Thursday, June 24, 2010

What's the deal with mining?...

Ostensibly a post about inefficiencies in our health care system, this chart in a paper from the National Bureau of Economic Research also pints to good work by ag and manufacturing to increase productivity.

Any clues as to what the problem is in the extraction (mining) industry?

Meanwhile another chart illustrates the consequences of the productivity problem of our health care system: paying way too much for a system that places dead last among OECD countries.  Note even our vaunted "speediness" is doubtful.


The other thing to remember about productivity is the faster it grows the fewer people are needed, as a rule.


Bill Harshaw said...

The more you mine, the less pure the ore/coal/whatever?

Anonymous said...

The fundamental flaw with most of our health system is that providers are incentivized not to make people healthy, but to provide more care.

Anonymous said...

Is the time “returning” for custom harvesting in the Corn Belt? Custom harvesting may increase efficiency for some operations. The larger per acre corn production and possible increase in acres from higher ethanol mandate may create more logistic challenges at harvest. Larger and/or more machines and higher yields require more trucks and equipment to keep the grain moving. This leads to more labor than might be found a home. One can envision custom corn cutters starting in Texas moving to Minnesota with the maturing crop. This may help keep harvest timely; like the custom wheat harvest. A timely harvest may improve our financial statements with lower equipment cost. This would change one’s on-farm storage plans (grain storage co-op anyone?) to handle and possibly dry the increased capacity of a caravan of machines. The future attraction seems real for the one to two man operations that hire fall help. Custom harvesting was common in the sixty’s when we could grow more corn than we could pick and feed. It is strange how things seem to come back around even if it takes a little different form. Who knows, may be some custom operations would let us run some of the equipment, so we had something to tear up.