User talk:Nick Gardner/Archive 1

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Welcome to the Citizendium! We hope you will contribute boldly and well. Here are pointers for a quick start. You'll probably want to know how to get started as an author. Just look at Getting Started for other helpful "startup" links, our help system and CZ:Home for the top menu of community pages. Be sure to stay abreast of events via Twitter. You can test out editing in the sandbox if you'd like. If you need help to get going, the forum is one option. That's also where we discuss policy and proposals. You can ask any administrator for help, too. Just put a note on their "talk" page. Again, welcome and have fun! Regards, Anton Sweeney 17:36, 8 September 2007 (CDT)

Economics articles

Thanks for your contributions to economics articles: they are a massive improvement! I hope we can bring on board some more economists [retired or otherwise] to help with the CZ effort. The wikipedia approach to economics is a far cry from what I would consider clear and erudite thinking on these issues, and I would like to avoid repeating that on CZ. --Martin Baldwin-Edwards 16:44, 17 September 2007 (CDT)

Thank you for your words of encouragement. I am intrigued with the possibility of conveying the basic ideas of economics in simple verbal logic without the aid of equations and diagrams. I may try that approach on the main economics article.
I need some advice, however. I should like to see much of what is written in that article transferred to an article on the history of economics thought. I suspect that to be beyond the power of an author? If so, how could it be arranged? Nick Gardner 02:55, 18 September 2007 (CDT)
I don't see why it is beyond the power of an author, as long as there is no opposition. I am not opposed, and the main author of these economics articles left CZ. Put the proposal on the Talk page, so that it is all transparent, and people can object if they want [they won't!]. Wait a few days, then go ahead. Message me when you have done it, so I can check it out. Seems ok in principle, to me. Bear in mind that other people may come along later and modify things, but this is true for all articles on CZ. We control such changes with editorial oversight. --Martin Baldwin-Edwards 17:03, 18 September 2007 (CDT)
Will do. Nick

Workgroup label

Forgive me for changing your page, but the Workgroup label is only for articles. I saw that you appeared on the Economics list as an article :-) Best wishes --Martin Baldwin-Edwards 07:21, 24 September 2007 (CDT)

Hi Nick!

Do you feel shy about coming to the Party? Or did you not know about it? Not sure? What the devil is this person talking about?? Click on the link, come on in and edit an article. Or start a stub. Or ask a question. Eat something at Hayford's Bar and Grill. Or just drink some vodka or grog. Or beer. What the hey! Aleta Curry 16:11, 7 November 2007 (CST)

Approval of some economics articles

Nick, I think we should go for approval of some of the developed articles: the process may bring in some more comments, but otherwise we will just go ahead with your texts. I will make some minor edits first, and any comments that occur to me in the process of looking more carefully. Can you suggest which articles you would like nominated? I think Microeconomics and History of Economic Thought are looking good. Possibly Economics and Macro... Tell me whzt you think, and let's try to get these done! Best wishes, --Martin Baldwin-Edwards 06:05, 11 November 2007 (CST)


Congratulations o your first of many Approvals! --D. Matt Innis 18:43, 16 November 2007 (CST)

Two down, 1000 to go! Competition policy --D. Matt Innis 19:19, 21 November 2007 (CST)

Also, my thanks to the most important contributor in Economics on CZ !! --Martin Baldwin-Edwards 19:32, 21 November 2007 (CST)


Nick- make sure that the talk page has the {{subpages}} placed at the top ;). Also, when you fill out the metadata page, make sure to also include the name of the page in both the "Page name" and "abc" fields. --Robert W King 10:46, 4 February 2008 (CST)

Also, another tip: The definition template is used as follows: Template:Def_nameofthinghere, for example see: Template:Def_Ice_hockey. --Robert W King 09:12, 6 February 2008 (CST)

Gross Domestic Product

Congratulations on approval! D. Matt Innis 10:55, 26 February 2008 (CST)


Please be careful typing in page-names. You created "Bank for International Settlements (note extra "), but we already had Bank for International Settlements. You should move any useful content to the second, and we will delete the (erroneous) first one. J. Noel Chiappa 16:52, 7 April 2008 (CDT)

Ah, I see, you just created Bank for International Settlements - I went to move the former one to the right place, and the move failed, and so I assumed it was a pre-existing page which you didn't see because of the ". If you ever need to move a page to a different name for any reason in the future, can you please use the "Move" tab (at the top)? Please never use cut-and-paste to move a page, as we need to keep the page history intact for copyright reasons. (In this case there's no harm, because you're the only author.) Thanks! J. Noel Chiappa 17:08, 7 April 2008 (CDT)

Hey sorry I can't give better feedback on economic articles

Hey Nick, I saw your forum post and glanced through a couple of your articles. I wish I knew more about economics and could contribute. I would suggest linking all of the articles in the forum post so people can click on them and give feedback. Tom Kelly 15:55, 11 May 2008 (CDT)

Revisions to user page

I am open to reasoned suggestions about how to present my user page, but I am not prepared to allow uninvited alterations, even if well-intentioned.Nick Gardner 16:03, 12 May 2008 (CDT)

In that case you did the right thing. :) Sometimes its just easier just to show rather than tell. Chris Day 16:10, 12 May 2008 (CDT)

Draft for article diminishing returns

Hi Nick, thanks for your comment! I have replied there. I am new to Citizendium. Can you tell me whether it is better to reply on the author's page or to reply where the comment has been made? Greetings! --Paul Schächterle 13:14, 15 May 2008 (CDT)

I'm no expert on CZ protocol either. I suggest you ask an editor. Nick Gardner 16:18, 15 May 2008 (CDT)


I do not wish to cause offence by not replying to messages, so I should explain that I have embarked upon an indefinite sabbatical from CZ, and for that reason I shall not be responding to messages posted here, except on matters directly concerned with articles that have been put forward for approval. Nick Gardner 15:30, 15 May 2008 (CDT)

:-( Sorry to hear that. Hope you'll be able to add more at some point; we all did notice all your work, we're just busy elsewhere. J. Noel Chiappa 16:20, 15 May 2008 (CDT)
Thank you. I appreciate your support and I am quite prepared to wait - especially for initiatives from fellow-economists. Nick Gardner 16:32, 15 May 2008 (CDT)
As far as I can tell, there has been no activity of any sort among the economics authors in the past two months, but I have returned to the extent of dipping a toe into the water that lies at the interface of economics and sociology (social capital) and I am waiting to see if I get any response there. I am not holding my breath! I might try behavioral economics next. Nick Gardner 04:56, 6 July 2008 (CDT)
Attempts to provoke the sociology authors failed, and nothing seems to have disturbed the torpor of the economics authors, but I plan to continue to probe the interdisciplinary aspects of economics with a foray into philosophy, in the hope of finding some response there. There must be life out there somewhere! Nick Gardner 16:21, 28 July 2008 (CDT)

International economics

Way to go! --D. Matt Innis 21:23, 22 May 2008 (CDT)


Thanks for you e-mail. In fact i've been waiting for a French citizendium to be launched, but since there nothing new about this...

Of course I can comment your article if you ask me. Maybe can you correct my English for it is not my native language. I am currently working on IS/LM model but opportunity cost should be checked too (my English in particular).

I'll try to convince some friends who are waiting for a French version to try to contribute in English. For that I need to finish IS/LM model to prove it is possible.--Sylvain Catherine 10:37, 12 September 2008 (CDT)

Hello Sylvain

I had no particular article in mind - I should welcome your comments on any that I have contributed to. They are listed in my user page [1].

I should be happy to help with your English (which in any case seems good).

I am glad that someone is working on IS/LM: I had been putting it off because I don't like drawing diagrams.

I'll have a look at both articles before long, and comment on them on their talk pages.

Nick Gardner 11:19, 12 September 2008 (CDT)

Your recent work

You've been doing a great job with the contributions you've made recently regarding the current debacle. I just wanted to swing by your talk page and thank you for your hard work. So... Thanks! --Joe Quick 15:01, 14 October 2008 (UTC)

Indeed. I'll repeat my comments from a while back - we're a small crew, stretched thin, and so most are busy elsewhere, but your contributions are both noted and valued. J. Noel Chiappa 16:39, 24 October 2008 (UTC)
Thank you both for your encouraging messages. Nick Gardner 18:11, 24 October 2008 (UTC)

Hang in there!

Are you sorry you started crash of 2008 yet?

