What (Baseball) Spitballs and (Coronavirus) Sanitizer Have in Common

During the 1870s some players discovered they could change a baseball’s trajectory at precisely the right moment. It just took a bit of spit. Decades later they banned the spitball because it made for boring games. Fans wanted more action,…

Green Blog: Stronger than the Storm?

By Amy Tourgee, guest blogger, Kent Place School alumna and Environmental Studies undergraduate at Princeton University Well, Labor Day weekend has come and gone, meaning summer has finally come to an end. Pools are closing, kids are going back to…

Human Capital: Electricity Matters

After Hurricane Sandy struck my NJ area, a physician friend told me that, with no refrigeration, her vaccine supply spoiled. Imagine her temporary problem as a permanent condition in the developing world. Lack of dependable electricity affects vaccines and the ability…

Disaster Economics: Neighbors and Utility Companies

Still dealing with the impact of Hurricane Sandy, I keep pondering the cost of preparing for the next storm. Personally, it has been worth purchasing a generator. But, what to do about my neighbor? Located a half mile from my…

Hurricane Sandy Stories

Just some notes today about close-to-home Hurricane Sandy economics. Trees: Walking down my NJ street, I stopped to talk with 2 gentleman in a truck from Gainesville, Florida. They said they did tree work and had driven the 1000 miles to look…

A New Name for Price Gouging

Yesterday, a friend of mine waited on a gas line for 3 hours to fill his tank. The price was close to normal but the line was not. Hearing about gas lines, I remembered when Boston’s water supply was temporarily…

The Economics of Natural Disasters

With Hurricane Sandy having just blown through my NJ neighborhood, our streets are covered with wires, leaves, branches and several huge trees. During the storm, Consolidated Edison darkened large swaths of NYC and the New York Stock Exchange suspended trading…

Storm Warnings

Some thoughts today about predicting natural disasters. Weeks before 308 people perished in L’Aquila from an earthquake, a government commission proclaimed the chance was slim that a disaster would occur. It did happen and now, the 6 scientists and single…