Friday, 29 May 2009

Really Wrong.

The Mortgage Bankers Association in America released some grim figures yesterday.  Hence the gloom and doom in the Mortgage Backed Securities markets which occurred the day before the figures were released.  Did someone get a preview?  Bloomberg reported that one in eight Americans are either delinquent on a loan or in the foreclosure process.  The sub-prime crisis has gone prime with prime loan defaults doubling in the past year, and, making up about half of the defaults.  For the gritty details, see figures from the Mortgage Bankers Association here or article on Bloomberg here.

Below is a really disturbing video by Jim the Realtor filmed in San Diego.  Apologies - it is really wrong. (makes sense without sound if you are in an office).

Thursday, 28 May 2009

The Bond Market

The Bond Market is on the up and up and is offering good opportunities.  In today's FT, there is an article by James Blitz on MI6 recruitment.  It proclaims that "finance workers could be the next generation of spies".  Indeed.  After a quick jaunt around the MI6 recruitment website it is clear there are plenty of vacancies to apply for.  Missmarketcrash and her geeky librarian instincts hovered on the category of Information Officer.  Childhood career desires danced in her head.  At age eight, it was the career of choice.  And it still holds a certain place in her heart.

Alas.  Missmarketcrash does not have a parent who is a British Citizen, and so, does not qualify. Perhaps it is for the best - I'm certain a blog would be a no-no if Missmc became MissSIS.  MissSIS sounds a bit wrong as well. 

The best part of the website is the virtual tour.  I did not have time to see it all, but, it has a pleasing grey interface and a lovely blond actress will tell you about various internal career coursework, clubs and social networking available for SIS employees.  It sounds a bit like being back in university again and that kind of appeal works for Missmc.  The virtual tour has a button for subtitles should you want to watch it in an inappropriate environment.

Ah well.  If anyone is still here reading rather than off exploring the links above, you are welcome to join me here for a look at the stock futures.  Thus far, it is not the gloom and doom I promised you yesterday, but, the bond market is worth watching carefully.

Wednesday, 27 May 2009

Quick FYI - Doom alert and tennis results.

Market doomsters are legging it across the valley and readying for the second big dip.  The MBS market was jumped out of by most every institutional investor leaving the fed standing just about alone today.  General Motors is almost a was.  Doom, gloom, and doom.  

And the worst of it all?  Missmarketcrash is busy this week with the children home for half-term. Writing time is at the bare minimum.  There are tennis tournaments and very important bicycle rides filling the schedule.

My advice?  Stick around until tomorrow morning when I wake up very very early to confront this gloom and doom and write about it for you.

The upside? Tennis.  He placed third and one of his favorite pals came second.  Hurrah.

Baked Beans and a Flat Tax....

In Britain, a picture of the recession is beginning to fall into place.  One statistic which must surely be a leading indicator in this country is the consumption of baked beans.  April 2009 sales of baked beans compared with April 2008 have risen a whopping 21.6 percent, according to the BBC here.

Time to re-visit Greg Mankiw's discussion of the flat-ulence tax....and the broadening of its application...

Tuesday, 26 May 2009

Alphabet Soup

L shaped vs U shaped vs V shaped vs W shaped.  The W is a relatively new from Google Trends, News Reference Volume.

Monday, 25 May 2009

Do It Yourself

At the UBS sponsored Long Weekend at the Tate Modern the theme was "Do it Yourself".  It is a reoccurring theme as of late, with implications beyond the Economic Crisis.  We joined in with thousands to transform an enormous mound of clay into a sculpture.  We played on Robert Morris' incredibly interactive sculptures to make an experience.  It was all a bit literally off-the-wall and the innovative spirit worked with even the most-resistant personalities (yes I am talking about you child number 1).

The "Do it Yourself" idea has lately mutated into the overarching idea of "Make".  There is a Make festival upcoming in California - see here for details.  Old-time spirit meets innovation. A great marketing umbrella that hides its capitalism under a egalitarian guise.  There must be a long German word for that.

The Make trend is on the web by where one can learn to do just about anything.  I learned how to make a booster for my wifi router dull girl that I am.  I will issue a caution on viewing the site - one can get terribly lost looking at ridiculous things.

But, back to the Tate Modern.  Philosophically, the legacy of 1960's performance and action-based artworks was a lean toward a utopian vision of experience that was self-created and free.  It was anti-consumerist consumerism.  And we are back there again.

Realities Helmet?

Sunday, 24 May 2009

All bright young things should leave now...

