Bryan Caplan and David Henderson

Arnold Kling: December 2003

An Author Archive by Month (23 entries)

Sowell on Math and Economics

Economic Methods
Arnold Kling
A while back, we discussed whether math is necessary for economic education. Thomas Sowell gives his view. Introductory economics is too often taught as if the students in it were all potential economists who had to be introduced to the... MORE

Foreign Aid and Growth

Growth: Causal Factors
Arnold Kling
In a generally skeptical post on the topic of using foreign aid to stimulate economic growth, Tyler Cowen asks, If you know of any good studies on what predicts future (not current) growth, in the Granger-causal sense, please let me... MORE

Economics and Moral Intuition

Economic Philosophy
Arnold Kling
Here's one for all those with a philosophical bent, from Robin Hanson via Tyler Cowen. How does economics, which talks about the positive effects of self-interest, square with moral intuition? we economists...seem to be constantly giving people excuses and social... MORE

Economic Education

International Trade
Arnold Kling
Tyler Cowen recommends James Buchanan's "The Soul of Classical Liberalism," an essay published three years ago. As Cowen points out, Buchanan is wrestling with tough philosophical issues. Here, I just want to focus on a few sentences that bear on... MORE

Case for Globalization

International Trade
Arnold Kling
One of our comment threads discussed this essay by Kyle Markley that makes the economic case for globalization. All significant economic change creates a disaffected group of people, people whose economic situation is threatened by economic change. Such people bear... MORE

Taxes and Health Insurance

Economics of Health Care
Arnold Kling
The Joint Economic Committee's health economist Tom Miller published a reminder of how our health insurance was system has been (mis-)shaped by tax considerations. Proponents of the tax exclusion for employer-provided health insurance contend that it provides the financial incentives... MORE

Prescribing Capitalism

Arnold Kling
Marginal Revolution found RangelMD, a doctor who was willing to criticize the economics of single-payer government funded health care. In order to expand Medicare to cover every citizen and pay for all medical treatment and all medications that Americans have... MORE

Long Run Stock Returns

Social Security
Arnold Kling
Because the stock market figures into most Social Security privatization plans, the Social Security Administration commissioned economists to estimate long-run returns from stocks. This analysis is three years old, but since I've brought up the issue on several occasions it... MORE

Math and Economics

Economic Methods
Arnold Kling
Brad DeLong points to an interesting post by Daniel Davies on the use of math in economics. Davies writes, If the history of economic thought teaches us anything, it teaches us that people who don't use the mathematics always, sooner... MORE

Predicting Drug Price Controls

Price Controls
Arnold Kling
Jonathan Oberlander and Jim Jaffe think that drug price controls are on the horizon. They say that this is what happened to payments to physicians and hospitals under Medicare. The government has habitually responded to budget stresses by changing the... MORE

Coase and Dean

Microeconomics
Arnold Kling
Everett Ehrlich invokes Nobel Laureate Ronald Coase as Ehrlich interprets the success of Howard Dean in terms of reduced transactions costs in setting up a political organization. the Internet has changed all that in one crucial respect that wouldn't surprise... MORE

Water Privatization, Continued

Regulation and Subsidies
Arnold Kling
Lynne Kiesling has two interesting posts on water privatization. In her first comment, she writes, Suppose you are not persuaded by my argument that water utilities should be private companies and not municipal utilities. OK, but you could still contract... MORE

Smooting the Weasels

International Trade
Arnold Kling
Reason's Matt Welch comments on the story that the Bush Administration is going to refuse to allow bids for Iraqi reconstruction work from companies that are located in countries that did not support the coalition. 1) It [costs] the Iraqi... MORE

Water as a Private Good

Regulation and Subsidies
Arnold Kling
If you ask people to list goods that should never be privatized, water is often one of the first that comes to mind. But Richard Tren writes, Those that campaign against private water ownership and supply on the grounds that... MORE

A Nation of Entrepreneurs?

Growth: Consequences
Arnold Kling
Jeff Cornwall points to a survey on entrepreneurship. Cornwall writes, The survey sampled 1,000 Americans over the age of 18. Here are some of their findings: * 56% of Americans dream of starting their own business (E.M. Couple this with... MORE

State Universities vs. Vouchers

Economics of Education
Arnold Kling
The fifty states use a variety of methods to subsidize higher education, but the most popular seems to be a subsidy for in-state students to attend specific public institutions. Bridget Terry Long compares this approach with a voucher program. up... MORE

Growth Inhibitors in Europe

Growth: Causal Factors
Arnold Kling
Alberto Alesina and Francesco Giavazzi write, The labor market flexibility in the US service sector is truly remarkable. During recessions and booms, you can feel the changes in quality and number of waitresses in restaurants, in the size of staffs... MORE

Labor Market Surveys Diverge

Macroeconomics
Arnold Kling
The Bureau of Labor Statistics uses two different surveys to measure job growth. The latest report shows that for the last two months, the household survey shows an increase of just over one million jobs. The payroll survey shows an... MORE

A Bad Month for Libertarians?

International Trade
Arnold Kling
In this essay, I say that libertarians had a bad month in November. Howard Dean came out in favor of re-regulation of "utilities, large media companies and any business that offers stock options." As Megan McArdle put it, "those of... MORE

Economics of Nanotechnology

Growth: Causal Factors
Arnold Kling
If the nanotechnology revolution takes off, what will be the economic consequences? Brad DeLong proposes this analytical framework: What commodities--what goods and services--become extraordinarily cheap as a result of the technological revolution? What human activities--what jobs and skills--become key bottlenecks,... MORE

Meeting the Enemy

Austrian Economics
Arnold Kling
What leads to bad economic policy? Bryan Caplan writes, On the conventional view—widely accepted by economists, pundits, and the man in the street—the public demands policies in its own best interest, but the political system ignores their wishes. Bastiat and... MORE

Social Security Reform

Social Security
Arnold Kling
The Social Security Administration has evaluated a proposal by Peter Ferrara for private social security accounts. This plan would establish voluntary, progressive individual accounts for workers who are under age 55 on January 1, 2005 and would provide for a... MORE

Immigration Policy

International Trade
Arnold Kling
Samuel Brittan calls for an open immigration policy in the UK. If we favour the free movement of goods, capital and people, between Yorkshire and Lancashire, or between the north and south of England, why should a frontier make a... MORE

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