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Why is mobile money so prevalent in Africa?

Via @prepaid_africa, this graph on the prevalence of mobile money:I suspect the main reasons are “least regulation” and “least powerful/developed existing banking establishment”, but these are speculative. Anyone know the answer?   The post Why is mobile money so prevalent in Africa? appeared first on Chris Blattman.

“The dream is the truth”

That’s the title of a superb humanitarian blog, equal parts angst, cynicism, and idealism. One excerpt: Somewhere in the offices of almost any humanitarian aid agency–typically on a manager’s wall, or in the entryway, or perhaps displayed prominently in meeting … Continue reading ? The post “The dream is the truth” appeared first on Chris Blattman.

Lost Language, Lost Liberalism

That is a new website from Daniel Klein and the Adam Smith Institute, “A review of the changes 1880-1940 to the central semantics of liberal civilization.”

America’s License Raj

The “license Raj” is an epithet often used for India’s byzantine code of rules and regulations on businesses under the central-planning system finally dismantled in part in the 1990s. The Economist applies the term to the United States, which buries entrepreneurs under layers of federal, state, and local red tape. According to the Competitive Enterprise […]

Scott Sumner on why no Kansas miracle?

He reports: The past two years Kansas reduced its state income tax rates. As a result, the top rate of income tax faced by Kansas residents (combined state and federal) rose from 41.45% in 2012 to 48.3% in 2013 and then fell a tad to 48.2% in 2014 (if they don’t itemize.) That’s a pretty […]

How big a deal is replication failure?

From Jason Mitchell at Harvard: Recent hand-wringing over failed replications in social psychology is largely pointless, because unsuccessful experiments have no meaningful scientific value. Because experiments can be undermined by a...Show More Summary

Assorted links

1. More on the amazing economics of Transformers 4.  And what are the economics and politics of Snowpiercer? 2. A waterless toilet? 3. The culture that is San Francisco. 4. Expensive Japanese grapes, more than you think.  Yet I don’t see anyone complaining, you don’t have to buy them. 5. The surprising surge of Medicare Advantage. […]

Libertarian Voters: Still Invisible in New Pew Study

David Boaz The Pew Research Center recently issued a major study of political ideology in America, based on 10,000 interviews early this year. That’s far bigger than most polls, so it allows more detailed examination of diverse political opinions. Show More Summary

Same sex parents and adopted children

The largest-ever study of same-sex parents found their children turn out healthier and happier than the general population. A new study of 315 same-sex parents and 500 children in Australia found that, after correcting for socioeconomic factors, their children fared well on several measures, including asthma, dental care, behavioral issues, learning, sleep, and speech. Do […]

Where's the Annual Social Security Report?

Jagadeesh Gokhale House Speaker John Boehner (R-Ohio) has announced his intention to sue President Obama for “failure to faithfully follow the nation’s laws” by taking extra-legal executive actions in some areas and failing to execute...Show More Summary

Tax Notes Praises Law-Review Article that Got Halbig Cases Rolling

Michael F. Cannon A panel of the U.S. Court of Appeals for the D.C. Circuit, which is often referred to as the second-highest court in the land, is expected to rule any day now on Halbig v. Burwell, a legal challenge that “may actually crush,” “kill,” and “wreck” the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act, a.k.a. Show More Summary

German leberkas meatloaf and sweet sausages with mustard arbitrage

A man exploited the perks of business-class travel to feast for free 35 times in a year at Deutsche Lufthansa AG (LHA’s) Munich airport lounge — without ever taking off. The man used the flexibility of the one-way fare to Zurich to repeatedly reschedule his travel plans after gaining access to food and drink, Munich […]

Subsidies for the Seacoast

Chris Edwards A June 24 article in the Washington Post looked at sea level rise in North Carolina. Unfortunately, the article followed a common template of portraying a battle of science vs. conservative politics and environmentalism vs. Show More Summary

America’s Relationship with Poland: Military Alliance or Social Club?

Doug Bandow Polish Ambassador Ryszard Schnepf has a tough job: making nice with American officials after his boss in Warsaw, Foreign Minister Radoslaw Sikorski, indiscreetly denounced Poland’s alliance with America as “worthless.” The ambassador responded to my earlier article and made a convincing case that Poles and Americans are friends. Show More Summary

The End of Forced Union Dues?

Jason Bedrick Defenders of the status quo in education have long used lawsuits to protect themselves from competition and force state legislatures to increase funding. Lately, rather than merely play legal defense, some education reformers have turned to the courts to push reform. Show More Summary

What does real business cycle theory predict about the cyclicality of prices?

At least since King and Plosser 1984, the core prediction is that prices are procyclical and perhaps a leading indicator as well.  Think of inside money/credit as another input into production, and real business cycle theory as showing a general comovement of economic variables.  That means broader measures of the money supply go up in […]

How does education lower the demand for children?

It doesn’t always, but sometimes it does and here are some reasons why: Caldwell identifies five mechanisms by which education reduces fertility by reshaping the economic relationship of parents and children. First, education reduces the ability of a child to work inside and outside the home – not just because school and studying take up […]

Swedish emotion markets in everything

The world’s first “emotional” auction, where people pay with feelings rather than money, has taken place in Sweden. Bids were generated by the way people’s biometrics – heart rate and sweat changes – altered when they saw an item for sale. Note that if you click on the link, it will make sounds and set […]

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