Hang in there, I know it's a pain when something gets nominated for approval, seems suddenly everyone and his brother has something to say on the topic, but even though it may not seem like it, everyone really is trying to help, not--I repeat, NOT--trying to find fault with your work!

Aleta Curry 22:49, 28 October 2008 (UTC)

I like it! It's stimulating - far better than being ignored. But thanks for your reassuring words. Much appreciated. Nick Gardner 22:58, 28 October 2008 (UTC)
While I'm here, let me echo Aleta's wise words! J. Noel Chiappa 18:47, 30 October 2008 (UTC)
PS: Seems like you may have gone from too little feedback to too much, in one fell swoop! :-) J. Noel Chiappa 18:48, 30 October 2008 (UTC)

I had hoped - as ever - to attract contributions from professionals in economics and finance, and to raise the quality of the article by exchanges with them. Apart from some help from Martin - a very busy man - that hasn't happened. I can't deny that that has been a disappointment. But your contributions have been a great consolation, Noel, and I am still enjoying the challenge. Nick Gardner 21:24, 3 November 2008 (UTC)


Since 'Draft' is ambiguous (and likely to need to be disambiguated), Draft/Definition‎ might be better at Bank draft/Definition. J. Noel Chiappa 18:47, 30 October 2008 (UTC)

lost glossary?

Nick, are you looking for this page? Subprime_mortgage_crisis/Glossary. When Martin moved the article he created a new metadata template and did not add the glossary tab. So, despite the subpage existing, it does not show up as a link at the top. Chris Day 15:21, 31 October 2008 (UTC)

Thank you Chris. I withdrew my complaint when I realised that much of what had disappeared was in any case redundant. I have put an edited version in its place. Nick Gardner 15:31, 31 October 2008 (UTC)

Your testimony

Please let us have it! If you're willing, of course... --Larry Sanger 21:07, 3 November 2008 (UTC)

I have tried - I hope it is what you wanted. Nick Gardner 08:32, 4 November 2008 (UTC)

Always being careful in areas where I lack expertise...

Two things came together for me on seeing your work on Banking. Last night, I was rereading John Keegan's The Mask of Command, in which he talks about military and economic competition/styles. One of his points was that there became a reversal of models, probably sometime in the early nineteenth century, and at least in military terms.

Up to that point, mercantilism and colonialism, to use game-theoretic terminology, used a zero-sum model, where the initial capitalism was non-zero-sum: more individual participation in security-funded firms gave the better-capitalized firm more opportunity to create wealth. In contrast, the national-level mobilization of Napoleonic armies turned warfare more from controlled maneuvering, which is actually evident in much of medieval and primitive warfare, to total war (i.e., zero-sum).

The wheel seems to be turning again, with the financial markets (merger/acquisition, derivatives rather than direct valuation), etc., moving to zero-sum, while warfare, both through the destructiveness of highly industrialized forces and to what is available to insurgents, becomes non-zero-sum.

Anyway, you triggered these associations, which I think are useful. Where to put the military-economic game of strategy relationships, if others agree in this cyclic behavior, utterly baffles me. Howard C. Berkowitz 15:20, 4 November 2008 (UTC)

Geometric series

I wrote Geometric series upon your request. --Paul Wormer 10:54, 6 November 2008 (UTC)

Instant satisfaction! Excellent! Many thanks. Nick Gardner 11:48, 6 November 2008 (UTC)

Economic warfare

I've started an article on economic warfare as a subset of grand strategy, but lack knowledge and examples in some areas. My strength is more intelligence and military; I know that there have been attempts to interfere with national resources in the worldwide financial markets, attack its currency, etc., but other than a few cases of counterfeiting, I don't know how the latter was done.

If you have any time to look at it, comments or text are very welcome. Howard C. Berkowitz 17:07, 6 November 2008 (UTC)

I think it has the makings of a fascinating article on a fascinating subject - which, however is not one that I know much about. You have rightly touched on blockades as a major economic warfare strategy, and I suppose that you are aready planning to say more about it. And what about the Allied bombing raids on the Ploesty oilfields? And, as you probably know, the German WW2 submarine blockade was a brilliant effort which might have won them the war but for the Bletchley Park codebreakers. But you may not have heard about the abortive German attempt to damage the British economy by flooding it with forged banknotes? Nothing else occurs to me right now, but I'll keep thinking ..Nick Gardner 21:28, 6 November 2008 (UTC)

I am gemerally aware of banknote counterfeiting, done by skilled slave labor in concentration camps. A bit of it was used by captured spies, but, IIRC, some of the troops moving into Germany found chests of banknotes in a lake.
There's a delicate line between economic warfare and strategic bombing (WWII terminology, now more generalized into strategic kinetic and nonkinetic strike). While there is a huge amount of controversy about the attack on German oil, I don't think of it as economic warfare. Certainly, oil had an immense role in the economy, but as far as I know, only military means were used to break the German oil industry. Ball bearings are different, in that there was a specific nonmilitary component where money was used to buy up the Swedish supply. I need to make that distinction more clear; while "economic warfare" is the strategic term of art, perhaps I should refer to "financial attack" to distinguish buying Swedish bearings from bombing Schweinfurt, although both were intended to create the same effect?
Where I need the most help is in attacks through a financial market. I'm most familiar with those used against non-national groups, but I'm thinking more about actions taken against countries through market manipulation, reducing the value of government bonds, etc. It's only a vague recollection, but I thought the U.S., at one point, played some games in the sugar futures market specifically to affect Cuba's economy. The relationship between the Arab oil boycott and effects on countries it wanted pressure is very direct; the sort of things I don't understand, however, is where they may have used means other than reducing production and controlling exports -- things done in the financial markets. There have also been allegations that terrorist groups speculated in markets, expecting a crash after an attack; I tend not to put a lot of credence into such matters as they are a huge operational security risk.
Britain did have a formal Ministry of Economic Warfare in WWII, although the US did not formalize it as much. While the US was unquestionably waging economic warfare on Japan in mid-1941, it was primarily to deal with Indochina; the US had no particular idea what effects it was having on the Japanese decision to launch much more aggressive war, which, in their minds, was for resources.
I'm trying to focus on the things that were done deliberately. Few people in the West, as far as I know, looked at an arms race as a means to break the Soviet Union, although it became a large part of it. Howard C. Berkowitz 21:45, 6 November 2008 (UTC)

I understand, but I don't think I can help. You need to consult a finance nerd rather than an economist. Nick Gardner 06:46, 7 November 2008 (UTC)

Laughing...see what I mean? I can make fine distinctions about interior and exterior ballistics for rocket science, which is really rocket engineering, know the nuances of all sorts of medical and computer things and how to put together an intelligence estimate, but economics? finance? mostly baffle me. Yes, I can do things like CAPEX and OPEX in a business plan, but, in other areas, I know my limitations. (thinks of some editorial disputes) Howard C. Berkowitz 14:49, 7 November 2008 (UTC)

Deterrence, compellence and game theory

Noticing you contributed to game theory, you might want to build on some specialized, often military, cases I am describing, such as compellence and deterrence. Compellence was an often flawed model used by U.S. decisionmakers in the Vietnam War, who both assumed the opponent was a rational actor, but mirror-imaged the opponent with the assumption they had a common idea of rationality and optimal outcomes. I'll be continuing to expand on these, but I can't help remembering that the full title of Morgenstern and von Neumann's work was Theory of Games and Economic Behavior. Howard C. Berkowitz 00:44, 6 December 2008 (UTC)

Shakespearean reflections

I saw your plan to put flesh on the skeleton of "financial system". Where does Shylock's pound of it fit? Should it be given to him in advance? Howard C. Berkowitz 18:22, 23 April 2009 (UTC)the risks

Certainly not! Along with other speculators in the bond market he will have to bear the risk that the issuer may default - and if he does there is also a possibility that his credit default swap insurance may not pay up. Then he will have to suffer the same fate as Lehman Brothers and the other money-grubbing investment bankers. Public opinion is definitely not on their side, and another bail-out is definitely out of the question. Nick Gardner 21:18, 23 April 2009 (UTC)

Perhaps of use...

