Browsing Tag: international


    2016 Forrest Research Foundation Scholars Announced

    September 14, 2019

    The Forrest foundation will allow me to
    continue my postgraduate studies will continue my PhD project at the moment it
    really means everything to me because that means I can continue my passion for
    research into oxidative stress which is implicated in many diseases like cancer
    Duchenne muscular dystrophy Alzheimer i don’t know where I would be without a
    scholarship so when I got the news it was almost cried with happiness and it
    still feels surreal at the moment I went with what I loved and now I don’t regret
    it at all this is done to a great choice and thank you for the Forrest Foundation
    scholarships really appreciate it. I think all the scholars have been such great ambassadors for Western Australia for our country and of course for the
    scholarships but I do see this is a journey without end humanity will continue to nurture such
    wonderful minds and people as Marissa and our job the job of every University
    of Western Australia is to attract those great minds firstly to stay here like
    you to not leave our fair shores and secondly to attract the greatest minds
    from around the world here to Western Australia so we can really grow the
    state in our beautiful country.

    [HYDERABAD METRO RAIL] PM मोदी हैदराबाद मेट्रो का उद्घाटन करेंगे THE NEWS INDIA
    Articles, Blog

    [HYDERABAD METRO RAIL] PM मोदी हैदराबाद मेट्रो का उद्घाटन करेंगे THE NEWS INDIA

    September 12, 2019

    Prime Minister Narendra Modi will be on a Hyderabad tour today. During this time PM Modi will inaugurate the Hyderabad Metro. PM has reached Hyderabad Prime Minister Narendra Modi will be on a Hyderabad tour today. During this time PM Modi will inaugurate the Hyderabad Metro. PM has reached Hyderabad Prime Minister Narendra Modi will be on a Hyderabad tour today. During this time PM Modi will inaugurate the Hyderabad Metro. PM has reached Hyderabad Prime Minister Narendra Modi will be on a Hyderabad tour today. During this time PM Modi will inaugurate the Hyderabad Metro. PM has reached Hyderabad Prime Minister Narendra Modi will be on a Hyderabad tour today. During this time PM Modi will inaugurate the Hyderabad Metro. PM has reached Hyderabad Prime Minister Narendra Modi will be on a Hyderabad tour today. During this time PM Modi will inaugurate the Hyderabad Metro. PM has reached Hyderabad Prime Minister Narendra Modi will be on a Hyderabad tour today. During this time PM Modi will inaugurate the Hyderabad Metro. PM has reached Hyderabad Prime Minister Narendra Modi will be on a Hyderabad tour today. During this time PM Modi will inaugurate the Hyderabad Metro. PM has reached Hyderabad

    [HYDERABAD] Hyderabad metro railway designed by foreign technical THE NEWS INDIA
    Articles, Blog

    [HYDERABAD] Hyderabad metro railway designed by foreign technical THE NEWS INDIA

    September 8, 2019

    There is a short time left for the metro rail in the city to start soon. The special thing is that with the adoption of complete foreign technology for this Metro Rail, the help of consultants from abroad has been taken. There is a short time left for the metro rail in the city to start soon. The special thing is that with the adoption of complete foreign technology for this Metro Rail, the help of consultants from abroad has been taken. There is a short time left for the metro rail in the city to start soon. The special thing is that with the adoption of complete foreign technology for this Metro Rail, the help of consultants from abroad has been taken. There is a short time left for the metro rail in the city to start soon. The special thing is that with the adoption of complete foreign technology for this Metro Rail, the help of consultants from abroad has been taken. There is a short time left for the metro rail in the city to start soon. The special thing is that with the adoption of complete foreign technology for this Metro Rail, the help of consultants from abroad has been taken. There is a short time left for the metro rail in the city to start soon. The special thing is that with the adoption of complete foreign technology for this Metro Rail, the help of consultants from abroad has been taken. There is a short time left for the metro rail in the city to start soon. The special thing is that with the adoption of complete foreign technology for this Metro Rail, the help of consultants from abroad has been taken. There is a short time left for the metro rail in the city to start soon. The special thing is that with the adoption of complete foreign technology for this Metro Rail, the help of consultants from abroad has been taken. There is a short time left for the metro rail in the city to start soon. The special thing is that with the adoption of complete foreign technology for this Metro Rail, the help of consultants from abroad has been taken. There is a short time left for the metro rail in the city to start soon. The special thing is that with the adoption of complete foreign technology for this Metro Rail, the help of consultants from abroad has been taken. There is a short time left for the metro rail in the city to start soon. The special thing is that with the adoption of complete foreign technology for this Metro Rail, the help of consultants from abroad has been taken. There is a short time left for the metro rail in the city to start soon. The special thing is that with the adoption of complete foreign technology for this Metro Rail, the help of consultants from abroad has been taken. There is a short time left for the metro rail in the city to start soon. The special thing is that with the adoption of complete foreign technology for this Metro Rail, the help of consultants from abroad has been taken. There is a short time left for the metro rail in the city to start soon. The special thing is that with the adoption of complete foreign technology for this Metro Rail, the help of consultants from abroad has been taken. There is a short time left for the metro rail in the city to start soon. The special thing is that with the adoption of complete foreign technology for this Metro Rail, the help of consultants from abroad has been taken. There is a short time left for the metro rail in the city to start soon. The special thing is that with the adoption of complete foreign technology for this Metro Rail, the help of consultants from abroad has been taken.


    China Wants To Build Underwater Train To America

    September 7, 2019

    China can do a lot of things but America
    unused a new who I guess proposal without but China wants to build and underground train to America underwater
    travel could be the next frontier up
    international travel if these futurists or dove you know find
    their way and the whole idea is a state-run
    Chinese news outlet said basically think they’re proposing
    running China Russia Canada America Line that would be 8 thousand miles long 1800
    miles long and the trans-siberian railroad the tunnel that you know China would
    help poor beneath ICC’s will be four times the
    length traverse for the English Channel now everybody in tiny thing to do this but
    the rest the world like I’ll I don’t know what their nano I’m with the rest of the world but baby
    I’m a skeptic we see each other P happen before people
    wouldn’t believe we could do a lot of things okay people
    never believed when they built Penn Station in New York
    City they get extra credit on all under the Hudson River that could
    connect New Jersey and New York underground right people
    believe that could happen and how look it happen yes it did so this is indeed possible that this
    thing could happen arm but it will be one astonishing rail construction costing us truly I’m
    and I’m assuming that cost the price tag was in the trillions of dollars arm now where the Chinese will embark on
    this astonishing road construction and nobody knows but they’re laying down ten thousand
    there are already laying down tens of thousands a tracks hi sry let’s all across the
    country which and I had to get on my bandwagon here I he to get on my high horse but I must America we want to continue being the
    world’s economy can we please hi bag build some
    high-speed rail lines China got on Japan gotta India getting ready to get out Europe
    have them us train right train lines stock in the
    dark ages come on y’all we get them we will in washington to do something profound do something astonishing do something
    remarkable how bennett do we have to get by the
    theater she meant when it comes to high-speed well creates jobs grows our economy awesomesauce getting to New you getting
    from she usually get from Chicago teed watch for to from Chicago to Washington
    Carver New York n and hour-and-a-half be a high-speed
    rail that’s happening all across the world why can’t it happen fear I just don’t
    understand I’m preaching to the choir getting up my
    high horse now well home


    How Kim Jong-un Travels

    August 18, 2019

    This video was made possible by Skillshare. Learn for free for two months by being one
    of the first 500 to sign up at North Korea: the real world equivalent of
    what happens when you give a kid a Minecraft server. This country is just, you know, not great. It is almost universally recognized as a real
    country, though, unlike plenty of other maybe countries, and Kim Jong-un is its real, legitimate
    leader. Despite being more closed as a country than
    a salad restaurant in Alabama, North Korea’s leaders do occasionally need to leave the
    country most often to make sure that big daddy China still has their backs. This can be occasionally tricky considering
    that there are many people worldwide who want Kim Jong-un to be Kim Jong-dead. Now, not much is known about Kim’s early
    life prior to taking office. In fact, before 2010, there was only one single
    confirmed photo of him in existence. It’s believed, though, that back when he
    was a Kim Jong-youngling he was educated in Switzerland and therefore he almost certainly
    did travel abroad before taking office. Considering that he officially was just any
    other North Korean schoolboy in Switzerland, though, he likely travelled normally on commercial
    planes. Since becoming supreme leader in 2011, though,
    he has only left the country seven times. Obviously he’s not taking commercial flights
    anymore so there are two major ways in which he’s gotten to his destinations. Most often, Kim rides the rails. This is now a bit of a tradition among DPRK
    leaders started largely because the previous leader, Kim Jong-Il, was reportedly deafly
    afraid of flying after surviving a helicopter crash in 1976. Therefore, he would almost always go by train. He even once took his train all the way to
    eastern Europe during the days of the Soviet Union. In the end, in a giant twist of irony, he
    ended up dying on his train but then this new guy came along and he too has almost always
    traveled by train. His private train is made up of 21 green,
    bulletproof carriages. Due to its enormous weight,—the train, not
    Kim—it travels at a maximum of 37 miles or 60 kilometers per hour and, from everything
    we’ve seen, the train carries all the comforts of home—all it lacks is the starving townspeople. When traveling internationally, though, the
    train becomes more of a trainer-cade. A security train will lead about 20 minutes
    ahead of the leader’s to check that tracks and stations are intact and safe. This also carries plenty of security officers
    who could ward off a threat if one arose. Kim Jung-Un’s train follows that one and
    then directly after would be a third support train carrying more bodyguards and supplies. It is exactly this method of travel that was
    used by Kim Jong-un on his longest train journey to date when traveling to Vietnam for his
    second summit with the US president—a 60 hour trek by train. South of Vietnam, though, is Singapore. Now, one of the many nice parts of Singapore
    is its lack of proximity to the dictator Disneyland but that made it difficult for Kim to get
    to the city-state when meeting the US president for their first summit. They thought about using a rocket to make
    a splashy entrance but then figured that would be overdoing it, just like this joke. He could have hypothetically taken the train
    there but it would have been a more than 110 hour trip passing through some countries that
    might not be happy to see Kim—most particularly, Malaysia. At the time, Malaysia wasn’t all that happy
    with Kim after he had his half-brother assassinated in Kuala Lumpur Airport. Quick fun-side note, this half-brother, who
    was once considered to be the DPRK’s heir apparent, began his falling out with his father
    when he tried to fly to Japan and visit Tokyo Disneyland on a fake passport. But back on track, when going to Singapore,
    the supreme leader made the fantastic and innovative choice to fly. Only problem—the country is under a whole
    heap of embargoes so it can’t buy any modern planes. They do have a few old and unreliable Soviet
    and Russian planes laying around but Kim’s not about having a broken plane while on the
    world stage. In addition, only a few of the country’s
    planes could make the trip non-stop and they needed four. Therefore, they borrowed two from China. An Air China a330 first flew from Pyongyang
    to Singapore likely carrying members of the security force followed the next morning by
    an Air Koryo, the North Korean airline, cargo plane carrying Kim’s limousine. Then the leader took off from Pyongyang on
    the specially configured Air China 747 that Chinese leaders fly on for the trip down south. Finally, another Air Koryo plane followed
    carrying the rest of the DPRK delegation. Obviously there’s very little precedent
    considering that this was the only time in decades that a North Korean leader travelled
    internationally by plane, but it’s likely that Kim Jong-un would probably use China’s
    jets again for any future long-distance trips especially if he were to make a trip to the
    mainland United States for negotiations. If the leader does make the trip to the US,
    he’ll, of course, have to deal with the long flight but he can make that time productive. He could use the Skillshare iOS or Android
    app to watch their course on negotiations offline. This great course teaches you the skills needed
    to get a raise, reach better business deals, leverage your country’s thermonuclear weapons
    development program to remove economic sanctions, and buy things for less. With over 22,000 courses, if there’s something
    you want to learn, you can almost certainly learn it on Skillshare. It’s a great engaging and fun way to use
    downtime for personal development. Best of all, by being one of the first 500
    to sign up at, you can learn for free for your first two months.

