Saturday assorted links

by on November 18, 2017 at 1:15 pm in Uncategorized | Permalink

1 Victoria Wilson November 18, 2017 at 1:39 pm

Does the erroneous reporting of school performance skew neighborhood composition and change life outcomes?
Does the favorable marketing of school performance result in clustering which generates self-fulfilling outcomes?
Are consumers really getting better education by paying higher housing prices, or are they paying for branding?


2 Mark Thorson November 18, 2017 at 3:03 pm

We don’t know the direction of the arrow of causation. It is always possible a third factor is causing both of the effects. I think that is the case with regard to the association between Alzheimer’s disease and type 2 diabetes. I don’t believe one is causing the other.


3 Someone from the other side November 19, 2017 at 12:37 am

Lack of sleep might be driving both


4 Brandon Berg November 19, 2017 at 12:45 am

Is it that implausible that elevated blood sugar can have deleterious effects on the brain?


5 BC November 18, 2017 at 4:59 pm

Suppose we accept the researchers’ claims that robustness checks established “a clear causal relationship” and that what they call grade inflation was truly inflation, “a false perception of quality”, rather than an indicator of truly better schools. Then, isn’t this good news from an educational equality perspective? These findings imply that the wealthy do not actually buy their way into better schools by moving into areas with grade inflation; they just falsely think they do. The poor, if we are to believe these results, are able to buy discounted housing without sacrificing educational quality. Apparently, the poor are good at housing and education arbitrage. I’m not sure, then, why the article refers to poorer residents being “driven out” or score differentials “trigger[ing] inequalities”?

Which is it, do higher school scores indicate better quality education, in which case assigning schools by neighborhood instead of giving students vouchers discriminates against the poor, or are the higher school scores a false perception of quality, in which case segregated neighborhoods by income don’t really create educational disadvantages?


6 Victoria Wilson November 19, 2017 at 11:35 am

I think the analysis of this complex topic would be best performed within the mid-range scoring schools than trying to compare the outcome of children in the wealthiest, highest scoring neighborhoods to those in poverty stricken, lowest scoring neighborhoods. Extremes make for good headlines or Hollywood stories but serve little use in problem resolution.

To start with what we know: consumers rely heavily if not exclusively on school district scores in making their home purchase; the scores do not need to represent actual performance – as shown in this article; intuitively one should be suspicious of mass averaging of data, which is what occurs in the compilation of >10K individual pupil scores; districts compete for families and utilize scores to sway school choice influencing housing prices.

Given this knowledge, state departments of education should reconsider (cease immediately) the use of school score averages as data indicative of school performance, or rather as data useful in the anticipation of how a consumer can expect their child to perform. This data is being use to sort children by financial means not intellectual ability or desire. The process wastes social resources on the top of end of the scale and denies opportunity and support at the low end of the scale.


7 apso November 19, 2017 at 12:31 am

I think they are paying to keep their kids away from horrible kids, but with mixed success. Anecdotal only . . .


8 A Truth Seeker November 18, 2017 at 1:48 pm

Soviet joke:
“Comrades, our country is advancing so fast that, in a few years, every family will have its own airplane!”
“Why would one need an airplane?”
“Are you stupid? Suppose there is a corn shortage again in Moscow. You could fly to Tbilisi and buy the corn you need.”


9 msgkings November 18, 2017 at 4:20 pm

Even Thiago gets one right once in a while.


10 A Truth Seeker November 18, 2017 at 5:31 pm

I get many things right all the time.


11 Thor November 18, 2017 at 7:00 pm

“What do we want?” “We demand more accuracy with respect to reporting on Brazil!” When do we want it?” “We demand more accuracy with respect to reporting on Brazil now!”

Anyhow, here, in lieu of a recommend, have a Soviet joke:

Q: Is it true that the Soviet Union is the most progressive country in the world?
A: Of course! Life was already better yesterday than it’s going to be tomorrow!


12 A Truth Seeker November 18, 2017 at 8:22 pm

If the American people were more demanding and the American press were more responsible, Americans would have a better reporting on Brazil.
And, in Brazil, life gets better and better.

13 JWatts November 20, 2017 at 10:57 am

“And, in Brazil, life gets better and better.”

The further back in time you go ….

14 dearieme November 18, 2017 at 2:00 pm

If God had known peccaries existed he would surely have banned them too.


15 dearieme November 18, 2017 at 2:27 pm

Which is to say, God is a cuck.


16 A Truth Seeker November 18, 2017 at 2:28 pm

Actually, Brazil’s peccaries are considered the best in the world.