I created most-favoured-nation and MERCOSUR. While I'm no international economist, perhaps we can try to get in the WTO, G8, G20 and other politically critical groups. Howard C. Berkowitz 16:41, 21 May 2009 (UTC)

MFN would certainly have an important place in an article on the WTO - and there ought to be such an article (I'll put om my list). In the meantime why not add a link to the WTO website [2] ? Incidentally your article does not make it entirely that MFN status applies to all fellow-members of the WTO. Nick Gardner 18:48, 21 May 2009 (UTC)

Labour (economy)

Thanks for your message. Footnotes: I just did that because there was a <references/> tag at the bottom of the page which I thought was a placeholder for future footnotes. You can delete it or restore the old tag if you think it's unnecessary. John Stephenson 03:36, 6 June 2009 (UTC)

Started a WTO article

Think of this as a starting point for your expertise; I saw it in your to-do list. Howard C. Berkowitz 14:54, 16 June 2009 (UTC)

Thanks Howard - a useful start Nick Gardner 15:25, 16 June 2009 (UTC)
In economics, I do well if achieve as much as the apple that hit Newton on the head. Alas, nothing ever came of the second apple other than a cry of pain. Howard C. Berkowitz 15:28, 16 June 2009 (UTC)

Globalization article

I've started, more as a stimulus for discussion and linking, globalization. Should this be more in the economics workgroup than one of the existing ones?

At the very least, I'd appreciate your looking at redlinks and changing them to any terms you have already defined. Howard C. Berkowitz 17:39, 29 June 2009 (UTC)

Howard An interesting start, on a subject to which I have given some thought. At first glance I haven't spotted any redlinks that I could help with, although I should like to add a link to International economics. I should be willing to develop that aspect, but I should warn that - like most (not all) economists - I am enthusiastically in favour of globalisation, so there might be a danger of losing balance. (I could, I suppose, give full vent to the opposing views of Dani Rodik and Joseph Stiglitz to restore the balance?). Anyway I have to admit that globalisation has greatly magnified the damage done by the present recession. Perhaps that is worth a mention? I also find interesting the non-economic issues that you raise, but I am not sure that I could usefully add anything on them. (Is there an ethical aspect?). Let's keep in touch on this - Nick Gardner 19:00, 29 June 2009 (UTC)
I think you'll find I'm somewhere on the pro- side of neutral; when globalization leads to war and famine, it's bad; when it leads to prosperity, it's good. The reasons for war often are not economic.
I was hoping you could check some of my terms such as "market economy" and "free trade", whether you have articles or not.Howard C. Berkowitz 19:13, 29 June 2009 (UTC)
Consider them checked. They are completely valid in the context even if they are destined to remaln red for some time to come Nick Gardner 19:35, 29 June 2009 (UTC)

(random) variable

Hi, why did you delete the "random" in the definition of confidence interval/Definition? If the variable is not random then there is no probability of its value being in a range. (The random may be implied for statisticians, but ia not in general.) Peter Schmitt 09:02, 30 June 2009 (UTC)

I am prepared to defer on this point because I am not sure of my understanding. However, I was thinking about observed departures from the normal distribution (kurtosis etc) which I had supposed to reflect departures from randomness. Are you saying that no confidence interval can be envisaged in those cases? (or that none is measurable?). Or what? Nick Gardner 10:33, 30 June 2009 (UTC)
I have added the following to the talk page of the Applied statistics article:
I should like to add a note to the glossary title on the Related Articles subpage to the effect that for mathematically precise explanations of the concepts, the reader should refer to the Statistics theory article. This does not seem helpful in the present state of that article, but perhaps I should do so in anticipation of its further development? Nick Gardner 10:59, 30 June 2009 (UTC)
If I understand you correctly, then this fits in: You observe "departures from the normal distribution" by measuring kurtosis (etc.), i.e., you observe the value of a random variable. You compute the confidence interval from assumptions on the distribution of that random variable.
I don't know if using /Related_Articles as a glossary is part of the original idea. But why not? (I am not sure if it needs a remark in the introduction.) Statistics theory (or better Statistics?), and Mathematical statistics could be used as parent article, Probability theory as related?
Peter Schmitt 23:18, 30 June 2009 (UTC)
Thanks for your help. I think you are saying that I should restore the deleted "of a random variable" - so I will do so. I am sure you know best (although I am not sure that I understand how to deal with kurtosis). I fear that other definitions in the glossary may be mathematically imprecise, and, if so, I hope that that can be remedied without rendering them incomprehensible to our layman readers (who I take to be in the majority).
The glossary is on the related article subpage on Larry's insistance (he objected to my former practice of creating an additional glossary subpage). It has been my practice in other articles to add a note in the introduction in order to save the reader's time by indicating that only the italicised words are defined in the glossary.
I would have used the title "statistics" for this article but it had been used by the earlier article and is still a redirect page for that article (now called "statistics theory"). I believe it to be necessary to impress upon readers that the subject of statistics has vital implications going beyond the mathematical processes that it uses - which they ignore at their peril (as they say). The conduct of experts who overlooked that fact is, I understand, one of the reasons for the current financial crisis. Nick Gardner 08:07, 1 July 2009 (UTC)

Correct linkage to your articles

Could you look at The Clash of Civilizations and the Remaking of World Order#The Nature of Dominance and check if I am using terms such as international economics, or perhaps I should be using finance, consistently with your definitions? Feel free to change terms. Howard C. Berkowitz 13:00, 12 July 2009 (UTC)

Interesting article. I couldn't find anything that I would wish to change. Passing thought: the ultimate level of integration would be complete globalisation - a remote possibility except for finance. Nick Gardner 15:16, 12 July 2009 (UTC)
Huntington thinks complete globalization is a fantasy, but you might want to look at some of the other futures studies books/theories/articles on which I'm working, some not yet started: The Pentagon's New Map, The End of History/Francis Fukuyama, Jihad vs. McWorld. Howard C. Berkowitz 16:10, 12 July 2009 (UTC)

speedy deletes

Hi, Nick,

Apparently you and Daniel are not in agreement with about 5 speedy delete requests. Please come to a meeting of the minds with him over this and let me know what to do. Thanks! Hayford Peirce 17:12, 18 August 2009 (UTC)

I simply moved "Bad bank"/Definition to Bad bank/Definition and speedied the former (i.e. the one with quotes in the title, which does not fit with naming conventions). As for the other ones, they were transclusions, and I think I have kicked them off the speedy list now by means of <noinclude></noinclude>. --Daniel Mietchen 19:27, 18 August 2009 (UTC)
Thank you, Hayford.
Daniel. If you are saying that the quotes in the title break some rule, I suggest that it is an unfortunate rule. How else can it be indicated that this is a technical term, the words of which are not intended to be taken literally?
Now that I have read your email it seems that you are saying that the quotes can be retained if they are really necessary? I so, let's keep them. The definition is not worth having without them. Nick Gardner 20:49, 18 August 2009 (UTC)
Since the tech aspects of this are beyond me, I will leave the speedy delete for the moment until every is settled conclusively. Hayford Peirce 21:17, 18 August 2009 (UTC)
As you see from the existence of "Bad bank"/Definition, titles with special characters like quotes are technically possible, but they tend to cause problems for the automated handling of pages.
My email referred to the possibility of putting {{r|Bad bank|"Bad bank"}} on Related Articles pages, which would display the same way:
"Bad bank" [r]: A subsidiary, or separate corporation, created to hold and manage non-performing assets transferred to it by a rescued bank. [e]
This achieves your goal of marking the term as unusual, while leaving the page name without quotes.
What do you think?--Daniel Mietchen 21:53, 18 August 2009 (UTC)
Agreed Nick Gardner 06:00, 19 August 2009 (UTC)

Congratulations, Your Worship

(knuckles brow) I always regarded economics as some sort of oracular priesthood.

Apropos of priestly sacrifice, in your flight test days, did you ever deal with the chicken cannon? Howard C. Berkowitz 15:48, 13 October 2009 (UTC)

Thanks, Your Majesty!
No. I was the victim of a variety of experiments by the aviation medicine wonks, including ejector seat trials, but they never used that weapon.Nick Gardner 16:24, 13 October 2009 (UTC)

Ronald Dworkin

I haven't changed anything because I wasn't sure what you are trying to do on the talk page, which presents in cluster creation mode. It seems like the first thing we need is a disambiguation page. Howard C. Berkowitz 14:17, 30 October 2009 (UTC)

I wanted to put a link to Dworkin the jurist in an article, but was unable to do so because the destination was occupied by Dworkin the medic. I thought to do some disambigation, but my efforts were frustrated by my ignorance of the necessary procedures so I tried to draw attention to the problem using the talk page - only to run into further problems - so I gave up. I should be glad of your help. (Incidently, I think Dworkin deserves more than a stub.) Nick Gardner 14:41, 30 October 2009 (UTC)

Where do accounting and audit controls fit?

