Back to the evidence versus the orthodoxy. I can, in a way, understand refusing to believe in global warming — that’s a noisy process, with lots of local variation, and the overall measures are devised by pointy-headed intellectuals who probably vote Democratic. I can even more easily understand refusing to believe in evolution. But the failure of predicted inflation to materialize is happening in real time, right in front of our eyes; people who kept believing in inflation just around the corner lost a lot of money. Yet the denial remains total. I guess it’s a matter of who you’re gonna believe — Ayn Rand or your own lying eyes.
Earlier this summer, the MIT Technology Review published a startling article based on the work of MIT’s Erik Brynjolfsson and Andrew McAfee showing not only that technology was destroying jobs, but that productivity in America had recently become decoupled from employment. Traditionally, the two rise in tandem. As productivity increases, jobs increase, too. But amid the massive new wave of automation, starting around 2000, this has ceased to be true.
That chart, from McAfee, shows the widening gap between productivity and employment in America (the pink arrow inserted is ours). This is deeply troubling to economists. But it’s possible – and this is what Sundararajan and others are hoping to measure – that the gap could contain all these people we are currently not counting. That’s not to say that these unconventional workers fill up that entire gap, but they could be an important part of the picture.
Esto no ocurrió solamente en América Latina, como algunos quieren creer o hacer creer, sino por todo el mundo, incluyendo los Estados Unidos. Este mes, por ejemplo, el Comité para la Protección de Periodistas (CPJ en su sigla en inglés) publicó un impactante informe sobre la persecución del gobierno de Barak Obama contra periodistas y medios norteamericanos y sus fuentes, y sobre su decisión, sin precedente en la historia moderna del país, de eludir a la prensa para comunicarse con los ciudadanos en directo.