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A Week of Optimistic Posts

Posted by: Michael Mandel on April 14

Next week, that is. I’ve been too gloomy around here lately…violates my natural upbeat disposition. So next week (starting April 21), I promise a full five days of optimistic posts.* I’ve got most of them mapped out already, but if you have any suggestions or requests, send them on.

*this promise not valid in case of major financial or economic collapse

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Reader Comments


April 14, 2008 09:27 AM

That's terrific. I can just imagine some of the post titles:

"It's possible, with considerable effort, to imagine a scenario where things could be even worse!"

"Yeah, he's destroyed the US, but doctors have assured us the good news is, Bush will eventually die!"

"In this tax season, when so much of your money is going to Iraq and oil company subsidies, good news: we've tracked a dollar that actually goes to a school."

Mike Reardon

April 14, 2008 12:58 PM

I’m looking for a new tax policy that that supports and rewards direct domestic investment over financial manipulation and still continues foreign reinvestment.

Brandon W

April 14, 2008 04:26 PM

Granted, I'm in Michigan, which is in it's own Depression. But I'm trying to see how the current situation /doesn't/ turn in to the next Great Depression, and I can't. And why do we go into a major economic collapse every time we let major corporations run amuck?

Tom Coss

April 15, 2008 12:20 AM

I'm looking for evidence that health care is becoming more efficient. A report released today by the Institute of Medicine shows that despite the health care labor growth often pointed out by Michael, it's likely not enough to meet the demands of us boomers.

Mike Mandel

April 15, 2008 06:41 PM

Tom, one of the posts will be on healthcare...


April 15, 2008 06:42 PM


Heard of Rohmer's Law? It may be a good thing that supply is not keeping up with demand in health care - at least in certain specialties. I believe there is a misallocation of the health care labor force more than a shortage. Strong economic incentives exist for doctors to specialize, but one of the consequences of increasing pressures to contain costs and improve efficiency will be a reallocation toward primary care and prevention leading to fewer specialists and more primary care professionals (not necessarily doctors).


April 16, 2008 05:22 AM

How about this for a positive take on sub-prime.
The damage to consumers is relatively small (in economic if not personal terms) because those who cannot afford their home can walk away from it (and their debt) and start again. Other home owners who might find themselves with negative equity may just grin and bear it if they can still make the payments(a home is more than just an asset). Those who hurt will be those who made bad loans (fair enough), those who trade in mortgage debt (these people should know the risk), and those who bought these things from them thinking they were real investments (sad but hopefully they have a diversified portfolio). The net result could be wiping out of a lot of "excess cash" from the economy which would otherwise just be hanging around inflating the prices of important things like food and energy. Perhaps a lot of "the sky is falling" commentary is just coming from the losers in this scenario.

Joe Cushing

April 16, 2008 03:54 PM

How about a post where we talk about the history of early recession psychology. It seems everyone is going to be the next great depression. None of them are.

Brandon W

April 18, 2008 08:42 AM

What does it say about our society that the economy would likely collapse if everyone suddenly bought only what they truly need, and measured the increase in their quality of life by the number of healthy relationships they had with friends and family?


April 20, 2008 08:02 PM

Michael, did you check with your bosses?

Are you sure it's ok to mention something positive on a Business Week web page? Especially during a Presidential election year. Aren't you supposed to wait until after the election to mention any good news. The Democrats are counting on your pessimism. Check with your bosses. They might out you.

Thank you for your interest. This blog is no longer active.



Michael Mandel, BW's award-winning chief economist, provides his unique perspective on the hot economic issues of the day. From globalization to the future of work to the ups and downs of the financial markets, Mandel-named 2006 economic journalist of the year by the World Leadership Forum-offers cutting edge analysis and commentary.

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