Turn the Crank

No Sift next week. The Weekly Sift returns on September 26.

In truth then, there is nothing more to wish for than that the king, remaining alone on the island, by constantly turning a crank, might produce, through automata, all the output of England.

— Jean-Charles-Léonard Simonde Sismondi
New Principles of Political Economy (1819)

In this week’s sift:

  • Economics Works Backwards Now. It used to be about working to produce scarce goods. Now what’s scarce is work.
  • Six True Things Politicians Can’t Say. Remember how in high school you sometimes couldn’t say obvious things, because the other kids would ridicule you for it? Politics is like that.
  • Toucan Sam Turns Evil and other short notes. Toucans can’t symbolize a Guatemalan educational non-profit, because they already symbolize Froot Loops. Also: I avoided 9-11 coverage, my reservations about Obama’s jobs strategy, some funny Rick Perry signs, a TED talk using iPods and magic, left-wing libertarianism, why the center keeps moving right, and a poster about common sense.
  • Last week’s most popular post. The whole site still lives in the shadow of Why I Am Not a Libertarian, now up to 18,000 views, and One Word Turns the Tea Party Around (8000). But though last week’s Rootworms, Monsanto, and the Unity of Existence (231) and Blowing Smoke About Clouds (165) posted much more modest numbers, both did well when reposted on Daily Kos.
  • This week’s challenge. The next significant campaign is the Ohio referendum called Issue 2, which will be voted on this November. Issue 2 is the old S.B. 5, Ohio’s union-busting bill, which was passed by the legislature and signed by Gov. Kasich, but is still in limbo now that enough signatures have been gathered to force a referendum. Find out how you can help at WeAreOhio.com.
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  • By Two Observations on the Robot Menace « The Weekly Sift on December 10, 2012 at 11:04 am

    […] Now, this is not a new idea, so it’s something of a mystery why so many people started talking about it this week. I think the original impetus was the news that Apple is planning to move some of its Mac production back to the U.S. This validates the predictions of a rebound in American manufacturing that have been bouncing around for a while now, and fits with the “insourcing” trend identified in the current issue of Atlantic. […]

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