A Durable City

The noise of construction and the vision of cranes on the horizon has become a feature of urban life in Minneapolis and St Paul lately, at least in some neighborhoods. The construction industry is booming, and the structures of choice are large apartment buildings. The demand appears insatiable – and no one is building condominiums. It’s all apartments, reaching to the sky in large complexes of 100 units and more.

My own neighborhood, West Seventh, is one of the hot-spots for this development craze. But are these units a good idea? Is this what the city needs? Or are we simply building the slums of tomorrow, today?

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The Tough Quarter Starts

If you’re a fan of NFL football, you know that the fourth quarter is when all the action comes in most games.  The teams that win consistently are the teams that get tougher in the last 15 minutes week after week.  The economy is no different, relying on the holiday season to make or break any given year.

Last year, Hurricane Sandy made for a wet and limp holiday season.  There are many good reasons to believe that 2013 will be much better – except, of course for the government shutdown.  We don’t know where that will leave us until long after it’s over.  But as we check in with Barataria’s predictions for the year we can get some idea where we stand heading into the critical last quarter.

Except, of course, for the final unemployment stats.  But let’s check out what we can and see how we stand for now.

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Yes, Not Again – Again

Ahead of both the 6th Anniversary of Barataria and my preparations for a book on the economy today, I have been re-reading old posts.  This one is from 26 March 2008, before the collapse of Lehman and before many people worried about the economy.  It’s important to revisit this point because it explains why many of us were worried back about the last time the DJIA was up where it is now.

This goes to the heart of what makes this a Depression, and why the effects are very long term and big.  I hope you enjoy this little trip through history.  Thanks for reading!

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Keep it Going!

The parties are over, and we got through the New Year and the Inaugural.  Everyone in Washington is back at work and ready to make great things happen.

Not so fast.  A lot has happened since the start of 2009, a convenient time to look back over the economy for a lot of reasons.  It was the start of Obama’s presidency, but more importantly it was when the financial collapse triggered by the fall of Lehman Brothers really hit the economy in general.  It was the start of final phase of this Depression.  So how are we doing?

It’s worth looking back if for no other reason than to make a few predictions – or at least know what to look for in 2013.  Let’s break it down.

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