17 msgkings November 18, 2017 at 4:20 pm

The lions love ’em


18 A Truth Seeker November 18, 2017 at 5:31 pm

There are no lions at large in Brazil. They are not a native species from Brazil. They are imported and bred by authorized establishments for educational, scientific or entertainment purposes. They are fed with the best meat Brazilian authorities can supply. Hunting savage beasts is mostly forbidden in Brazil.


19 Sam the Sham November 18, 2017 at 6:45 pm

“Ordo y Progresso” = “Our Lions Will Eat You”. I have a friend who recently came back from a vacation in Brazil, and she can attest that there were relatively few lions eating street children – fewer than expected, at least. But she also mentions that everyone in Brazil speaks just simply ATROCIOUS Spanish.


20 A Truth Seeker November 18, 2017 at 8:26 pm

Brazilians speak atrocious Spanish because it is not the country’s official language. Yet, we deign to speak it to speak it to humor our neighbours.

21 dearieme November 19, 2017 at 1:13 pm

Or in the case of Guyana, humour them.

22 Viking November 18, 2017 at 3:20 pm

#6. Does the bear crap in the woods?


23 Jan November 18, 2017 at 3:34 pm

6) I prefer using defecation to stop drones.


24 rayward November 18, 2017 at 4:12 pm

1. People will believe anything, including ever increasing asset prices. Of course, people believe their own brilliance, which they learn by a combination of grade inflation and watching Fox.


25 Viking November 18, 2017 at 4:26 pm

Tell me how you really feel about us irredeemables!


26 Dick the Butcher November 18, 2017 at 7:34 pm


I don’t know where rayward obtains the exaggerated misinformation, likely, PMSNBC, CNN.

In the real world, of which few here have any experience, better school districts command higher housing prices. Cogent indicators are SAT scores and top-level college acceptance rates.

Now, this I can’t explain it.

He is sufficiently aged as not to have been wrecked by the education apocalypse. Yet, rayward communicates a depth and breadth of knowledge that, no doubt, would have earned him non-inflated straight-A’s in “Oppression Studies and Intermediate Virtue Signaling ” Hat tip to Kurt Schlichter.

In conclusion, Stay Deplorable, My Friends.


27 rayward November 18, 2017 at 4:16 pm

3. 40% of inequality could not be built today; but fear not, markets will correct the imbalance. Or fear a lot.


28 Viking November 18, 2017 at 4:29 pm

“Such openings were a requirement of the Tenement Housing Act of 1879, meant to make tightly packed apartments a little bit more livable.”

I saw one of these in a 5 year old Hong Kong condo last year.


29 MikeW November 18, 2017 at 4:50 pm

#6 Wow, Indian police use “garlanding” to embarrass and discourage lawbreakers??? That’s a new one for me, had to look it up. The culture that is India…


30 A B November 18, 2017 at 8:59 pm

#3– This is wonderful. Seriously. It means that many old buildings will not be torn down because new buildings would have less rental space. Aside from developers, who the hell wants another glass and steel/Leeds-Certified/2-steps-removed-from-brutalism monstrosity?


31 y81 November 18, 2017 at 9:14 pm

3. I don’t see the problem. Zoning laws and building codes change over time to reflect changing technology and changing neighborhood circumstances. It’s like saying 40% of dissertations in the past 100 years (buildings last a lot longer than scholarship) would not earn a Ph.D. today.


32 y81 November 18, 2017 at 9:47 pm

3 (more).Reading this post and the one about downtown churches, I feel like Tyler doesn’t actually know very much about New York City real estate law, compared to someone who works full-time in the field, but that this ignorance doesn’t stop him. Which in turn makes me doubt everything else he says outside the field of economics. An object lesson in how the more you talk, the less credible you are.


33 So Much For Subtlety November 18, 2017 at 11:25 pm

It’s like saying 40% of dissertations in the past 100 years (buildings last a lot longer than scholarship) would not earn a Ph.D. today.

I am not sure you have that the right way around. It is true that, from what limited dissertations I can see, the formal requirements of a thesis have gone up – much more references and citing – in terms of the actual content virtually no dissertations completed today would have earned a Ph.D. 70 years ago. That is virtually all of them in the Social Sciences and the Humanities. And a good share of those in the Hard Sciences.

In my field, alas not very Hard, I would say about 90% of them are garbage and the world would probably be better off if they had not been written.


34 Art Deco November 19, 2017 at 10:22 am

in terms of the actual content virtually no dissertations completed today would have earned a Ph.D. 70 years ago. T

I’ve never figured out whether you’re a crank or utterly brazen.


35 shrikanthk November 18, 2017 at 9:25 pm

3. Zoning is one of those elite measures which hurts the urban poor and pushes them to the suburbs.

If I had my way, I’d get rid of central park and build buildings all over it, bringing down rents. But ofcourse, the liberal elites who want their daily jog, don’t want the working class in Bronx to stay in Manhattan. Hence the effort to keep Manhattan gentrified with zoning laws.