    .@fordschool – Paul Krugman: Reflections on Globalization: Yesteryear and Today
    Articles, Blog

    [email protected] – Paul Krugman: Reflections on Globalization: Yesteryear and Today

    August 18, 2019

    [ Music ]>>Susan Collins: Good afternoon and welcome. I’m Susan Collins, the Joan
    and Sanford Weill Dean of the Gerald R. Ford School of Public Policy. And I am simply delighted to see all of you and
    welcome you here on behalf of the Ford School; the International Policy Center;
    and, the Department of Economics. It is really wonderful to have so
    much interest in our speaker today, who I’ll introduce in just a moment. But as most of you know, we had to
    move the venue because of that interest and I’d like to thank Hill
    Auditorium for wedging us in, in the midst of performance of
    the University Symphony Band. I feel like I should go and
    play the drums, but perhaps not. It’s a great honor and a personal
    pleasure to welcome Paul Krugman to campus, as the Ford School’s 2009
    City Group Foundation Lecture. This lecture series was established several
    years ago by the City Group Foundation as a gift in honor of Gerald R. Ford. We’re very grateful to the foundation for
    their generous gift, which has enabled us to bring distinguished policy leaders to campus. And we’re extremely honored this afternoon to
    be able to add Professor Paul Krugman’s name to the list of our City Group lecturers. Today’s lecture is the keynote address for an academic conference we’re
    hosting on campus today and tomorrow. The conference was organized in honor of
    the distinguished career of our colleague and friend, Professor Alan Deardorff, who is
    currently the associate dean of the Ford School. Alan’s wide ranging and astute
    contributions have furthered our understanding of why countries trade. The implications for growth and the impact
    of trade policy on a globalizing world. And the conference has also brought many of the
    world’s leading trading economist to Ann Arbor and I’m very pleased to welcome
    all of them here today, as well. Well, like many of those conference
    attendees, I’m an international economist. And while I’m very proud of my profession
    and its contributions, I do have to concede that there aren’t that many economists whose
    work is followed closely by the general public; whose opinions on economic matters stir
    great passions among lay people; and, whose weekly writings are routinely
    discussed around the water cooler. Well, Paul Krugman is the exception. Whether they agree with him
    or not, people from all walks of life want to know what Paul has to say. And just the past few days, for example,
    he’s appeared in quite desperate settings, such as the keynote speaker at a conference in
    Helsinki on Finnish Economic Competitiveness and as a guest on the HBO show,
    Real Time with Paul Maher. Paul’s even a hit over YouTube, where a
    little known performer scored a quarter of a million views with his song,
    and I promise I won’t sing it for you — his song, Hey Paul Krugman. And if you haven’t checked out the
    YouTube video, I encourage you to do so. But, of course, they don’t award Nobel
    Prizes for popularity or YouTube hits. Paul Krugman is one of the great economists
    of our time and he was awarded the Nobel Prize for his analysis of trade patterns
    and the location of economic activity. Traditional theories of international
    trade emphasize why countries are different and why they will trade with us, exporting
    and importing, and trade with each other — exporting and importing different products. Paul’s work emphasized that an awful lot of
    the trade that we see in the real world is between countries that are quite similar. And they’re trading relatively similar products. His models highlight both that firms can
    take advantage of economies of scale, or produce more cheaply by
    producing large quantities. And the consumers value variety and choice. Thus, he pioneered models of trade in which large firms producing similar
    products compete in a globalizing marketplace. These models also link globalization to economic
    geography, helping us to understand where firms and people choose to locate and why. Paul’s academic work stands out because
    of its insights about the real world. In packages that economists love, because they’re mathematically
    elegant and deceptively simple. This work on trade, like his work on
    financial crisis and in so many other areas, has launched new avenues of research and
    literally thousands of academic papers. As most of you know, Paul’s work
    is also remarkable for its clarity. Lucidity of the writing in his many articles, books and columns has significantly
    raised economic literacy around the globe. And as dean of a policy school, I
    particularly want to highlight his dedication to the importance of clear analytic
    thinking as a guide for policy. On a more personal note, I can also
    attest to the fact that Paul has educated and inspired generations of international
    and policy oriented economists. Nearly 30 years ago, his course on international
    trade was one of the first courses that I took in my doctoral studies at MIT and I have had the
    great fortune to benefit from Paul’s insights and perspective as a member
    of my dissertation committee and at numerous points during my career. For all of those reasons and more, I could
    not be more pleased to call to the stage, our 2009 City Group Foundation Lecturer. Please join me in welcoming Paul Krugman. [ Applause ]>>Paul Krugman: Well, thanks. Thanks Susan and thank every
    — thank you all for coming. And thank — I’d like to thank
    the [inaudible] Burton [phonetic] for organizing this great event. Not this event, but the Festdrift [phonetic]
    the celebration of the work of Ellen Deardorff, which is a great group of people and, you
    know, it’s kind of a homecoming for me. This is the world in which I started. Because the occasion for this is the
    conference honoring Ellen Deardorff’s work, I’m going to try to talk at least in a
    speech a little about different things than what I mostly talk about these days. Mostly, you know, everybody wants to know
    about the economic crisis and I will talk about that a bit at the end, but I’m
    sure it will come up in the questions. But at least for starters, I want to talk
    about my whole new territory, originally, academically, which was discuss
    — sorry about that — other than national trade and globalization. And since this is Gannett, this is really
    all about honoring Ellen Deardorff. I just thought I’d reminisce for a moment. So I got into international economics, you
    know, coming straight out of graduate school, late 1970s and joined what was then
    the conference circuit that people who would meet and many of whom are here now. And so somehow, they all look older. That hasn’t happened to me, but in
    anyway — and Alan Deardorff was there. Alan was, you know, at many meetings I was at. Late ’70s, early ’80s and was extremely
    distinctive because he was an American, which at the time was quite rare. At the time that I got into international
    economics, there were a few Americans in it, but it was mostly from other places. Actually, the way I thought about it was
    that it was a field dominated by colonials. Some Indians, but mostly, Canadians
    and Australians, it seemed at the time. That’s probably not true literally, but there
    were an awful lot of them, which actually, imparted a certain character to the conferences. I was able to finally pinpoint the character. Initially, I would go to these meetings and they
    incredibly — I come home exhausted, blasted. Even though I was much younger then, obviously,
    but even so, I really was having a hard time. And I actually went to one with
    a bad cold and was taking cough and cold medicine and really couldn’t drink. I didn’t dare to drink and it’s funny how much
    less — you know, there’s all these Canadians and Australians and an awful
    lot of beer at those. But anyway, by the way, there’s a Chihuahua in
    my throat now, which may make an appearance. There was a reason why Americans weren’t
    that prevalent in international economics at that point, because even then,
    international trade didn’t seem to be that big a deal for the United States. In 1970, which is about when
    a lot of people who were on the conference circuit then would have made
    their decision to be in international economics. You know, imports were only about 5% of GDP. They’re 17% now. So we had this explosion of international
    trade, which has turned what was at the time, a little bit of a back water within economics
    into something that’s enormously important. So I want to talk about globalization. What it’s done and I’m going to
    finish up by talking about the role of globalization and the mess we’re now in. But I want to talk a little bit
    about history, about the forces. What we understand. So first thing you should know
    in terms of the history is that globalization is not a new phenomenon. It was — there was a — the
    enabling technology for globalization, the key inventions arguably were the
    railroad, the steamship and the telegraph. There was a very extensive global
    economy created in the late 19th century. That there’s a lot to be learned,
    even now, from studying that economy. But at that, global economy kind of went into
    abeyance for a long time between two world wars, the Great Depression and protectionism
    and a lot of shift by much of the world to inward looking strategies
    of economic development. Globalization receded a lot and
    by the 1970 World Trade as a share of gross world product is probably only
    back to around it had been in 1913. Other aspects of globalization were
    nowhere near their pre-World War I levels. There was not nearly as much flow of
    capital, even now, despite all that we talk about immigration [inaudible] it’s still
    migration of people than there was, because there are many legal barriers now
    that didn’t exist then and the legal barriers of the poorest do actually matter. But just about the time that I was getting into
    international economics, just about the time that I first met Alan Deardorff,
    all that was about to change. Now, there’d been some, some return. international trade had grown
    substantially in the ’60s and in the ’70s, but it was done so in a kind of limited fashion. Most of the — what we would now consider the
    emerging markets were still inwardly turned in their economic policies. What was happening was there
    were agreements that had opened up trade between quite similar countries. So there was a lot of trade between
    the United States and Canada. A lot of trade within Western Europe, but it
    wasn’t a lot of the stuff that we now think of globalization, certainly
    China was not yet in the picture. Even the smaller Asian economies
    were barely there. So it really didn’t look the way it looks now. What I was — the analytical work that I did
    that, that I and others did was a whole movement that really, that ended up with that
    kind of interesting event in Stockholm, what was largely about that growth in trade. Trying to understand why the United States and
    Canada, which looked so similar to each other. You do so much trade; why France and Germany
    ship automobiles back and forth to each other. It’s kind of the way things tend to work in
    economics, is as soon as you have a theory, the world starts moving in a way to
    make the theory less and less relevant. And so we’ve actually, in some ways, moved to a
    completely different world, which in some ways, but not in all resembles the kind of
    trade that we had in that first age of globalization before World War I. What changed? Two things, I think, really. And they were both happened. I think to myself now, when we were at —