Imagine that.  Bright-eyed new graduates of British universities will wake up over the next few weeks and see pamphlets from the government scattered around them.  And what do they say?  

Leave.  Leave now.  Get on a plane and fly away from this country.  You might be better off elsewhere.

Read more here from the BBC....

Friday, 22 May 2009

Optimism vs Pessimism

I really do like this article by Brian Green on the excellently titled "Brickonomics" blog.  Here is an excerpt - do not be fooled by his hilarious paragraph - he is actually quite analytical...Link here for the rest....

"How else could we have presented the "reality" portrayed by the survey?

Well here is one way. Things are crap and they are going to get crapper, but probably not as quickly. And why are they not going to get crapper quite so quickly? Well, one major factor is that the crapper it is the harder it becomes to get any crapper.

It's not that difficult to put some solid mathematics behind that last sentence.

Gloomy British Airways...

Gloomy BA says "No signs of recovery..."

Maybe they should try some ironic viral marketing...

Thursday, 21 May 2009

A silly tax case.

How silly.  Pringles took the position to the courts that they were not a crisp (chip to you Americans) here on the BBC.

Blog Hungover

 I have nothing on offer in the brain this morning after quite a busy week so I will just give away a secret.

There is a really fantastic hang-out roof garden that opened a few weeks ago.

It is on the roof, above Sir Conran's latest restaurant venture "Boundary" in Shoreditch.  The staff will hand you a blanket or two to keep off the evening chill.  And serve you drinks.  And give you the idea they would do just about anything for you.  

I shall refrain from becoming a restaurant reviewer and just say that all three ventures in this building are well well worth a visit.  Unless you have to go see your child's school play early the next morning.  I'm not very good at the timing of things.

Finally -- a good reason for Twitter.  Check in on this twitter to see if the roof is open....

Wednesday, 20 May 2009

Artworks That Ideas Can Buy

"Artworks that ideas can buy" is the title of an exhibition by Cesare Pietroiusti in the project room at Wilkinson Gallery.  Works by Jeremy Deller, Dara Birnbaum and notable others will be for sale in exchange for visitors' ideas.  Interested?  The exhibition opens on the 29th of May.

Questioning the value of contemporary art and its exchange mechanisms is a thread that has been alive and well, coming high above the surface with conceptual art in the 70's.  It is a subversion of the question "what is art" raised by Duchamp with his "fountain".

The value of art is undergoing quite a bit of analysis these days.  Alongside the value of money and the value of British politicians.  But I digress.  Major collections of contemporary art have historically had the generous support of the financial world.  The Frieze Art fair is sponsored by Deutsche Bank.  UBS has been a generous partner of the Tate Modern.  Fingers crossed for this to continue.

On the exit side, several prominent collections are up for sale as noted in the FT here and here.  It's fairly easy to guess which Spanish bank is in process of raising cash by selling off its collection.

So back to "Artworks that ideas can buy".  What other cultural goods can be "had" by the exchange of ideas?  It is self-referential.  Ideas of course.  And that is art with a capital A, no matter what its form.

Make room for a new storm of conceptualism in the contemporary art world.  The economics are ripe for it.  I can already picture the UBS sponsored Salon of Ideas in the Turbine Hall. 

Monday, 18 May 2009

Transitional spaces

Transitional spaces in architecture are a distinct sub-genre.  Hallways, waiting rooms, elevators, awnings, and even those little chutes that deposit us onto the plane are spaces you likely never think about, but, architects do.  Transitioning the senses from point a to point b is not only a visual and physical concern, but thermal and auditory issues are also considered.

We are in a transitional space of sorts with regard to the economy.  In the in-between zone of function and disfunction.  In architecture, when you are in the no-where land, you still have a fairly certain idea of where you will be next.  And you visualize it.  As well as think of where you were before.  The past/future spatial thinking keeps you from being in that dimly lit hallway.  Unless of course some architect has made it a "feature".  Then, you feel the sunlight on your shoulder and look out the window at the pretty fountain.

Back to the economy.  In the transitional space.  It glimmers as Goldman Sachs says buy Bank of America.  And simultaneously becomes dark and overcast as data casts horrid shadows on the wall.  Even the transitional space is ever shape-shifting, a hall of mirrors, not Versailles.

Well then.  So much for the economy, transitional spaces, and insights.  You'll have to make it up yourself.  With that, Missmarketcrash thinks Tyler Cowen's  upcoming new book is so very neatly timely...
Create Your Own Economy: The Path to Prosperity in a Disordered World (Dutton)

Either buy that, or, fly somewhere tropical and check out the airport.

