Blog Profile / Marginal Revolution

Filed Under:Academics / Political Science
Posts on Regator:11504
Posts / Week:35.1
Archived Since:July 6, 2011

Blog Post Archive

My Conversation with Mary Roach

Here is the transcript and podcast, here is the summary introduction: She joins Tyler for a conversation covering the full range of her curiosity, including fear, acclimating to grossness, chatting with the dead, freezing one’s head,...Show More Summary

Is Piketty’s Data Reliable?

When Thomas Piketty’s Capital in the Twenty-First Century first appeared many economists demurred on the theory but heaped praise on the empirical work. “Even if none of Piketty’s theories stands up,” Larry Summers argued, his “deeply grounded” and “painstaking empirical research” was “a Nobel Prize-worthy contribution”. Show More Summary

Kim Jong Un is rational in a very long-term game

That is the thesis of my latest Bloomberg column, note that Kim is only 33 and could be around for another fifty years or so he hopes.  Peaceful exile probably is not an option!  So how does one hold onto power and avoid those anti-aircraft...Show More Summary

Cutting corporate rates vs. boosting the EITC

If the federal government boosts the Earned Income Tax Credit, or for that matter just lowers tax rates on lower-income workers, firms have an incentive to hire more labor (and also an incentive to expand hours for individual workers). ...Show More Summary

Tuesday assorted links

1. FT piece by Rana Foroohar, suggesting the influence of the tech companies has led to insufficiently strong patents. 2. A good way of thinking about cryptocurrencies.  Recommended for those who don’t already know what is going on. 3. Show More Summary

Concentration in the dollar store sector

Already, there are 14,000 one-story cinder block Dollar Generals in the U.S.—outnumbering by a few hundred the coffee chain’s domestic footprint. Fold in the second-biggest dollar chain, Dollar Tree, and the number of stores, 27,465, exceeds the 22,375 outlets of CVS, Rite Aid, and Walgreens combined. Show More Summary

Request for requests

What would you all like to hear about?  I do pay some heed, sometimes. The post Request for requests appeared first on Marginal REVOLUTION.

Might short-term shareholders be better monitors?

Another plausible thing to believe…is that someone who holds a stock for a minute, or a quarter anyway, might pay more attention to this sort of stuff [longer-term company prospects] than someone who holds it for 10 years. It is hard...Show More Summary

Kenneth Whyte’s new Herbert Hoover biography

This excellent book is titled Hoover: An Extraordinary Life in Extraordinary Times.  Here is one good bit: Knowing that he could not manage what he could not measure, Hooover made Commerce botha producer and a clearinghouse of relevant information on the U.S. Show More Summary

Psychology and behaviorism in Blade Runner 2049

From my email, by Jason N. Doctor: You provide a good perspective on Blade Runner 2049.  In addition to the biblical references and themes, I was also impressed by the psychology and philosophy of mind references: 1)  After every event...Show More Summary

Monday assorted links

1. I agree with most (not all) of these (propositions from Matt Yglesias). 2. Thoughts on Kirkuk. 3. How the Netherlands feeds the world. 4. How to commit a crime in Labrador. 5. The secularizing effects of the Protestant Reformation. 6. How colliding stars determined the price level in the 19th century. The post Monday assorted links appeared first on Marginal REVOLUTION.

Decertifying the Iran deal

A few of you have asked about Trump decertifying the Iran deal.  I think it is a big mistake, keeping in mind the old chess maxim “The threat is stronger than the execution.”  If we slap them, they slap us back by doing something like,...Show More Summary

Understanding the extent and predictors of college late departure

That is a new and important piece by Zachary Mabel and Tolani A. Britton, here is the abstract: Research on college dropout has largely addressed early exit from school, even though a large share of students who do not earn degrees leave after their second year. Show More Summary

The Hard Thing About Hard Things

I loved this book, by Ben Horowitz of Andreessen-Horowitz, the venture capital firm.  While it is hard to pull bits from the broader stories, here are a few: Most business relationships either become too tense to tolerate or not tense...Show More Summary

Sunday assorted links

1. Fred McChesney has passed away. 2. When the single taxers tried to take over Delaware. 3. There’s a new digital magazine coming that only analyzes photos of Mark Zuckerberg. 4. Finding Allah in Viking graves (NYT). The post Sunday assorted links appeared first on Marginal REVOLUTION.

Is the World Bank lending too much to China?

The Trump administration is demanding the World Bank allocate less capital toward Chinese projects: “The bottom line here is right now we’ve got too high a percentage of the World Bank’s balance sheet that’s going to countries and to...Show More Summary

Blade Runner 2049 (some Straussian spoilers)

I hardly expected the movie to be so drenched in Tarkovsky (“The Zone” and Solaris, maybe a bit of The Sacrifice), and the now-famed sex scene draws from Bergman’s Persona.  Overall, the colors and palette were stunning, and the useShow More Summary

A simple theory of baseline mood

During much of the 1982-2001 period, the Western world seemed to be moving in a very favorable direction, indeed most of Asia too.  Over time, Westerns intellectuals and commentators came to expect triumphant feelings and relatively low levels of stress. Show More Summary

Saturday assorted links

1. “Jutras has been working on the trifecta for a decade, since his pumpkin win.”  (who’s complacent!?)  And did Iranian ballistic missiles violate the nuclear deal? 2. This is not Arthur Laffer’s napkin.  And “Five countries have higher tax rates than the peak of the Laffer curve.” 3. Show More Summary

The High Cost of Good Intentions

The subtitle is A History of U.S. Federal Entitlement Programs, and the author of this new and excellent book is John F. Cogan of Stanford University and the Hoover Institution.  It is the single best history of what it covers, and thus one of the best books to read on the history of U.S. Show More Summary

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