    oh, the Handbook of International Economics, the first volume was a conference
    that took place in Princeton in 1982. And when we were there, we didn’t
    — had no idea, but in fact, out there, the world was totally changing. The whole world of trade was changing in a way
    that certainly, I had no sense of at the time. Two things were really changing. One was technology. The ability to ship things long
    distances, fairly cheaply has been there since the steamship and the railroad. What was the big bottleneck was
    getting things on and off the ships. A large part of the cost of international trade
    was taking stuff off the ships, sorting it out, dealing with the pilferage that
    always took place along the way. So what the first big thing
    that changed was the box. The container. A lot of those things — we think about
    technologies that changed the world. And we think about glamorous
    things like the internet and — but if you try to figure out what happened
    to world trade, there’s a really strong case to be made that it was the container. The container that can be hauled off a ship
    and put onto a truck or a train and moved on. And these days — used to be the ports
    were places with thousands and thousands of longshoremen milling around doing stuff. Now, they’re like something out of
    one of those science fiction movies in which something has caused all the people
    to disappear and they’re only machines, right. But there’s — and [coughs] told you
    about the Chihuahua in my throat — the, the big change there, I’ve just been
    re-reading a very good book called The Box, which is about containers. The big change there was really between the
    late 1970s and mid 1980s, sharp drop in the cost of transactions, which opened up the world;
    made it possible to do what we do now, which is to produce a good in
    many, many different places. As the different stages of
    production, different components. Ask yourself where is an
    iPod made and the answer is, that’s a really complicated question to answer. The other thing that changed was policy. To some extent, in countries
    like the United States, but we had actually moved quite
    a long ways toward free trade. What really changed was that many of the
    developing countries had followed for 35 years after World War II, they followed
    a policy of looking inwards. Of encouraging production for the domestic
    market, which whether by design or simply because that’s the way [inaudible]
    equilibrium works. Ended up discouraging exports, basically, the way these inward looking
    policies discouraged exports. Great shift toward outward looking policies. Great shift towards allowing foreign
    trade to become the driver of growth. The most extreme case, of course, being China, which went from virtually closed
    to the world, to extremely open. And all of a sudden, this
    explosion of world trade. And all of a sudden or over a
    relatively short period of time, international trade was no
    longer interesting to Canadians, for whom it’s always been interesting
    because they have this neighbor. And was interesting to all of us Americans. What do we know about globalization? I think even now, we don’t —
    we’re still adjusting our stories. In fact, I’ve actually been changing my
    own story about globalization a little bit than the last two months, because
    I’ve been noticing some stuff that I was not paying sufficient attention to. I really should have, because
    it’s up my line very much. So this is the part where I get to tell
    you what I did on my summer vacation. I did actually take — was holidaying in
    Scotland earlier — just relatively recently. And — this is kind of depressing. What do we commoners do on vacation? They go to museums that are
    focused on economics. [Laughter] In Dundee, Scotland,
    there’s a terrific — if there’re any people economics-oriented,
    you’ll find yourself there. Visit the Vurdonport [phonetic] Museum,
    which is dedicated to the history of the Dundee Jute [assumed spelling] industry. And if you haven’t been there, you might
    think of Dundee, but [phonetic] the name — it sounds like it ought to
    be some cute little town. It’s actually — they’re trying
    to rebuild, but it’s a grime, decayed industrial city trying
    to crawl its way back. And what it was industrially, was
    jutopolous [phonetic] is what they called it. It was the center of the world
    jute trade, which was a enormous, long-distance trade in the late 19th century. Taking the fibers, which come from India,
    treating them, drawing them; eventually, ending up as burlap bags and such like. Huge business. Dundee had more millionaires per
    capita than any place else in Britain. How do we think about that? Part of it was that it was compared
    advantage, which is what economists — the grand theory of economic of international
    trade which has dominated most of our thinking which is the country’s trade
    because they’re different. They have different resources, difference
    competences and they trade, in effect, to take advantage of those differences. Obviously, Britain had to import the jute
    because it won’t grow in Scotland, for sure. Why was the manufacturing
    taking place in Britain? Because Britain had the capital. It had the technological skill. It had certain kind of skilled labor in
    a way that India, at the time, did not. Later on, actually, the industry moved back — the actual manufacturer moved to
    India because those things did spread. But initially, at least,
    it was to do with Britain. But that’s not the whole story, because
    that says why you should be producing — why you should be processing
    jute somewhere in Britain. It doesn’t say why you should
    be doing it in Dundee. And there the answer is much closer to the kinds
    of things that I’ve spent a lot of time thinking about in my career, which is
    the role of increasing returns. The role of things that accumulate. So as is characteristic of these stories, some more or less accidental
    historical things that got started. In the early stages, the process of
    treating the fibers relied on whale oil. Later, it turned to mineral oil, but initially,
    it was whale oil and Dundee was a whale import. And also, it was similar in some
    respects to dealing with flax, which was the only thing they had, but
    all that, that’s just how it started. It became irrelevant. You had this clustering. You had this process where
    it fed [phonetic] on itself. In the economic geography, a lot of us,
    some years back, we discovered the works of the great Victorian [inaudible]
    Alfred Marshall, who focused a lot on these industrial clusters,
    which was very much a story of the time. That he said there were really three things. There was the creation of a thick market for particularly highly skilled,
    but specialized skill labor. There were specialized suppliers of equipment
    services that you needed in the industry and there was what we would now call
    technological spillover, but as he phrase was, the mystery of the trade become no
    mystery, but are as it were the air. Basically, everybody in Dundee
    knew all about jute. So you had this kind of clustering. And that’s actually quite typical. If you go back, we do tend to think of 19th
    century trade as having been straight forward. There were countries with different — there were tropical countries,
    there were tempered countries. There were countries that knew manufacturing
    and there were countries that didn’t. That was actually a lot of
    this clustering, as well. So there were many such clusters. Obviously, jute in Dundee. Hose and lace in Nottingham. Cutlery in Sheffield, go down
    these last — a series of things. We actually had counterpart things
    in the United States, as well, although the United States was
    protectionist and relatively closed. So they served the domestic market. So we also had Patterson, New Jersey
    was the equivalent of Nottingham. And Troy, New York was the detachable collar
    and cuff center and that sort of thing. Well, anyway, I always love
    these historical things. What about today’s world? Today’s world is extraordinary,
    complex, enormous volumes of trade. When I was first getting into this, we
    could say, “Well, you know, in some ways, globalization still falls short of
    what it was in the Edwardian Era. Can’t say that now. Now, we have this enormous —
    what we have and what didn’t exist in the past is these complex supply chains where
    things are many, many stages of production. That’s the iPod, about a dollar — the
    iPod’s final assembly point is trying — but that assembly is only about
    a $1.50 of the price of the iPod. The rest, there is other trainee stuff in
    there, but there are just many, many stages and it’s a large number of
    countries are involved. Creates a tremendous amount
    of shipping back and forth. A lot of that now, reflects again
    differences between countries. The wealthy countries still have advantages. They have still somewhat better technology. They have more skilled labor. They have all of the advantages of being
    in an advanced country environment, so there’s quality control issues. I understand, I haven’t seen it. There’s a new book out called,
    That They Made in China. There’s still, even now, there are differences
    in [inaudible] but on the other hand, the developing countries have inexpensive labor. And in some cases, reasonably good productivity
    in manufacturing and so we have a trade back and forth that is based upon
    the goods that are really, goods in stages of the production process that are really still requiring advanced country
    environment or done in advanced countries. But the other stages are
    done in developing countries. Within that, there’s a lot of the same thing as
    my story about Dundee, but what’s interesting is that these days, if you want to find
    those clearly defined industrial clusters; those cities where a particularly sort of
    narrow competence leads to the dominance of the whole city economy,
    you really find them best in the emerging markets in the developing world. So you go around China, you’ll find
    that there is, you know, there is — well, if Dundee was Jutopolous
    in the late 19th century, Yambu [phonetic] is underwear
    city in the 21st century. There are these clusters, again,
    the broad — it’s pretty — it’s probably a foregone conclusion that we’re
    going to have labor intensive apparel produced in China or now, moving down to even
    lower wage countries like, Vietnam. But it’s a — the details
    depend a lot on accident, which leaves some particular
    town to develop a specialty. And derive advantages from that, because
    there are advantages of this cluster. The advantages of this scale of
    production in a particular locality. I should mention, by the way, since
    again, this is Alan Deardorff conference that this whole process of fragmentation
    of production, which has made it possible to have this huge volume of
    world trade is one of his — one of the areas he’s done a lot of work in. When this stuff first began, when we were
    just starting to see the surge in exports from smaller Asian countries, we used to say,
    “Well, you know, there’s only a limited amount of this stuff that they can —
    labor-intensive stuff that they can export.” What will happen? I mean, I remember specifically saying,
    what will happen if China tries to do this? It just isn’t possibly going to
    be enough labor-intensive stuff. And of course, it’s there because the ability to
    segment the production of goods and produce all of these labor-intensive stages of production. Transformed world — the process really gained
    a lot of momentum because of the interaction of these technological changes
    and the political changes. The technological changes meant the country — some countries could do very well by
    integrating with the global economy. And that made other countries more willing to
