Archive for February, 2009

Since the World As We Knew It morphed from Dalí painting to disaster movie last year, there has been a subdued but detectable undertone to the ever-present anxiety. Though many people contemplate the future with fear and dread, a few are feeling excited. The stress is stimulating them, and I don’t mean government stimulus, I mean [...]

20 Feb, 2009

Dubai luxury so over for now

Posted by: Marian Salzman In: Dubai| global economy

Dubai is not having a good week. The city with a grandiose reputation is not only reeling—like the rest of us—from the economic crisis, it’s become a symbol for all that led us here … the extravagance and indulgence. Vogue editor in chief Anna Wintour called it out this week as a synonym for excess, [...]

19 Feb, 2009

Is crime on the rise?

Posted by: Marian Salzman In: Uncategorized

Is the economic crisis encouraging criminal behavior? A recent survey shows 44% of U.S. police agencies report spikes in crime linked to the economy. Russian President Dmitri Medvedev is warning law enforcement and citizens to prepare for an increase in petty crimes as well as crooked bureaucrats stemming from the crisis there. The U.N. crime [...]

18 Feb, 2009

Using the word “consumer”

Posted by: Marian Salzman In: consumerism| trendspotting

In the lead-up to New York Fashion Week, the Wall Street Journal talked to Vogue editor in chief Anna Wintour about the economy’s effect on the fashion industry. “When the editor of Vogue rails against consumerism, the economy must be in a tailspin,” the story’s introduction read. As it turned out, the sartorial starmaker didn’t [...]

Laid-Off Foreigners Flee as Dubai Spirals Down –

17 Feb, 2009

Latitude about where?

Posted by: Marian Salzman In: privacy| radical transparency

Recently there’s been some outrage over the launch of Google’s location-tracking Latitude service, which works with Google Maps. Users sign up, install the app on their mobile device and track their friends or ping their own location to a select group. So what’s the problem?
The prospect of being tracked makes some people antsy—shades of “1984”’s [...]

14 Feb, 2009

As featured on CNN: The economy and romance

Posted by: Marian Salzman In: romance| trendspotting

After months of talk of bank bailouts and auto-industry rescues, along came Larry Flynt. The long-embattled porn purveyor had a cheeky message to Congress, requesting a bailout for the adult entertainment industry, to recover losses stemming from the nation’s low libido. “People are too depressed to be sexually active,” Flynt reasoned. “This is very unhealthy.”
Whatever [...]

06 Feb, 2009

Word economy: It’s time to downsize

Posted by: Marian Salzman In: connectivity| technology| trendspotting

Less is more, for words too. Short and simple says much more.  But right now I want to take up a little more space to argue the case for the power of brevity.
First, a few words for intellectual snobs who think only diatribes deserve respect: Of course Russian novels and great operas and even [...]

What happens to commitments of love in a time of economic angst? Watch the classic film “Cabaret,” set in Depression-era 1930s Berlin, for a clue to the mind-set that can occur when romance takes a backseat to survival. The show’s view of love in the song “Money”: “Money makes the world go around … But [...]

One of the most shocking things about the economic bust is the frightening speed at which it has become mission critical. Sure, the subprime cracks started to show in 2007, but the whole thing was barely on the WEF radar last year in Davos. Last May, we raised a red flag about alarming economic problems [...]