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Taylor Swift (John Cage) markets in everything

It is time for Taylor Swift to drop the mic and take a bow because she has just accomplished the unthinkable. Swift hit number one on the Canadian iTunes chart this week with eight seconds of pure static. A glitch in the Canadian version of iTunes released a track called “Track 3,” that looked like […]

Space Tourism Still Not Ready for Flight

Ten years ago when Burt Rutan was predicting 100,000 space tourists in ten years I wrote a widely debated article, Is Space Tourism Ready for Takeoff? My answer then, and my answer now, is no: The vision is enticing but the facts suggest that space tourism is not ready for market. The problem is not the monetary […]

Pharmaceutical regulation is getting tougher

From Diana Carew at the Progressive Policy Institute: …the number of ‘restrictions’ on drug companies increased by 767, or 40% since 2000. This represents a substantial rise in the overall regulatory burden of pharmaceutical companies, which must allocate resources to ensure regulatory compliance. Show More Summary

You Ought to Have a Look: National Landmarks, Copious Food, Fingerprints, and Satellites

Patrick J. Michaels and Paul C. "Chip" Knappenberger You Ought to Have a Look is new a feature from the Center for the Study of Science posted by Patrick J. Michaels and Paul C. (“Chip”) Knappenberger. While this section will feature...Show More Summary

A Few Words on 'Gainful Employment'

Neal McCluskey The big higher education news this week is that the Obama administration released its “gainful employment” rules aimed squarely at beleaguered for-profit colleges, which are the schools most likely to offer programs that are explicitly about supplying job skills. Show More Summary

BOO! Your Tax Dollars at Work

Patrick J. Michaels Increasingly, federal monies have been disbursed to the various departments and agencies in support of the Obama administration’s politically strange perseveration on global warming. Specifically, many millions go...Show More Summary

Himalayan Viagra fuels caterpillar fungus gold rush

I don’t myself care about the event, I just liked the headline. A related study is here, and I thank CK for the pointer.

Presidents, Precedents, and Perpetual War

Gene Healy Good news: after nearly three months of airstrikes in Iraq and Syria, the branding’s finally caught up to the bombing. Our latest war in the Middle East finally has a name: “Operation Inherent Resolve” is what we’re calling it, the Pentagon recently announced. Show More Summary

The Next Congress

Democrats are increasingly pessimistic about holding the Senate. As Greg Sargent notes in the Washington Post: with Democrats narrowly favored in New Hampshire and North Carolina, the route to 50 seats will probably also require Democratic wins in Colorado and Iowa at the outset, followed by a surprise pickup elsewhere. This is not impossible. But […]

Assorted links

1. Scott Sumner on demand- and supply-side stagnation.  I also would stress the risk premium as a transmission mechanism linking the two curves. 2. Austin Frakt reviews Google’s Inbox. 3. What the world eats. 4. When DNA is the matchmaker (dubious, in my view). 5. How candy conquered Halloween. 6. The 86-square foot Paris apartment.

The World Misery Index: 109 Countries

Steve H. Hanke Every country aims to lower inflation, unemployment, and lending rates, while increasing gross domestic product (GDP) per capita. Through a simple sum of the former three rates, minus year-on-year per capita GDP growth,...Show More Summary

Is reocvery always slow after a financial crisis?

That has been the received wisdom, but it is now challenged by a new paper (pdf) by Christina and David Romer: This paper revisits the aftermath of financial crises in advanced countries in the decades before the Great Recession. We construct a new series on financial distress in 24 OECD countries for the period 1967-2007. […]

Was there mismatch unemployment during the Great Recession?

I remember this question being debated extensively circa 2009-2011, and those who said there was a (limited) role for mismatch unemployment were mocked pretty mercilessly.  Well, Sahin, Song, Topa, and Violante have a piece in the new American Economic Review entitled “Mismatch Unemployment.”  (You can find various versions here.)  It’s pretty thorough and state of […]

State capacity and military conflict

There is a new paper (pdf) by Nicola Gennaioli and Hans-Joachim Voth, forthcoming in The Review of Economic Studies: Powerful, centralized states controlling a large share of national income only begin to appear in Europe after 1500. We build a model that explains their emergence in response to the increasing importance of money for military […]

The Costs of Ebola: Guinea and Sierra Leone

Steve H. Hanke For a clear snapshot of a country’s economic performance, a look at my misery index is particularly edifying. The misery index is simply the sum of the inflation rate, unemployment rate, and bank lending rate, minus per capita GDP growth. The epicenter of the Ebola crisis is Liberia. Show More Summary

Michigan markets in everything department of why not?

Oakley, Mi. is barely a town at 300 people, only one streetlight and, until recently, one police officer. The one cop was good at his job, reports Vocativ’s M.L. Nestel, until he was forced to step down after getting caught stalking a teenage girl. In 2008, new chief Robert Reznick made some changes: he hired […]

Preliminary Results in Ukraine

Emma Ashford Update : The results are finally in. With 98.5% of votes counted, Western-leaning parties (and independents) have done even better than expected, taking 311 seats. Pro-Russian parties took 112 seats, while 27 seats (mostly Crimean districts) remain unfilled. Show More Summary

U.S.-Mexico Sugar Agreement: A Tribute to Managed Markets

Daniel R. Pearson The U.S. Department of Commerce (DOC) announced Oct. 27 that it had reached draft agreements with Mexican sugar exporters and the Mexican government to suspend antidumping and countervailing duty (AD/CVD) investigations on imports of sugar from that country. Show More Summary

Assorted links

1. RBC theory won’t die soon. 2. Beware of fake priests in cemeteries. 3. Scott Alexander on whether polyamory is boring. 4. Average is Over, Sydney beach bum edition.  And Bolivia legalizes child labor for ten year olds. 5. Not your grandfather’s pot. 6. A Larry Summers summary post on secular stagnation. 7. My 2013 […]

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