    liberalize their policies and do the same thing, and so this explosive growth of globalization. Is it a good thing? Or is it a bad thing? And the answer, of course, is yes. The good thing, first of all,
    just in terms of the economics. Clearly, there are — the world economy
    is richer because of all this stuff. It’s richer both, because we have countries
    — here [inaudible] for two reasons. One is that we have countries concentrating
    on the things they do relatively well, which doesn’t mean, as the economists know
    here, it doesn’t mean they do absolutely well. Actually, on any given thing,
    it’s almost certain that U.S. labor is more productive
    than Chinese labor. But that varies quite a lot, so by
    having the Chinese do the things at which they are relatively productive, we
    get the whole world producing more efficiently. It means the world wealth has gone up. In addition, the world market makes it possible
    to do a lot of things on an efficient scale. In some cases, by just having a
    really big factory, but in many cases, by having a concentration of production of — not many factories where the firms
    produce mutually reinforcing advantages. And all that gets passed
    through ultimately, two buyers. In the end, the world is a richer place because
    the underwear makers of Yambu are more efficient than any national, purely domestic
    market-oriented underwear city could be. So we have a world that’s clearly richer. But that doesn’t mean everybody
    benefits equally. And there are many dislocations. Many distributional effects. The most obvious and the one we worry about
    a lot is that lower formal education workers in advanced countries are almost certainly hurt
    by, by imports, that, that inequality is wider to some extent because of globalization. I would argue that the evidence
    is still a little suggestive — that it’s a secondary factor — but inequality
    has widened and globalization is probably part of it, and that has probably hurt
    workers in advanced countries. The, on the, if you, if you take a
    global citizen point of view, though, I think you want to say that those losses
    are less dramatic than the huge gains which many workers have achieved in
    the developing world, and you, there, there’s a real trap, I think, for, for
    concerned people in the, in the advanced world, a tendency to think of, to compare
    the ugly reality of life for workers in today’s developing countries with an
    abstraction of what you think it ought to be or with an idealized picture of what it
    used to be like rather than with reality. So sometimes this almost
    comes down to condescension, thinking about happy peasants living
    their traditional lives and you compare that with the actual workers at
    Lonjeau [phonetic] and you say, “Oh wow, this must be a terrible thing.” But the fact of the matter
    is, given the reality, which is that developing countries were
    incredibly poor in 1970, and the fact that some of them have now achieved a really big
    increase in their standard of living even if it looks pretty bad to us, that there’s
    been a tremendous amount of progress. Hundreds of millions, perhaps
    billions of people, live better lives because of globalization. But it is a mixed picture, and it’s also
    turned out to be much harder than, I think, many economists believe to actually
    reap those gains from globalization. When the great takeoff of some East Asian
    economies took place, a lot of people thought, “Well, if you just open yourself up to
    world markets, this is what happens.” And a number of countries, particularly Latin
    America, at least, that’s where I track it, have opened themselves up to world markets, and
    have not gotten anything like the same results. So it turns out that it’s a much more
    mixed, much more uncertain picture than we were hoping it would be,
    but if you’d asked me 2 years ago, “How’s globalization going,” I
    would have said, “Well, you know, there’s a lot of…it’s certainly
    not wonderful but there are some, some…a lot of good things have
    happened, and that on the whole, this is a, has been a force for good.” All right. Something happened to us recently. So we have the world economy
    go into this terrible crisis. What can we say about the role of globalization
    in this future globalization, you know, small questions, but anyway, let me,
    let me, let me try to talk about, about where, where I think we are, right now. And by the way, of course, there is a, if you
    read your history, you can’t help but think, gosh, we had this global economy
    the single biggest force killing it, the original goal of the global
    economy was the Great Depression. And now we are in a world slump that
    bears a definite family resemblance to what happened in the early 1930s. Is it all going to happen again? What does it say about where
    we’re going for now? So, okay. The crisis. We have had, well, it, it
    has been awesome, of course. The first year of the crisis tracks
    the Great Depression very closely. It actually turns out that the initial fall
    in industrial production was as big as it was in 1929-30, that the initial fall in world trade
    was actually sharper than it was in 1929-30. The fall in GDP, well, we don’t
    really have the statistics back then, probably a little bit less, but, but
    on the whole, we really did have a, a onset of the Great Depression
    scale world crisis. It does appear to have stabilized now, so the,
    it appears that Armageddon has been put on hold for at least a little while here. The Apocalypse has been postponed. But it’s, it’s been a pretty
    shocking crisis, and we are of course, nowhere near being out of the woods. Was the crisis caused? Did globalization pave the way for this crisis? Well, certainly not in the simple sense that all this increased trade was
    directly responsible for the crisis. It didn’t do that. If you want to look for causes of the
    crisis, you would possibly look more at the financial side of globalization,
    which of course, is not independent. So if you’re looking for where things
    went wrong, you would say, well, as, as, as China became deeply integrated into the world
    economy, it also sort of stumbled into a policy of accumulating huge reserves, which led to
    a glut of cheap money in the United States, which helped feed our housing bubble. It’s kind of an indirect chain, but
    it certainly is part of the story. You would also say that, in a more
    limited sense, that we tend to think of this crisis has having been a
    primarily U.S. event, but actually, there’s a lot of it happened in Europe as well. And they’re, they’re sort of
    more localized globalization, if you can use that phrase, played a big role. They had huge lending to Eastern
    European emerging nations that was, in its own way, as big an imbalance as the U.S. /China thing and has ended in
    similar lease [inaudible] grief. So you can certainly say that the
    opening up of world capital markets, the opening up of world capital flows,
    played some role in engendering this crisis. Globalization has certainly played
    a role in propagating the crisis. One of the things that has been remarkable
    is that although you can point to certain, you know, obviously, the, the places of the
    financial excesses were the United States, the U.K., arguably, but in different
    ways, some of the European countries that had a enormous housing bubble, so Spain. The punishment has not borne,
    if you look across countries, has not borne very much relationship
    to the crime. That the steepest falls in GDP, at least
    initially, have actually come in countries that did not have runaway financial sectors and
    did not have housing bubbles, have come in Japan and in Germany, which were,
    well, what was their sin? Their sin was being deeply integrated
    in the world economy and being exporters of durable manufactured goods,
    which took the biggest hit. So the biggest declines in GDP, at
    least initially, have come in countries that were being hit through world trade,
    and all of this is possible because we have such a, an integrated global economy. And that contributes to what is in
    some ways, the most troubling feature of this crisis looking forward,
    which is that it hit everybody. I’ll come back to that in a second. There’s another sense in which the crisis,
    in which globalization helped to lead to a synchronized crisis, and
    this is a little bit softer, but I think, very, still very important. One of the effects of globalization has
    been, while it’s, you know, obviously, what’s driving it is people looking for, for
    profit, and what, what it’s about the movement of goods, and services and money, it
    also produces an integration of thought. We more and more, you know,
    we all certain of culture, I gather that there was a presentation
    this morning about the horrors of, of cultural homogenization, which is, you
    know, whatever you think of it, it’s very real. We certainly all dress alike around the
    world, we all, we all watch the same kind of entertainment and, and we all think
    alike, which means that intellectual trends, the conventional wisdom of the moment is
    now a global conventional wisdom rather than a national conventional wisdom. And in particular, pretty much everyone
    around the world thought it was a great idea to deregulate banking and at
    the same time, so that we all, when the house of cards came
    down, it came down everywhere. Which makes this very difficult right now. We’ve just had an awesome financial crisis. It’s not, now that we’ve seen it
    happen, that hard to understand. We look at it and it’s actually,
    it is a, it is a more or less a, a historically standard banking crisis,
    but dressed in different clothes. So we, we, if you go back to the early 1930s,
    there was a wave of banking failures, bank runs, and such things have happened in
    individual countries since then. This time, well, we actually had pretty good
    guarantees for banks as conventionally defined, basically, big marble buildings
    that take deposits. The trouble was that we had sort of
    failed to do anything about the growth of, of institutions that functionally are
    banks; basically, anybody who borrows short and lends long is a bank, but weren’t
    called banks, and didn’t look like banks, and weren’t strictly speaking,
    depository institutions, but once you take that into account, what we’ve had is the 21st century functional
    equivalent of 1931 around the world. With, it so, this time, bank runs
    don’t consist of hordes of people out in the street banging on the doors. They consist of hordes of people on
    the Internet clicking their mouses, but it does the same thing. And it’s sort of all played out very similarly. And we have, thank God, had a
    pretty vigorous emergency response. So we have learned a little bit
    these past 75 years and appear to have contained it from
    being a total collapse. But what comes next? Well, we’ve had a number of
    more localized banking crises around the world since, since
    the Great Depression. We’ve had, obviously, we have had
    financial crises of various sorts. We’ve had Mexico and Argentina and, and
    Mexico again and Argentina again, and, and the Asian countries, and Sweden and
    Finland and, and all of these are very nasty. We know the IMF has done a lot of, you know,
    reaching back into history to ask what happens, and the answer is that financial crises not only
    are severe, but it takes a long time to recover. There’s one other thing that becomes
    very clear from, from the record, which is that all modern financial crises, economic recovery from all modern financial
    crises, relies crucially on the same thing, which is that the crisis-afflicted
    country recovers to a large extent by, at least for a while, running