The Magician's Promise

Ok.  We have a box.  We have locked-up fake money.   We have a magician's promise.  And the unlikely un-allegorical fact is that we have a boy handsome enough to convince clever girls to help him.  

Yesterday's adventures featured a magician with a box containing a 1000pound note.  The magician gave it my 8 year old son and said if he could open it, he could have the money.  He worked hard on it for what seemed an eternity to no avail.  After much coaxing, he put the box down and took a seat to watch the soon-to -begin magic show.  Toward the end of the show, my son was so utterly obsessed about the money in the box he wandered back to it, behind the magic show.  There he met a small pretty girl who taught him the trick.  He successfully opened the box and grabbed the bill.  By this time, Mr. Magician was in his van.  My son went running up to him with the bill and asked if he could really keep it.  Mr. Magician said no.  Sad sad son.  And it was fake money.

Solving illusions in the hopes of being rewarded by magicians is clearly misguided.  But he was a terribly mean magician.  Not getting the reward he was promised, my son turned elsewhere for reward.  To us.  He wanted us to buy a toy trick from the mean magician.  No. No. No.

Mr. Magician was so busy in the art of illusion, he overlooked good business opportunities.


Sunday, 17 May 2009

A geep? A shoat? Oh dear.

A blustery ever changing weather day was spent at the Dulwich Park Festival.  This year's theme was "Animals".  Missmarketcrash loves a good sheep-herding show and was treated to something even better.  A Goose-herding event!  Tiny bridges, little swimming pools, gates and other props not unlike those found on miniature golf courses were placed just-so on the lawn.  Happy-go-lucky border collies herded the geese through the obstacle course under the direction of the lovely shepherdess.  And then, miniature six-week old geese appeared and the props were rearranged.  It brought me back to university days where I did a course on the genetics of dogs-who-are-good-at-sheep-herding and why why why.  But I'll spare you.

I also saw a goat-sheep.  A geep?  A shoat?  Oh dear.  Anyway, it was something that was an accident but was cute none-the-less.  

Ah.  Now you are wondering how my idyllic day ties in with the economic crisis.  Easy. I saw herd behavior, and, something rarer than a black swan in the same spot.

O - and to top it all off on the coincidence side of things, I saw Tamiflu Harry perform.  

Saturday, 16 May 2009


Missmarketcrash had the pleasure of attending "The Battle for the Economy" this afternoon.  Fellow-blogger Leigh Caldwell was speaking in a session entitled "The rise and rise of behavioural economics".  I can report that he is even better in person and a very eloquent speaker. Leigh's fellow panelists were excellent and there were a few laughs interspersed with perfect timing.  It almost cured my hangover from last night's debaucheries with the irish neighbors.

The man sitting in front of me was eagerly clapping with just a tad too much enthusiasm.  My mind drifted and there I was, standing around in Speaker's Corner.  My one and only visit to Speaker's Corner eleven years ago opened in a pop-up window atop Leigh's lecture.  I listened to a chat by a man that could relate any topic back to football and philosophies that lie there-in.  And a few religious zealots.  And more.  Where ever I went, a little old man followed along.  At just the right comedic place in a speech, he would shout from the crowd at the speaker "NEWTONIA".  I began to follow him.

An experimental way of investigating something without hypothesis was one of the fundamentals of Newtonianism.  It was experimental with a big E and tended to throw away past assumptions and theory in favour of direct observation.  Back to Leigh's lecture. The debate as to whether behavioral economics is a valid perspective took sail and closed the pop-up window. But I was sitting there silently hoping the overenthusiastic man in front of me would rise up and shout "NEWTONIA".  

In the end, the madman did rise.  He delivered a garbled passionate plea that made no sense whatsoever.  And my hangover hurled itself full-force atop me and reminded me not to drink too much ever ever again, lest I become the man that wanders about shouting NEWTONIA.  Though it would have been just the right shout in this lecture that ambled around behavioural economics in relation to the current economic crisis.

Friday, 15 May 2009

Quick Link - NYTimes economics reporter maxes out....

Wow.  Love really is blind.  See this, from an economics reporter for the New York Times....

We can only think about thinking about thinking.

One of the more interesting aspects of the economic crisis is where things are evolving culturally.  As things go down, things go up.  And what is rising?  Satire.  Utopian Ideals.  Nihilism.  Nostalgia.  We all turn a different way and these ideological basepoints are pure emotion, feeling translated into culture, media, things, a mirror.

