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Arnold Kling: May 2006

An Author Archive by Month (37 entries)

Economics non-junk Science

Economic Methods
Arnold Kling
Bryan snarls, Arnold, please tell us: What's not junk? As I believe Yogi Berra said (if not, it sounds like something he would say), "You can observe a lot just by watching." I think economists should put more effort into... MORE

CoA Watch

Economics of Health Care
Arnold Kling
My reader-blogger Joe Kristan spots this WSJ story Interest is growing in the digital version of the breast-cancer screening test, driven in part by a study last fall in the New England Journal of Medicine that said digital was better... MORE

Good Sense on Fiscal Policy

Social Security
Arnold Kling
I commend Greg Mankiw's op-ed in today's Wall Street Journal. Even a generous set of excerpts will leave out a lot of well-phrased analysis. let's start with a fact about which every serious policy analyst agrees: The government budget is... MORE

Economic Junk Science

Economic Methods
Arnold Kling
I am reading the latest issue of the American Economic Review, which is a selection of papers from this year's annual convention of the American Economic Association. A lot of it is what I consider to be "junk science." So... MORE

Class Once More

Income Distribution
Arnold Kling
My class autobiography got people riled up. More commenters were riled up at Economist's View than here, by the way. There are some things that I wrote that I don't wish to stand by and defend, after thinking about it... MORE

Math Snobbery

Books: Reviews and Suggested Readings
Arnold Kling
I discuss David Warsh's Knowledge and the Wealth of Nations in my latest essay. David Warsh, a uniquely dedicated journalist, turns economics into melodrama. He takes a number of risks, both in terms of content and style, and not all... MORE

My Class Autobiography

Income Distribution
Arnold Kling
Bryan is encouraging these things. On both sides of my family, my grandparents were immigrant Jews who tried to make a living as merchants. My mother's family settled in Bradford, Pennsylvania, a declining steel town. My father's family settled in... MORE

My comparative advantage?

Books: Reviews and Suggested Readings
Arnold Kling
Don Boudreaux writes (you'll need to scroll down if you follow the link), Arnold Kling is as well-credentialed and technically skilled as any economist. He has a knack for using metaphors and analogies effectively; his sentence construction is clear; he... MORE

Rare Sighting

Energy, Environment, Resources
Arnold Kling
An explanation of Oil Econ 101. Only drastic reductions in U.S. oil use would lead to elimination of oil imports. Until then, the United States will continue to import oil. And U.S. consumers will pay the world price for oil,... MORE

The Confirmatory Bias Diet

Behavioral Economics and Rationality
Arnold Kling
John Ford writes, Seth Roberts, a psychologist at UC Berkeley has written a book called The Shangri-La Diet. In it, Roberts described some old obesity rat data and via "self-experimentation" developed a technique for weight loss that he hopes will... MORE

Reminder--Tuesday on Capitol Hill

Economics of Health Care
Arnold Kling
If you want the definitive word on the Massachusetts Health Care reform, be sure to attend this event at the Rayburn Building at noon on Tuesday, May 23.... MORE

A Sudden Outbreak of Greed

Economics of Health Care
Arnold Kling
Alex Tabarrok writes On its face, price gouging is a peculiar explanation for recent increases in insurance premiums. Is greed new to the world? Were insurance companies followers of Mother Teresa just a few years ago? If greed and gouging... MORE

Potentially Disruptive

Growth: Causal Factors
Arnold Kling
Jonathan B. Tucker and Raymond A. Zilinskas write, In the near future, synthetic genomics technology should make it possible to recreate any existing virus for which the complete DNA sequence is known. At the same time, the advent of high-throughput... MORE

CoA Alert

Economics of Health Care
Arnold Kling
As long as I'm creating an alert for Bryan's book, I might as well create one for Crisis of Abundance, which is an essential resource for anyone interested in health care policy and, with birthdays and graduations coming up, makes... MORE

Economists on Immigration

Labor Mobility, Immigration, Outsourcing
Arnold Kling
Alex Tabarrok composed a letter to the political community from the economics community on immigration. He has posted the letter. Here is an excerpt: Immigrants do not take American jobs. The American economy can create as many jobs as there... MORE

MRV Alert

Political Economy
Arnold Kling
Holman Jenkins writes, When Americans finally must look daily to the stock market rather than the government as guardian of their retirement, their appetite for fantasies and demagoguery on bread-and-butter issues like gas prices will decline too. The single biggest... MORE

Macroeconomics and Confirmatory Bias

Economic Methods
Arnold Kling
Greg Mankiw has written an outstanding new essay that reviews the history of thought in macroeconomics. I don't know where he is planning to give this paper, but I wish I could be a discussant. Here is a brief excerpt.... MORE

Family vs. State

Institutional Economics
Arnold Kling
In my latest essay, I discuss a book by Jennifer Roback Morse. Single moms and the welfare state go together. Strong families and free markets go together. Morse argues that a combination of weak families and free markets is much... MORE

I'll Be Debating Health Care Policy

Economics of Health Care
Arnold Kling
At this Cato-sponsored event on Tuesday, May 23rd, at noon on Capitol Hill. Meanwhile, my book could use more reviews at Amazon. If you've actually read it, then weigh in. But don't use your review as a way to voice... MORE