    big trade surpluses. It basically pulls itself out of its hole by
    selling a lot of stuff to parts of the world that were not caught up in the crisis. I think you see the problem. Unless you can find another planet to export to, the normal [laughter] the normal
    exit from financial crisis. Not, not the stabilization, which I think has
    been a tease, but the actual return to something that looks like a reasonably, fully -employed
    economy, that route is not available. And you really look, it’s, there really are
    no exceptions to this rule in modern times, whether it’s Argentina or the East Asians or even Japan emerging temporarily
    from its lost decade of growth. They’ve all been achieved
    through export surpluses. And that is not available, so if you
    are actually looking for a precedent for a world economy managing to emerge
    from a financial crisis, and, you know, fully recovered from the effects of a financial
    crisis, without, where everybody’s caught up and where countries are not able to
    do it by running trade surpluses, you actually have to go back to the recovery
    from the Great Depression itself, which was the, you know, the full recovery was achieved through a large public spending
    program, known as World War II. So, it’s, it’s not a very encouraging thing. The last time we had a global
    crisis, one of the effects was to roll back globalization for a long time. That does not seem to be happening right
    now, although, yes, there’s tariffs on tires and things, but there’s actually nothing
    like the kind of protectionist response that took place in the 1930s, not
    much sign that that’s going to happen. The question I guess one might
    ask is, maybe should it happen? We seem to have a global economy
    that is, that we don’t exactly, we, our institutions have not caught up with this. We aren’t actually managing to find global
    solutions for crisis; we are just managing to find ad hoc patches to, to keep
    the thing from totally falling apart. We are to a certain extent holding
    the world economy together with, with scotch tape and chewing gum. So our, is there a, a reason in the
    crisis to roll back globalization? I think you could actually
    possibly make that case. But I don’t think it’s going to
    happen, because the advantages of globalization are still very real, the
    virtues, and of course, everybody does remember, actually, they remember something
    which may not be entirely true, which was that protectionism was a
    major cause of the Great Depression. That’s arguably not true, but in any
    case, it stands as a cautionary tale. Which means that we need to
    find a way to deal with this. And I think one way to look at the
    world right now, I mean, there are many, there are many different ways to look
    at it, but one way to look at it is that we actually created this global economy without creating the institutions
    that we need to manage it. We are still in a world of national policies,
    even where we have super national institutions. They’re not functioning very well, so that the
    European Union is looking awfully disunited when it comes to [inaudible]
    our policies these days. And they really, they’re enormously
    interdependent, and yet they don’t seem to be able to make policy jointly. We’ve had some cooperation in
    some of the emergency measures, but those have been amazingly dependent,
    really on sort of personal contact. I mean, they, you could argue that the,
    we managed to save the world basically because Jean Truchet [phonetic] and Irving King
    and Ben Bernanke were able to sort of agree on some things that needed to be
    done in the heat of the moment. And while I would like to have a rule that the
    leaders of policy would always be in the hands of smart bearded Princeton professors,
    that’s not something we can really count on in the future [laughter] So we do, we
    do, actually, we have not yet come to terms with this enormously more integrated
    economy, this economy that, I have to admit, 30 years ago when I was getting
    into international trade, I never imagined it would,
    it would be this relevant. And we have no choice in the end, because, well,
    you could imagine rolling back trade flows. You could imagine. It would not, it’s not technologically
    impossible to go back to a world of relatively inward looking economies. There are other ways in which
    we’re globalized, like it or not. The atmosphere doesn’t care where a ton of
    carbon dioxide gets emitted and we’re now at a stage where those global
    constraints bind enormously on all of us. So we’re, we’re globalized, whether we like
    it or not; it’s an amazing, frightening time. I’d like to think that we’ll come out of all
    this with an understanding that we really need to go beyond just trusting this vast global
    economic machine to do the right thing, and figuring that we actually need to have
    some adult supervision of the whole thing — maybe it will actually happen — and hey,
    we’re supposed to be optimistic, right? Otherwise, what’s the point? So, amazing times. As a citizen of the world, I am quite
    horrified about what we’re going through, a little less frightened than I was 6
    months ago, but still, awful prospect, but this is a conference to analyze economic
    research and, and to celebrate the research of [inaudible] Deardorff and as an economic
    researcher, may I say, “Boy, I’m in clover. This is like a volcanologist watching
    Mt. St. Helen’s erupt, and great time, great time to study, unfortunately,
    not to live through.” Thanks. [ Applause ]>>Thank you so much. Paul. [laughter]>>Susan Collins: Yeah. First I’d like to thank you, Professor Krugman,
    for coming to the University of Michigan today. I wrote this down. Recently I watched you and
    former Governor Spitzer speak on Bill Maher regarding the current
    lack of social ability in this country and the decreasing income
    growth within the middle class. Former Governor Palin was also mocked on the
    show as she has been before, for saying recently that the key to an economic
    recovery is a slashing of payroll taxes, corporate taxes, etcetera. Globalization is obviously very
    real and capital is free to flow where the costs of it are the lowest. If, in fact, the goal for our economy, is job
    growth, real wage growth, and the decreasing of income gap between the rich and
    the poor, how does the maintenance of a high corporate tax rate, which makes it
    more expensive for multinational corporations to do business in the U.S. relative
    to other countries, and therefore, makes the U.S. that much more uncompetitive
    with the rest of the world achieve that goal?>>Paul Krugman: Okay. The, the corporate tax, the argument
    that corporate taxes are really high in the United States and are, are
    driving business out, you know, it could be true, but it happens not to be. I mean, if you actually look at the numbers,
    [applause] there’s a lot of massaging of the data, you know, that are used, so people, the overall corporate U.S. corporate
    tax rate is not much out of line with other advanced countries and you know, direct investment has, has
    on balance, been flowing in. It’s not, just no sign that that’s
    actually been happening in America, so, not, not, not the thing to worry about. And by the way, you know, if you take the
    overall level of taxation, you know, we’re, we’re pretty much at the bottom
    along advanced countries. And if you take the, and even if there
    were, there really were a big problem with corporate taxation, it’s not as if we’re
    dealing with, you know, anonymous vast forces. If there was a, if there was really a war of
    corporate tax cutting among the major economies, we could sit down around a
    table and try and settle this. It’s not, it’s not a large number
    of players, so no, this, this is, of all the things to worry about, the idea that
    high corporate taxes are costing America lots of jobs, is really, doesn’t
    belong in the conversation. [applause] Yeah.>>Hello. I’d like to ask you to
    clarify an observation that you made about globalization leading
    to greater inequality, because it seems like you’re describing
    globalization as sort of a leveler that lifts up, the wealth of China and that
    it may be, does that at the expense of, of workers in other parts of
    the world, so what’s the, the, what’s the metric by which you see in equality
    increasing as a result of globalization?>>Paul Krugman: Oh, yeah. If you looked at inequality within the
    United States has increased dramatically. Increased, inequality within most advanced
    countries has increased a little bit, although basically, mainly in
    the English speaking countries, which is an interesting thing. But the, but if you were looking at
    some measure of world inequality, the, that’s gone down because of the big
    rises in income and some of the roles, in some countries that were formally very poor. Actually, I’m going to give my, I didn’t give
    my usual pro-globalization sermon, which is, when I went into economics, when I
    was a PhD student, I thought to myself that I really should be doing
    developmental economics, because that’s what really
    matters for the people. But I didn’t because in, circa
    1975, it was too depressing, because developmental economics was
    basically non-development economics. There hadn’t been any big success stories. There hadn’t been…you tried to look for
    a country that had gone from a third world to first world, and you basically found
    well maybe Japan, or you know, Japan 1883. All of that has changed now. Lots of poor countries have remained very poor. There are a lot of terrible stories out
    there, but there are also real success stories and all of those are tied to globalization. I think a world in which it is at least
    possible to have a place like South Korea, that was on the edge of subsistence in the
    mid-1960s and is now a decent, advanced society, is a much better world than the one which
    we have sort of locked into permanent roles, so that’s the, that’s the
    pro-globalization sermon. It doesn’t mean you should
    be blind to the downsides, but that is the, the plus, the upside.>>Professor Krugman, I just wanted
    to ask, do you think the contributions in the economic debates from, from people who
    aren’t macroeconomists, I’m talking voices like Richard Posner, who is not an
    economist at all or Eugene Falms [phonetic] who is not primarily a macroeconomist or even, even just regular bloggers
    like Matthew Iglasias. [phonetic] Is their contribution adding
    to the state of the debate or is, is there a risk that they’re muddying it
    by knowing just enough to sound interesting and reasonable to people like, laymen
    like me, but not enough to, not, don’t know enough to really
    contribute substantially.>>Paul Krugman: Oh boy, I mean,
    economics is not a priesthood. [laughter] And God knows, at this point, the
    economists certainly have no claim to say that no one who has, who acts, you know,
    the piece of paper should be in the debate, it’s not like, you know, it’s not like we’ve
    done all that well in the last year or two? [laughter] So, by all means, people should
    play in, but I think, I think, you know, in some ways, this whole modern system
    of credentializing is, you know, is somewhat artificial and someone can be,
    look, I’ll give you, I’ll tell you some-, Martin Wolf of the Financial Times,
    is actually not a trained economist. That doesn’t stop him from doing actually
    superb work, you know, on it, because he’s, he’s learned a lot about it and not just about
    the professional work, but observing the world. So, that’s fine. Now, if people are going to weigh in on the
    economic debate and not get basic facts right, not understand the difference between
    changes at an annual rate and actual changes over the quarter and not, GDP at an