Please take a look at Sarbanes-Oxley Act, and help me decide what workgroups are appropriate. Economics? Business? Law? Computing? If we created a Security Subgroup, would accounting and audit be part of it? Howard C. Berkowitz 22:17, 10 November 2009 (UTC)

Congratulations on your article, Howard! As to the workgroup it belongs in, I've been treating finance as though it were a branch of economics. (That's probably as a result of the crash of 2008 - like most economists I more or less ignored it up to then. It was supposed to be always there and working, like the sewage system). Anyway, there is an article on the financial system whose concluding paragraphs deal (incompletely) with proposals to reform it. And the concluding paragraph of its addendum subpage contains a list, to which I have added a link to your article. So it would sit well in the Economics workgroup. I don't think readers would expect to find financial regulation in a security workgroup, but there is something to be said for an accounting and auditing workgroup. Nick Gardner 08:41, 11 November 2009 (UTC)
I've set up a top-level article, U.S. financial laws, which provides useful Related Articles. Would something similar be appropriate for the UK or EU, or perhaps for international agreements ?
As a new challenge, what workgroup is appropriate for a trade union? I'm approaching them more from a standpoint of political activity. Economics and Politics? Business somehow seems wrong. Howard C. Berkowitz 22:02, 14 November 2009 (UTC)
Your use of the Related Articles of the US financial laws article seems to me to be a good idea that might well be emulated in a a European context - but I don't think I'm the man to do it!
I don't think economics has much to do with the rationale of trade unions, and I don't think that their undoubted economic influence is sufficient justification for putting them in the economics workgroup. Politics is an obvious choice - but how about sociology? Nick Gardner 22:27, 14 November 2009 (UTC)

Hello from a new Citizen

Hi Nick,

Going by the recent changes to the economics articles, it appears you are by far the most active in the economics workgroup. I'm very interested and excited to make a positive contribution to the workgroup as well. If you have any suggestions for me or if you are interested in active collaboration on any of the economics articles, please let me know. --Joseph Carpenter 05:03, 11 December 2009 (UTC)

Welcome aboard Joseph!
Actually I have for some time been the only active economics author, and I recently became an editor - with nothing to edit! your intention to start by filling in some of the missing definitions and external links is an excellent idea. It will make you aware of the existing articles before you start on your own. Don't hesitate to criticise what you find! I will get back to you later with more suggestions. Nick Gardner 09:06, 11 December 2009 (UTC)

General disclaimer

Hi Nick, I found this in CZ:General disclaimer and removed it, since I think you wanted to put it elsewhere:

This article contains material from Decade of Discontent, (Basil Blackwell, 1987) of which I am the author and copyright-holder, and I hereby relinquish my rights to the passage quoted. Nick Gardner 14:19, 11 December 2009 (UTC)

--Daniel Mietchen 16:27, 11 December 2009 (UTC)

Thanks DanielNick Gardner 16:32, 11 December 2009 (UTC)

Bank of England

Hi Nick,

Any chance you could have a look at Bank of England and correct any egregious mistakes I've probably made? Thanks. –Tom Morris 14:46, 28 December 2009 (UTC)

Hello Tom - and well met! I haven't spotted anything that I would call a mistake, but I think you need to explain what is meant by "operational independence". Without further explanation, the statement that "interest rate setting and other operations are now managed independently of political oversight or control" is misleading, because it leaves the reader unaware of the important facts that the Bank's statutory remit is specified by a letter from the Chancellor of the Exchequer [3], and that the Chancellor sets its inflation target, and that the Governor is required to send a letter of explanation to the Chancellor if the Bank fails to keep inflation within the limits set by the Chancellor.
The Bank also has some very important responsibilities that are not at present covered by the article, including its role as "lender-of-last-resort", its shared responsibilities with the Treasury and the Financial Standards Authority for the oversight and regulation of the banking industry, and the part it plays in the current international debate about "macroprudential" management of the international financial system. If you want to add further drafting to cover those points, please let me know, and I shall be glad to help in my role as editor (I should also be willing to add some drafting of my own, but that would debar me from taking part in the approval process). Either way, I will make some further suggestions on the talk page of the article in the course of the next few weeks.
You have made a valuable start, and I hope you will continue. Good luck with it! Nick Gardner 17:23, 28 December 2009 (UTC)

Applied statistics

Nick, I noted that you designated the categories (on the Metadata template) for Applied statistics as being engineering and economics ... with which I agree. However, don't you think that the categories should also include mathematics? Milton Beychok 06:31, 30 December 2009 (UTC)

You are right in the sense that, like engineering and economics, it makes use of a certain amount of mathematics - although not, of course, the level of mathematics that is required for statistics theory. I have added mathematics to the template. Nick Gardner 08:46, 30 December 2009 (UTC)

Bond (financial)

Nick, could you look at this forum post, and the preceding posts? If you agree the (now deleted) talk page could be archived as discussed there. --Peter Schmitt 10:31, 18 January 2010 (UTC)

I have no objections, so long as Hayford is content Nick Gardner 10:47, 18 January 2010 (UTC)
I have no objections at all -- my whole role here has been that of trying to figure out what to do. I certainly think that the talk page should be available *somewhere* -- I've been telling Peter and Matt that I don't *know* what to do with it and that I want them to either tell me exactly or to do it themselves so that I can see what the process is. Hayford Peirce 16:43, 18 January 2010 (UTC)
It's probably important to consider that we have a Bond (finance) and I believe you are asking me to undelete the talk page at Bond (financial). You don't want both do you? D. Matt Innis 03:49, 22 January 2010 (UTC)
As far as I am concerned (when wearing my economics editor hat), all that is needed on the subject is contained in paragraph 2.1.1 of financial system (and indexed at Economics/Related Articles), and everything else could be deleted. But I believe that Hayford wants to preserve the history page of Bond (financial) as evidence in a policy discussion. That is still there, and I am content for it to remain there, archived or not. Bond (finance) seems to have been an accidental duplication, and serves no purpose. Nick Gardner 08:48, 22 January 2010 (UTC)
When this issue turned up (in the forum) I found two /Definition subpages - one at Bond (financial) (where the page and the talk page had been deleted) and at Bond (finance). Since there were links to the latter (but not to the first one) I moved the cluster to this place. You recreated Bond (finance) later. There is no talk page there, so it can be simply undeleted (and moved afterwards). --Peter Schmitt 11:22, 22 January 2010 (UTC)
I've re-read this twice and am still not sure which way this should go. We can move both histories to the same page, but which name do we want for the articles. I'm not sure the content is a big problem as neither article is more than a stub definition. D. Matt Innis 14:49, 31 January 2010 (UTC)
It doesn't matter which. I prefer Bond (finance) by a narrow margin. - Nick Gardner 15:17, 31 January 2010 (UTC)
OK, I've moved everything to Bond (finance), although now it needs some work as it is not an article. D. Matt Innis 16:15, 31 January 2010 (UTC)

Bond rating(s)

Nick, there are two pages (created at the same time with common contributors!) on Bond rating and Bond Ratings. What do you think of them. --Peter Schmitt 00:39, 4 February 2010 (UTC)

Thanks, Peter, I should have spotted them myself.
They are simplistic, incomplete, uncritical, and out of date - but not inaccurate. The material in them is partially duplicated here. I do not consider it (them) to be up to standard, but I do consider it an advantage to have an article that brings together the, at present scattered, references to this topic.
The two available options seem to be:
(a) re-title as "Credit Rating Agency", and edit -very extensively, or
(b) delete and start a new article under that title.
The outcome would be the same either way and, in addition to the above material, should include
Their methods of risk assessment;
The part played by their incompetence in triggering the financial crisis (as revealed by evidence to various independent enquiries);
A Tutorials subpage note on their errors (such as this);
External links to the agencies and to their newly-appointed regulatory authorities.
I would be prepared to do the necessary drafting (and I don't suppose anyone else would want to) but I need a constable's ruling as to whether to adopt option (a) or option (b).-Nick Gardner 08:58, 4 February 2010 (UTC)
I have moved the page as you suggested. If you want to start a new article, I suggest that you simply blank it before that. Since, as you say, the article is not inaccurate, it can remain until you (probably, or someone else) works on it. --Peter Schmitt 11:03, 8 February 2010 (UTC)

Another monetis(z)ation

Probably more business than true economics, monetization is a popular term in Internet-based business. How shall we disambiguate?

