Linkage: Economics 101.

Loose Change 2 by jswieringa.Photo by Flickr user swieringa. Some rights reserved.

There are a lot of smart people out there writing about complicated things, and it rarely gets more complicated than the economy. But there are a few smart people out there that can aptly dissect the Glass-Steagall Act and describe how toxic assets can actually be relevant to us:

  • Ezra Klein cut his teeth (at the ripe age of 23) as wonk blogger for The American Prospect. Four years later and a he’s a leading voice in left-leaning economic policy circles.
  • Scott Sumner’s been teaching economics for as long as Klein has been alive, though Sumner frequently takes a much more conservative/libertarian and free market-based approach.
  • While Nate Silver and his contributors at FiveThirtyEight doesn’t broadly discriminate against what subjects they’ll examine, their framing of fiscal concerns are always as precise as Silver’s political projections are keen.
  • NPR’s Planet Money is widely lauded as a blog and podcast that usually succeeds in its breaking down of inherently complicated macroeconomic concepts into easy-to-understand presentations.
  • If you like a little more contention in your economic newsfeed, The Economist’s Free Exchange blog manages to house smartly written posts from Kenseyians, Friedmanites and everything in between.

Financial woes aren’t limited to macroeconomic policy, though. The average New Yorker still needs some immediate relief from the day-to-day financial pressures, whether it’s figuring out how to make a lunch worth actually making or finding a new good read on the cheap:

  • Brokelyn is a one-stop blog that covers a pretty wide range of life necessities and a couple of indulgences here and there that helpfully remind you that you are not the only miser in the borough.
  • Jake and Thomas Browns are your instructors at the Brothers Brown School of Cooking, where the two do their best to break down how to make deceptively fancy foods without breaking the bank.
  • Manhattan might have The Strand, but now everyone can get in on the Half-Priced Books bandwagon. The Texas company expanded to the online marketplace with HPB Marketplace, where you can get rare books at even rarer prices.
  • The web’s been flooded with coupon sites over the last couple of years, but RetailMeNot is actually consistent and has coupon codes for anything from J&R to Duane Reade.
  • More exclusive than anything listed above, Janelle’s List is a semi-closed Facebook group that describes itself as “Craigslist without the creeps, Linkedin without the lame.” All you need is an invite from a friend, and with more than 2,000 members, you’re bound to get in soon.
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About Chester Soria

Chester Jesus Soria is a Brooklyn-based freelance multimedia journalist currently studying at the CUNY Graduate School of Journalism. He has written on culture, criminal justice issues and politics and has been published the New York Times’ Fort Greene/Clinton Hill Local blog, Alternet, Houston Press and the Innocence Blog. Read more at