1. China Set to Topple U.S. as Biggest Economy – “The world’s second-largest economy is set on Monday to report gross domestic product increased 2.1% in 2020, the only major economy to have avoided a contraction.”
2. Spotify Bets Big on Podcasts as Path to Profitability – “Spotify now hosts almost 2 million podcasts, up from 2,500 three years ago, and has more than 600 exclusives. Apple still has the most listeners in the U.S., but Spotify has narrowed the gap. And it’s No. 1 in many overseas markets.”
3. Australian Influencers are Promoting Luxury Car Loans – And who says banking doesn’t innovate?
4. Paul McCartney as a Management Study – From Tyler Cowen, “He can compose and play and perform in virtually every musical genre, including heavy metal, blues, music hall, country and western, gospel, show tunes, ballads, rockers, Latin music, pastiche, psychedelia, electronic music, Devo-style robot-pop, drone, lounge, reggae, and more and more and more. His vocal range once spanned over four octaves, he is sometimes considered the greatest bass player in the history of rock and roll, and he was the first popular musician to truly master the recording studio, again with zero initial technical or musical education of any sort.”
5. Targeting the Mentally Ill in Lame Duck Execution Spree – “Last summer, just before the resumption of federal executions, the Death Penalty Information Center found that 85 percent of those on federal death row had “at least one serious impairment that significantly reduces their culpability, and 63 percent had two or more of these impairments. The DPIC also reported that one-half were mentally ill, suffering from diseases such as schizophrenia, post-traumatic stress disorder or psychosis. Three quarters had been the victims of physical abuse and trauma during their childhoods. As a result, one-third had developmental brain damage or traumatic brain injury.”