In general, it means, in my context, finding a way to get unexpected monetary return from an activity not principally intended as profit-making. The most common usage is putting pay-per-click advertising on otherwise free websites, the revenue going to the site operator.

Another aspect, where I'm doing some work in my town planning now, is to combine revenue-producing telecommunications infrastructure, sometimes along with capital investment, with construction that would be done anyway by the locality. For example, where I last lived, one of the cellular telephony companies paid for a substantial night athletic field lighting system, along with continuing rent, in return for putting a cell tower on one of the light stands. My town is putting in a new sewer system, and I'm encouraging them to include, in the concrete castings, ducts for telecommunications cables.

The latter is not only a revenue source by leasing cable right-of-way, but also a benefit to the town economy since telecommunications providers no longer have to disrupt traffic to install cable. They can also move away from unsightly utility poles and get their cables into a place that needs less maintenance -- and also is more protected from disasters. We are a seacoast that can get violent windstorms from which underground facilities are safe.

Not a problem, fortunately, because the actual definition is Monetisation (of public debt). The reason that it didn't read that way was because I hid the bit in brackets by putting "Monetisation (of public debt)|monetisation" in the [[ ]] brackets to make it read monetisation. - Nick Gardner 16:43, 11 February 2010 (UTC)

Redlinks and lemma articles

Hi Nick, I saw that you have been starting CZ:Lemma articles more systematically recently, so I would appreciate your comments on this thread at the Forums. Thanks! --Daniel Mietchen 09:56, 26 February 2010 (UTC)

Thank you Daniel: I have added a reply saying that I find them indispensible. Nick Gardner 10:31, 26 February 2010 (UTC)
Thanks — I agree with your assessment, but I also invited others to the debate who see things differently. Did you notice that clicking on the [r] in a lemma brings you to its Related Articles page? This way, it is possible to embed a topic into a web of relevant context, even before an actual article is started. --Daniel Mietchen 10:46, 26 February 2010 (UTC)

Clear definition of Highly Indebted Poor Country(ies)

First, correct me if this is not the term of art for a country for which debt relief is considered appropriate. Second, I can find World Bank, IDA, and even MCA pages that talk about getting a country out of HIPC status, but I do not yet have an unambiguous definition of what qualifies a nation as HIPC. Can you help?

On a separate issue, we have created a Security Subgroup. Is that the reasonable place of accounting, auditing and regulation, rather than Economics? If you like the idea, please add the Economics Workgroup. Howard C. Berkowitz 15:03, 5 March 2010 (UTC)

I don't know whether HIPC is a term of art - but I've never taken an interest in development economics so that's not much help. I wouldn't know where else to look if the World Bank doesn't define it, but I'll google around a bit and see if I can turn something up.
There are some fuzzy borderlines between economics and accounting, auditing and regulation, but I am not inclined to consider them appropriate to the economics workgroup - although I have started an article on financial regulation and the gross domestic product article has a reference to national accounts that some economist might want to expand. Nick Gardner 17:00, 5 March 2010 (UTC)

The Great Recession

Hi, Nick, that's sure an impressive body of work you've been putting out! Whew, my hat's off to you, as I use the opportunity to wipe my brow in commiseration of all the sweat you've generated.

I know that you've been working on the Crash of 2008 for a long time now, but what about an article called the Great Recession? That phrase shows up in Bing 150,000 times and in Google 803,000. I know that Howard, for instance, excoriates newspapers (and the Authors who depend on them for references), but some newspapers are simply more important than others. In the *lede* article on the front page of today's New York Times, in the *lede* paragraph, we read, "The American economy lost fewer jobs than expected last month, bolstering hopes that the worst may finally be over in the wrenching event known as the Great Recession." (The Times, incidentally, has used it 8,560 times.)

Cheers! Hayford Peirce 18:06, 6 March 2010 (UTC)

Thank you for those encouraging words, Hayford. I enjoy doing it, and it's a bonus to feel that it is well received.
I've been thinking about your suggestion, and I am rather attracted to a portal article with that title, covering the period 2007 to 2010 and linking together the articles on the subprime mortgage crisis, the crash of 2008 and the recession of 2009, and perhaps robbing some material from each.
How does that strike you? Nick Gardner 07:20, 7 March 2010 (UTC)
That's *precisely* what I had in mind. Just as there ought to be a portal article called the Great Depression. And let's hope that *this* one is on its last legs and won't take WW III to make it go away! Hayford Peirce 16:56, 7 March 2010 (UTC)
Good! I'll do it. And thanks for the idea. Nick Gardner 20:34, 7 March 2010 (UTC)

It's done! Well anyway, there's a first in place for anyone who is interested. Is this what you had in mind Hayford? Nick Gardner 05:35, 29 April 2010 (UTC)

Social capital

Hi Nick, would you be interested in being a third editor on the nomination of Social capital? It looks like you made some significant contributions and would be the best choice for a three editor approval. D. Matt Innis 14:21, 31 May 2010 (UTC)

Yes, willingly - I was not aware that an editor is able to take part in the approval of an article to which he has contributed.
Yes, as long as it is the three editor approval, an involved editor can participate. D. Matt Innis 15:11, 31 May 2010 (UTC)
PS, just add your name to the metadata template as the third editor. D. Matt Innis 15:14, 31 May 2010 (UTC)
Is there any way of getting some of the economics articles approved? Nick Gardner 15:04, 31 May 2010 (UTC)
There are possibilities, especially if you can add associated workgroups with the articles... otherwise, we need more editors! D. Matt Innis 15:11, 31 May 2010 (UTC)

Nick, Please see This D. Matt Innis 16:32, 31 May 2010 (UTC)

Social capital

..needs your attention for approval. See this. Thanks! D. Matt Innis 21:55, 2 June 2010 (UTC)

I have noted my approval on the talk page. Nick Gardner 06:18, 3 June 2010 (UTC)

Now Approved! Actually for the second time. While you were sleeping the database crashed so everyone lost a days worth of edits.. so I did it twice! D. Matt Innis 23:47, 3 June 2010 (UTC)

You've been Nominated!

Someone has nominated you for a position in the new Citizendium. They have noticed you're dedication to the project and like what they see. To be listed on the ballot for the position, it is necessary that you accept the nomination on the Nomination page. Just place accept next to your name along with the four tildes. The nomination period will close at midnight October 7 (UTC). Article 54 of the new charter details the requirements:

Article 54

  • In conjunction with the Declaration of the Editor-in-Chief regarding the effectivity of this Charter, there shall be a call for nominations for the following offices: Managament Council (five seats), Editorial Council (seven seats), Managing Editor (one), Ombudsman (one). This shall be the effective date of the Charter.
  • Any Citizen may nominate candidates for these positions.
  • Nominations shall be collected and collated by the Chief Constable.
  • Nominations shall be accepted no more than fourteen days after the effective date of the charter; the ballot shall be available starting on the twentieth day after the effective date of the charter; the election shall be completed no more than twenty-eight days after the effective date of the charter; all elected officials shall begin their term of office on the thirtieth day after the effective date of the charter.
  • Only candidates who accept their nomination shall be eligible to appear on the ballot. Nominated candidates can accept nominations for no more than two official functions. Accepting a nomination serves as a declaration of commitment, in the case of being elected, to fulfill this function until the limit of the term.
  • All positions shall be elected by a simple majority of the voting citizenry. In the case of a tie, an immediate run-off election shall be held.
  • In the event that a candidate has been elected for two functions, the candidate shall declare which one he or she accepts within three days of announcement of the election results. In the event that such a declaration has not been made during this period, the candidate shall be considered elected for the position for which the nomination was accepted first. The same procedure applies to a reserve member that becomes elected by a seat being vacated this way.

If you would like to make a statement to help voters, click the "Statement" link to the right of your name.

Thanks again for the commitment you're making to assure that Citizendium becomes the premier quality online source we all have envisioned.

D. Matt Innis 13:03, 3 October 2010 (UTC)

Glass-Steagall Act of 1932 and more

Please check the lede changes I made here. I'm not a professional economist, but I see the repeal of most of Glass-Steagall by the Gramm-Leach-Bliley Act as the start of a slide to today's chaos.

