ECONAMICI A land economist's view

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A land economist's view
Updated: 2 weeks 1 day ago

Review of Matthew Desmond’s Evicted

Mon, 2021-03-08 23:53

Matthew Desmond, a sociologist, lived for two years among poor renters in Milwaukee, first in a south side trailer park occupied mainly by whites, and then in the north side black inner city. In both places, he interviewed and followed several tenants as they moved through the devastating process of eviction, in some cases multiple times. Evicted, Poverty and Profit in an American City (2016), bestseller and Pulitzer Prize winner, tells their personal stories. Desmond's people, suffering from poverty, mental or physical illness, addiction, and harsh and arbitrary treatment by public authorities, will also be hardest hit by the coronavirus. . . . → Read More: Review of Matthew Desmond’s Evicted

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Review of Break ‘Em Up by Zephyr Teachout

Thu, 2020-10-29 21:51

It's tough being a chicken farmer. Three processors, Tyson, Pilgrim’s Pride, and Perdue, have divvied up the American chicken market between them. Chicken farmers must sell to the one who “owns” their geographical area. That processor dictates where they get their chicks, how they build their chicken houses, what feed and medications they give, when they deliver their fattened birds, and what prices they receive on delivery. They are banned, on pain of being cut off, from comparing prices and conditions with other chicken farmers. In short, they lead the lives of medieval serfs, but at least the serfs could complain to each other about the lord! As Zephyr Teachout reports in her chilling new book, Break 'Em Up, chickenization isn't just for agriculture; it's also how giants like Walmart, McDonalds, Uber and Amazon exploit their suppliers and workers. Meanwhile, monopoly profits flow into their dark money political PACs. . . . → Read More: Review of Break ‘Em Up by Zephyr Teachout

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Review of Thomas Frank’s “The People, No”

Sat, 2020-09-05 18:43

The pundits love to denounce populists. They are the ignorant people who rally to the standards of foreign far-right fascists. In the US, they are Donald Trump’s loyal “deplorables” or Bernie Sanders’s “Bernie Bros.” They're a major threat to democracy. In The People, No, Thomas Frank proposes that anti-populists are the real threat. . . . → Read More: Review of Thomas Frank’s “The People, No”

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Mason Gaffney, October 18, 1923-July 16, 2020

Tue, 2020-07-28 17:27

My old friend and mentor, Mason Gaffney, died last week at his home in Redlands, California. I thank David Cay Johnston for a warm and insightful obituary in the New York Times. I also thank Wyn Achenbaum and Nic Tideman and the Schalkenbach Foundation for an extraordinary tribute with excerpts from his writing. Especially check . . . → Read More: Mason Gaffney, October 18, 1923-July 16, 2020

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