In the visual arts world, there is a lag time between when things are made and when they are exhibited.  It often lacks the real-time saturation we are accustomed to.  It is the now to the viewer, and, the past to the creator.  Some things transcend a sense of time, others are reflective of it, and, the best do both.  

In the realm of economic discourse, the time lag of evolving ideological basepoints can be even slower.  Of late, on the economics front, there has been a scramble of newly published books addressing the economic crisis.  The reflection necessary for a dialogue is unavailable whilst we are in the midst.  It is nearly impossible to transcend the now without the risk of becoming a horoscope writer.  One can address things with universals that seem applicable to these times, but, these universals may shift, or be in flux as they stand behind the veil of the present.

We can only think about thinking about thinking.

Thursday, 14 May 2009

Bank of Heinz Baked Beans

Yesterday, BT was described as a hedge fund with a sideline in phones. There are many hybrid business models evolving as of late. Tesco is offering banking services. And yesterday's mail brought a flyer from HSBC - they are selling wine. If HSBC is pedaling wine, why not have Guinness offering some banking services? I am certain the Bank of Guinness would be a most popular option.

Hybrid banking models have been around. But a diversification into other product lines can cement an image more graciously than pretending to be a bank. Because banks are now perceived as evil.

Imagine the options. It's funnier if you imagine them rather than if I make a silly list here. But Bank of Heinz Baked Beans appears to me as something with tradition that would likely never fail.

Green shoots and donuts....

Illusions can be useful.  Group participation can help with insuring the success of such things.

Wednesday, 13 May 2009

How politicians make it all look a bit better

Click here...

Yes they are Prada but they might hurt you.

Missmarketcrash has been roped into helping sign up presenters for The 2009 Charity Awards.  Personally, I'd love to stand up there myself, but, being anonymous, that just would not do.  I would have to appear with a paper bag over my head and pretend I was a person of great importance.  But that is what blogs are for.

Nonetheless, I've forwarded on a note and will forward another few until a person of public importance is roped in.  So, stand back -- the notes are flying.  

Charity.  Charity Awards.  It does sound like a minefield to honour the most benevolent causes.  This year, the Mid Argyll Pipe Band is a nominee.  I kind of love that.  

Speaking of charity, I've a bag of old shoes I must give a quick polish to that are going off to a sale to benefit Macmillian Cancer Support, another nominee for the 2009 awards.  It is truly hard to be Miss Make do and Mend with all these organizations clamoring for my cast-offs. Some of them would make fantastic pillows, others give me hope of looking like I did twenty years ago.  So, cash is much easier.  But, the shoes can go.  Though I am not quite sure if someone trying to walk in my shoes is a recommended thing.

Tuesday, 12 May 2009

Existential economics

A new genre of economics is blossoming.  Existential economics, or, EE as it is affectionately referred to by insiders is becoming so very popular it is about to extinguish itself.  Existentialists need to stand about, in the corner, observing everyone else's reality.  Alone.  So what happens when they are no longer loners?  A crowd of existentialists is a self-negating idea.

Bring on the Existential Economist.  Questioning expectations of the masses brings a certain kind of validity to being alienated.  To know is not enough.  Or, Non Satis Scire.  (Yes I went to that school with the long driveway).

So, let's go back to this glommed together group of EE's.  They are standing about, though they have blogs in their hands rather than cocktails.  Some of them are having a moral crisis about the disconnect between perception and reality.  Others are taking it in stride and sounding rather jolly.  There are still others on the dance floor.

And where am I?  Trying to grow another few heads so that I can be both.  With humanity, and, apart.  I'd like the third head to be the godlike one - up on an incredibly long neck with a really bulgy eyeball and some sort of device to muffle the laughter because the third one has a really jolly sense of humour.

Monday, 11 May 2009

Ode To Tamiflu

Did I promise there would be no more on the Swine Flu?  I did. But local Alleyn's student Harry has impressed me so much, I just had had had to add a quick link...

Go stand in the corner Missmarketcrash

And I shall never be invited back.  To the most beautiful house in the world.  With the prettiest garden.  In the prettiest setting.  With the loveliest most perfect pal of a hostess. Because I called it a cockroach.  Merde.  It was not not not.  It was a warrior beetle.  Of the rarest kind.  Only found in the poshest of posh places.  Because it takes a certain kind of relaxing ambience to guarantee their good health.  People in some places consider them an aphrodisiac and would pay very very high sums for such a creature.  Sometimes they are raised for battle.  The beetle who wins the battle will guarantee its owner eternal life, everlasting happiness and a plentiful lifetime supply of Gin & Tonics.

