Brazil’s World Cup To-Do List

Preparing its transportation infrastructure for the 2014 World Cup and the 2016 Olympics, Brazil has one giant to-do list. In the air and on the ground, it has the participants, the officials and the fans that have to be moved around.…

The Reason That Certain Quarterbacks Earn More

A 3.2 difference in a facial symmetry score can mean an extra $378,000 in  pay for a quarterback. According to research from economist David Berri on salaries from 1995-2009, if a quarterback is better looking, his salary will exceed others…

Why Do Young Adults Live With Their Parents?

In Slovakia, Bulgaria, Greece, Malta and Italy, young people, age 25-34, live with their parents. But not in Denmark, Finland Sweden, and Norway. Below you can see the country stats: The Reasons Pew Research provided some insight about multigenerational U.S. households. In 2012, returning…

Have We Halved the Deficit?

In the State-of-the-Union, President Obama said, “Our deficits–cut by more than half.” Looking at the federal deficit as a percent of GDP, we can say that the deficit is much lower than 4 years ago. BUT… The deficit was an unusually…

One Reason That $1.1 Trillion is Not So Much

The Congress just agreed on $1.1 trillion in federal spending. But let’s look a bit more closely… Each year, I give my class a federal budget graph and ask them to identify the relative size of 17 main spending categories.…

One Way That the “Poor Beat the Rich”

In just 8 minutes, Hans Rosling shows us that, with child mortality rates, the developing world is making more progress than we might expect. With his captivating “gapminder” approach, he creates a race between Sweden in 1900 and Bangladesh in…

The Trade-Offs of Prolonging Life

From guest blogger, Mariana Do Carmo, student at Yale University. What if prolonging life results in prolonging not only your suffering but also that of others? The recent development of universal health care in the United States will make it…

The Revolution That Grandma Started

The NYC Miss Subways competition was about a lot more than pretty “girls” (as they were called). To become Miss Subways for a month, applicants had to submit a picture to the John Robert Powers Agency. From perhaps 1000 applicants,…

Connecting Abigail Adams to Janet Yellen

Reading about “touch generations” in Sam Arbesman’s Wired Magazine blog, I realized that Abigail Adams and Janet Yellen were connected. Different generations touch when one’s birth year coincides with someone else’s death. Born in 1744, Abigail Adams died in 1818, the year that Karl Marx was…

The Green Blog: Why Japan Might Face a Demographic Crisis

By Madeleine Vance, guest blogger and student at Kent Place School. As of late, younger Japanese citizens are choosing to live the single life rather than get married. But why? Seven years ago, Japan’s population climaxed at 128 million, but…