by Tyler Cowen
on March 18, 2013 at 12:07 pm
1. Smiling fighters are more likely to lose.
2. Posner on automation and employment.
3. Is it a mistake to Punjabify Thai food, and what is wrong with the North Indian palate anyway? And a short piece on how much Indian women drink alcohol (not that much).
4. What New Zealand has become.
5. Robin Hanson on MetaMed.
6. Choosing the right seat, and does capital accumulate and labor not?
7. Perry Anderson on Cyprus.
then english speaking upper middle class in india can be very isolating.
Que? Care to expand on that?
At first I wondered if there were too many beautiful women in the restaurants they favor. But then I actually read the first article. Ah, here we go:
“But sushi is all the rage because teenagers love it. Similarly, the fast food chains which survive on wheat (pizzas, pasta, hamburger buns etc) should all flop in the rice-loving south. But young people flock to them as much in Bangalore and Madras as they do in Delhi and Ludhiana. The old boundaries are fading.”
Pizza and burgers!
And the 2nd article informs us that ” Incidents of thugs beating up women at pubs are not unheard of.”
The young people will change that, too, as soon as they start drinking beer to go with pizza and burgers.
“Whatever are the social pressures than tend to corrupt the usual medical authorities, I expect them to eventually corrupt successful new medical firms as well.”
“Presumably they somehow try to stop just short of the line of recommending treatments, as only doctors are legally allowed to do that.”
@2 Good closing paragraph regarding the effects of rapid technological change and high un/under-employment.
“These trends bear on the current debates over the size of government. Technological advances are increasing longevity, and with it an increase in the dependent population. By reducing demand for workers, and therefore employment and wages, in many labor markets, the same technological advances may be creating a second dependent population, consisting of people of working age and their children who cannot support themselves without public assistance that will either replace or augment wages. Republicans may therefore be tilting against windmills in thinking that the size of government can be reduced.”
That wasn’t the heart of Waldmann’s post. It’s that “capital” is a ridiculous meaningless categorization that in practice has been usurped by finance, while “labor” excludes the most important things we should actually be calling capital.
*includes, but yes.
Posner on Automation
It’s sort of unfortunate he uses ‘logic’ the way he does given he should know better.
“The result is a worker surplus—but the logic that predicts this result is flawed.”
It does cause a surplus, but that’s just the immediate effect.
On #6: The fact that the distinction between capital and labor is often muddled maybe provides evidence that the efficient level of taxation on both is 0 and that we should shift to taxing consumption. Just a thought.
There’s a strong ideological component to not believing the idea that the maximal efficient level of taxation on capital = 0.
There’s a strong ideological component to believing the idea that the maximal efficient level of taxation on capital = 0!
And Waldman blows them all out of the water.
I like his last sentence: “We have as much reason to believe that you will like strawberries as we have to believe that the capital gains tax should be zero.”
#6 – choosing the right seat:
about as pretentious as the posted article regarding reserving restaurants in new york city a few days ago
7. “Communism is good.* The British are rotters for not allowing Greece and then Cyprus to become Soviet bloc dictatorships. Greek voters are to be further condemned for not electing Communists in subsequent elections. Despite these great historical mistakes, Cyprus is much better off than former Communist states, somehow. Greek Cypriots are entirely correct to reject power-sharing with Turkish Cypriots and Turks on equal terms, though if Northern Irish Protestants were to do this in their polity, which has much more power-sharing and much less sovereignty, they would be sectarian bigots. Alternate history is fun, and we should wish that things were not as they are, from thousands of miles away, rather than proposing messy solutions that would compromise our sense of moral superiority.”
* Admittedly, I could use this opening in any trite summary of an LRB piece.
“Jim Hodge – Allied Home Mortgage have been attacked by lawyers and the liberal press. A self made man of humble means is working hard to restore the jobs lost by these baseless attacks”
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