Tim Worstall

Tim Worstall is a Senior Fellow at the Adam Smith Institute in London, a freelance writer whose work has appeared in the WSJ, The Times, Daily Telegraph, The Register, Forbes online and a number of other places. He is also in his day job an expert in the rare earth metal, scandium. A strange thing to be but someone has to be and in this flavour of our universe Worstall is it. He apologises in advance for his Englishness and the manner in which his spelling will waver from accepted American standards at times.

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  • turkey_twit

    Why Twitter doesn’t want to open an office in Turkey

    With all this brouhaha over the censorship of Twitter and YouTube in Turkey there’s now a demand that Twitter should open an office in that country, a demand that Twitter seems keen to quietly dodge. The interesting thing being why they want to dodge it: having an office of the company in a place isn’t all that different from having a representative there who handles things for the company. Why not just stick one employee there, as an “office”…
  • fb_euro

    Why Facebook is launching its money transfer service in Europe, not the US

      The Financial Times has the news (the, err, sorta confirmed rumor) that Facebook is about to launch a money transfer program over here in Europe. Given that money transfer is a proven money maker if you’ve got a large enough network doing the transferring, the thought that Facebook wants to get into it isn’t all that surprising. But why in Europe and not in the US? For that we have to look to the regulatory regime that…
  • Tantalite-272645

    A Federal court has just killed off Dodd Frank on conflict minerals

    Given the complaining I’ve been doing about the costs of implementing the Dodd Frank rules on conflict minerals* this sounds like very good news. The DC Court of Appeals has just pretty much killed off the law on the grounds of the First Amendment rights of companies. The full judgement is here and is quite clear in its reasoning. You can compel a company to say things via, say, SEC listing requirements and regulations, but only on the…
  • traditional-business-etiquette

    Beware the investors who don’t share the Silicon Valley norms

    Marc Andreessen (who is an investor at Pando, in a personal capacity) took to the Twitterverse recently to outline the latest threat to peace and joy on Earth. That investors from outside the Valley are looking to come in and invest in late stage companies to the detriment of those companies. Yes, it is possible to be a tad cynical about the interests of a VC guy warning other VCs off his patch but there is something of substance…
  • startups-wa

    So, how cynical are you about politics: or, Google’s lobbying expenditure explained

    The Washington Post has a lovely little piece about how Google’s lobbying expenditure has changed in recent years. From being entirely disdainful of the whole process, only opening a one person office a few years back, the company has now climbed to near the top of the pack in throwing money around DC. What your attitude toward this is could provide an interesting litmus test of quite how cynical you are about politics. On the one side we might say that…
  • rich-doctor-pennybags

    That Medicare doctors’ payment database shows how screwed the US health care system is

    On Wednesday the authorities released the detailed information on how much Medicare pays out to physicians around the nation. And there’s been a lot of commentary on how amazing it is that some handful of doctors are earning tens of millions of dollars out of the system. It was also quickly noted that the top earning doctor, gaining over $20 million in one year from Medicaid, was currently being prosecuted for trying to rip the system off. So that’s…
  • don't-recycle

    An amazingly sensible decision on recycling rare earths from DoD: don’t

    I know that this rather goes against the tenor of our times but the Department of Defense has just made an amazingly sensible decision about the recycling of rare earths: don’t. That this decision is sensible is because the economics of trying to do it just don’t stack up. Trying to recycle much of the use to which these weird metals are put would lead to greater costs than any advantage that could be gained by doing so. And that’s…
  • solar-panels

    Now can we stop subsidising solar?

    An interesting report in the UK papers this week: solar power is coming down in price so quickly that this climate change thing is pretty much over. It should be said that this claim is from Ambrose Evans Pritchard, who is often, umm, enthusiastic about things. Things are either disasters or triumphs requiring jubilation rather than just being interesting developments in the world around us. But even with that enthusiasm Ambrose is broadly correct here. Solar has been coming…
  • hp-bribery

    How can HP do business in Russia if they’re not allowed to bribe anybody?

    As someone who worked in Russia for a number of years (yes, at the same time as Pando’s own Mark Ames although we never met after he declined to hire me during a phone interview. I’m not bitter at all) I’m left rather scratching my head over this recent judgement against HP over bribery in Russia: Hewlett-Packard has agreed to pay a $108 million fine to resolve allegations that its subsidiaries bribed officials in Poland, Russia and Mexico to…
  • congo-mining-dodd-frank

    The appalling nonsense that is conflict minerals and Dodd Frank

    There are vile tales of exploitation in that big wide world out there: there are also such tales than we can and should do something about. Unfortunately we also get solutions enacted into law that are grossly wasteful. One such, on all counts, is the slavery, rape and forced child labour that goes into conflict minerals. It is a real world vileness, it’s something we both should and can do something about and we’ve got the most absurd law I…

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