A credit-default swap is not unreasonable as long as it is adequately collateralized (not quite the word I want) by the participants. The crisis came about partially because new financial instruments were being created in an environment where no regulation applied, and there was no one to ask the question, "are these being designed on an overly optimistic model?" Howard C. Berkowitz 08:45, 5 October 2010 (UTC)

Although I did a lot of drafting about the Great Depression, I know little about US banking legislation. I knew that Glass-Steagall forced a separation between commercial and investment banking, but I didn't know that it also had the effect of relaxing reserve requirements(?). I agree that Gramm-Leach-Bliley played a part in the banking crisis, but I seem to recall that relaxations in the interpretations of banking law in the 1980s had also been important. Nick Gardner 07:24, 7 October 2010 (UTC)

Risk and reward on Wall Street

While I wouldn't presume to be authoritative on stabilizing the U.S. financial market, there's a very interesting New York Times opinion article at [4], which describes ways in which financial executives can be incentivized to stabilize rather than gamble with highly speculative investments. I wonder if it fits somewhere?

Full disclosure: while I believe in the free market, I tend to feel that basic market principles of value and goodwill have especially left the financial markets, with blind faith in deregulation and "self-correction" have led to some of the recent crises. You can't have a truly free market with insider information, and conflict between personal and shareholder value. Howard C. Berkowitz 15:10, 8 October 2010 (UTC)

Thank you Howard. This is a topic that I should return to. I have been waiting for an international consensus, but it now seems that everyone is going their own way. I am beginning to suspect that the "moral hazard" of investment banking is unavoidable. They know we will bail them out, so there can be no decisive restraint on their risk-taking. And they are smart enough to evade our attempts to restrain them. Nick Gardner 10:50, 13 October 2010 (UTC)

Going cold turkey

Hi, Nick, could you take a look at: and offer your considered opinion when you have a moment? Many thanks! Hayford Peirce 22:08, 19 October 2010 (UTC)

Good to hear from you, Hayford. I hope my comment on the talk page of the article is not too sour. Nick Gardner 09:00, 20 October 2010 (UTC)

Any existing "U.S. Economy" article?

If you look at the lede of Tea Party movement, you'll see a redlink to U.S. economy. Does anything exist that fits there? Howard C. Berkowitz 04:38, 22 October 2010 (UTC)

Not that I'm aware of. It would be an interesting challenge! Nick Gardner 07:51, 22 October 2010 (UTC)

Tony Blair

Wow! This was a lot of work: I hadn't realised you were doing so much on politics articles. My quick reaction is the following: it looks very well researched; there are some questions that I have, on a few specific issues; and I have some doubts about aspects of the structure of the article (especially the section on Criticisms) which look less like a normal academic article and more like WP. Having said that, it is not too far from Approval state, I would guess. Probably the best way to get there is for more people to collaborate on it. I'll put out a call on the Forum, or you can if you prefer. Anyway: congratulations on excellent work! Martin Baldwin-Edwards 21:39, 24 October 2010 (UTC)

While I certainly am not qualified to judge the detailed UK politics, I have made a few link and terminology changes on military aspects during the second term. Continuing to read, I am impressed, and suspect I'd be very happy to join in a nomination. Howard C. Berkowitz 22:07, 24 October 2010 (UTC)
I'll copy edit... like you need that. D. Matt Innis 23:41, 24 October 2010 (UTC)
Thanks! I'm in your hands. Nick Gardner 06:18, 25 October 2010 (UTC)

Setting up a group of linked articles on a common topic

The CZ wiki has the potential of generating more navigable and user friendly articles than would be possible on Wikipedia, by creating sets of linked articles on common topics.

Among issues to consider when creating or bringing together a set of linked articles are its provisions for coordination, terminology, navigation and adaptation. Here are some suggestions

CZ ‘s system of editors gives it a major advantage in the provision of coordination. It would obviously be a help if the active editors of the workgroup concerned were to agree in advance upon the selection of a lead editor, who would then be responsible for advising authors on matters such as consistency of terminology, avoidance of excessive duplication, and ease of navigation.

CZ experts (including me) are apt to use without explanation, terms that they mistakenly believe to be widely understood. Links to lemma article definitions overcome that problem, but without coordination the system can become chaotic with rival definitions as variants of the same concept. The creation of a central glossary as a subpage to the “main article” (of which more later) provides the required coordination, provided that authors learn to refer to it, and to use it for lemma creating. Lemma articles can’t provide an in-depth explanation of a concept but that can be provided either by a link to a stand-alone article on the concept or a link to a headed paragraph in an article on a different article (using the # connector).

What I have called the “main article” could serve as the navigation centre for the new group of articles. One of its subpages could be an alphabetical index of articles and topics within articles, with links to article titles and to the headed paragraphs containing the topics. Another subpage could provide a thematic or “taxonomic” index (like the Economics/Related Articles subpage) in which links to articles and headed paragraphs are shown in alphabetical order under each of a series of subject headings . The related articles subpage of every article in the group could then display links to both indexes.

To preserve adaptability, the organising framework could be allowed to evolve as an "open system" that could develop interdisciplinary links and node articles (like the sociology/politics/economics article on social capital), and with the eventual possibility of a link from a "metagroup"

Nick Gardner 10:00, 9 November 2010 (UTC)

New Economics author

Nick, we have just been joined by Levan Ramishvili of Georgia as a new economics author. You may wish to post a welcome message on his Talk page. Milton Beychok 03:51, 20 November 2010 (UTC)

Thanks for letting me know, Milton. I'll keep an eye on him. I see that Martin has sent him a welcome Nick Gardner 11:38, 20 November 2010 (UTC).

The article Knowledge need to be looked at critcally

On our Welcome page, visitors are pointed to the Knowledge article. With that in mind, it is critical that the article be well written and impress them.

Recently, Dmitrii Kouznetsov added a major amount of material to the article which increased the article length fifteen-fold (from 1,565 bytes to 23, 990 bytes). Unfortunately, Dmitrii's command of the English language is not too good. Also, although I am not philosopher, it seems to me that some of his additional material may not be too relevant. I also wonder if some of his references are valid or appropriate.

Since the article is classified as in the Philosophy workgroup .... and there are no active Philosophy editors ... I am asking Philosophy authors like you to take a good look at Dmitrii's additional material and to revise it as appropriate. If nothing else, some of the formatting leaves much to be desired. Milton Beychok 22:21, 6 December 2010 (UTC)

I will try. - Nick Gardner 07:26, 7 December 2010 (UTC)
I am intrigued by the challenge that this offers because my second reaction - after finding the article as drafted to be almost entirely irrelevant - was to start thinking about what should replace it. I should very much like to rewrite it, but I am not sure that I should. Let me explain.
I have had no academic tuition in philosophy, but about five years ago I read - and was fascinated by - Karl Popper's Objective Knowledge. I still have a copy of that, and I find that my copy of The Oxford Companion to Philosophy contains four articles on theories of knowledge, contributed by eminent academics. So I am quite confident that I have all the research material needed, and I am fairly confident that I could use it to put together an adequate article.
However, it may be that there is a better-qualified author who is prepared to do a rewrite, and I don't want to pre-empt that possibility. Perhaps I should wait?
Anyway, for the time being I will concentrate on the question of how much to delete. Nick Gardner 10:12, 7 December 2010 (UTC)
For reasons stated on the talk page, I do not propose to take this any further. Nick Gardner 21:45, 20 December 2010 (UTC)

About the Knowledge article

Nick, I am confused. On Talk:Knowledge you say that you deleted all of Dimitrii's stuff as well as Anthony's "to know" section (both of which I would agree with), but Anthony's section is still there. Is there some reason why you changed your mind?

I don't think that Daniel was disagreeing with you. I also think that Anthony's section could go into a subpage on "Etiology" if he feels strongly about it. Milton Beychok 01:24, 10 December 2010 (UTC)

Several reasons. Following Anthony's talk page interjection asking for his paragraph to be retained, I thought it would not be right to delete it without giving him a further opportunity to comment. Also I thought that there might be a consensus in favour of Anthony's proposal to follow Larry's philosophical opening with some paragraphs on semantics - rather than my proposal to expand upon Larry's opening by adding some paragraphs drafted in terms similar to his. I had indicated on the talk page that I did not want to combine the two.
I think your suggestion of putting his paragraph on a subpage is an excellent compromise (I hadn't thought of that). I will adopt it if I do not hear from Anthony (or from others who support his proposal) in the next few days. Nick Gardner 07:00, 10 December 2010 (UTC)
I wrote that before Anthony's further talk page entry. As you can see, I have since put your suggestion to him. I am hopeful that he will agree Nick Gardner 14:37, 10 December 2010 (UTC)
Unless Anthony can be persuaded not to make pedantic alterations to my drafting I do not feel inclined to continue anyway. Nick Gardner 17:34, 10 December 2010 (UTC)

I believe that I have done what is needed - see what I have added to the talk page Nick Gardner 10:49, 15 December 2010 (UTC)

Hitler and economics

If you could, I'd appreciate your thoughts on the economics sections of my rewrite of Jensen's Hitler article, User: Howard C. Berkowitz/AH and of the economics section of National Socialism, where I moved some of the material. Frankly, I don't understand the Hitler material and the references are behind the JSTOR paywall. Maybe it's me, or maybe it's just hard to understand.

