Weekend Talking Points, Sept. 24-26

A blog about business, finance, and economics.
Sept. 24 2010 1:15 PM

Weekend Talking Points, Sept. 24-26

Suddenly, no Summers. I was out on a research mission Wednesday, so the estimable Mike Konczal weighed in on the imminent departure of Larry Summers from the Obama administration. He focused on Summers' motivations for leaving, all of which are well laid out. But here's another question: Does anyone think it will make that big of a difference? It's well established that the left loathes Summers , blaming him for much of what has and hasn't happened with Obama so far. And obviously much depends on who replaces him. I have this strong sense, though, that if Summers didn't exist, the administration would have to invent him—and that his influence will continue to be felt even where his name is no longer on a desk plate.

Inflation makes a comeback! Surowiecki says it's good for us . And the Fed apparently agrees , sort of.

Advertisement

This gives "network sweeps" a whole new meaning. Zucker gone , Klein gone . Both seemed inevitable, if not overdue. In NBC's case, the new owner obviously wanted to be able to pick its own person—one lumbering industrial giant (Comcast) replaces another (GE). At CNN, though, there's probably more of an opportunity for Ken Jautz to make an impact, and faster, too. There's a little more schedule flexibility, and any improvement in the numbers will make a real difference, whereas turning around NBC's prime-time ratings seems like a multiyear task.

Gerbils are jumpin'. The Commerce Department's reports for durable-goods orders—known to many fast-paced business journalists as "gerbils"—were surprisingly strong for August , once you strip out military stuff. More people have been buying computers; the July-August sales average is a strapping 33 percent higher than sales for the second quarter. The market likes what it sees , at least for the moment. Can someone please tell cranky Volcker ?

TODAY IN SLATE

Medical Examiner

The Most Terrifying Thing About Ebola 

The disease threatens humanity by preying on humanity.

I Bought the Huge iPhone. I’m Already Thinking of Returning It.

Scotland Is Just the Beginning. Expect More Political Earthquakes in Europe.

Students Aren’t Going to College Football Games as Much Anymore

And schools are getting worried.

Two Damn Good, Very Different Movies About Soldiers Returning From War

The XX Factor

Lifetime Didn’t Think the Steubenville Rape Case Was Dramatic Enough

So they added a little self-immolation.

Politics

Blacks Don’t Have a Corporal Punishment Problem

Americans do. But when blacks exhibit the same behaviors as others, it becomes part of a greater black pathology. 

Why a Sketch of Chelsea Manning Is Stirring Up Controversy

How Worried Should Poland, the Baltic States, and Georgia Be About a Russian Invasion?

Trending News Channel
Sept. 19 2014 1:11 PM Watch Flashes of Lightning Created in a Lab  
  News & Politics
Weigel
Sept. 20 2014 11:13 AM -30-
  Business
Business Insider
Sept. 20 2014 6:30 AM The Man Making Bill Gates Richer
  Life
Quora
Sept. 20 2014 7:27 AM How Do Plants Grow Aboard the International Space Station?
  Double X
The XX Factor
Sept. 19 2014 4:58 PM Steubenville Gets the Lifetime Treatment (And a Cheerleader Erupts Into Flames)
  Slate Plus
Slate Picks
Sept. 19 2014 12:00 PM What Happened at Slate This Week? The Slatest editor tells us to read well-informed skepticism, media criticism, and more.
  Arts
Brow Beat
Sept. 20 2014 3:21 PM “The More You Know (About Black People)” Uses Very Funny PSAs to Condemn Black Stereotypes
  Technology
Future Tense
Sept. 19 2014 6:31 PM The One Big Problem With the Enormous New iPhone
  Health & Science
Bad Astronomy
Sept. 20 2014 7:00 AM The Shaggy Sun
  Sports
Sports Nut
Sept. 18 2014 11:42 AM Grandmaster Clash One of the most amazing feats in chess history just happened, and no one noticed.