by Tyler Cowen
on November 1, 2011 at 1:12 pm
in Uncategorized |
1. Why OWS has a library and what that means.
2. Siri Singlish rival in Singapore, via Yana.
3. The disconnect of labor’s share and median wage from economic growth, across various countries (pdf).
4. Why does consciousness feel unified?
5. Denisovans, and discussion here.
1. “These include how to close the library when it rains (put lids on the boxes and tuck the tarps around them in a manner that won’t aggravate the police) and it has circulation policies, including how to check books out forever: “these books belong to everyone, so we trust everyone to do what they think is most effective with them.”
So something thought to be a public good can be turned into a private one.
From the lending FAQ:
“Q: Can I buy the book? A: No, but nobody would oppose folks taking and keeping a book with or without leaving a voluntary donation.”
the police will get aggravated by wrong tucking?
The police are looking for excuses to get aggravated.
Ben Franklin started libraries open to the public which did not rely on government taxes.
Phooey. Denisovans are a social construct.
For #3, I noticed they used wages and opposed to compensation. I always have this chart from Kaiser in the back of my mind: http://www.kff.org/insurance/snapshot/chcm012808oth.cfm (I’m sure Tyler’s linked to it at some point). For the US, while wages have gone down, total worker compensation has remained steady as a percent of GDP. So either the distribution is changing, and median is changing while average is not, or the taxes, benefits, and insurance have eaten up the remainder. And if the US has been this way, what of other countries with higher tax rates and only slightly slower-growing healthcare spending?
Re: #3, I’m interested in whether anyone has any data on the effects of having a lot of low-skilled immigration on income inequality or wage stagnation among lower-skilled laborers. Particularly in situations where the country is seeing a lot of its population growth from immigration? This is separate from median standard of living, which I think is mostly enhanced for a country overall by even low-skilled immigration. However, if we’re going to focus on income inequality, and you’re growing your population by bringing in a bunch of people who are close to the 0 bound and don’t have the educations or skill sets to take advantage of the types of opportunities your economy affords at the middle and upper strata, to me it seems obvious that your income inequality would grow and that unskilled labor would capture less of the gains. But I haven’t seen any actual data on this – it just seems that the math and economics would work out that way.
4. Consciousness feels unified by definition. If part of me feels part of my unified consciousness, I define it as such. If it doesn’t, I don’t.
1. Fairly common behavior among those who live in close-knit, culturally homogenous communities of reasonably prosperous, well-behaved people. Examples, (i) my summer community on Fire Island, which has a library run on similar principles, (ii) the average four year residential college (although Sterling didn’t run like this, I believe the individual college libraries at Yale operated on pretty much of an honor system), and (iii) Scandinavian communities of the Midwest. Places where systems of this nature don’t work, because the conditions I have named don’t exist, would include New York City.
4. To my mind, a lack of responsibility does not equate to a lack of culpability. For example, to protect society you cannot rely on rehabilitation if actions are involuntary.
Regarding 3, I’m surprised at how much the rather socialist countries of Germany and France have had a drastic disconnect with GDP growth and median wages, since 2000.
France: GDP +1.1% Median Wage +0.2%
Germany: GDP +1.5% Median Wage +0.1%
1. I think I will walk over to their library and donate a copy of “Economics in One Lesson”.
1. “…these books belong to everyone, so we trust everyone to do what they think is most effective with them. If you think you could put a book to good use long-term, by all means keep it. If you think others might benefit from it more after you’ve finished, we strongly encourage returns.”
In other words: when left to their own accord, a welfare-improving order will spontaneously emerge through each individual using her private knowledge to compare how much value she places on a particular book how much value society places on that same book.
Would this same model of spontaneous order hold true for non-book resources?
And instead of relying on each individual knowing the social value of each book (because that’s a lot of knowledge for one person to acquire), could we let the social value be determined by the participants and recorded as a numerical value that we will call ‘price’?
Also, I find it interesting how trusting OWS protesters are that human nature is essentially good and that no one will act in their greedy self interest and horde books.
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