Month: December 2011

Almost 4 years after recession began, Americans still driving less

I follow a lot of monthly economic data that I don’t post here on the blog, but I’ve been paying regular attention to the U.S. Department of Transportation Federal Highway Administration estimates of total traffic volume. The prolonged decline in…

Case-Shiller: Oct. home price declines “broad-based”; Atlanta leads the decline

The title of today’s S&P/Case-Shiller press release pretty much says it all: The Fourth Quarter Starts with Broad-based Declines in Home Prices Case-Shiller looks at repeat sales of homes. It’s one of the most widely respected home price indices, but…

What does smaller government look like in Georgia?

In my City Talk column today, I talk about cuts to education in Georgia over the last few years. I just want to follow up here with a post about total government employment in Georgia using Georgia Department of Labor…

Calculated Risk on private investment, GDP and the business cycle

Wonkishness warning: Very high. Calculated Risk has a great post today: Private Investment and the Business Cycle The post shows that while private investment typically only accounts for about 15% of GDP, it plays an outsized role in economic recoveries.…

Merry Christmas, Part 2 (beer on Sunday, link to today’s column, Mannheim Steamroller)

Early here on Christmas morning, someone wound up on my blog after doing an internet search for the following phrase: “can u buy beer on christmas in savannah” The answer, amazingly, is yes. Liquor can’t be sold in the state…

Merry Christmas

This video is 34 years old and it still works for me. I remember seeing this when it was first broadcast and being absolutely enchanted.

Georgia’s new political map gets federal approval

From the AP’s Feds approve new Ga. political maps: It is the first time that Georgia Republicans — who now control both chambers of the state Legislature and the governor’s mansion — have controlled the redistricting process from start to…

Happy Festivus!

Intellectual laziness: The payroll tax cut edition

From Charles Krauthammer’s The GOP’s payroll tax debacle in The Washington Post: A two-month extension is nothing more than a long tax weekend. What employer is going to alter his hiring decisions — whose effects last years — in anticipation…

Intellectual laziness: The “I Want to Believe” edition

I suspect that there might have been an advanced civilization on Mars in the distant past. Despite a few tantalizing photos from the Cydonia Zone, there’s obviously no evidence of that. (Photos taken from other angles and with different shadows…

Is there an 1100 year old Maya site in north Georgia?

No. But that’s the story that’s making the rounds today. As of right now, the story Massive 1,100+ year old Maya site discovered in Georgia’s mountains, has already been shared over 16,000 times on Facebook. But keep in mind that…

WSJ: What a payroll tax increase would mean for workers

I think it’s clear that the politics of this issue are working in favor of President Obama and Democrats, but I’m a lot more interested in the impact that the 2% cut in payroll taxes had on the economy in…

Philly Fed state coincident indexes show growth in Georgia, most of nation

It’s been a pretty good fourth quarter for economic data, especially the recent drop in unemployment rates in the nation as a whole and in Georgia specifically. Now, there are lots of negative trends in that employment data, and there…

Savannah metro unemployment falls to 8.4% in November, but the devil is in the details

From the Georgia Dept. of Labor this morning: State Labor Commissioner Mark Butler announced today that the preliminary unemployment rate in metro Savannah decreased to 8.4 percent in November, down six-tenths of a percentage point from 9.0 percent in October.…