News: Mining the magic: MN Industry leftovers reinvented by influx of silent sports

How do you take a once scarred landscape filled abandoned ore mines and turn it into something positive? One method: by embracing silent sports like mountain biking, hiking, trout fishing, and kayaking. A two-hour drive from the twin cities, you’ll find the Cayuna State Recreation Area, home to a then-radical idea hatched 30-years ago that is paying big dividends for a once economically stricken area.  summary by: Josh Wolsky

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Learn, News: The cult of productivity has a counterproductive flaw

Imagine you figure out a new way to do something at work, saving you five hours each week. Over a year, you’ll save 260 hours. Now suppose you spent 10 hours teaching this work hack to 10 of your colleagues. At the end of the year, your productivity would be 4% lower (you’d only save 250 hours in total). But your 10 coworkers would save a combined 2,600...  summary by: Josh Wolsky

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Who’s Going to Capitalize on the North Dakota/NAFTA Talking Point?

Commentary: Who’s Going to Capitalize on the North Dakota/NAFTA Talking Point?

In November of 2017, two studies were made public regarding the effect of NAFTA (The North American Free Trade Agreement) were it to be repealed. One study was done by BMO Capital Markets and the other by the U.S. Chamber of Commerce. The third most vulnerable state were NAFTA to be repealed would be North Dakota. The two most vulnerable states are Michigan and Wisconsin. The other states...

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Paying people to move to rural locations

News: Paying people to move to rural locations

The efforts to reenergize and repopulate rural portions of the United States are an ongoing topic for politicians. Often framed under the idea of ‘economic development’, the hope is that government can incentivize a behavior deemed to be beneficial to an area that’s not taking place on it’s own through the private sector. In Georgia, there’s a new intiative that aimed at simply getting people to move into...  summary by: Josh Wolsky

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Welcome to Washington… er … La-La Land

Commentary: Welcome to Washington… er … La-La Land

This month has been what looks like a reality check. Let’s stipulate to a few facts. In Washington, D.C. we have a Republican President, a Republican House of Representatives and a Republican Senate. In the opinion of these duly elected persons, a tax decrease is needed to stimulate the economy. This is at a time when unemployment is at its lowest level in years and the stock market...

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News: N.D. farmers Vertically Integrating with Investments in East Coast Restaurants

How do you make a product or a company more profitable? There are lots of ways including reducing costs through innovative practices, creating a differentiated product that commands a higher price. And there’s also vertical integration — the method of getting control of the supply chain and middlemen that separate a raw product from the end user. Here’s a story from about a couple ND farmers using...  summary by: Josh Wolsky

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News: Diversifying an oil and gas economy in Carlsbad, NM

Carlsbad, New Mexico — it’s a city with more than a few similarities to Minot. Notably, it’s fortunes also rise and fall with the price of oil. It’s a cycle that’s led community leaders and business owners alike if there aren’t better ways to build a sustainable livelihood and economy. Sound familiar? As a solution, Carlsbad is turning towards hospitality and tourism, and another familiar theme here on...  summary by: Josh Wolsky

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Tax & Spend or Borrow & Spend? Or Reject the Premise?

Commentary: Tax & Spend or Borrow & Spend? Or Reject the Premise?

I am very possibly of the minority when it comes to public opinion, but nonetheless in the mainstream with the opinions of the majority of credible economists. If there are tax reductions by Congress, it will in all probability stimulate the economy at least over the short term. A tax decrease would also be popular because taxes in and of themselves are inherently unpopular. That said, tax decreases...

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News: Nobel Goes To American Richard Thaler For Work In Behavioral Economics

Economics is very much a scientific study of simplified, rational decision making. But there’s a problem, humans aren’t always rational decision makers. Sometimes we’re downright weird and inexplicable. Richard Thaler was among the first economists to consider our weirdness, and his work won him a Nobel Prize. NPR has the story.  summary by: Josh Wolsky

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News: Grand Forks warily eyes once-dependable federal grant process

Elected officials in Grand Forks are opening their eyes to a new financial reality — funding from the federal government is coming more slowly and less regularly. It means many programs, particularly those that fall under the umbrella of Community Development Block Grants have a less secure future. It matters for Minot because local municipalities all answer to the same federal government.  summary by: Josh Wolsky

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Commentary: Equifax Deserves the Corporate Death Penalty

If your personal information was compromised by the data breach at Equifax, hopefully you’ve been notified and are taking steps to protect yourself. And if you were impacted, there’s no doubt the situation has been more than a little inconvenient. And all of it speaks to what standard of corporate responsibility Equifax should be held to. For Ron Fein writing at Wired, the breach is egregious and should...  summary by: Josh Wolsky

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