been described earlier in Indian mathematics.
Fibonacci numbers are used in the analysis of financial markets, in strategies such as Fibonacci retracement, and are used in computer algorithms such as the Fibonacci search technique and the Fibonacci heap data structure. The simple recursion of Fibonacci numbers has also inspired a family of recursive graphs called Fibonacci cubes for interconnecting parallel and distributed systems. They also appear in biological settings,such as branching in trees, arrangement of leaves on a stem, the fruit spouts of a pineapple,the flowering of artichoke, an uncurling fern and the arrangement of a pine cone.

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The Secrets of the Federal Reserve

In books on February 22, 2011 at 6:21 pm

By  Eustace Mullins

Dedicated to two of the finest scholars of the twentieth century
George Stimpson  and  Ezra Pound
Who generously gave of their vast knowledge to a young writer to guide him in a field which he could not have managed alone.

Eustace Mullins’ Acknowledgments:  I wish to thank my former fellow members of the staff of the Library of Congress whose very kind assistance, cooperation and suggestions made the early versions of this book possible. I also wish to thank the staffs of the Newberry Library, Chicago, the New York City Public Library, the Alderman Library of the University of Virginia, and the McCormick Library of Washington and Lee University, Lexington, Virginia, for their invaluable assistance in the completion of thirty years of further research for this definitive work on the Federal Reserve System.

American Drug War: The Last White Hope

In Documentaries on January 16, 2011 at 10:35 pm


The War on Drugs has become the longest and most costly war in American history, the question has become, how much more can the country endure?

Taming the Vampire Squid: Take Back Our Banks

In wild card on January 15, 2011 at 3:27 am
Taming the Vampire Squid: Take Back Our Banks