    annual rate and GDP, and so on, this is, this is about Posner, who was off by a factor
    of 16, and his critique of Kristy Romer, [phonetic] then, you know, then we
    probably shouldn’t listen to them. But it’s not a question of the credentials;
    it’s a question of whether they’re serious.>>Let me ask you a question
    from two points of bias. One is, I live in a state that at least used
    to make its way in the world by making things and selling things and secondly,
    when I was getting my piece of paper, we studied a lot about exchange rates, a term
    interestingly, that you haven’t mentioned yet; I just want you to think about
    contemplating a world in which our, two of our major exports cease to
    be mortgage bonds, private debt…>>Right.>>Paul Krugman: …and, on the other
    hand, U.S. Treasuries public debt, and can we think about a world in which there’s
    less demand for those things in other countries. The dollar, in fact, weakens considerably,
    and all of a sudden, maybe some of our lost or losing industries have a stronger
    comparative advantage because the dollar is, is a cheaper thing for people to buy with. You know, that was actually starting to
    happen just before all hell broke loose. You could actually see U.S. exports were
    surging, U.S. manufacturing was staging a, something of a comeback and we
    were running into constraints, which were a problem but were revealing. It, there are a lot of stories from 2007, about
    the emerging shortage of skilled machinists, skilled pipefitters; we were
    experiencing a manufacturing revival and, and being hurt by the fact that we had
    gotten so much out of the business and no, I think that’s where we will be, if
    and when we finally emerge from this, and I say it will be a stronger manufacturing
    nation again, partly because of a weak dollar. It doesn’t mean that we’ll be doing
    the same things we were before. It’s, you know, I don’t think…apparel is
    something that is going to be done very much in the first world no matter what, but it’s,
    it’s not going to happen and it’s just; we were in a very weird world on,
    in the middle years of this decade. We were in a world where the United States
    was, as I love, as I used to describe, we were in a world where we were making a living
    by selling each other houses which we paid for by money borrowed from the Chinese. I mean, it was a…that’s not sustainable. That’s not the way it’s going to be. The other version of that is that we
    actually had fair and balanced trade. Right, if they were sending us
    poison toys and tainted seafood and we were sending them fraudulent
    securities, but the, [laughter] the…neither of those is original [laughter]
    but it’ll, it’ll come back. Now it won’t come back in the…in…and
    of course, it may be a while. And of course, China, the other
    thing you need to bear in mind is that China’s enormous surpluses,
    the, that’s a recent development. In China, it was roughly in [inaudible] balance
    as late as 2002, so this whole bizarreness, this bizarre economy, the house of cards that
    collapsed, was a relatively recent creation, and if we can go back to a more reasonable
    set of exchange rates, a more reasonable set of capital flows, some of this will come back. I don’t, I don’t know what the fate of the
    Michigan automobile industry is, right? That’s, that’s problematic, not just because
    of the, of the dollar and the crisis, but also because of transplants and all of that. But it ‘s going to be quite different. And, yeah, it still is weird, I’m using
    that word a lot, but, there, there is, it is hard to figure out, we’ve become
    so used to a country that doesn’t seem to be making many things, although but there’s
    more of those than people imagine, but, but, but certainly less than there used to be. The, if you take the train up the
    Northeast Corridor, there’s a famous, as you cross the Delaware River, there’s a sign
    that says, “Trenton Makes, The World Takes” and what they actually make
    in Trenton now is nothing. So, things have changed, but I think,
    I think we’ll see some of it come back.>>Your comment about the U.S. actually
    having lower tax rates than a lot of Western advanced nations made me think about
    what those taxes pay for in other nations, namely, social safety nets, you know, healthcare
    systems, which led me to the question, if you were made king for a day, and got to design the U.S. health
    care system, what would it look like? [laughter]>>Paul Krugman: Yeah. [applause] Yeah, I mean, look, the, the, if you
    could wipe away all the political realities, you’d want it to look probably
    like France, which is, with its heart, it’s a very Gallic system. It’s actually hard to explain to fully
    understand what’s going on, but it’s, it’s basically a single payer system with a
    mixture of public, private, non-profit provision of health care, but yeah, I mean,
    if, if I could start from scratch or waive away political reality,
    I’d go for something like, something like an idealized version of
    Medicare for all, so, not just single payer, but [applause] but a lot more, a lot more effort
    to sort of police the provision of health care, so that it’s done wisely and you don’t have
    runaway costs and, and a lot of spending on procedures that don’t help people. Now this is, but, that’s it, okay? I don’t think you want to be a
    purist, because there are lots of ways to have universal health care with much
    lower costs than the American system. Basically, every other advanced
    country does it, right? And they do it in wildly different ways. They do it, in single payer, they do it with
    actual socialized medicine in Great Britain and in Spain; they do it with
    private but tightly regulated and, and subsidized health care in, in
    Switzerland and the Netherlands. There, there, there appear to be about
    a half a dozen ways to make this work. We happen to be following none of those ways,
    but it doesn’t, it’s not that you have to do it in one ideal way, it’s just
    do it, that’s the point. [applause]>>Hi there. What’s going to happen to the world
    economy after a nuclear device is detonated at the corner of Sixth Avenue
    and 42nd Street in New York?>>Paul Krugman: Oh boy. [laughter] If it’s one of the days
    that’s…it’s fairly frequent, that I’m actually in the
    city, I guess I won’t care. The [laughter] no, look, this is, can I
    say, though, that this is terrifying, but, what actually would be, the actual
    terrorist incident we had which, you know, first was what supposed to change
    everything, you know, didn’t. That we, this is, this is a real possibility
    that someone could do it, but it’s not, it’s not something that any of the
    players we know about is capable of doing. I mean, I’m stepping completely away from
    economics now, but Al Qaeda is a vicious gang of fanatics, but they really
    got lucky on 9/11/2001. They haven’t been able to do anything
    on that scale since, and, but, sure, you want to be fighting nuclear
    terrorism which, as I understand it, the most important thing is actually
    securing nuclear material in places like the former Soviet Union, not,
    and, and doing all of the things that one tries to do to fight terrorism. The, it, it’s not a…there’s no indication that
    you have to completely change the way you live. That we need to become a police state ourselves,
    that we have to, there was a lot of talk about world trade, world interactions have to
    be shut down because of the terrorist threat and that, that has proved unnecessary. And, and I even think, I, every time I
    squeeze my shampoo bottles into my little bag, I get really mad because that was clearly an
    overreaction, that the war on liquids was, was inappropriate [applause] so, you know,
    there are lots, there are lots of bad things that happen in the world and
    you try to deal with them. I don’t, you know, don’t want
    to fixate on just that one.>>Thanks again for being here. As an economics student, you learned a lot,
    especially in mac, introductory macroeconomics, you learn about, when it comes to government
    spending, there’s 2 major factors – there’s the Kansian [phonetic] multiplier
    and then you have crowding out, and recently, I know that some economics have argued that
    the Kansian multiplier isn’t as effective as we once believed, and you’ve
    actually argued against crowding out, you believe that the large trillion
    dollar stimulus package is crowding in. So I was just wondering if you would
    just explain that a little further.>>Paul Krugman: Yeah. It’s not a, we’re in a very
    special circumstance right now. We’re in a situation where, which we, in the
    United States, haven’t been in since 1930, although the Japanese were there in the 90s. Which is, that interest rates, short
    term interest rates are basically zero, that there’s a, and, if, see, the normal,
    we talk about crowding out sometimes as if it’s a mechanical thing, but it’s
    actually, it’s mediated through, through, through actions by the Federal Reserve normally. If you expand and the, you know, fear of inflation expanding economy causes
    the Federal Reserve to jack up interest rates, the ones it controls, which then lead
    to higher interest rates on other things that should crowd out private investment. Ordinarily, that’s a very real story. Certainly, what happened in the
    80s from the Reagan deficits. Right now, take the Taylor [phonetic] rule. It’s a rule of thumb for, to, for Fed policies; it depends on how depressed the
    economy is and the rate of inflation. Apply a Taylor rule that actually
    fits Fed policy in the past and that’s what the Federal
    funds rate would be, should be, according to the Taylor rule right now. And the answer is about minus 5 or
    6%, around minus 500 basis points. This is a world in which expansion of fiscal policy is not going
    to cause the Fed to raise rates. It’s not going to lead to higher interest rates. So, the normal arguments about
    crowding out don’t apply . And in fact, or, an alternative way of
    saying it, I’m going off this…one way of saying it is, right now, the
    world is awash in excess savings. Around the world, the amount that people
    want to save is less than the amount that businesses are willing to invest,
    even at zero short-term interest rates. That’s a world in which governments, by
    borrowing and spending, are not crowding out, are not taking away savings that
    could be used for private investment; they’re actually putting
    these excess savings to work. And we’ll actually need to hire investment, because the main reason businesses
    aren’t investing now is that there is not enough
    demand for their products. So this is not, you know, we don’t expect
    to be in this kind of situation very often. This is a, this is Alice Through
    the Looking Glass territory. This is a weird, boy, that’s been my word
    all through the night, anyway, but this is a, this is a, this is an economy in which
    everything is kind of reversed and which, I think I wrote this at some point, that
    virtue is vice and prudence is folly. That’s not the normal state of affairs,
    but it is the state of affairs we’re in now and if you believe the projections from
    the Office of Management and Budget, it’s the world we’re going to be
    in for 2 or 3 more years at least. So that, this is special times and
    part of what drives me crazy is the way that conventional wisdom about economic
    policy has not taken on board the craziness of the times we’re now living in.>>So, here in Michigan, where the
    unemployment rate’s really high, the local industries are really
    struggling, you know, the idea of some form of protectionism starts to have some appeal. I think you mentioned you
    thought that was unlikely, but the argument could be made for that. Can you explain that a little bit please?>>Paul Krugman: Oh, no, I mean, there,
