Assorted links

by on May 31, 2012 at 3:23 pm in Uncategorized | Permalink

1. Markets in everything radio call-in edition.

2. Unused parking meter time markets in everything.

3. Update on India’s gdp growth.  Not good, 5.3%.  Addendum: Correct link is here.

4. Markets in everything hurricane simulator.

5. Video of my earlier talk in Milan on the eurocrisis.

TallDave May 31, 2012 at 3:35 pm

3. I’ve been pessimistic on India ever since I read Fareed Zakaria’s book. More people have to realize democratic rentseeking isn’t any better than the other kinds and stop prioritizing democracy over individual rights.

msgkings May 31, 2012 at 4:41 pm

Like the right for individual homosexuals to marry, trumped by the democratic process in CA, NC, and many other states?

Andrew' May 31, 2012 at 4:44 pm

EXACTLY like that, except an order of magnitude or two less important and more complicated.

TallDave June 1, 2012 at 9:13 am

Yep, that’s exactly the sort of democratic triumph over individual rights that has become so burdensome to liberty.

the spam robots are getting better and better May 31, 2012 at 9:41 pm

which dictatorships/one party states do a better job at ensuring individual rights???

TallDave June 1, 2012 at 9:15 am

Dictatorships are also generally not good at respecting rights, one party states are probably the worst of all.

What works pretty well is what our Founders intended — a constitutional republic with strict rule of law in which it requires very large majorities to alter laws regarding liberty.

Rahul June 2, 2012 at 1:15 am

In theory, India has pretty similar constitutional protections.

Collin May 31, 2012 at 4:10 pm

Wait where is the the link to Tyler’s new weight loss program? I need to know!

3. How deep of landing is India and will it have more global implications?

John S. May 31, 2012 at 4:15 pm

Next you’re going to tell me the letters to Penthouse were made up.

msgkings May 31, 2012 at 4:42 pm


Nick_L May 31, 2012 at 4:18 pm

Err.. so, does that make Frasier Crane’s radio show a ‘reality show’? Who knew?

Willitts May 31, 2012 at 4:21 pm

2. Why not go the full Monty? Have a punch in, punch out system that only charges you for the minutes you actually use. As long as your ID stays ON the meter, the costs pile up until 1) the meter’s time limit is reached, 2) You punch out with a PIN, 3) You punch out remotely with your PIN if you forgot to punch out, 4) Someone else or multiple people punch in at that spot for more than some time threshold, 5) a preset fail safe limit that you set is crossed. You can either use a credit card or a phone number and PIN.

You pay only for time you use, you don’t have to carry cash or change, you have protection if you forget to punch out, there is no inefficient middle man, no paper, no free riding. Revenue might be neutral. No over payments, but fewer under payments that aren’t ticketed.

You can receive warning texts, emails, or phone calls when meters are expiring. The city can give people “passes” for a certain number of brief time extensions on expired meters.

byomtov May 31, 2012 at 5:19 pm

Sounds like a business plan to me.

JWatts May 31, 2012 at 6:29 pm

That plan sounds very customer friendly, unfortunately traffic meters are generally run by the government.

rr May 31, 2012 at 4:39 pm

5. Had to laugh at Tyler saying “the markets will rule” and “the eurozone is hopeless” with a picture of himself behind him in a 17th century palace of an Italian nobleman. Great talk, but the elderly gentlemen in the audience might not fully appreciate the call for a youthful influx.

Also, a great point on the unimaginative Euro banknotes. In Britain they have Adam Smith, James Watt and Charles Darwin on their notes. Unidentifiable architecture is ironically appropriate for Euro banknotes.

Enrique May 31, 2012 at 9:45 pm

I stopped listening at 4:28 when Tyler said the world’s greatest achievement was “Europe” — what a load — why not Asia, or Africa, or any other continent, for that matter?

Cliff May 31, 2012 at 11:09 pm

I think you answered your own question? Human progress from the level of desperate poverty?

Enrique June 1, 2012 at 1:01 pm

Fine, then if wealth and opulence is our criterion for goodness, I would submit that ancient Egypt or Mesopotamia are just as good candidates as “Europe” — what I do not like is the implicit cultural bias in all our textbooks and public dialogue (with Tyler’s being no exception) that arbitrarily privileges Western Europe over other regions of the world — certainly, many aspects of European culture are worth emulating (I myself am very fond of Spanish culture), but with two world wars, mass killings, etc., etc., there is a lot of things with Europe that are not worth emulating as well

rr June 1, 2012 at 2:25 pm

I think tyler meant the current state of (Western) Europe, which is peaceful and prosperous. That achievement is especially great considering the enormously bloody convulsions Europe went through to reach that point. Like Tyler says in the talk: pessimism about the Euro doesn’t mean pessimism about Europe (I tend to be more skeptical about Europe’s ability to continue on a peaceful and prosperous path).

John S. June 1, 2012 at 5:37 pm

People are voting with their feet too. How many Europeans do you see emigrating to Africa or Asia, vs. the other way around?

TGGP June 2, 2012 at 12:12 am

The wealthy in ancient Egypt & Mesopotamia didn’t have fridges, tvs, indoor plumbing or air conditioning. I’d consider them poorer than the average american.

Jeff Morgan June 1, 2012 at 5:09 pm

If I had to answer that question, I would say the Enlightenment, Scientific Revolution and Industrial Revolution

Robert Guico May 31, 2012 at 4:46 pm

4. Without multiple showerheads and a mechanism for flooding the compartment with 5 feet of water to simulate a storm surge, I think this is better described as a “hurricane-force wind simulator”.

Russ R. May 31, 2012 at 5:29 pm

#2. This could lead to enterprising parking lot attendants acting as intermediaries.

A) If a vehicle is departing and nobody is immediately looking to take the spot, rather than waiting around the departing driver could sell the remaining time to the “freelance attendant”, who could later resell it (at a markup) to the next arriving driver.

B) The “attendant” would gradually lose money on the inventory of “live” parking time, but expired receipts would potentially have value as well. Assume a driver exceeds her purchased time and receives an infraction notice and fine (hypothetically, $30). The “attendant” could go through his inventory of expired receipts to find one that was “live” at the time of the infraction, giving the offender the required evidence to contest the fine. Such a receipt could be sold for a large percentage of the infraction fine (perhaps $10-$15).

rjs May 31, 2012 at 5:43 pm
Frank May 31, 2012 at 6:12 pm

At least it’s good news.

Tyler Cowen May 31, 2012 at 6:15 pm

thanks, fixed…

k May 31, 2012 at 6:41 pm

that link goes to a spelling bee…

Frank May 31, 2012 at 7:05 pm

And they say Alex is the funny one.

Marc Roston May 31, 2012 at 8:22 pm

Forget that hurricane simulator…as Nigel would say “These go to eleven”…

Corey May 31, 2012 at 9:17 pm

Tyler also gave a similar talk in Romania a few weeks ago.

affenkopf June 1, 2012 at 3:45 am

A Murray Rothbard center in Romania, didn’t expect that.

DK May 31, 2012 at 10:59 pm

Right, nation states work great, and so the solution is to have more immigration to them from other continents. Brilliant!

ohwilleke June 1, 2012 at 11:53 am

Denver is modifying its parking meters so that remaining minutes are forfeited when you leave the space. Ironically, our previous Mayor (now the Governor) won office in substantial part on a funny campaign of outwitting tyranical parking enforcement officers.

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