Hello World!

This site is an attempt to bring some of my different posts in different social media and blogs that I want to preserve in one place, and to present new material on economics, photography, and whatever else interests me.

Who am I? The signatures of the posts here say I am “cogiddo”. This is an amusing (to me, at least) bit of wordplay I invented years ago, inserting my initials “dd” into the “cogito” of the famous Descartes saying cogito ergo sum. The name you would know me by in real life, however, is Dimitrios Diamantaras. More information on the About page.

This post will stay in top position. Please scroll down for every other post. To see all my posts in the “Economics” category, you can visit this page; for “Photography”, this page, and so on. The Categories are shown on the right.

Acemoglu and Johnson on the need to control technological progress

I’m finally returning to this blog with a post on economics and technology. It’s not much of a post, but it does represent an end to a long period of neglect of the blog.

Daron Acemoglu and Simon Johnson have a new book out, Power and Progress, released yesterday. I just grabbed an ebook copy and started reading it. This post will be the first of a series in which I will record my reactions. Here is an excerpt from the end of the preface, to show the gist of the main argument in the book:

“We wrote this book to show that progress is never automatic. Today’s “progress” is again enriching a small group of entrepreneurs and investors, whereas most people are disempowered and benefit little.
A new, more inclusive vision of technology can emerge only if the basis of social power changes. This requires, as in the nineteenth century, the rise of counterarguments and organizations that can stand up to the conventional wisdom. Confronting the prevailing vision and wresting the direction of technology away from the control of a narrow elite may even be more difficult today than it was in nineteenth-century Britain and America. But it is no less essential.”

Excerpt From
Power and Progress
Daron Acemoglu & Simon Johnson


Captured in Branford, CT, July 16, 2022

I made many efforts to get sharp images of birds last week on my trip to CT, and a few came out well, such as this one.

The new versions of COVID-19 are no joke

This is worrisome and everybody should know about it.

Tweet posted yesterday by Dr. Farid Jalali. Text: “To borrow an infamous phrase: I don’t know how to put this in a half-acceptable way. New Omicron variants are actively killing vaccinated and recently boosted 60-70 year-olds with very average comorbidites, as we speak. It’s a bog-standard medical reality in our hospitals.”

A good Twitter thread on COVID-19, inequality, morbidity, and vaccines

I just read the thread that starts with this tweet: https://twitter.com/thrasherxy/status/1524780425847181312?s=21&t=g7F-ikgMkS9so5zKI7PbHQ by Dr. Thrasher.

When I read the first tweet, I immediately saw “base-rate fallacy” flash in front of my eyes. It turned out not to be this at all. I recommend the thread, all of it, and some thinking about the malignant combination of inequality with the COVID-19 pandemic. (Others have discussed the insidious effects of inequality on the pandemic, of course. I am putting together some of those discussions and research for my materials for the economic inequality course I teach and the book on it I am drafting.)

I fear that our society, here in the U.S., is so committed to ignoring the importance of public goods, such as public health measures that mitigate infectious-disease transmission, that it is simply unable to deal with this pandemic effectively. As a result, we will probably see years of mutating Coronaviruses of the SARS-COVID variety, and will be consistently responding the wrong way to their emergence.

(I could of course have responded on Twitter, but I have decided to use this blog more and Twitter less for discussions like this. I am letting this be auto-tweeted, though. I may cease contributing to Twitter at all, depending of how big a mess EM makes of it once it is under his control.)