by Tyler Cowen
on April 28, 2011 at 11:28 am
1. Can the eurozone get over its fear of Lehman?
2. Daniel Sutter podcast on economics and tornadoes and their impact.
3. Markets in everything: perfumes you can’t even smell.
4. Richard Cornuelle has passed away.
5. “I always assumed the Death Star was primarily designed as a cost-cutting measure.”
6. Europe isn’t as green as you think.
You mean -“Europe is less green than I think.”
The majority of liberal Americans I meet are convinced that all people in the Netherlands commute by bike. Is Tyler signalling he is with them? Ever elusive…
#3 – I think the more intriguing takeaway is that the guy made a perfume that smells LIKE A MAN’S ANUS! That’s it, TGS is over and done.
Love that article on the Death Star. Although the political economy aspect of building it as a replacement for beuracracy is fascinating they digress into arguing the actual structure of intra-galactic trade. The question I have is the structure of the currency markets. Does each planet have a single currency? What is the optimal currency area of each part of the empire?
5. …the cost of force projection to remote rebel bases was slashed until SHTF (Small-moon Hyperdrive Technology Foundry) was bought out by MPH (Medium Planet Hyperdrives)…
“It’s a lot like assuming having nuclear weapons will allow you to dictate policy and control people and places pretty much for free. In reality, to control a place, you have to spend a lot of resources, no matter how powerful you are. Because people will continue to have problems and complain even if you threaten to kill them, and not dealing with those problems, no matter how strong you are, eventually leads to the failure and collapse of your administration.”
Kind of speaks to how “regime change” may be the worst policy option.
Apparently trade was super important in the Star Wars universe. People were dying on Naboo, a rich lush planet with a building-sized generator, because they were blockaded and cut off from space supplies.
At least we were told they were dying. We didn’t see any of them dying.
5. The Death Star was a make work stimulus program from an earlier regime before the Empire was powerful. After having its funding cut during several successive administrations, it accidentally produced enough revenue from the jobs created to build it, that it vaulted the Empire to supreme economic power.
The Death Star link made my day. The same group of writers has another less economically oriented but perhaps funnier on what Storm Troopers think of Vader.
Seems pretty clear that the individual planets and systems of the Star Wars galaxy are very highly interdependent. The glimpses we get of the scope of the economy — a moon-sized space station can be built with such secrecy and control of information that it can function as the bait of a trap, whole planets are densely urban, entire solar systems have been converted to industrial manufacturing (c.f. Kuat Drive Yards) — indicate that a single planet is no more important than city, or even a mere suburb, in the entire galaxy. The loss of a planet should be no more significant than the loss of a medium-sized city — repercussions, but not apocalypse.
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