Sunday, March 29, 2009

Show off to buy less

Earth hour is a very interesting experiment. It turn the bandwagon effect upside down.

The standard bandwagon effect is to display consumption so peer pressure lead more people to consume similar item. It worked especially well on luxury and branded items.

But enviromental concern could also be treated as luxurious consumption item and peer pressure could be used in many ways. Slimming down and going to the gym is one example where it work to reduce consumption of high-fat substance.

The number is quite encouraging. Just in Chicago area it save 100 megawats of electricity (click here). Anyone has corresponding number for Indonesia?


Have been reading some opinion article on Prabowonomics.

Among them are Teguh Dartanto in Koran Tempo, Bersihar Lubis in Medan Bisnis, Heri in his blog dan Vivanews feature.

Does it really deserve a school of thought by itself?

The strands of policy seems to have emphasis on role of the state and primary sector, with a healthy dose of scepticism to globalisation. Dartanto put forward a thoughful critics of some of its target.

Name-nomics is a good cacthphrase in the time of frenzy campaign. So I am looking forward to read more of SBY-nomics and Megawati-nomics as well as JK-nomics.

It would be interesting to have more debate on economic platform of each party though and less musical campaign.

Even though also quite likely that Indonesian campaign promises are, in Ron Ziegler's immortal argot, "inoperative" on the day after the election.

Saturday, March 28, 2009

Mother Nature's Wrath or Government Negligence?

Almost one hundred people dies and more than one hundred still missing in Situ Gintung tragedy.

It is a shock indeed. Especially since I live nearby.

Is it mother nature striking back due to lack of water absorbance or negligence by government? I think its a little bit of both.

Checking the bottom of dam is not a high priority in budget allocation. But maybe it should.

The incentive is heavy on building new infrastruture but much less on maintenance.

Deepest condolescent for many lost of life and livelihood

Tuesday, March 24, 2009

Debating the toxic

Fianally comes the long awaited Obama-Geithner plan (click here) to clean America's bank from toxic asset.

But Krugman attack the plan as causing despair. head investor won and tail investor loose. (click here)

If government is subsidizing private investor and protecting them from risk, why bother. Just do it directly and nationalize the bank. Those director should be held responsible for their action.

No more USD 165 million bonus after destroying the financial system.

Bradford de Long provided Q& A version of the plan here. But its positive tone is criticize by Krugman (click here).

Let the debate continue.

Friday, March 20, 2009

Stimulus and election

Never let a crisis goes to waste. Thus said Obama's chief of staff.

As election looming, this is a chance to propose something grand and visionary in stimulus without worry (too much) about inflation and international credit rating.

Must admit quite dispapponted with both the detail of stimulus (click here) and the way election candidates present themselves (click here).

Looking for silver lining and rainbow after the rain.