Assorted links

1. Blog on Chinese financial markets.

2. Webcast site for my NIH talk, coming on Wednesday noon, on lotteries and randomized control trials in medical research.

3. Very good comments on geo-engineering, with some excellent sentences, and more here.

4. Why the Euro is not the next global currency.

5. Evidence on pedigree effects in academia.

6. Cory Doctorow's publishing experiment.


sulfur geo-engineering isn't the only option (fleet of ships creating foam in the oceans; light reflecting discs, etc...). To criticize it for treating symptoms instead of the underlying problem is not enough. In context of cingularity any and all technological solutions are valid. Yes, it'd be wonderful for all of us to SLOW down, but it's not going to happen, so using market forces to combat global warming SYMPTOMS shouldn't be discounted that easily.

Re: the recent climate geo-engineering debates, it's kind of amusing to see so many instant experts on these subjects in the blogosphere (Matt Yglesias!, Ryan Avent!). There's no subject that can't be analyzed and put to bed in a 3 paragraph blog posting! It's kind of the modern day analog of the all night dorm room bull session, without the pizza but with about the same level of expertise.

Who are the real experts? Turns out its easier to prove who are not experts.

Do you:

-eat significantly less beef than the average 1st world citizen?
-use significantly less fossil fuel for travel than average?
-live in a significantly smaller space than average or otherwise reduce your home/office fossil energy use?

If you answer yes to all 3, you may be an expert.

"Having spent a fair amount of brainpower and energy over the past month trying to convince right-leaning folks and libertarians that having three bureaucrats sit down and come up with a default ‘vanilla option’ checking account won’t be a first step on the road to serfdom,"

He lost me at hello.

I will have to pay for other peoples' healthcare and they can't even be expected to help manage the costs. What exactly is it these folks think we are warning them about? To quote Jar Jar Binks "What YET?! Monsters out der, leakin' in here, all sinkin' and no power. When is yousa thinkin' wesa in trouble?!" And liberals are NOT Jedi knights gonna get us outta this mess.

Of course it won't be the first step, it will be the last step. Once medical is controlled, what next, life itself. Of course there could never be anything like that. Nooooo. No government would ever, umm, say, let's see, maybe tell you could only have one kid or something insane like that. That's crazy talk.

And there is no excitement over geoengineering that I can tell. There is hysteria from the left. What has struck me is that they almost seem depressed at the prospect of a solution. No, see, the difference between libertarians and the statists is that the statists get excited about launching missiles at the moon for no damn reason whatsoever, while libertarians grudgingly acquiesce to sulfuring the atmosphere to keep the statists from wrecking the whole planet.

All geoengineering represents is an approach to a real solution, as opposed to the brilliant lefty plan of just stopping history and rationing the existing prosperity across the glob (hmmm, sounds like their plan for medicine). Yglesias almost got it. You can paint every roof white, but is that the best approach? We are all geoengineers now. Like it or love it.

5. At first I thought "great!" Then I read more and realized that this academic critique was from some ideologue. That Adam Smith cat never amounted to much of anything.

I'd really like to see the two of you take a clear stand on the Romm-Yglesias-Klein-Krugman criticisms of Freakonomics.

@anonymous coward

Don't tell me, let me guess. You're a medical doctor who believes a positive mammogram translates into a 40% probability of breast cancer. It's ok, we all remember when we were convinced it was more important to read quickly than thoroughly.

# 3 – Popper is not Yglesias’s best theoretical defense in the geo-engineering debate. Popper was happy about applying ‘instrumentally-activist technological engineering’ to socio-environmental problems provided the policy engineer facilitates the ‘scientific method of trial and error’ and observes certain ‘normative procedural rules’ for choosing between means to ends. Presumably that endorses purposively engineered global solutions as long as bureaucracies make genuinely impersonal rule-based selections among private designs that are continually tested competitively. Potentially an avenue for compromise...

MR requester - For example, at any top 30 school, 95% of the faculty will have their PhD from a top 10 school.

And Tyler adds: And very often it is the top six rather than the top ten.

Like wow! That *is* academic incest with a vengance.

Except the data says that more like 80% of the faculty at the top 30 schools comes from the top 35 programs (and less than 80% at programs #2 and #3 come from the top 20). Given that the top 35 programs in the US produce rather more than 2/3 of US PhDs in economics, the pedigree effect starts to look awfully, yawn, small.

But kudos to Tyler for finding (and linking) the paper that utterly refutes his and his commenter's claims.

Well, Chinese stocks are going up and that is all investors care about.....and they don't seem to have inflation problems.


Well, US stocks are going up and that is all investors care about....and we don't seem to have inflation problems.
(Department of Duh)


The sets of top-20 and top-35 departments are not confined to the US. It is based on a worldwide ranking.

The top 35 included LSE, Oxford, Cambridge, Toronto, and UBC.

I have a few short questions. Given the dynamic nature of economics, I would expect that over time the weighting of this new SDR would need to change. This indicates a body which decides upon the weighting of this new currency. Do you feel that the IMF should be responsible for changing the weighting of the SDR? How would you propose protecting nations from the results of changing the basket underlying this new SDR, and lastly, how is this body/IMF protected from political interference in its decisions on weighting of this new SDR?

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