And now look what I've done.  I've squashed it dead and sullied its good name.

Go stand in the corner Missmarketcrash.

The Mallorcan Cockroach Killer

Mallorca.  Out there, amongst the fragrant orange blossoms and gin & tonic & another & another, the 2009 Scrabble tournament was held.  Sounds of bells from the valley of sheep lying in the distant south of poolside tinkled.  Rising early, I did try to write with a pen.  And I can say that I was utterly incapable of that.  Slow writing is not my thing.

This morning, back in sunny London I opened my suitcase to gaze at my trophies.  "World Scrabble Champion" and "Highest Scoring Word" were my winnings.  But something else was in my bag.  It scuttled across the floor.  After a few good screams, I crushed it to death with Jake Chapman's book.  Very appropriate.  Thank you Jake.  The Mallorcan cockroach should have stayed in the posh farmhouse.

Tennis, scrabble, and gin & tonic swilling are jolly good competitive sports.  As far as non-competitive, the blog is the thing.  While I was away, Leigh Caldwell was busily slogging on my site.  Humourously noted by Leigh, his name is "common" and mine is getting past its sell-by date.  A bloglift is in order.

So. Rebranding.  "The Outsider Economist", "Slow Economics" and "The Mallorcan Cockroach Killer" are all contenders.  In keeping with the viral tangent in the news of late, I think Leigh and I ought to rebrand with some hybrid names that reference each other.

Ponder that.  Whilst I go and see if I can get the blood off of Jake's book.

Saturday, 9 May 2009

Jokes about Tim Geithner

One of the principles of modern macroeconomics (which just missed the cut in Greg Mankiw's textbook) is that all models of the economy should include jokes about Tim Geithner. Fortunately President Obama has been trained well by Larry Summers and has incorporated this concept into his policymaking.

The President has attended his first White House Correspondents' Dinner. The results:

Wednesday, 6 May 2009

Capital, but small

As the economist with the small m jets off to unknown lands, I'm here to keep the blog warm.

Recent news from Jacqui Smith interested me because I'm speaking on a panel next weekend with Michael Savage. No, not that Michael Savage - but the masking effect in Google makes it very difficult for me to find anything out about who I'm debating with. It's a clever way to keep me on my toes. I might walk into an intellectual ambush - or even a Home Office ambush if someone in immigration misunderstands the conference announcement.

My accountant has this problem. He's called Mark Saunders, and if you search for that you'll find the Chelsea barrister who died in a police shootout this time last year. Even a year later that's still much more interesting for Google than an accountant, however good his double entries.

Even Leigh Caldwell is not a unique name - I thought for a while I was at least the only one with a blog, but there are now not one but two of them on twittermoms alone.

Fortunately missmarketcrash remains unique, but the Indian news alerts us to "lucky promoters" who "miss market crash, strike gold". It's hard to stay special in a competitive world.

In the economics of knowledge there are hints of this. Any individual fact is not a scarce good - you can give it away without losing possession of it - and thus it's hard to apply standard economic theory to it. But if you can define yourself a unique collection of knowledge or expertise - or get others to perceive that it's unique, as embodied in a unique name - that is scarce and excludable. Bounded rationality for once makes an economic phenomenon more tractable instead of less.

But I honestly do not think I can write with a pen anymore...

I am moments from walking out the door to board a plane.  Without the FT, without the computer, and without my children I will soon be.  Little has been packed save one book of poetry by Jen Hadfield.  

I am really looking forward to the great experiment I will be undertaking called "How to write with a pen".  A lost art with these hands.  It seems rather silly to think I can write with a pen something that might be a blog upon my return.  I honestly do not think I can write with a pen anymore.

The slowpen blog will be here, online, from the 11th.  In the meantime, Leigh is here but he might decide to punish me and not write anything after this gloating...

Thatcher Remixed

A wave of seventies revivalism has landed.  Economic dread revisited.  And bad fashion.  But, we are also in the midst of a Thatcher nostalgia moment in the media.  Here, from the BBC, is an audio slideshow on HER.  Sound is essential -it is really the best part.

Tuesday, 5 May 2009

An Economist with a capital E

Missmarketcrash will be off the blog until the 11th of May.  The insightful Leigh Caldwell will be filling in from time to time while I am away.  Do continue to stop by - he is an Economist with a capital E and a delight to read.  

