Cheap Trick!

Posted January 16, 2010 by gh1f
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The tragedy of mathematical education

Posted June 20, 2009 by gh1f
Categories: Uncategorized


You see the fruits of the problem when you teach students material that uses math to solve problems and express ideas. They freeze up and want recipes rather than seeing beneath the surface to the ideas.

But to be fair, some people only get the ideas by working through the recipes. I never understand anything until I work through all the steps myself, writing the recipe in my own words.


This seems like another alternative to a credit card option to me

Posted June 18, 2009 by gh1f
Categories: Uncategorized

Is This The Beginning of the End of Free Checking? – Real Time Economics – WSJ

You pay $20 per month to the bank for the checking account, but the account does not charge any overdraft fees for overdrafts up to $500.  And you get a debit card.

You therefore pay $20 per month for the ability to have a short term ‘interest-free’ loan of $500. 

That works out to an interest rate of 4% per month, or 1.04^12-1=60% yearly interest, in the best case.  And that is if you borrow the $500 each month.  Surely you can find a lower cost credit card? That is, get a no-fee credit card for those $500 short term loans.

‘Crowding out’

Posted June 3, 2009 by gh1f
Categories: Uncategorized

is the idea that people offset increased government spending by increasing private savings.  It is happening, at least partially:

Americans are saving more money – Top Stocks Blog – MSN Money

Much of the time when I read something

Posted May 1, 2009 by gh1f
Categories: Uncategorized

in the newspaper related to what I work on, I realize that when reporters try to explain the facts, they get it wrong, or at least explain it wrong, since they stop a few steps before the correct explanation-probably looking for the ‘bad guy versus good guy’ explanation, rather than a consistent and coherent explanation.

The Baseline Scenario is probably the worst online site. When did the IMF ever successfully deal with oligarachs? As far as I know, that organization spent much of its time giving money to the oligarchs, or funnelling money to communists. I don’t like bailouts, either.

I loved the kindle,

Posted March 21, 2009 by gh1f
Categories: Uncategorized

and now it is dead. 😦

And no way to repair it–either buy a new one, or pay $180.00 for a refurb.  I am sad and annoyed.

In the summer, I went to a talk by regulators,

Posted March 20, 2009 by gh1f
Categories: Uncategorized

who argued that a big problem they had was that financial institutions did not want to borrow money because of ‘stigma,’ which ended up making the liquidity problems worse.  So the regulators wanted to take away that stigma.

Fast forward to fall 2008, in which the government has ‘solved’ the stigma problem by making the deals better and apparently forcing some of the institutions to borrow money.

Now we know that some of then financial institutions had ‘rational expectations’ about the problems with taking money from the government. 🙂