    there are different levels of argument. So the first is, you mean would
    Michigan manufacturing workers benefit from some protectionist measures,
    yes, at least in the short run. Would those protectionist measures
    make America as a whole poorer? Under normal circumstances,
    yes, but arguably not now, because we do have this depressed
    economy and we need more demand. You can even make an analytical case,
    though you want to be very careful about it, that the world as a whole would be a little
    richer if we had a little bit more protectionism because every individual country would
    feel freer to engage in fiscal stimulus, knowing that the extra jobs
    it creates would be at home, so the lack of policy coordination
    gives you some case for protectionism. Now, there are good reasons not
    to do this; namely, that in the, protectionism does make the
    world poorer in normal times. Normal times will return eventually and if
    you break up the system of trade we’ve built, then it’s very hard to put it together again — probably take decades of
    negotiations to reconstruct it, so you don’t want to do this lightly. But it does, look, take the issue. The tire tariff, that, there was a
    lot of hyperventilating about that. It happens to have been legal, because
    we had pre-arranged that we had more, that we had the right to temporary
    restrictions on Chinese exports that were imposing a big market share, market, taking a big market share
    in a short period of time. So we, it was, everyone’s out here
    someplace, it was, it was not a violation, it was not like the steel tariff that Bush
    did which was a clear violation of the rules. This was within the rules. Was it a wise thing economically? Probably not, but it, it was a response to
    the very real concerns of workers and, I, I think you have to be, you
    have to cut some slack in these very special, in certain situations. If temporary protectionism
    is what it needs to sort of hold our political fabric
    together for the time being, okay. As long as it doesn’t endanger the underlying
    rules of the game, which we have not done. So the, the way to think about it is, is,
    to, not be too much of, of a purist here. This is, this is, not the moment to be crusading
    for absolutely free trade and no use of the, the safeguards that are actually built
    into the rules of international trade. It’s a time to say, “Let’s get
    ourselves out of this economic crisis, so we don’t have worse things happen
    on, under, under irresistible pressure.”>>Yeah. Your show is great. I think everybody like, love it, and it’s great. It’s better than David Letterman [laughter]>>And without the blackmail, too.>>Haha. Well, you both are even better. I like those statements such as Gal
    Val [phonetic] and Dao Ao [phonetic] but I do have some question as
    you hope it’s not aggressive? Can you give me the honor to explain a better
    version of the statement “cash for trash.” We got 4.1 billion dollars
    interest rate, the interest payback and after Tim Geitner [phonetic] have
    that statement, and you have very strong, disagreement, and I was positing if
    you can give me the honor, explain, what is the latest version
    of your “cash for trash?”>>Paul Krugman: Okay. Cash for trash, which was not original. I picked up the phrase from
    somewhere, was the term I used for the original Paulsen [phonetic] plan, which
    was simply to buy toxic assets off the banks at prices that I guess would
    have been sort of invented. I thought that was a really bad idea, it
    would be a really bad idea for the taxpayer. What we actually did, or what Paulsen
    and then Geitner actually did, that was, that version was dropped. What was actually done was buying equity in,
    in the banks to improve their capital ratios. And that’s what’s being, you know,
    they’re being paid back and has actually, it appears in the end to be
    making a little bit of money for the taxpayer, but it’s
    not the original plan. The original Paulsen plan was a pure giveaway
    and, and that was, well, it wasn’t, you know, it was, it had the risk of turning into a
    pure giveaway and that was what was so awful. Now, what’s actually happened, I still think
    taxpayers did not get enough of the upside. We essentially set up our system under which it
    was clear that, we socialized the downside, and, but, but didn’t get the full payment for the
    taxpayers on the upside, and as it turns out, the banks have been, at least so far, more
    profitable than, than I expected and it, it’s turning out, at least in a financial sense,
    okay, although the banks are still not lending, but it, it was a, a, there was some really,
    the, you know, if you revisit what happened in those first 2 weeks after Lehman failed, there were some really, really
    bad proposals out there. And they, they got better. They still weren’t good, but they got a whole
    lot better after the, after the first round.>>You mentioned that you thought that
    the actions of the central bankers and Chairman Bernanke was essential
    to stabilizing the economic downturn, and you might be aware that there’s a bill
    sponsored in the House right now by everyone from Barney Frank to Michele Bachman
    calling for an audit to the Fed. I was just wondering if you could, clar-,
    like what, what do you think the real role of the Fed should be and how
    should it be administered?>>Paul Krugman: You know, I’m, I have
    mixed feelings about the whole thing. I believe in democracy, and the Fed is,
    you know, it is a part of the government, even though it’s sort of
    structured as if it was, in a way that makes it a little bit
    ambiguous and should have oversight. That said, the, it’s, it’s
    unclear what’s being audited. Part of the problem is we’re
    going to audit the Fed but without defining what is the
    Fed supposed to be doing, you know, the Fed is not there to be making a profit. The Fed is there to be stabilizing the economy. So what are we auditing exactly? And we have been reasonably well served. Not, not, with some big holes, but, by,
    by a quasi-independent central bank. Now, that, that’s turned out, the, it doesn’t
    look as good as it did 3 or 4 years ago, when people still thought that Alan Greenspan
    was right about everything, but, but it still, there’s a lot, you know, we do do this, we
    do create institutions that are supposed to be somewhat outside politics,
    ultimately accountable but somewhat outside. I mean, I used to say that the Federal
    Reserve was, was like the Supreme Court. That it was something that
    was, was stabilized, you know, something that was ultimately accountable,
    but, but, but insulated from politics and, and above the partisan process and then there
    was a point around 2001 where I was saying, okay, now we’re 0 for 2, but [laughter]
    but still, there’s some virtue in it. This isn’t going to be a, this is a tough
    debate, we got to think about the question. The notion of a very independent central bank
    was something that really took hold at a time when people thought that credibility and
    inflation fighting was the most important thing. And obviously, we are not in that world
    anymore, but it’s not something, and basically, I don’t think that any audit process in which
    Ron Paul is playing a large role in, in, in determining what we’re looking
    for is going to be helpful. [laughter]>>Susan Collins: Unfortunately, we
    just have time for one more question.>>What are the implications of your theories on
    clustering and economic geography for the future of automobile production in Michigan,
    and what must the region, the state, the local and the national policy do
    to retain its competitive advantage or is this exodus in manufacturing inevitable?>>Paul Krugman: Yeah, I’m not
    going to be really reassuring here. [laughter] What we think we know is that the
    sort of peak of the forces for manufacturing, clustering in the United States was, was
    probably in, in the 20s or the 30s, that the, the, you can actually this, Suku Kim
    [phonetic] has actually looked at these indices of geographic concentration of
    manufacturing in the United States and they peak around 1930, and head downwards. Partly that might be because mature industries, the necessity of having very specialized
    suppliers in the same place becomes less; partly it may just be something about
    the changing nature of manufacturing. It seems to be less and less necessary
    to have manufacturing clusters. If you look for the really spectacular
    industrial clusters or economic clusters in the United States now, they tend
    to be intangibles; they tend, I mean, Silicon Valley is not really at this point
    a semiconductor manufacturing cluster, it’s more like a semiconductor
    design cluster, and of course, the financial sector in New York City. So the, the forces that made it possible
    for Michigan to be the, this dominant force in automobile manufacturing, despite
    having high wages relative to other places where you might also do manufacturing
    seems to be reduced. It’s not clear that there is
    any way to recapture that. It’s not, and it’s not just imports, it’s the
    spread of the auto industry down auto alley, so it’s, it’s Tennessee and, and Georgia and
    the Carolinas to which stuff has, has migrated. So I don’t claim to be an
    expert on the auto industry, but I’ve read books and articles
    by people who are. And they seem to think that the
    conglomeration effects that once made this such a dominant place in the auto industry
    are just, just much weaker in today’s world. That doesn’t mean you can’t do other things. I mean, but its, that’s a wrenching transition. It’s, and, I guess ,the hopeful
    thing would be to imagine, and, boy, if I was a presidential candidate, I
    would be killing myself at this moment, but you think about Massachusetts, which had an
    old industrial base that went away much sooner than all those did here and
    eventually reconstructed itself as a, as an economy based on, it’s a little bit
    hard to know exactly what it’s based on, but appears to be [laughter] no, one of the
    things — people talk about in the geography, when people talk about amorphous specialization
    now, because it’s really hard to figure out sometimes what clusters are doing
    even though there’s clearly some kind of cluster there. But anyway, but has rebuilt and
    has become a reasonably strong, vital economy in spite of, of all that. The other thing, of course, is that, this
    is the United States and people move. I mean, there is a, there is this,
    Massachusetts is now a state that tends to have unemployment rates that are comparable
    to the national average that does pretty well, but its share of the American
    population has dropped a lot. And that, that happens as well. So, I don’t think you can imagine Michigan
    rolling back the clock to, to, to 1980. It’s not going to, it’s not
    going to work that way. Same thing could be, you know, the,
    there’s, there’s a, a, probably, I think there are a multiple
    of Bruce Springsteen songs about the industrial decline
    in New Jersey, right? So where I live and the industry, that
    industry has never come back, but there are, are other things, and so
    there’s a, the state has, has done reasonably well economically except
    right now, where everyone is suffering. So the, the short answer is, I don’t
    think you can just turn that back. You can probably try to hold on to some of
    it longer, you can try to find other things that will spring off from it, but
    it’s, what can I say, that, that, that’s an awfully downbeat way to end
    this, discussion [laughter] yeah, we, has to be something good to say
    here [applause] This is, Ann Arbor, Ann Arbor must have all kinds
    of knowledge resources; maybe this can be the hub of the new Michigan. Thank you all. [ Applause ] [ Music ]

