Consumer Sovereignty and the Apocalypse-proof Dream

Dreaming tiny dreams has become a favorite pastime in the past five or 10 years.  The “tiny house movement” is gaining greater traction as ever more people choose to downsize for economic or ecological reasons. A small house, usually being defined as one offering less than 400 sq ft of space, offers a stimulating challenge about living … Read more

Three Models of Microfinancing

The Disruptive Influence of Microfinancing Ten percent of the world has access to traditional banking. And traditional banks often refuse to finance low-income or unemployed entrepreneurs, no matter how viable their ideas are. Now, enabled by the spread of mobile technology and wireless internet access, microfinancing organizations are attempting to eradicate this problem through small … Read more

Shedding Retardant Forces

Thomas Jefferson said it best. We might as well require a man to wear still the coat which fitted him when a boy, as civilized society to remain ever under the regimen of their barbarous ancestors. Today we should be asking, What is the regimen? What motivates it? What will our future be like if … Read more

Reflections on Right Sizing

“The foxes have holes, and the birds of heaven have nests, but the Son of Man has nowhere to lay his head,” and so it is today for many of his followers. Despite all the warnings about the snares laid by moneylenders, despite the fact that gage mort is literally translated as a pledge to … Read more

Is There Even One Statesman Among Them?

Last week, the U. S. House of Representatives voted, by a count of 285-144, to approve a three-month extension of the debt limit in a bill that concurrently pressures lawmakers to adopt a budget or have their pay withheld. The bill, known as the No Budget No Pay Act of 2013, directs both chambers of Congress to adopt a … Read more

Wall Street Analysts Have Outsourced Their Brains.

There is a short-sighted methodology for calculating the Internal Rate of Return (IRR) on an investment. It causes some investors to focus on smaller and smaller wins. If something doesn’t pay off for years, the IRR is so unattractive that the addled investor will focus capital on shorter and shorter term wins. The other myopic … Read more

Throughput Accounting

Throughput Accounting (TA) improves profit performance with better management decisions by using measurements that more closely reflect the effect of decisions on three critical monetary variables (throughput, investment (AKA inventory), and operating expense. It is thus part of the management accountants’ toolkit, ensuring efficiency where it matters as well as the overall effectiveness of the … Read more

The Quotient of a Lifetime

Renunciation really taught a great life-policy, though no one was aware of it. It is the method, in its refined form, of increasing life’s fraction by lowering the denominator of demands instead of striving always to increase the numerator of satisfactions. It comes to be one of the great life-philosophies. —Sumner & Keller (1927)