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Alessandro Cripsta

Good afternoon.

Debate victory

It took four female moderators to get US presidential candidates to debate childcare. Five Democratic debates in the 2020 campaign have already occurred, but childcare and paid family leave—one of the most pressing economic and social problems facing Americans today—were finally discussed.

It took four female moderators to get US presidential candidates to debate childcare

The lives of working parents are complex indeed, and it's amazing to me that our political sphere is only just beginning to understand that. Our economy is one in which so many families, even quite privileged ones, are barely holding it all together. How much GDP is sacrificed when American parents are

The lives of working parents are complex indeed, and it's amazing to me that our political sphere is only just beginning to understand that. Our economy is one in which so many families, even quite privileged ones, are barely holding it all together. How much GDP is sacrificed when American parents are busy scrambling daily to arrange suitable childcare or stressing about the cost or logistics of it?

I have to keep reminding myself that these are relatively new mainstream issues for this country to confront (new, that is, for families in which the mother works outside the home as a choice versus a necessity; in some segments of society, the working-mom thing has been happening for generations, long before anyone ever heard of parental leave). But it's about time we start caring about the issue of childcare, and about time that our politicians start talking about it. I know some very stressed-out working parents on both sides of the aisle who will rather appreciate it.

The 5th democratic debates last night may have seemed relatively uneventful to the outside eye, but they brought about at least two big changes: All the moderators were women, and for the first time, the candidates were asked what they would do to fix America's childcare problem. Only 3 candidates addressed

The 5th democratic debates last night may have seemed relatively uneventful to the outside eye, but they brought about at least two big changes: All the moderators were women, and for the first time, the candidates were asked what they would do to fix America's childcare problem. Only 3 candidates addressed the question (Harris, Klobuchar, and Yang), though Warren brought up the topic of her own accord in her opening statement.

Connecting to the internet

Amazon-ification

Today in impeachment

Buying, mindlessly

When superpowers collide

A US show of support for Hong Kong's protesters... President Trump is expected to sign bipartisan legislation to set up regular reviews of Hong Kong’s special status with the possibility of sanctions, Bloomberg reports.

Trump Expected to Sign Hong Kong Bill Despite China Threats

This is a very complex issue which I have addressed before, having been a resident of Hong Kong since 2006. This is one issue (the only issue?) where Trump has bipartisan support - that is taking a hard line with China. In fact Congress might be even more hardline than Trump now as so many are concerned

This is a very complex issue which I have addressed before, having been a resident of Hong Kong since 2006. This is one issue (the only issue?) where Trump has bipartisan support - that is taking a hard line with China. In fact Congress might be even more hardline than Trump now as so many are concerned about the national security ramifications of a rising China. It was obvious that such a bill would have good momentum.

Looking at the Hong Kong protests: the one hand the youth of Hong Kong have much to complain about with extortionate property prices and an ultra competitive environment upon graduation. Many Hong Kong Chinese also feel that their own unique culture is slipping away because of the influence of mainland China. And the government of Hong Kong doesn't seem so empathetic to their plight: some say its because government is controlled by the wealthy real estate tycoons. And there are a lot of articles about this including a blog I wrote. In fact in some ways Hong Kong shares many of the characteristics of other cities around the world which are suffering from civil unrest (including Paris) due to historically high gaps in wealth and income. Regarding the push for 'democracy,' of course I think it's a noble cause. However, it's not all black and white. The Hong Kong government and bureaucracy has been competent in many areas. I've never encountered a civil service which is so efficient - and friendly. And when Hong Kong was a colony of my country, we did not grant it democracy. In fact, it is more democratic today than under the British! So I think the underlying causes of all of this are more economic than regarding democracy. Look at many other countries around the world which don't have democracy, the West barely comments. Why are we making such a big deal of it now (and in some ways helping perpetuate the conflict)? Some might argue that it's because China is in the cross hairs. When I forecast that Donald Trump would win the US Presidency I warned that his administration would be ultra aggressive with China, and would go much further than anyone would imagine. I also warned just before the Hong Kong protests flared up that Hong Kong was about to have a crisis. I could see the stress building up in society (as well as looking at a lot of data) and I knew that the West would probably take a strong anti China stance. For the record, I am not a blind pro China analyst. I think we should always be (constructively) critical of government actions and hold them accountable. However, I think the trajectory we are currently on is dangerous.