While I don't think Hitler is quite ready for mainspace, it's getting close (not approvable though), and any general comments are welcome. Howard C. Berkowitz 21:40, 12 December 2010 (UTC)

Give me a little time, Howard, I'm doing some stuff that I have to finish. When that's done I'll dig back into the research that I did for the Great Depression and give you my reactions. Remind me if I don't come back in a week or so. Nick Gardner 22:32, 12 December 2010 (UTC)
Without consulting sources I can advise you that the references to the economic situation in interwar Germany are inadequate and misleading (Jensen had a misplaced confidence in his understanding of economics). I have set up an "AH" user page of my own on which I will attempt some alternative and additional drafting if you wish. In the meantime let me make some brief points for you to consider. I shall number them so that you can refer to any that you consider to be too specialised to include.
(1) It is acknowledged that the economic situation in post-war Germany played a significant part in AH's rise to power, but little is said about what it was, how it arose, or how the Nazis dealt with it.
(2) The recession is referred to as an exogenous factor, but a significant part of it was generated wihin the German economy .
(3) The hyperinflation is mentioned, but without giving an adequate account of its effects.
(4) The cause of the hyperinflation was the mistaken monetary policy employed by the Weimar goverment to combat the depression.
(5) The hyperinflation was dealt with by the remarkably successful policies of the Nazi government's Hjalmar Schacht.
(6) The depression was dealt by a surge in government spending, much of it on armaments.
Apart from those economic issues, I was surprised by the absence of any reference to the contribution of the Freikorps and its successors to the public support enjoyed by the Nazis. Nick Gardner 11:34, 16 December 2010 (UTC)
Aha! Hitler himself had no association with Freikorps. Remember this is the Adolf Hitler article rather than the National Socialism article, a distinction that Jensen seemed not to make -- there are Hitler-specific things in National Socialism and vice versa. Obviously they interact, and there are also articles on Freikorps, Franz Ritter von Epp, [[Eetc.
I think it's a little pretentious to have Nazi Party as the redirect to National Socialism, as if National Socialism was a more clear-cut ideology than what Hitler said it was. It is fair to have Marxism, Marxist-Leninism, and Stalinism as separate main articles, as the historical literature clearly deals with these as ideologies rather than charismatic movements such as Naziism. Admittedly, it's hard to say if Das Kapital or Mein Kampf is more badly written. Still, I'm probably going to rename "National Socialism" to "Nazi Party", which I think will be much more clear.
As far as "too specialized", I found it decidedly frightening to find myself explaining M1 and M2 to Fox News-addicted friends, who had just discovered the Fed had monetized debt. In 1970, I was in the computer support group for the Securiteies and Exchange Commission's Institutional Investor Study. We concluded that if all the economists in the world were placed in a straight line, they'd point in different directions. Howard C. Berkowitz 17:06, 16 December 2010 (UTC)
I believe that activities such as those of the Freikorps may be relevant to both articles, as part of the explanation for the otherwise baffling phenomenon of a people of a democratic country voting into power an avowedly totalitarian party. Also, I belief that the elimination of its successor, was a step in Hitler's political progress. Nick Gardner 17:34, 16 December 2010 (UTC)
(I believe I said too specialised for inclusion! Nick Gardner 17:34, 16 December 2010 (UTC)
Failing any indication of urgency, I will put this matter aside for the time being Nick Gardner 21:32, 20 December 2010 (UTC)

Obama tax break

Are you considering wrtiting a quick article about OASDI FICA taxes? Everyone will be searching the web this week for that article to find out what it is. Just a suggestion. David E. Volk 20:18, 3 January 2011 (UTC)

Thanks for the suggestion - I agreed that it is good for CZ to be topical. However, as far as I can see, their economic effects should be the same as any other payroll taxes. As such they are not an economically efficient way of raising revenue, so their choice was presumably made on political grounds. I don't think I should attempt to write an article on how they affect individual tax liability - even if I knew how. But I will look out for an estimate of how they affect the aggregate tax wedge and then add it to the taxation article.Nick Gardner 09:22, 4 January 2011 (UTC)

Sub-timelines of Europe

I like what you are doing, and it occurs to me that I might do two timelines, with your agreement -- one on Naziism going back to 1918 or even to Hitler's birth or the 19th Century German nationallists, and one on WWII from both sides. Obviously, WWI should be done as well, but that's plenty to start.

How would you like them formatted and linked? Howard C. Berkowitz 20:02, 8 January 2011 (UTC)

Howard: See my addition to the talk page Nick Gardner 08:49, 9 January 2011 (UTC)


I wonder if you might like to give some attention to our article on microcredit, currently under the title microfinance. There was an editorial in the newspaper this morning by Muhammad Yunus that made me go look at our article. (He thinks the way in which microlending banks have commercialized is hurting borrowers and demonstrates mission drift.) Our article seems accurate if a bit out of date but very short and I don't think I have the knowledge to expand it. --Joe Quick 14:55, 15 January 2011 (UTC)

This deserves more attention that I can give it at present - but I'll come back to it when other commitments permit. Nick Gardner 16:59, 16 January 2011 (UTC)
I have now found time to examine the article and to survey the relevant information sources. I have found the article to contain inaccuracies and unsupported expressions of opinion, and to be not of an acceptable standard . I have made some deletions, set up a new paragraph structure, and invited new contributions. There has so far been no response, and I intend shortly to make a start on redrafting. Nick Gardner 21:58, 22 January 2011 (UTC)
I have contributions in mind, but I am quite willing to wait until you restructure it. It's relevant to social credit and counterinsurgency, as a start. What would you like me to do? Howard C. Berkowitz 22:03, 22 January 2011 (UTC)
I welcome your interest, but I would ask you to hold off for a few days during which I hope to set down the basic facts. Nick Gardner 22:24, 22 January 2011 (UTC)
Thanks, Nick. I feel this is an important article to do well. --Joe Quick 19:48, 24 January 2011 (UTC)

Connectivity check?

Tried to send an email but not sure it reached you. Please confirm. Howard C. Berkowitz 15:07, 17 February 2011 (UTC)

6 emails received (I've been gardening - just come in for a breather}. I will respond shortly Nick Gardner 15:42, 17 February 2011 (UTC)
Do not breathe the fertilizer. Howard C. Berkowitz 15:43, 17 February 2011 (UTC)


Nick, I have answered by email on Feb. 17. Didn't it arrive? --Peter Schmitt 09:03, 22 February 2011 (UTC)

Peter - Sorry! Yes it did. I ticked the wrong box. Thanks. Nick Gardner 09:21, 22 February 2011 (UTC)

Financial Report as of March 15, 2011

Please read our Financial Report as of March 15, 2001 for complete details on our financial history and our current financial situation. If you have any questions, please ask them on CZ Talk:Donate. Milton Beychok 00:54, 18 March 2011 (UTC)

Say hello go new Philosophy workgroup editor

Hi, Nick:

We have a new editor, Maria Cuervo, in the Philosophy workgroup. Please post a welcome on her Talk page. Thanks, - Milton Beychok 03:54, 2 April 2011 (UTC)

Nick: Tolkien is wonderful. I will most certainly look at your articles in dismal science and to the extent that from the perspective of my discipline I can comment or contribute something of interest, I will do so. I hope you look at mine entries, as well sometime. I have not yet added the strong economic elements found in the Republic of Plato or in his Phaedrus, a dialogue for which I just made a quick draft page, but I am hoping to discuss these elements on those pages as they develop. Perhaps you will be able to add some contextualization or analysis upon those as they appear. --Maria Cuervo 17:51, 2 April 2011 (UTC)

Management Council

Nick, we need ya. Please reconsider. Let's talk off site. Drop me a line and let me know what's up.Thomas Simmons 16:43, 13 May 2011 (CDT)

Thank you Tom - email to follow Nick Gardner 04:33, 14 May 2011 (CDT)

Request re considering article for renewal

Nick, when convenient, will you take a look at the article, The Fourth Great Awakening and the Future of Egalitarianism, in consideration of its merit for nomination for approval.

