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I’m going to need more rum and popcorn for the theater that is about to take place in mainstream media over this…
Rum and popcorn? I never tried this. Interesting combination!
Re. productivity, I like economists’ speculation on causes for productivity changes best, particularly vs. CEOs who, at least the celebrity ones reported on in the press, seem often to latch on to the most façile explanations.
Here’s part of Dean Baker’s take, for instance…
"To see this story, we can look at an ad hoc measure of productivity growth in the construction industry. …
This would imply roughly a 7.8 percent decline in productivity over this ten-quarter period.
It doesn’t seem plausible that either construction technology or the quality of labor in the industry could have deteriorated so much in such a short period of time. The more obvious explanation for a decline in productivity in construction is that many workers were effectively wasting their time waiting for parts or materials that were needed for them to do their jobs."
Having had this exact conversation quite often, I think this is multifaceted. There is for sure the aspect you mention of waiting on supplies, but we also have an employee issue where I am. Many of the older workers where I am, the ones that haven’t missed a day of work in 40 years, took early retirement when covid hit, and effectively removed themselves, their dedication, and their skills from the work force. Many of the young workers seem plagued with issues that limit them to shorter days, and in many cases, fewer days. And then there are the ones that have covid every second month now, and this isn’t necessarily on them, because many people can’t go to work if they have cold or flu like symptoms anymore. So when you add all these things together, a 7.8% decline seems quite feasible.