The Great Liberal Books

Books: Reviews and Suggested Readings
Arnold Kling
On my reading list, a commenter complained that I did not recommend books with which I disagree. Although I disagree with some of Harford, some of Blinder, and much of Warsh, the point is well taken.... MORE

Scam

Behavioral Economics and Rationality
Arnold Kling
Mitchell Zuckoff describes how the Nigerian email scam works. Patiently and persistently, the Nigerians turned Worley’s skepticism into suspension of disbelief, to the point where he seemed to worry that they might not trust him. They made Worley the perfect... MORE

A Hansonist MD

Economics of Health Care
Arnold Kling
Nortin Hadler is not your typical MD, as this interview indicates. I think bypass surgery belongs in the medical archives. There are only two reasons you’d ever want to do it: one, to save lives, the other to improve symptoms.... MORE

Reading List

Books: Reviews and Suggested Readings
Arnold Kling
Greg Mankiw's list has a list of suggested readings for an economics undergraduate that are fun enough that you would not be embarrassed (well, not too embarrassed) reading them at the beach I have no quarrel with his suggestions of... MORE

Tyler on Art Subsidies

Economics and Culture
Arnold Kling
The interview is here. I still think it's the case that when we come to, say, our tax system, and we ask ourselves, "Are we committed to the view that every tax rate on everything has to be the same?"... MORE

My Book Commercial

Economics of Health Care
Arnold Kling
is here. I should start by saying that the book does not contain a single major policy recommendation that is politically palatable today. That fact will greatly limit its appeal to most Washington wonks. To gauge their reaction to Crisis... MORE

Re-read Group Power

Institutional Economics
Arnold Kling
Max Borders rightly criticizes a proposal for an international agency to effect nation-building. A disconnect between the donors and the recipients means that information feedback loops get lost. The structure of the behemoth makes it virtually impossible for that agent... MORE

Wealthy Ugandan Expats

Income Distribution
Arnold Kling
Val MacQueen writes Those expelled from East Africa were third generation immigrants to Africa, and had created assets and wealth. Which is why Idi Amin was so interested in them. Now, those families are again third generation immigrants, this time... MORE

Kling Interview

Economics of Health Care
Arnold Kling
I'm interviewed over at Catallarchy. The main topic is Crisis of Abundance, but the interview ranges over a number of topics. Some of the questions include, Where does your interest in economics come from? What do you like most about... MORE

Practice Makes Expert

Economic Education
Arnold Kling
Both Greg Mankiw and Tyler Cowen recommend an article by the Freakonomics team of Levitt and Dubner in the New York Times on the research of Anders Ericsson into the development of skills by experts. Deliberate practice entails more than... MORE

Scientific Self-help

Behavioral Economics and Rationality
Arnold Kling
Tyler Cowen seems quite smitten with psychologist Daniel Gilbert. Tyler justifiably recommends this article about Gilbert, which is from the New York Times three years ago. While walking in Pittsburgh one afternoon, [economist George] Loewenstein tells me that he doesn't... MORE

Intellectual Property Absolutism vs. Pragmatism

Information Goods, Intellectual Property
Arnold Kling
Greg Perkins writes, The crucial distinction between discovery and invention lies in their object: facts of nature are what they are and exist waiting to be discovered, while inventions are objects which would not exist without a creator. So intellectual... MORE

Emergent Nations

Growth: Causal Factors
Arnold Kling
From my latest essay: What [Meir] Kohn points out (in other chapters) is that medieval guilds, which we think of as backward institutions, helped to solve the lemons problem long before government inspection came along. Each guild jealously guarded its... MORE

Cross-posting

Economics of Health Care
Arnold Kling
I have posting priveleges at the new Cato blog. Not sure how much I'll use them--it's not easy to do two blogs at once. But I wanted to point to this post, where I let off quite a bit of... MORE

Health Outcomes vs. Health Care

Economics of Health Care
Arnold Kling
A New York Times story says, Americans 55 and over are much sicker than their British counterparts even though the United States spends more than twice as much per person on health care as Britain, researchers said Tuesday. ...The researchers... MORE

Bryan, Read Thyself

Energy, Environment, Resources
Arnold Kling
I can't believe that Bryan wrote about people getting upset about high gas prices without mentioning anti-market bias. This is the perfect example of the public thinking that high prices are due to an outbreak of excess greed (profits are... MORE

Health Insurance Regulatory Crisis

Economics of Health Care
Arnold Kling
Republicans John Shadegg and Jim DeMint write, In the past 30 years, state governments have instituted more than 1,500 mandated benefits. According to the Council for Affordable Health Insurance, these mandates have increased the cost of individual health insurance by... MORE

Bryan gets a Blurb

Books: Reviews and Suggested Readings
Arnold Kling
Greg Mankiw writes Caplan offers readers a delightful mixture of economics, political science, psychology, philosophy, and history to resolve a puzzle that, at one time or another, has intrigued every student of public policy. (Bryan: You can use that as... MORE

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