The article title is the title of a year-2000 book by Nobelist economist, Robert William Fogel, and the article itself is essentially a synopsis of Fogel's thesis.

I started the article and did most of development. It was considered for approval a few years ago, but Larry wanted an editable table instead of the image-table I used, taken from the publisher's website. I've finally gotten around to wikifying the table, and I think it does look better—the image-table can be seen in article history.

For reasons you'll see if you look at the article, I will also make this request of a History Editor and a Religion Editor.

BTW: I love how you are developing History of political thought. Graceful flow of story and graceful storytelling. Clarity with grace and style. Anthony.Sebastian 22:59, 1 June 2011 (UTC)

Anthony, your article occupies intellectual territory that I find foreign in several respects, since I have little religious awareness and no more than a slight understanding of American history. I find it interesting nevertheless, and I will do what I can, as an interested outsider, to contribute to the consideration of its suitability for approval. I should like to complete the political thought article first (thanks for the words of encouragement about that), but I will put that on hold rather than delay the approval process. Please send me a reminder if I seem to be holding things up Nick Gardner 07:36, 2 June 2011 (UTC)
Thanks, Nick. All you have to do is edit the article's metadata page, put 4 tildes next to one of the ToApprove Editor items, save page. You'd then be one nominator, and other Editors, including yourself, then could remove the nomination banner if they find that it does not merit approval. Anthony.Sebastian 16:05, 2 June 2011 (UTC)
Done Nick Gardner 20:20, 2 June 2011 (UTC)
Thanks. Anthony.Sebastian 20:28, 2 June 2011 (UTC)

The Fourth Great Awakening

Hi Nick, if you feel the article is ready, please feel free to put a date in the metadata template and I will lock that version when the time comes. Thanks, D. Matt Innis 02:00, 7 June 2011 (UTC)

Thanks Matt. I have had no experience of the approval process. If there is no response from the history and religion editors, presumably the process must fail. Is there any point in further action from me if they do not respond? Nick Gardner 21:24, 7 June 2011 (UTC)
Should I put the date opposite date =, or where? Nick Gardner 14:51, 17 June 2011 (UTC)
Nick and Matt: Let's take the article off consideration for approval for now, as I still have work to do suggested by Nick and Peter. Thanks. Anthony.Sebastian 15:03, 17 June 2011 (UTC)

New user Donald P. Cram

Nick, we have a new user and author in the Business and the Economics workgroups. Would you please leave a welcome message on his Talk page? And would you offer to help him get acquainted with CZ styles/methods, policies? Milton Beychok 22:28, 24 June 2011 (UTC)

Will do. Thanks Milt. Nick Gardner 10:41, 25 June 2011 (UTC)

"approval process in abeyance"

Hi, Nick. I saw the comments you made on the "Ready for approval" page. I just wanted to mention that I think we can address that situation very soon. The new approval process and the tools that the Editorial Council has provided for me to work with ought to make it much easier to draw in outside experts to help us review and hopefully approve some of our articles. The templates that will be used to perform the actual approval process aren't ready yet, so we can jump into things immediately, but you could help by thinking about which articles are our very best in the areas that matter to you and who might be good a good outside reviewer for those specific topics. Once the templates are up and ready to go, leave me a note on the Approval Manager account talk page and we'll see what we can do about getting somebody's attention. -- Joe Quick (Approval Manager) 05:01, 15 August 2011 (UTC)

Thanks Joe. Will do. Nick Gardner 07:20, 15 August 2011 (UTC)

EC nomination

Nick, please see the discussion page on the nomination you recently made for the EC vacancy. Anton Sweeney 22:47, 19 September 2011 (UTC)


Hi Nick, it looks like this page may be better as a lemma article consisting of just a definition. Could you take a look? David Finn 07:35, 19 November 2011 (UTC)

Thanks, Dave. I had forgotten that I had started it. It could be developed into a full-scale article, but I have no immediate plans to do so. I don't think a definition lemma would be useful, though. It could either be deleted or left until I get round to completing it. I don't mind which.Nick Gardner 11:59, 19 November 2011 (UTC)
No worries, I'll leave it as is. Cheers. David Finn 12:06, 19 November 2011 (UTC)


Nick, I guess I should not have posted it to my own talk. I've made some remarks on my talk page concerning the text you asked me to add to the Marx page. --Maria Cuervo 19:11, 5 April 2012 (UTC)

History of economic thought: Comments and recommendations from Roger A. Lohmann needing response for Approval Process

Nick, I put Roger's review under ==Comments== on the Talk page. How would you like to proceed? Anthony.Sebastian 22:54, 14 April 2012 (UTC)

Thanks Anthony. I see that you have advanced the approval process . Great!
I have done all I can think of to improve the subpages to meet Roger's suggestions - and I am content for them to be considered for approval, although I don't see them as an essential part of the article. Nick Gardner 07:33, 16 April 2012 (UTC)

Comment by Peter Schmitt re History of economic thought

Nick, see Peter's comment re title vs. scope of article: here.

You may want to give it some thought. My first thought, keep title, but write something about the 'scope' of the article, perhaps in the textbox above the lede.

Let me know. Anthony.Sebastian 01:56, 18 April 2012 (UTC)

Peter's comment is a misunderstanding. He appears not to have read the article. I have replied, rejecting his suggestion. In my opinion the existing title faithfully reflects the scope of the article, making an explanatory note superfluous. Nick Gardner 07:37, 18 April 2012 (UTC)

Europe approved

Nick, I certified Europe for Approval, version of last edit as of time of this message.

I ask Matt to complete the Approval Mechanics.

Congratulations, and kudos for an outstanding article, and my admiration for your perseverance.

Anthony.Sebastian 21:03, 7 August 2012 (UTC)

Relating to Pompeii

Hello Nick, I notice that recently you added an addendum to the Magna Carta cluster which contained a translation of the text. When discussing the document it seems like a good idea to have it to hand, and I was wondering why you chose that articular format rather than say inserting it into the text. I'd also be interested to know how you chose that text in particular. The reason I ask is because I'm currently putting together something on Pompeii and have a similar situation. The letters of Pliny the Younger are important records of the events but I'm unsure where to include the text. The letters themselves are several thousand words long and would dominate the article. An addendum could be added as has been done at Magna Carta, but the Project Gutenburg translation isn't especially easy to read and the translation in Cooley & Cooley is much clearer (to my eyes at least) but since its more recent I'm not sure if it can be used. The approach I've taken at the moment is to state in the article that there's a free version at project Gutenburg and a more recent one available through Google books and to provide links to both. What do you think of this approach? Richard Nevell 19:57, 11 October 2012 (UTC)

I have assumed that our readership may include people who want to get quickly to the gist of a topic, as well as those who wish to study it in depth. The Magna Carta contains a lot of material that was relevant only to issues of the time it was written, as well as some statements that have timeless relevance. So I decided to quote the latter in the main text, and put the full text of the Magna Carta on the main page. (I could equally have just provided a link to it, but I would not have considered putting the full text on the main page, having already quoted extracts from it.) The British Library translation was the first that came to hand, and it was readable.
As regards your admirable article on Pompeii, I should be inclined to put the six sentences beginning "the eyewitness account of Pliny" in a concluding paragraph under the heading of "Sources" - or some such. If the Pliny quote contains material of interest to the general reader, you might add a brief summary of it. Otherwise what you have written would seem to be all that is needed.
I have often made use of the timelines subpage to provide links to contemporary accounts , but I am not sure whether that would be useful for your Pompeii article.
Thanks for your help with Magna Carta.
Nick Gardner 05:44, 12 October 2012 (UTC)
At a quick glance, the British Library copyright notice doesn't seem to allow what you've done. Peter Jackson 08:43, 12 October 2012 (UTC)
Thanks Peter: I think you are right. I've deleted it. Nick Gardner 09:59, 12 October 2012 (UTC)
Might be better legally for constables to delete the page completely before we try to find a public domain version (or ask Brian to translate it for us). Peter Jackson 09:52, 13 October 2012 (UTC)
Thanks for the response. What I've opted for is to mention the sources when discussing the reconstruction of the eruption. The archaeological deposits include some clues to what happened and I think should be discussed at the same time as Pliny's account. Richard Nevell 23:21, 15 October 2012 (UTC)