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Bryan Caplan: April 2017

An Author Archive by Month (12 entries)

The World's Worst Argument Against Homeschooling

Cost-benefit Analysis
Bryan Caplan
I've heard many arguments against homeschooling.  Here's the worst:"Bryan, you've got to send your kids back to public high school.""Why?""Well, you've got to understand that high school is miserable.""I remember it well.  How is that an argument for high school?""Because... MORE

What Is Self-Righteousness?

Economic Philosophy
Bryan Caplan
What exactly does it mean to be "self-righteous"?  1. "Self-righteous" is definitely not the same as "hypocritical."  A hypocrite talks the talk but doesn't walk the walk.  A self-righteous person can definitely do both; in fact, you're probably more likely... MORE

Earth 2.0?

Economic Philosophy
Bryan Caplan
The latest Freakonomics Radio is on "Earth 2.0: Is Income Inequality Inevitable?"  I'm pleased to be prominently featured alongside Jeff Sachs and Alice Rivlin.  A few highlights:And we'll remember to keep our eye on the economic ball: CAPLAN: Any time... MORE

IQ With Conscience: Three Followups

Economic Philosophy
Bryan Caplan
Three followups on my last post:1. Most of the brutal policy advocacy I've heard comes from consumers, not producers, of intelligence research.2. Why didn't I name names or link links?  Because the brutal policy advocacy is almost entirely off-the-record.  3.... MORE

IQ With Conscience

Economics and Culture
Bryan Caplan
I'm an IQ realist, all the way.  IQ tests aren't perfect, but they're an excellent proxy for what ordinary language calls "intelligence."  A massive body of research confirms that IQ predicts not just educational success, but career success.  Contrary to... MORE

Economic Systems: The Fundamental Questions

Microeconomics
Bryan Caplan
Next month, my homeschoolers are taking the Advanced Placement Microeconomics test.  Here's a thought-provoking question from a practice exam:Which of the following constitute the fundamental questions every economic system must answer?I. What goods and services will be produced?II. How will... MORE

The Undermotivated Apostate: Two Post-Libertarian Case Studies

Behavioral Economics and Rationality
Bryan Caplan
Political irrationality is ubiquitous.  Most people irrationally cling to their political views; most of the rest irrationally revise their political views.  This includes, of course, my fellow libertarians.  I know plenty of unreasonable libertarians, but I also know plenty... MORE

The Undermotivated Apostate

Behavioral Economics and Rationality
Bryan Caplan
People rarely revise their beliefs on issues they care about.  Even when confronted with strong counter-evidence, they usually manage to weasel out somehow.  When you encounter someone who has revised his beliefs, therefore, it's tempting to conclude that he's highly... MORE

A Keynesian Conundrum

Macroeconomics
Bryan Caplan
This year, I'm prepping my 8th-grade homeschoolers for the Advanced Placement tests in European History, Microeconomics, and Macroeconomics.  The Macro test is less Keynesian than it used to be, but its Keynesian origin remains blatant.  And after years away from... MORE

Scott Alexander's Self-Evaluations

Economic Methods
Bryan Caplan
I just learned that blogger Scott Alexander starts ends the year by scoring the accuracy of his numerous annual predictions: here are the results for 2014, 2015, and 2016.  Since he assigns probabilities to each prediction, Scott can graph his... MORE

What's Wrong With the Rationality Community

Behavioral Economics and Rationality
Bryan Caplan
I disagreed with most of what Tyler Cowen said in his recent interview with Ezra Klein, but this part launched a vociferous internal monologue:Ezra Klein The rationality community. Tyler Cowen Well, tell me a little more what you mean. You... MORE

Education, Politics, and Peers

Economics and Culture
Bryan Caplan
From The Case of Education.  Written pre-Trump. Abundant research confirms education raises support for civil liberties and tolerance, and reduces racism and sexism.[1]  These effects are only partly artifactual.  Correcting for intelligence cuts education's impact by about a third.[2]  Correcting... MORE

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