"Words ought to be a little wild, for they are the assault of thoughts on the unthinking" - JMK
- Noahpinion rightly praises Tabarrok's call for a more innovative economy. He's also right to explicitly raise the issue of public goods (although I'd rather call it "externalities" - a lot of these things aren't really public goods, they're private goods with crucial externalities). However, I'm not sure Tabarrok would be on the same page with him on that point. For me, this is an "all of the above" point. Noahpinion is exactly right that there are lots of things where simply increasing spending would be a very, very good idea. But Tabarrok is exactly right that this is about so much more than that - that a lot of it is about an environment that fosters entrepreneurialism and innovation. Previously, I've raised some concerns about the way Tabarrok talks about high skill immigration.
- Ron Paul proof-read and approved all the newsletters. Not exactly a surprise or a revelation. The guy vehemently defended them until the political winds turned. If this isn't enough to dissuade libertarians, I can understand that. But don't pretend this isn't something that we who are bothered by this should just brush off. And just admit how bad it all is like Steve Horwitz and Nick Gillespie. If the modern libertarian movement is nothing more than a Ron Paul lovefest it's hard to see how it differs from any other political personality cult with an idealistic ideology behind it.
- Troy Camplin claims that we ostracize and sneer at the commercial class. I call that bunk, and explain my position in the comment section. What do you all think? UPDATE: [More from Troy. He writes in response "I do think they are ostracized and sneered at in our literature and by many of our academics, who in turn teach college students to think of businessmen as inherently corrupt." I cannot think of a single professor I've had in my seven and half years of higher education that has said that businessmen are inherently corrupt (and I've had a couple humanities professors and a bunch of sociologists). But perhaps my case is still atypical. What about you all? Has anyone ever taught you that businessmen are inherently corrupt? He goes on: "One of the consequences is that those who go to college then go into business think that one has to be corrupt to be successful" I knew a lot of business majors (who often doubled-majored with economics at W&M), including two roommates. None of them thought this. I've never met anybody who went "into business" and thought this. But again - my case may be atypical. Can anyone confirm Troy's assertions here?]
- Happy EITC Day! Sometimes I feel like the people who whine about welfare and act as if government isn't an emergent order itself don't really understand the important landmarks in the history of our social democracy. U.S. government is a decentralized system with plenty of opportunity for information feedback and evolution. That makes for good government, and the evolution of the welfare state is an excellent example of that. Hooray for the EITC!
Procrastinating on January 23, 2017
8 hours ago