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Kidney Shortage? Cato Discussed That

Michael D. Tanner A New York Times editorial yesterday brought attention to the severe shortage in the number of kidneys available for transplant. There are over 100,000 Americans on the waiting list for a kidney transplant, and the average wait time is almost five years. Show More Summary

Net Neutrality -- or Destroying Internet Innovation and Investment?

David Boaz The Sunlight Foundation reports that the Federal Communications Commission has received more than 800,000 public comments on the topic of “net neutrality,” more than 60 percent of them form letters written by organized campaigns and more than 200 from law firms on behalf of themselves or their clients. Show More Summary

Assorted links

1. The new Claudio Borio paper on excess financial elasticity. 2. How important are SOEs for China? 3. Why so many Russians support Putin, from a Russian opposition source. 4. Scott Sumner on intellectual decay. 5. What do Uber drivers make? 6. Defense of Thomas Piketty (pdf). 7. Syllabus on political science and science fiction […]

Soft landing vs. hard landing

Michael Pettis writes: The choice, in other words, is not between hard landing and soft landing. China will either choose a “long landing”, in which growth rates drop sharply but in a controlled way such that unemployment remains reasonable even as GDP growth drops to 3% or less, or it will choose what analysts will […]

Anti-School Choice Activists Demand Judge's Recusal Because She's Catholic

Jason Bedrick It’s bad enough that a Florida teachers union, the Florida School Boards Association, and the PTA filed a lawsuit to deprive low-income students of scholarships citing the state constitution’s historically anti-Catholic,...Show More Summary

MRU class on international finance

Our new class on international finance is up here.  The class description reads as follows: International finance covers some of the most complex but also important topics in economics. How are exchange rates determined? When if ever are ongoing trade deficits harmful? Are fixed or floating exchange rates better? What are the roots of the […]

Organ Markets

The NYT editorial board is concerned about the shortage of kidneys for transplants. As one might expect, the most obvious solution to the problem is automatically dismissed: While some argue that the way to reduce the growing shortage is to pay living donors for kidneys, either in cash or government benefits, there are many ways […]

Is this the best political science syllabus ever?

Jake Bowers at UIUC teaches a course on political science and science fiction, called “Future Politics”: How can imagining the future help us understand the present? How does considering the future help us think critically about politics today? In this course we … Continue reading ? The post Is this the best political science syllabus ever? appeared first on Chris Blattman.

More Foreign Competition in Software and Internet Services?

Simon Lester We’ve gotten used to American dominance in the internet/software industries. That may not last forever: Over the weekend, China announced that it was planning to launch a homegrown operating system to replace Windows and Android for running the nation’s desktop and mobile devices. Show More Summary

Washington Should Stop Praising Military Tyranny in Egypt

Doug Bandow CAIRO—Egypt’s capital is crowded, busy, confused, and messy. Security isn’t obvious, until you get close to a sensitive site, such as the Interior Ministry. The military has taken firm control, elevating its leader, Abdel Fata al-Sisi, to the presidency. Show More Summary

College Admission Secrets

Most colleges are non-profits with unclear ownership status so their incentives do not lead to simple profit-maximization. Don’t be fooled, however, neither do colleges maximize student welfare or the public good. Instead colleges pursue some index of free cash flow, prestige, and administrative and faculty independence. Show More Summary

Why I endorsed Evo Morales

Well, “endorsed” isn’t exactly the right word, but I did say “simpatizante.”  Here are my views: 1. I disagree with most of his economic policy, for reasons you can find stated in Adam Smith and the other classical economists. 2. Governments work very hard to stay in power. 3. In a weighted average of public […]

China mixed marriage markets in everything

Chinese authorities in the restive western region of Xinjiang have begun offering large cash incentives for interracial marriages in the latest attempt to quell growing unrest among the mainly Muslim Uighur ethnic group that inhabit the region. Show More Summary

Assorted links

1. What people cured of blindness see. 2. Shoes that show you the way. 3. Which states are in the Midwest?  I say no to all the marginal cases, including Kentucky.  And how can it be that not everyone thinks Iowa is in the Midwest? 4. China insurance markets in everything. 5. Who is the […]

Is China seeing a great stagnation?

From ChinaRealTime: China’s 1% average annual growth in total factor productivity between 1978 and 2012 – a period when average per capita annual incomes rose from $2,000 to $8,000 — compares with 4% annual gains for Japan during its comparable 1950-1970 high-growth period, 3% for Taiwan from 1966-1990 and 2% for South Korea from 1966-1990, […]

Why I am a relative optimist about Bolivia

1. Bolivia became a semi-stable democracy in the early 1980s and it has stayed that way. 2. For all the rhetoric to the contrary, the current regime is a mix of 1990s-era market-oriented reforms and Evo Morales.  Probably you like one of these, though perhaps not both. 3. Many more Bolivian children go to school […]

Assortative mating in Bolivia

It is potent: If people married each other more randomly, poverty levels would be considerably lower than they are now.  If we abandoned all current family arrangements and randomly grouped all Bolivians into new families of 5 persons, poverty levels would fall by about 15 percentage points (from the current level of 55% of all […]

Sunday assorted links

1. David Rosand has passed away. 2. Which state has the worst drivers? 3. Interview with Robert Aumann. 4. Summer books from Politico, many are the sorts of titles you don’t usually run across at MR. 5. Does the language of deceit betray scientific fraud?

Do wealth shocks affect the health of the elderly?

Hannes Schwandt of Princeton has a new paper (pdf) on this topic: Do wealth shocks affect the health of the elderly in developed countries? The economic literature is sceptical about such effects which have so far only been found for poor retirees in poor countries. In this paper I show that wealth shocks also matter […]

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