Monday, 4 May 2009

Swine Flu strikes Dulwich

I did promise I would not write about Swine Flu anymore and stick to the economy.  But - IT has landed in my back garden.

It is here.  Leafy Dulwich has five cases of swine flu and the media vans are crawling all over the neighborhood.  Mothers are texting each other in excitement.  Most of the mums are delighted to have their children get a dose of Tamiflu before it runs out.  At the local Sainsbury's I spied several Alleyn's mummies staring down the antibacterial cleaning products.  Swine Flu has gone posh.  The well-regarded Alleyn's School is closed for the week.  Surely there is a bad local joke going around about how clever that little virus must be to have gained admissions to Alleyn's.  T,c,a,g....but can you string them backwards while hopping on one foot?

I am off to a lovely farmhouse in Majorca on Wednesday with four other mums under the good excuse of a of a scrabble tournament.  I do hope if they close our adjacent school they have the good sense to do so whilst I am on holiday and the mother-in-law is here to look after the children...

**Addendum.  Neighboring school JAPS has just closed from the 18th of May through half-term due to one case of swine flu in a year 6 girl.

Mountain, mud, and man thing

Missmarketcrash had an odd dream last night where she was on top of a dirt/mud mountain and slowly making her way down.  Every step ran the risk of slipping and falling to the bottom.  Each step also kicked little mudballs down the hill, where they would lodge and fill up the bottom, making the hill shorter.  I went slowly and cautiously, kicking little mudballs to assist in leveling the terrain on the way down so that my journey would be shorter.  I then realized I was walking upside-down going up, not down.  And maybe the little mudballs would be counter-productive.

It is ok, it is going to be ok.  Newspapers and blogs alike have started to state that the big scary depression is not going to happen.  The "green shoots" phrase is being bandied about though it is most usually wrapped with a small warning.  This warning is conceptually related to food labels that effectively say "this product may contain nuts though it does not contain nuts".  In other words, use your own judgement as to whether you want to eat these green shoots.  If you do opt for a snack, you mustn't blame us if something bad happens.  

As Missmarketcrash's dreams tend toward a codification of her personal reality it is clear this morning that the dream has been caused by the consideration of various recent economic outlooks. I'd obviously been walking on a chart.  That was then flipped.  Walking upside-down in flat-land (if kicking) and an incline (without kicking) is where I was left.  The kicking part was a rolling ball of economic sentiment that I had a choice to engage with, or, not.

But why was I flipped?  Was my perception "wrong" to begin with, or "wrong" after being flipped?  Or is it not me at all?  Is it a metaphorical world sentiment mountain, mud and man thing?  I still don't know where I am if that is the case.

Best to get dressed and enter day 4 of the long holiday weekend.   A dream of friends and garden parties would be far more entertaining.  Champagne anyone?

Friday, 1 May 2009

Slow Futurism

The economic crisis coupled with swine flu has brought upon a feverish quest for real-time information.  Mankind has been fully immersed in the moment, but, this moment is hanging and waiting for "the future".  Here right now, with rapt attention, we want to know.  All the tools for this state are in place, with a global information system at our disposal.  Tomorrow never comes.

This state of prediction of now for later is endemic of our culture.  It is counterbalanced by the "Slow" movement of past and present and thoughts of the future for "now".  But even this slow now promises a better future.  As an aside, this is nothing new.  Various religions have historically offered perspectives on our relationship with the state of now.  Now has always been a participatory endeavor.  In this month's issue of Frieze Magazine, Jonathan Griffin offers an analysis of cultural perspectives on "The Future" and proposes it is time to "resurrect the lost art of looking forward".  This essay, entitled "Future Conditional" points out the current lack of children's reading material which is futuristic in essence.

Futuristic tendencies often arise when old boundaries are erased.  The man on the moon was a shaping force for the cultural products of our youth.  For our children, the internet is not a new frontier, but, a given part of everyday reality.  Instead of new spaces, our children are faced with fatalistic concerns about the lack of new boundaries.  The global boundless nature of our culture has given birth to fears about globalism, global warming, global pandemics.  So, a retreat from the notion of new spaces providing new opportunities is underway and the shaping of the concept of the word "future" is being redrawn.

The future has shifted back to the "now".  Conceptually, this does not have to be problematic or purely nostalgic.  The "now" is and always has been immensely creative.  Think, make, do and march forward.  Real-time is your tool.