    Brazil’s Geography Problem
    Articles, Blog

    Brazil’s Geography Problem

    August 14, 2019

    This video was made possible by Skillshare. Learn from 21,000 classes for free for two
    months at There are plenty of lines you can draw on
    the globe but perhaps none is more consequential than the equator. Of the 15 wealthiest countries
    in the world as measured by GDP per capita, all are in the northern hemisphere. Only 800
    million of earth’s 7.6 billion residents live south of the equator. There is a clear
    divide between north and south but of those 800 million people a quarter of them, about
    207 million, live here in Brazil. The country is an exception to the global trend. Brazil
    is the fifth most populous country in the world and the most populous entirely within
    the southern hemisphere. Its economy has grown enormously and the country is quickly developing.
    Although, the very land it sits on stacks the odds against it. Its location gives it
    a disadvantage. Given this, the question is whether Brazil can develop into a world superpower
    by the likes of the US, Europe, Russia, India, and China or if the country is doomed to fail? Brazil, of course, looks like this but in
    reality almost 80% of the country’s population lives here—within 200 miles of the coast.
    You do see a concentration of population near the coast in any country as it provides a
    cheap and easy means of transportation by boats and a source of food through fishing
    but few countries have such a severe concentration of people by the oceans as Brazil. This small
    area, for example, is home to three of Brazil’s six largest cities. Normally this would help
    development as the area in between cities will urbanize but this map doesn’t tell
    the whole story—this one does. You see, this area of Brazil is rather mountainous.
    The major cities mostly exist in small pockets of low-altitude, flat land on the ocean. This
    is because major cities need easy water access to get goods in and out. The majority of Brazil’s
    coast is defined by steep, sheer cliffs. Petrópolis, for example, a suburb of Rio, is a mere 13
    miles from the ocean and yet it sits at almost 3,000 feet of altitude. The rare areas with
    low-altitude land on the water are where cities like Porte Alegre, Rio de Janeiro, and Recife
    are but this pattern has two consequences. First, these cities, while being on flat land
    themselves are surrounded by cliffs and mountainous regions which means their growth is limited.
    There are plenty of cities that exist in mountainous regions but the world’s largest and most
    influential cities like London and Delhi and Beijing all exist in areas with absolutely
    no geographical features limiting their growth. The fact that Brazil’s cities locate in
    rare low-altitude coastal land means that the country will likely never have a megalopolis
    by the likes of the Pearl River Delta or the US Northeast. It takes a surprising six hours
    to drive between Rio and Sao Paolo and since there’s no low-altitude coastal land in
    between them, there are really no major cities in between them too. Brazil’s cities are
    confined to the geographically convenient areas which are spread out from each other.
    This means the cities can’t collaborate easily with each other thereby limiting Brazil’s
    impact on the world stage. Like any large country, Brazil’s development
    potential is also linked to how it gets its food. This, in fact, might be Brazil’s greatest
    obstacle as it really doesn’t hav e much great farmland, at least yet. The country’s
    main agricultural region is its south which is blessed with great soil and great rivers
    that help transport crops away from their farms. Interestingly, the same elevation that
    leads to steep coastal cliffs causes rivers to run in a counterintuitive direction. The
    Tietê river, for example, starts near Sao Paolo a mere 10 miles away from the Atlantic
    ocean but then runs inland almost 500 miles where it flows into the Paraná River which
    eventually flows out into the ocean near Buenos Aires, Argentina. If a farmer wants to export
    their food abroad, it’s often cheaper to first ship it the thousands of miles by boat
    on these rivers than just hundreds of miles overland to Brazil’s coast due to their
    poor road infrastructure. This means that Argentina gets the business of packing up
    and shipping Brazil’s food to other countries. That’s just lost money for Brazil as a result
    of their geography. Brazil’s south, though, does not even have enough land to feed the
    country’s own 200 million residents. Given that, the question is where to put the rest
    of the farms. In Brazil’s north is the Amazon basin. The
    central feature of this region is, of course, the Amazon River which is navigable for boats.
    Normally this feature would lead to a significant population as navigable rivers serve as cheap
    and easy transport for crops and goods but the banks of the Amazon are a tough place
    to farm or live. Not only are they muddy and unstable which makes building difficult, but
    the Amazon also regularly floods which means that every year many of the communities on
    the banks of the Amazon can have their streets underwater for months. Building and living
    in the Amazonian cities is difficult, but what’s more difficult is building the roads
    in and out. The largest city in the Amazon, Manaus, is home to 2.6 million people, it’s
    as big as Baltimore, and yet there are only three roads connecting the city to the outside
    world. Many of the smaller towns around the Amazon have no roads going in and out as its
    just incredibly costly and difficult to build roads through the rainforest. In fact, rather
    unbelievably, there is not a single bridge spanning over the Amazon so there is no way
    to drive from the northernmost region of Brazil to the rest without taking a ferry. Overall,
    this whole area is just empty. Even if there was the infrastructure to transport crops
    to market, farming in the Amazon involves clearing huge amounts of land and even then,
    the soil is relatively infertile which leads to poor yields. Despite being Brazil’s largest
    state, Amazonas is home to just 1.8% of its population. It just costs too much to build
    the infrastructure needed to live there. To the south of the Amazon, though, is an
    area known as the Cerrado. This vast savanna used to be in the same category as the Amazon—it
    was empty. The problem was not only that there was no natural network of rivers to get crops
    out of the area but also that the soil was too acidic and lacking enough nutrients to
    easily grow large quantities of crops. Between both the Amazon and the Cerrado being off-limits
    for large-scale farming, that meant that Brazil really didn’t have much land at all for
    farming. 30 years ago, with only the south to farm, Brazil was actually a net importer
    of food—it bought more food from other countries than it sold. That was until researchers discovered
    that all you needed to do to fix the soil was add phosphorous and lime. The phosphorous
    served as a fertilizer in the place of natural nutrients and the lime worked to reduce the
    level of acidity. In the early 2000’s, the country spread more than 25 million tons of
    lime per year and so today the Cerrado accounts for 70% of Brazil’s farmland. In addition,
    Brazil has begun growing soybeans. This plant is normally grown in more temperate climates
    such as the US, northern China, or Japan, but through cross-breeding and genetic modification
    it can be modified to grow in warmer and acidic environments such as the Brazilian Cerrado.
    Thanks to the enormous amount of land Brazil has and these technological advancements the
    country has gone from producing 16% of the world’s soybean in 2005 to 31% today.
    A country’s level of development is often to linked to how good its natural transportation
    system is. That’s part of why the US developed so much so fast—it has a great system of
    navigable rivers right in its agricultural heartland that helps get goods from the fields
    to cities fast and inexpensively. The Brazilian Cerrado, though, does not have that. It doesn’t
    even have much of a preexisting network of roads since before this recent agricultural
    advancement barely anyone lived there. Therefore anyone who wants to farm in the Cerrado has
    to find land, level it, treat it with phosphate and lime, and build roads to get supplies
    in and crops out. Cerrado farms can be profitable but it takes an enormous amount of money to
    build the infrastructure needed to start a farm. It’s not like the US or France or
    China where all you need is some land. The consequence of this is that farms in Brazil
    tend to owned by corporations rather than individuals because only corporations have
    the money to build farms. That therefore increases the level of wealth disparity in Brazil. According
    to the World Bank’s Gini index, Brazil is the 11th most economically unequal country
    in the world. Lower wealth disparity and the emergence of a middle class are indicators
    of economic development so the country should want to fix this. Brazil’s government has
    recognized its infrastructure problem as a source of its wealth disparity and has therefore
    worked to build roads in the interior so that more individuals can run farms but the government
    only has so much money to spend and it’s a big country.
    Brazil does, though, understand the importance of its core. It understands that the coastal
    cities are constrained and that economic development will come from the center. It was partially
    for that reason that the country decided to move its capital from Rio de Janeiro to here—Brasília.
    The thinking was that putting the capital in the core would stimulate the economically
    underdeveloped region and, in many ways, it worked. The city simply did not exist before
    1960 yet today more than 4 million people live in its metropolitan area. Being located
    on relatively flat land unlike Rio, the city can just grow and grow and grow without hinderance.
    Brazil has potential, but its defining issue is that it’s an expensive place. It’s a
    vicious cycle. In order to make money, Brazil needs to invest in its infrastructure but
    without people making money it doesn’t have the tax money to build what it takes t o transition
    into the first world. The question of why tropical countries are less developed is an
    enormous one without a clear answer, but Brazil is one of the most likely candidates to break
    this trend. It certainly lags behind other developing countries like China, but as its
    agriculture industry develops it will become a bigger and bigger exporter which will bring
    more money in. With time, its average income will inch up. The country already does have
    major companies in other industries such as banking, manufacturing, and oil but with how
    big Brazil is, agriculture is the one that’s the world’s focus right now. Only France,
    Germany, the Netherlands, and the United States export more agricultural products per year
    which is good company to be in. Brazil may not have the explosive growth rate of some
    other less developed countries but by continuously taking what it earns and reinvesting it to
    open up more of the country to agricultural production it will continue its path to superpower
    status. One of the common questions I receive is how
    I started making these videos. The first step was learning the skills needed from writing
    to research to sound design and editing, but for each and every one of them there’s a
    course on Skillshare. Skillshare, you see, is an online learning community that has more
    than 21,000 classes on whatever you want to learn. The variety is astounding. You can
    learn skills to help you make videos, to show off at parties, or even to help you get a
    job. There are also some great courses taught by fellow YouTubers such as Mike Boyd and
    Kurzgesagt. What’s best about Skillshare is that you can try it all for free for two
    months exclusively by going to Skillshare makes this show possible and its
    a great place to learn or improve your skills so please do check them out, once again, at Thanks for watching and I’ll see you again in three weeks for another
    Wendover Productions video.

    Canada & The United States (Bizarre Borders Part 2)
    Articles, Blog

    Canada & The United States (Bizarre Borders Part 2)

    August 12, 2019

    Canada and the United States share the longest,
    straightest, possibly boringest border in the world. But, look closer, and there’s plenty
    of bizarreness to be found. While these sister nations get along fairly
    well, they both want to make it really clear whose side of the continent is whose. And
    they’ve done this by carving a 20-foot wide space along the border. All five and a half
    thousand miles of it. With the exception of the rare New England
    town that predates national borders or the odd airport that needed extending, this space
    is the no-touching-zone between the countries and they’re super serious about keeping it
    clear. It matters not if the no-touching-zone runs through hundreds of miles of virtually
    uninhabited Alaskan / Yukon wilderness. Those border trees, will not stand. Which might make you think this must be the
    longest, straightest deforested place in the world, but it isn’t. Deforested: yes, but
    straight? Not at all. Sure it looks straight and on a map, and the
    treaties establishing the line *say* it’s straight… but in the real world the official
    border is 900 lines that zig-zags from the horizontal by as much as several hundred feet. How did this happen? Well, imagine you’re
    back in North America in the 1800s — The 49th parallel (one of those horizontal lines
    you see on a globe) has just been set as the national boundary and it’s your job to make
    it real. You’re handed a compass and a ball of string and told to carefully mark off the
    next 2/3rds of a continent. Don’t mind that uncharted wilderness in the way: just keep
    the line straight. Yeah. Good luck. With that. The men who surveyed the land did the best
    they could and built over 900 monuments. They’re in about as straight as you could expect a
    pre-GPS civilization to make, but it’s not the kind of spherical / planar intersection
    that would bring a mathematician joy. Nonetheless these monuments define the border
    and the no-touching-zone plays connect-the-dots with them. Oh, and while there are about 900 markers
    along this section of the border, there are about 8,000 in total that define the shape
    of the nations. Despite this massive project Canada and the
    United States still have disputed territory. There is a series of islands in the Atlantic
    that the United States claims are part of Maine and Canada claims are part of New Brunswick.
    Canada, assuming the islands are hers built a lighthouse on one of them, and the United
    States, assuming the islands are hers pretends the lighthouse doesn’t exist. It’s not a huge problem as the argument is
    mostly over tourists who want to see puffins and fishermen who want to catch lobsters,
    but let’s hope the disagreement gets resolved before someone finds oil under that lighthouse. Even the non-disputed territory has a few
    notably weird spots: such as this tick of the border upward into Canada. Zoom in and
    it gets stranger as the border isn’t over solid land but runs through a lake to cut
    off a bit of Canada before diving back down to the US. This spot is home to about 100 Americans and
    is a perfect example of how border irregularities are born: Back in 1783 when the victorious Americans
    were negotiating with the British who controlled what would one day be Canada, they needed
    a map, and this map was the best available at the time. While the East Coast looks pretty
    good, the wester it goes the sparser it gets. Under negotiation was the edge of what would
    one day be Minnesota and Manitoba. But unfortunately, that area was hidden underneath an inset on
    the map, so the Americans and British were bordering blind. Seriously. They guessed that the border should start
    from the northwestern part of this lake and go in a horizontal line until it crossed the
    Mississippi… somewhere. But somewhere, turned out to be nowhere as
    the mighty Mississippi stops short of that line, which left the border vague until 35
    years later when a second round of negotiations established the aforementioned 49th parallel. But there was still a problem as the lake
    mentioned earlier was both higher, and less circular than first though, putting its northwesterly
    point here so the existing border had to jump up to meet it and then drop straight down
    to the 49th, awkwardly cutting off a bit of Canada, before heading west across the remainder
    of the continent. Turns out you just can’t draw a straight(-ish)
    line for hundreds of miles without causing a few more problems. One of which was luckily spotted in advance:
    Vancouver Island, which the 49th would have sliced through, but both sides agreed that
    would be dumb so the border swoops around the island. However, next door to Vancouver Island is
    Point Roberts which went unnoticed as so today the border blithey cuts across. It’s a nice
    little town, home to over 1,000 Americans, but has only a primary school so its older
    kids have to cross international borders four times a day to go to school in their own state. In a pleasing symetry, the East cost has the
    exact opposite situation with a Canadian Island whose only land route is a bridge to the United
    States. And these two aren’t the only places where
    each country contains a bit of the other: there are several more, easily spotted in
    sattelite photos by the no-touching zone. Regardless of if the land in question is just
    an uninhabited strip, in the middle of a lake, in the middle of nowhere, the border between
    these sister nations must remain clearly marked.

    41st Annual International Railfair Model Railroad Show
    Articles, Blog

    41st Annual International Railfair Model Railroad Show

    August 11, 2019