Archive for January, 2009

Economists are often the subject of jokes, both serious and non-serious. The funny ones include this classic video, and Levitt recently asked his readers to compare economists to garbage. The more serious ones generally surround the lack of consensus among economists or their absurd assumptions. A recent  EconTalk podcast touches on these issues (the way Robin thinks is fascinating as usual and he’s the kind of person I’d love to have around).


With the financial crisis, there are more bankers-bashing posts as well. With criticisms on excessive pay or profligacy constantly floating around (story on John Thain for example), it’s easy to see why bankers are probably the last men on earth people want to sympathize with. This NY Times article talks about what happen to those who date bankers.

Being a nottie economist in an investment bank seems like the worst possible combination now. Do
two negatives make a positive?

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Chinese New Year

Chinese New Year isn’t a good time to be in Singapore. The streets are mostly empty with most shops closed. And besides fast food chains, which I don’t eat, it’s rather hard to find anything else to eat. The weather is cloudy and windy today. And wandering around the empty streets with my MP3 makes me feel like a tragic MV actor (since when did I start part-time as a 憂鬱MV男主角?). To avoid being mistaken as a tragic subject, next year I will either store up lots of healthy food or fly to another place.


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Assorted links

Bryan on parenting. The same Bryan I met in Singapore. I look forward to read his forthcoming book.

I now know why I never feel ‘hot’.

Obama’s Inaugural Address. The Japanese uses it to study English.

Want to avoid impulse shopping? Don’t touch the item. 

Happy Chinese New Year to all.

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Doomsday Economist

My boss and I published a report recently and it was being quoted in several news articles (examples are here, here, here, and here). Although it’s good that people pay attention to our research, it can be annoying when the press over-sensationalize things, given it’s a potentially sensitive topic. My boss joking said we should send The Strait Times a photo of me with my usual stupid smile. I suppose that means if anything goes wrong, I’ll be the one to be blamed. I hope the government don’t kick me out of the country, or we would need to add one more person to our job loss forecasts (or did we already take that into consideration?). I don’t think publicity is what I need now. My goal is to continue to learn more about economics and to do better research. I also don’t intend to become another Dr. Doom, so I hope our next research that the press picks up would have a brighter view.

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Misc. links

Why we should get away from the city from time to time. I enjoy walking along the river and find gazing at the open sky soothing, whether during the day or at night when my lovely lady appears (interesting to revisit how I think back then).

A long article on what does knowing your personal genome mean.  I would be interested in, but not obsessive about, knowing mine, partly out of curiosity, partly to learn something about myself. Reading this article makes me want to watch Gattaca again.

Think economics is boring, check this out. The "You might be an economist if…" section makes sense to me. Perhaps that’s why I’m often the subject of jokes.

Two interesting guys talking about interesting topics.

Just discover that Vox has an audio podcast section. More interesting things to listen to.

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The global economy might not be doing well, but the Wanderer’s internal world remains bright and hopeful. The Wanderer will continue to live life to its fullest. This year’s theme is depth over breadth: to focus on a few important things and to do them well before attempting the others. Same principle applies to relationship.

2009 Roadmap

Stay healthy, maintain my little sunshine fingertips, and avoid 還我師師拳.

Exercise: daily push-up and sit up, jog at least once a week, work out and stretch twice a week, basketball once a month, and continue to walk everywhere.

Food: limit dessert to weekend and with friends only, continue to eat healthy and use meals to catch up with people.

Finance: spend prudently to expand opportunity set and to focus on important things; continue to track and balance budget on a quarterly basis; gradually improve my quality of living and later this year start looking for a better den that is more private and can accommodate more friends and animals.

Career: be the best in the field with quality research and good work attitudes; aim to learn something, add value, and act professionally on a daily basis; learn economic concept by heart: set 5 hours per week to
learn/review economics through textbooks, journals, reports in addition to blogs.

Personal: set 4 hours per week to brush up my Japanese and maybe learn Chinese Ping Ying and a secret language; reflect and write regularly and aim to blog at least once week; draw at least once a month; continue to read widely, keeping in mind quality over quantity; watch movies, concerts, and dramas with
spare time.

Work hard to make BD Co. Ltd. prosper and appreciate in value: DDYBBL – 幸せになる

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