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Reuven Brenner

6 Economists Every Entrepreneur Should Know About

For years I’ve rejected the false choice that entrepreneurs are forced to make when it comes to the subjects of political science and comparative economics. First is the offer to buy in to the notion that there exists no natural connection between the underlying motivations and incentives which inspire entrepreneurs and their political and electoral choices.

Published: 7Jan2014

Match of the Day

Demographic changes and increased mobility of people and ideas are posing significant challenges for global commerce, with even emerging economies struggling to match capital with talent. But, in spite of the glacial pace at which the West is adapting to the new realities, there may be cause for cautious optimism. 

-Article by Reuven Brenner

Read full article: Quantum, April 2014 

Published: 19Mar2014

Why Bitcoins Lack Currency to be 'Money'

Milton Friedman, in his book Money Mischief, reported the well-known story of the monetary system of a small island in Micronesia. At the end of the 19th century, the inhabitants used stone wheels as a medium of exchange and as a store of wealth. The colonial government imposed "fees" on disobedient district chiefs by painting black crosses on these stone wheels, thus "confiscating" them. This induced the locals to change their ways and work harder, paving roads they were previously reluctant to pave, in order to have these marks erased and get their wealth back.

Published: 17Feb2014

Reassessing History from Two Continents

Günter Bischof ist aus der österreichischen zeitgeschichtlichen Forschungslandschaft nicht mehr wegzudenken. Als Leiter des Centers Austria und Marshall Plan-Professor an der Universität von New Orleans bekleidet er einen wichtigen Außenposten der österreichischen Wissenschaft und der österreichisch-amerikanischen Beziehungen. Als Historiker leistet er wesentliche Beiträge zur Aufarbeitung des breiten Feldes der österreichischen und europäischen transatlantischen Beziehungen, insbesondere der Nachkriegsjahre. Die anlässlich seines 60.

Published: 13Dec2013

Central Banks and Illusions of Independence

While much attention is now paid to personalities of incoming central bankers, far less attention is paid to debating central banks' mandates in light of the unusual fiscal and financial intermediary roles they have been fulfilling since 2008.

The crisis revealed institutional voids that the central banks filled quickly. Such ventures by central banks have been tolerated in the past too: there is nothing new about quantitative easing (QE). The Fed practiced it during the 1940-51 under the Treasury's explicit command, though the technique had no name then.

Published: 13Sep2013

As English Football Season Starts, Burma’s Gamblers Play the Odds

On a TV above the blue neon-lit bar in Rangoon’s Tamwe Township, the hapless-looking Arsenal manager Arsene Wenger grimaced, sputtering an indiscernible obscenity, his hands resting forlornly on his hips.

Published: 23Aug2013

Forget Pacquiao In Macau, It's Time For Floyd Mayweather To Leave Las Vegas

Last night’s fight between Manny Pacquiao and Brandon Rios interested me from a boxing perspective but its real intrigue was what it suggests might be possible for another man – Floyd Mayweather, Jr.

... This is nothing new – in fact, gambling, centuries ago in Europe, was in the same position that boxing is in today– subsidizing another non-profitable sector.  In their outstanding book A World Of Chance: Betting On Religion, Games, Wall Street, Reuven Brenner, Gabrielle A. Brenner and Aaron Brown write:

Published: 25Nov2013

Entrepreneurship, Innovation and Prosperity

What is the common ground between the economic successes of the Netherlands in the XVII-XVIII centuries, nineteenth century England, twentieth century U.S. and, more recently, countries such as South Korea, Singapore and Israel? Although the question could be answered from different angles, fundamentally it can be inferred: in their own time, these countries promoted economic systems where resources were efficiently channeled to the most competent entrepreneurs and endeavors.

Published: 5Oct2013

Taking a Gamble on Illegal Betting

As the English Premier League season starts, punters play the odds despite the country's ban on wagers - and millions are taking the risk.

Published: 15Sep2013

What Does a 'Two-State Solution' Mean?

In light of what is going on the Middle East, and the efforts of US Secretary of State John Kerry to restart negotiations to reach a ''two-state'' solution to the Israel-Palestinian conflict, it is worth briefly summarizing solutions I write about 30 years ago.
The efforts of the United States and Europe to bring about a "two-state" solution in the Middle East are incomprehensible.

-Article by Reuven Brenner

Read full article: Asia Times, September 5, 2013

Published: 13Sep2013