Pando

Tim Worstall

  1. An economics prize tells us something very worrying about the news business, and ourselves

    They've just handed out this year's John Bates Clark Gold Medal over at the American Economics Association. The research for which its been given should be of great interest to everyone worried about the media and journalism.

    By Tim Worstall , written on

    From the News desk

  2. New shocking research proves that rich people control American politics

    A fascinating piece of research confirming that what we all suspected is actually true. American politics is entirely bought and paid for by the economic elite and this democracy thing just isn't working out. You can get the whole paper here, but the basic conclusion is: The central point that emerges from our research is that economic elites and organized groups representing business interests have substantial independent impacts on U.S. government policy, while mass-based interest groups and average citizens have little or no independent influence. Our results provide substantial support for theories of Economic Elite Domination and for theories of Biased Pluralism, but not for theories of Majoritarian Electoral Democracy or Majoritarian Pluralism. Majoritarian electoral democracy is the idea that we all march off to the polls to elect the politicians who then do what we would like them to do. That this doesn't actually happen will not come as a shock to most. Well, OK, it shouldn't come as a shock to anyone who has been paying attention.

    By Tim Worstall , written on

    From the News desk

  3. Measuring the value Marissa Mayer's destroying at Yahoo!

    Yahoo's value, as measured by its market cap, has something like doubled since Marissa Mayer took the helm so clearly I must be suffering some terrible brain spasm when I say that she's destroying value there. However, we have to distinguish between Yahoo the business and Yahoo the company. As I pointed out a month ago, and as Matt Yglesias and Matt Levine have both just noticed, Yahoo the company is valued at less than that company's stake in the soon to go public Alibaba. This then implies that Yahoo the business – the media company, portal, startup acquisition machine – is valued at (slightly) less than nothing. When we then consider the asset value of the stake in Yahoo Japan, the corporate cash holdings, we end up with a seriously negative valuation of some minus $13 to $15 billion for that business that makes very good profits.

    By Tim Worstall , written on

    From the News desk

  4. The scandalous statistical mess around Obamacare

    There's something scandalous going on over Obamacare. No, it's not the usual stuff: how scandalous it is that the government is interfering again in the market. Nor that opposite: the scandal of why it isn't all just single payer like it ought to be.

    By Tim Worstall , written on

    From the News desk

  5. 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" and make the local government happy? The answer being that having an office in a country changes the tax position completely and the important phrase to understand here for non-accounting types is "permanent establishment."

    By Tim Worstall , written on

    From the News desk

  6. 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.

    By Tim Worstall , written on

    From the News desk

  7. 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.

    By Tim Worstall , written on

    From the News desk

  8. 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.

    By Tim Worstall , written on

    From the News desk

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