Paul Summerville • February 27, 2013

Commentary on the over emphasis on a university degree, disruption, US housing recovered, who really looks at internet advertising, ending the water drought, austerity kills the patient, and seven years on.

Modest suggestion.

Harvard Business Review -- Stop Requiring College Degrees
If you're an employer, there are lots of signals about a young person's suitability for the job you're offering.


Paul Summerville • November 12, 2012

Commentary on new battery life, bumpy markets, reminding the Chinese that state capitalism is the future, the danger of drift, Detroit’s 70,000 abandoned buildings, America’s bottom 10% (are likely to stay there), and dirty hotel rooms.

Isn’t innovation a wonderful thing.

Financial Times -- Power supply: Batteries required
Growth in renewable power plants has increased the need for grid-scale batteries to store their electricity.

Paul Summerville • July 5, 2012

Commentary on the consumption tread mill, is Microsoft next, who are the innovators, learning Mandarin, and worrying about the impossible.

Is our species doomed to consume ourselves into extinction?

Financial Times -- Enough is enough of the age of consumption
Until fairly recently economists envisaged three stages of economic development.


Paul Summerville • May 18, 2012

Commentary on the profits in copying, comparative capitalism, the rise and fall of unions, free trade negotiations, public transit in 20 different  cities, Greece to leave soon, and the case for 100 million Canadians.

Important article that reminds us that there is much profit in copying and adapting.

Economist -- Pretty profitable parrots
For businesses, being good at copying is at least as important as being innovative.

Not all economies are created equal.

Paul Summerville • March 16, 2012

Commentary on how a smart guy beat the Atlantic City casinos, the state and innovation, boomer wreckage, Ben Bernanke, and some travel mugs are better than others.

Winning at blackjack. (ed’s note – the casinos negotiated away their advantage).

Paul Summerville • November 12, 2011

Commentary on the importance of Shakespeare, the Liberal Party of Canada’s primary proposal, a report on innovation in the United States, and Bob Rae’s winning streak.

The first live Shakespearean play I saw was at Stratford-upon-Avon in July 1976 when I was 18 travelling through England on a BritRail pass. Stratford was on the map of places to go to and Romeo and Juliet happened to be playing so I bought the cheapest ticket available.

Paul Summerville • October 6, 2011

Articles on what might change investor sentiment, a global map of the innovation countries, Joseph Stiglitz’s prescription for a recovery, the bullish case for equities, the impact of globalisation on labour, George Soros on the Euro’s fate, and a third strike?

Reducing cash piles.

Paul Summerville • August 4, 2011

Articles on ending world hunger, the new role of the Canadian dollar in global foreign exchange markets, thinking about labour market success and failure, the end of social, the top 100 most delayed flights in America, the Economist ’s interactive global debt guide, answering questions about gold, Italy stinks, and thoughts on Greek yogurt.

On the front line of hunger. Josette Sheeran on the challenge and hope ending world hunger. Thanks to David of Victoria.

Paul Summerville • August 1, 2011

Articles on the impact of on-line movie rentals on Hollywood, a global sovereign debt rating map, Japanese buying their own radiation detection devices, the slowing economy, some debt deal spin, now back to Europe, and a wonderful conversation with Paul Nurse.

The $35 DVD just went the way of the horse and buggy, and that’s bad news for Hollywood. (ed’s note – this fits nicely in the ‘disruptive technology’ category).

Paul Summerville • July 31, 2011

Articles on the debt deal, visiting Japan, regulating America’s mortgage market, why Germans kept fighting in 1945, will the United States and Europe suffer Japan’s post-1989 fate, the home of English frets about the invasion of Americanisms, Arab dictators hold on, how communication technologies change our world, and human rights and the Israeli Army.


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Twin Virtues: Inequality of Outcomes & Equality of Opportunity©

Twin Virtues

Ultimately, the most successful societies find the balance between the twin virtues of inequality of outcomes and equality of opportunity.

The new politics must marry the twin virtues of unequal outcomes and equality of opportunity.

When too few get too much everybody loses.

Feminism is about women living their lives on their own terms, marshalling the resources of the society to make that possible, and men embracing this as vital to a successful society and their own liberation.

Can it be that striving for equality of opportunity however imperfect the process not only benefits the individual but also creates benefits for the society that are unintended but wonderful?

Economics must be a 'moral enterprise' as much as politics claims to be. Economic outcomes need to be framed in terms of right and wrong not just efficiency if only because these often align in surprising ways that are good for society and the economy.

My vision of Canada is that any Canadian child from a family of limited circumstance can expect to have a chance at lifetime of unlimited opportunities.

Free trade is a wonderful thing. Time and time again economists have proven that free trade creates enormous wealth for each country 'on the whole'. Historians have shown that free trade is usually associated with rising political, social and cultural liberty. The perennial problem is that free trade always creates tremendous disruption for thousands even millions of individuals often concentrated in one geography, and where the state is idle, not investing in best in class instruments of social justice, free trade can be a permanent ticket out of the middle class, down, not up.

Tax policy should be founded on the principle of generating steady tax revenues sufficient to maximise environmentally sustainable economic growth in order to fund fair government.

Public policy should be designed to decrease inequality before the law and increase equality of opportunity.

Capitalism is not the problem; the problem is what we do with capitalism.

Content is always more difficult to argue than conspiracy.

Let the state regulate and the market operate (most things).

Welfare strategies are best designed as a hand up, not as a hand out.

Political debate should not be fact free fighting.

Explanation lasts longer than eloquence.

Always favour empowerment over dependency.

The most enduring public figures are embraced for the causes they fought for and not the concept of themselves they hoped others would remember them by.

Find your voice and don't be the echo of somebody else.

It is possible to operate on two different levels: the practical, cautious and conservative; and the realm of ideas, open, free, and radical.