The Chinese government has its faults, but living in China is not anywhere nearly as bad as some journalists describe. It is true in some areas freedom of speech is curtailed (some people would say the same of Singapore) but without the political correctness the West has, in many areas there are even greater freedom of speech. I've heard many people say that, including a famous Silicon Valley VC who wrote about it in a blog. If you look at governance from the perspective or creating a society which is growing in abundance , harmonious and happy, then China might be said to be doing a good job. I interviewed Parag Khanna 2 years ago after he write his book Technocracy in America and he certainly subscribes to that view. Now is a good time for the West to examine its own system and ask profound questions - and stop intervening in other nations. If journalists went on to the streets of Hong Kong and spoke with a lot of the long term foreign residents, they would find that many of them are not happy with the actions of the extremist protestors (throwing petrol bombs and assaulting women and even children who disagree with them). We should be looking at our own system now. Personally I think its a good time to go back to the drawing board. I happened to pick up a copy of Plato's Republic this week, and somewhere it describes the events in Sparta and Greece, saying that democracies can result in senseless overseas wars and oligarchies can result in civil wars. (He recommended philosopher rulers - ironically something that the Chinese have always aspired to). The West might be oscillating between the two systems. As we move to a multipolar world and the American Empire ends (I don't think its the end of the US, just a transformed US), I think we need to move back to a more pragmatic form of geopolitics and diplomacy. I call it live and let live. If we allow a peaceful rise of China, we could actually be enter a very peaceful time of human history.

Confronting inequality

Women remain deeply underrepresented in aviation. But a shortage of trained pilots is offering more opportunities than ever for women to make fresh gains in the high-skilled profession.

Why are there so few women in aviation?

Diversity is good for our industries. Across aviation, we need women in tech roles, leadership positions, and in the air.

I've been taking flying lessons (for fun) for several years and have been amazed at the lack of gender diversity in the air. We don't encourage young women and girls to take enough risks in general, so it shouldn't be a surprise unfortunately. We need to change this across industries.

ETFs are eating the market

ETFs didn’t democratize finance. Could they? Over a third of Americans spent more on coffee than in investments last year. Getting people without much money to invest small amounts for their own good is hard. ETFs could help solve that problem. ✦

ETFs didn’t democratize finance. Could they?

Given the obvious volatility of the markets and that the ETF provides no protection convincing the public to invest in stocks should be hard.

Most people instinctively follow two adages. First if you can't afford to pay you can't afford to play. Second there is rule about a fool and money.

Even the

Given the obvious volatility of the markets and that the ETF provides no protection convincing the public to invest in stocks should be hard.

Most people instinctively follow two adages. First if you can't afford to pay you can't afford to play. Second there is rule about a fool and money.

Even the casually interested know the markets are often opaque and recent news about Uber and Wework is not going to support conference.

The ETF marketers also need to explain how they make money. Market intermediaries almost always make money no matter what the market does and small investors need to pay attention to the costs.

The new face of education

Employers shouldn’t obsess over hiring elite students. Hiring from lesser-known colleges can benefit companies in surprising ways.

Only recruiting the smartest students is a dumb hiring strategy.

It is really important to hire people who have the humility to take feedback and the confidence to give it. The college elite may not always bring that to the table. It is also equally important to get people from a wider section of the society, especially if you are building a startup that would cater to the entire country.

Who’s in charge of Christmas?

