COMMERCE

With the Local Newspaper in Decline, What is the Fate of Local Reporting?

by Neil Strebig
Local newspapers have struggled for more than a decade to secure a foothold in the digital era and stay in business. Dwindling revenues and flagging demand for print editions have led some southwestern Pennsylvania papers to close and others to downsize their newsrooms, affecting coverage of local news. To make…

Austin’s Conundrum of Success

by Paul Scripko
Austin, Texas is one of a handful of cities in the world currently blessed in reputation — big enough to have almost all the cultural amenities of cities twice our size, yet small enough to be tops on any of those innumerable “livability” lists.

Death Becomes Her

“Why?” is the obvious question: dead bodies of all ages (arriving daily), grieving families, being surrounded by sadness and despair, not to mention dealing with the more unseemly but necessary “physical” aspects of the job. As a family business — sure, that makes sense — family pressure can go a long way, and there…

Fed Folly and its Practical Effects

“The… task of economics is to demonstrate to men how little they really know about what they imagine they can design.” –Friedrich von Hayek

The Working Life

by Madison Nicole Snyder
Work is a fact of life for nearly 1.2 million southwestern Pennsylvanians. Some love what they do; others, not so much. Either way, work consumes a healthy share of their time and energy. Their weeks are structured around it. It’s what puts money in their pockets.

The Fed’s Act of Cowardice

We are talking about America’s Monetary Keystone Kops, who have, since 1987 (when Greenspan became chair of the Federal Reserve), been masquerading as central bankers. (Or maybe it’s the other way ‘round, it’s hard to tell.)

Bernanke’s Blunders

We’ve assessed the successes and failures of central bankers in the 1930s. Now let’s turn our attention to their modern counterparts.

Ageless Wisdom: Jim Roddey, 85

In part one of this video series, Jim Roddey, age 85, discusses his contributions to Pittsburgh as a businessman and first Allegheny County Executive.

Why Gold Had to Go

The “gold standard,” which prevailed in the developed world for many decades, simply means that some fraction of a country’s paper currency has to be backed by — that is, convertible into — gold. In the U.S. that fraction was 40 percent. Since a government on the gold standard can’t print money without increasing…

Central Bankers Then and Now, Part III

Scholars of the Great Depression typically blame policymakers of the 1930s for failing to do four things:

The Great Depression vs. the Great Recession

Subsequent to the Global Financial Crisis, U.S. GDP has grown, in the aggregate, 37%. During the period of the Great Depression, U.S. GDP grew, in the aggregate, 40%. In the 1930s, the U.S. economy declined 26% between 1930 and 1933 and unemployment rose to 25%. During the Great Recession the…

Focus on Leadership

Five regional leaders address key elements and lessons of what it means to lead.

Central Bankers Then and Now

Not that anyone cares, but in these pages I’ve been highly critical of the “unconventional” policies pursued by every central banker on the planet since the Financial Crisis.

Pittsburgh’s Hardest Working Angel

Enter the warehouse and, if you aren’t bewildered by the seeming randomness of it all, you get a sense of the urgency. Mobile hospital beds. Crutches. Respirators. IV poles guarding bedpans. Hundreds of boxes of pharmaceuticals. Medical equipment bound for Nigeria, Uganda, Guyana. And for some reason, dozens of suitcases,…

A Look Inside Google’s Unconventional Bakery Square Offices

by David Aschkenas
What is really behind the brick walls of that redeveloped Nabisco cookie factory building in Bakery Square, labelled with Google’s colorful logo? Think: hammocks, coffee shops, dining rooms, gaming rooms and pool tables. Created in collaboration with local architecture firm Strada, Google’s office space in Pittsburgh’s East End is playful,…
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