In this time of constant bickering between the right and the left, the movie Avatar has become the highest grossing film in history. To achieve these astonishing grosses of $1.86 Billion (besting Cameron’s own Titanic in record time), the movie has appealed across all demographics and all political profiles. This is not to say that right wing critics didn’t try to discourage their partisans as Jonah Goldberg points out.
The film has been subjected to a sustained assault from many on the right, most notably by Ross Douthat in the New York Times, as an “apologia for pantheism.”
It would be a cop-out on my part to say the huge success was due only to the gee whiz special effects and the immersive 3D environment. Read more…
Categories: Barack Obama, Climate Change, Energy Policy, Entertainment, Futurism, Interregnum, Military Spending, Movies, Politics, Recession Avatar, Interregnum, Military Industrial Complex, Politics, Recession, Religion, Tom Friedman
I’ve been talking about “the New Frugality” for a while and Friday’s consumer credit stats bear out my thesis, that something profound has changed in our desire to live within our means.
Americans borrowed less for a 10th consecutive month in November with total credit and borrowing on credit cards falling by the largest amount on records going back nearly seven decades.
I don’t think we will ever return to the point where the average household will live with a debt to income ration of 160% as they did in 2006. So this will mean a transition towards an economy in which consumer spending plays a smaller part in GDP, kind of like Germany or France. Read more…
Categories: Business, Economics, Education, Futurism, Health care, Interregnum, Politics, Technology China, France, Germany, New Frugality, Paul Krugman, social democracy
To give you an idea of what a musical Interregnum we’re in, look at the top selling artists of the year (including Digital sales):
- Michael Jackson
- Taylor Swift
- The Beatles
- Susan Boyle
- Lady Gaga
- Andrea Bocelli
- Michael Buble
WTF? A dead guy, a second rate country pop singer, a band that was a smash 40 years ago and a granny that sings Broadway Standards. Now obviously the list of most illegally downloaded songs would look pretty different, but this actual hits in the real music economy doesn’t speak very highly of our current era of musical innovation.