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kottke.org posts about Philip Bump

A Hand-Drawn Visualization of the US Economy from 1861 to 1935

posted by Jason Kottke   Sep 18, 2019

75 Yrs Us Ecoonmy

In 1936, former director of research at the Cleveland Federal Reserve L. Merle Hostetler published 75 Yrs. of American Finance, a hand-drawn chart of the economic health of the US from 1861 to 1935. The chart, which is horizontally oriented, shows a trending business activity index (which measures productivity) along with other financial data, indicates when Congress is in session, lists notable news events, and shows the high and low of the DJIA (starting in 1898). The graphic at the top shows Hostetler’s chart from 1929-1931, aka the beginning of the Great Depression.

The copy of this chart hosted by the St. Louis Fed goes to 1938…it must have been updated at some point. Also, if you go into the “»” menu in the upper-right corner of the in-page document viewer, you can set it to “horizontal scrolling” for easier viewing. (thx, andy)

Update: Philip Bump made a horizontally scrolling B&W version of Hostetler’s chart. This is a lot easier to navigate than St. Louis Fed version.

Regulate the bullets

posted by Jason Kottke   Dec 18, 2012

Philip Bump for The Atlantic:

But there are two things that are needed for a gun to work: the gun and the ammunition. Limiting guns may be hopeless. So why don’t we focus on the bullets?

People have made their own guns for a long time. A ZIP gun, a crude device used in prisons and by street gangs, can be cobbled together with only a little more effort than Defense Distributed’s plastic offering. A gun can be made from any number of common household objects. But making bullets is much, much trickier. A bullet needs much more specific consideration of materials and weight and requires something that is much harder to come by: a propellant. You can make your own gunpowder, of course, but refining the process to create effective munitions is as tricky as building a simple bomb. Doable, but dangerous.