All we want for Christmas is Q

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The Sharing Economy Was Always a Scam

The Sharing Economy Was Always a Scam

Read more on OneZero

From Our Members

  • Airbnb buying Hotels Tonight is already a sign that the sharing economy isn't reducing consumption but creating more inventory. I won't write it off just yet though: there are redundancies being removed -- DVD shops with Netflix, hotel websites with Airbnb etc. These resource-sharing platforms also create

    Airbnb buying Hotels Tonight is already a sign that the sharing economy isn't reducing consumption but creating more inventory. I won't write it off just yet though: there are redundancies being removed -- DVD shops with Netflix, hotel websites with Airbnb etc. These resource-sharing platforms also create a social experience which adds to the business of trust that Airbnb is in. Think of the sharing economy as a consolidation of resources, with names and faces. I think this vision will still stay for a while more, as trust becomes more valuable.

  • One truth here is that early tech evangelists always see the best potential in any new technology, whether that be personal computers, the internet, or the sharing economy. Ultimately, it is capitalists that see how to extract value and through making the vision a widely adopted reality, also choke the

    One truth here is that early tech evangelists always see the best potential in any new technology, whether that be personal computers, the internet, or the sharing economy. Ultimately, it is capitalists that see how to extract value and through making the vision a widely adopted reality, also choke the idealism from the vision. Ultimately, I'm a fan of technology for the same reason that I'm a fan of humanity - I think that in our quest to evolve with higher levels of consciousness, there is a goal worth striving for, even if it means our societies are less utopian than we wish they were.

  • We should call things what they are, and this nice discussion raises key issues with the so-called sharing economy. It seems the gauzy term ‘sharing’ was embraced to make companies seem warmer and friendlier, even as commercial considerations dominated the motivating principles that led to the founding

    We should call things what they are, and this nice discussion raises key issues with the so-called sharing economy. It seems the gauzy term ‘sharing’ was embraced to make companies seem warmer and friendlier, even as commercial considerations dominated the motivating principles that led to the founding of the companies. If you’re paying for the temporary use of something, that sounds like renting. If your work and how you do it is largely dictated by a company, you’re probably not just a ‘independent contractor’. I’m not sure it could have been different, but I think we should call things what they are; most of the things called ‘sharing’ were mislabeled.

    Perhaps more importantly, the system effects of ‘sharing’ — reduced friction of consumption/usage — lead to more, not less, consumption. So due to ‘sharing companies,’ we have more cars on the roads, rather than fewer, while fewer people use public transit, which actually is a shared resource (see New York’s data over the last year or two). And as the author points out, investors and companies ‘demand growth, and platforms demand scale.’ The second order effects of risk-shifting and what this means for economic volatility are also worth considering. As these systems and platforms seem here to stay, the question is how we manage to satisfy multiple stakeholders.

  • As if blockchain is an ultimate solution if I am not misreading the last paragraph. It is definitely one thing to invest in aside the sharing economy and venture capitalism. Not regulating and taxing the sharing economy or other such growing venture capitals means going against the very principles of

    As if blockchain is an ultimate solution if I am not misreading the last paragraph. It is definitely one thing to invest in aside the sharing economy and venture capitalism. Not regulating and taxing the sharing economy or other such growing venture capitals means going against the very principles of sharing, which means coming full circle, taxing these for profit only companies enables them to give back, but a smaller portion, however, it is up to the policy makers in the government, private contractors and the visionaries heralding the top corporate cultures to really put the social in Corporate Social Responsibility.

  • The "sharing economy" wasn't built to be a primary source of income. It was built to put underutilized resources to work.

    It should be no surprise that it isn't really working out as a primary source of income.

  • Seems to me that the limiting factor in a more robust shared economy is the lack of effective, sustainable business models. The underlying concept remains valid - how best to optimize consumptive use of small assets among a community. Not sure I’d write it off completely yet. Still plenty of room to explore innovative models.

  • Matt Walters the final statement in your comment couldn't be said better.

  • Idealism was ripped from the cold dead hands of the Sharing Economy the day Airbnb announced it's IPO date in June 2018. Airbnb is being taken to the woodshed in Boston for people buying entire floors of new luxury condos and then renting them out on Airbnb trying to avoid the local hotel taxes.

  • 😢😢