Jun 27, 2009

Is It Hot In Here Or Is It Just Me?

YES, finally! My "Living in Atlanta during the summer feels like a Dutch oven" experiment is going to pay off big time.

My fellow Tokyo travelers from Wisconsin, Pennsylvania, Minnesota, New York and Nova Scotia are not going to know what hit them when we are sitting in our first sweltering meeting next week and their hair starts to melt like cheese in a microwave.

82 degrees? Please, we do that for breakfast down here in the ATL. I once rode on a non-air conditioned bus with 45 high schoolers from Peachtree City to Augusta, GA. when it was about 98 degrees outside. After that nightmare an office building set at 82 degrees is going to feel like Irkutsk in January.

Lobster, Get Your Cheap Lobster Here...

A little while back Mrs. EconBlog and I were out for dinner and she ordered the lobster. On the menu it had the old "market rate" bit next to the Maine lobster. To me "market rate" usually translates into "big money" so I was expecting a huge bill. Much to my surprise the lobster was very affordable. Great news for the Mrs. and I but bad news for the salty old fisherman who was probably out on the water at 4:30am setting traps.

Turns out there seems to be a few too many salty old fishermen and women out on the water. Supply and demand wins again! If this keeps up lobster will be cheaper than shrimp in a matter of months. Pass the melted butter please.

Jun 16, 2009

Summer Schedule

Hands up, who is in full summer mode? Yeah, me too. Posting will slow to two or three times a week for the next little bit. Enjoy your vacation and the time away from students. Look for daily updates from Tokyo, Japan at the beginning of July.

Jun 13, 2009

More bad news for Detroit.
When it rains it pours.

Jun 12, 2009

A Minimum Debate

Chances are good that some of you have students working for minimum wage. The minimum wage, which dates back to 1938, is set to increase to $7.25 next month. Just like fluctuating gas prices, the minimum wage law is one of those great "go to" topics that never fail to get the kids fired up.

This article could be a good starting point for a discussion on the con's and more con's of raising minimum wage. Also helpful is this Department of Labor site that tracks wage rates since the 1930's. Hmmm.....so the minimum wage has only increased 22 times between 1938 and 2009. I wonder how many times Congressional pay has increased during that same time?

Jun 10, 2009

Debt Creation

Those certainly are some big downward arrows you got there.

Jun 3, 2009

Uhhhh, Like, No Kidding Chairman Bernanke

File this one under "Tell me something I don't know." Maybe we should have been trying to do this since, oh, I don't know, the early 80's?

Jun 1, 2009

Summertime Plans

Yeah, it's finally June! Right now you are staring at nothing but two months of sleeping in and enjoying life without students. Anyone have any cool trips lined up? Maybe a little study tour to some far off land perhaps? I know of a few teachers who are heading overseas to learn more about economics this summer.

Michael Melvin (Starr's Mill) of "From the Classroom" blogging fame and GAEE President-Elect Chris Cannon (Sandy Creek) will be spending two weeks in Germany learning about German education, culture, government and business. Both were selected to participate in a Goethe-Institut sponsored Transatlantic Outreach Program excursion. Want to learn more about how they were selected and what they have to look forward to while in Deutschland? Of course you do.

2009 Georgia Economics Teacher of the Year Amy Hennessy (Davidson Fine Arts) is headed to South Africa on a Council for Economic Education sponsored study tour in August. Amy will be spending time learning more about economic education and culture in South African schools and she will be meeting with government, business and educational leaders.

Finally, yours truly will be blogging from Tokyo at the end of this month. I will be traveling with nine other teachers from the US and Canada as part of a Keizai Koho Center Educator Fellowship program. Our goal will be to to learn about contemporary Japanese society and to enhance the teaching of global perspectives. The trip, which is sponsored by the National Association of Japan-America Societies, will include meetings with government officials, educators, and business people; visits to elementary and secondary schools; tours of major industrial and corporate facilities; a home stay with a Japanese family....and me eating large quantities of makizushi.