36 y81 November 18, 2017 at 9:48 pm

If I had my way, I’d make every university do its admissions by lottery. Then we’d find out how much value the professors actually add. But the elites will never permit that.


37 msgkings November 18, 2017 at 10:10 pm

That would work double. More supply lowering rents, and people fleeing Manhattan as you pave it over into a concrete Soviet hellhole. That would bring down rents too.


38 shrikanthk November 19, 2017 at 12:43 am

Not sure why you compare my plan with the creation of a Soviet hell hole.

I am not suggesting govt to get rid of central park. I am saying – if the free market had its way, central park won’t exist, or atleast would be much smaller than it is today.

Central Park is good for people like us with six figure salaries. But is it good for the man in Bronx who has to stay 20 miles away from his workplace in downtown Manhattan, just because he cannot afford to stay in this island? No.


39 msgkings November 19, 2017 at 1:41 am

No I get it, Komrade.


40 mulp November 19, 2017 at 12:39 pm

Does the guy living 20 miles away live in a concrete and asphalt dense housing and commercial environment?

If not, would he chose to live in NYC if it was built that way without the public space created by public ownership and by zoning, as well as private property owners placing their values above those of economists seeking optimal use of land in a place they would never live if built to their design.

Note, I explain why NH zoning is designed to keep out the poor, and how it I is unsustainable economically because it causes population aging and thus population decline which harms the economy by starving it of workers and customers. But I live here in large part because I was rich enough to afford the landscape and difficult economy the policy was preserving and creating. NH zoning is a product of economists who theorize taxes are harmful, and the poor cause high taxes. That is wrong because it’s unsustainable, but I’m old with no kids and thus I don’t need anything that is sustainable.

I have yet to see an economist write with glee: “I got the zoning changed in my neighborhood and a big apartment building has been built next door with lots of kids causing school over crowding, parking and traffic problems that make my daily life more of a hassle and more costly, but the neighborhood is more efficiently used and benefits people poorer than I as economics professor.”


41 Albigensian November 20, 2017 at 11:39 am

You’d get more housing in Manhattan by making it practical to replace all those low-rise buildings with higher density housing, plus effective methods to reduce the cost of building in Manhattan. Because unless high building costs can be translated into high rents or no one will want to build (in Central Park or anywhere else).

As for Central Park, there are certainly upscale joggers in it but my impression is that it gets heavy use by all social classes.

And ultimately you’ve got high demand for the limited real estate available on a not-so-large island. Development of the Bronx was an answer to intolerable density in the early 20th century. An updated answer might be a 300-mph TGV-style train to bring people into Manhattan in under an hour from some distant yet high-density suburb.

But of course no exurbs would permit that, and in any case it seems to be impossible to build anything big on anything like a reasonable budget and schedule anymore anyway (e.g., the Second Avenue Subway vs. construction of the the original IRT subway).


42 So Much For Subtlety November 18, 2017 at 11:21 pm

4. “This is not a pig.”

So. This story is a little unsatisfactory. Who says they are not pigs and why? Do the Rabbinical authorities say they are not pigs – in which case which ones and what is their basis for saying so? Why does anyone claim this? A Peccari is not a pig-pig, as no doubt Whoopy Goldberg would say, but it is as close as you can get without Quaaludes and membership of the Screen Director’s Guild. Is it because they are serving Peccari-bacon butties in the customer restaurant? Is there a big demand for Latin American Ham in Israel?

I think this story is missing the real point.


43 jorod November 18, 2017 at 11:41 pm

6. Maybe they should just switch to capitalism…


44 mobile November 19, 2017 at 1:06 am

6. Shouldn’t San Francisco use drones to stop open defecation?


45 carlospln November 19, 2017 at 1:36 am

6) Dob in a dumper


46 Tom West November 19, 2017 at 10:45 am

Back when I was doing a little research about why this hot-house of madness called “junior high” or “middle school” dominated over K-8, the only answer that came up was “to reduce sexual predation by older students upon younger”.


I have no trouble believing that for the vast majority, a K-8 environment produces better outcomes. But I can also believe that it does reduce sporadic victimization of young children by some tiny minority in the throes of adolescence madness.

Small wonder the change was made, even if the change reduced outcomes a little. (And still feels wrong. Every kid I knew, both when I was a kid and as a parent, smartened up considerably when there were young children nearby (if perhaps mourning the lost opportunity to be stupid). Junior high seems *designed* to bring out the worst of “I’m going to ape what I think cool adults do” behaviour among adolescents.)


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