Bryan Caplan and David Henderson

Bryan Caplan: April 2005

An Author Archive by Month (18 entries)

Rock on, Alex

Energy, Environment, Resources
Bryan Caplan
Alex Tabarrok make a real splash on Lawrence Kudlow today. And while most of the talk centered on Social Security reform, there was an exhilirating digression on oil economics.... MORE

Education and the Economic Way of Thinking: Another Test Case

Behavioral Economics and Rationality
Bryan Caplan
More educated people think more like economists. It's one of the big findings in my piece in the 2001 Journal of Law and Economics. And that's controlling for income, income growth, job security, gender, ideology, and party. It's a big... MORE

Why Most Economists Are Hawks and Why They Might Be Wrong

Politics and Economics
Bryan Caplan
I've never seen a survey, but casual empiricism makes me think that economists are hawks. Arnold Kling calls himself a Jacksonian - "the patriotic fighters for whom the worst sin is not going to war, it's losing one." But even... MORE

Freedom to Cell

Regulation and Subsidies
Bryan Caplan
Only a small man would pick on the Oakton Sun Gazette, but I can't resist. Friday's editorial attacks proposals to legalize cell phone use on planes: This idea – nincompoopery at its finest – needs to be smothered in its... MORE

Tabarrok Should Bask in His Victimhood

Labor Market
Bryan Caplan
A new study finds that academia discriminates against right-wingers. Alex Tabarrok wishes it were true, but isn't buying it: I must admit that for a moment I enjoyed basking in my own victim hood. My failings are not my own... MORE

34 Postcards About Terrorism

Politics and Economics
Bryan Caplan
What's the deal with terrorism? The Department of Homeland Security summarizes the views of 34 different teams of social scientists here. Recommendations range widely. The authors advocate everything from encouraging empathy to making it harder for terrorists to provide social... MORE

The Missing Martyrs

Economics and Culture
Bryan Caplan
My colleague Lawrence Iannaccone is the world's leading researcher on the economics of religion. His work fascinates me, but at the end of the day, I wonder how much of it is true. One juicy tidbit: In "The Market for... MORE

Tetlock and Taboo

Behavioral Economics and Rationality
Bryan Caplan
Philip Tetlock may well be my favorite political psychologist. He has a fantastic article surveying his research on political taboos in Elements of Reason, edited by Lupia, McCubbins, and Popkin. Tetlock asks: Are taboo trade-offs "taboo" in the primal Polynesian... MORE

Don't Believe Behaviorism's Dead? I Say!

Economic Methods
Bryan Caplan
One of the many paradoxes of behaviorism is that the only way you can tell that Arnold Kling and I disagree about it is from our words. Observe our behavior for a hundred years; you'll never figure out where we... MORE

Behaviorism in Economics: A Funeral

Economic Methods
Bryan Caplan
One reaction to my recent piece in Econ Journal Watch is "economics isn't about what people say or believe; it's about what people DO." The easy response is: Not anymore, it isn't! Survey research has exploded in economics. So has... MORE

A Dagger in the Heart of America

Energy, Environment, Resources
Bryan Caplan
As late as 1999, it was our single largest foreign supplier of oil. But then a hostile regime took over, struck up close friendships with our bitter enemies, and started strangling our economy. By 2003, it had cut its exports... MORE

Voters As Mad Scientists

Politics and Economics
Bryan Caplan
Voters aren't selfish. That's an important question where the political scientists are right and the economists are wrong. But I part company with the political scientists when they draw implications about how well democracy works. After they shoot down the... MORE

A Little Evidence I'm Wrong About Voter Motivation

Politics and Economics
Bryan Caplan
I disbelieve what I call the Self-Interested Voter Hypothesis (SIVH for short). Political scientists like David Sears have amassed a mountain of empirical evidence against the SIVH, and the evidence on the other side (mostly economists, I'm afraid) is awfully... MORE

The Blogging Meme

Economic History
Bryan Caplan
The term "blog" was coined in 1999, and it now gets 105,000,000 google hits. Compare that to "democracy," which only gets 43,800,000. Wikipedia provides a fascinating and thorough discussion.... MORE

Normality Signaling: A Test Case

Information Goods, Intellectual Property
Bryan Caplan
My student Howard Wu passed along an interesting anecdote on signaling that you're normal. True story: In my company once we received a resume sent along with a dress shoe. And the cover letter says: "now that I have a... MORE

FDA: Public, Economists, and Specialists

Regulation and Subsidies
Bryan Caplan
I've come across two interesting surveys on the Food and Drug Administration. The first is the latest gem by the Kaiser Family Foundation. Among other topics, it has the dirt on public opinion about regulation of drugs. Does the public... MORE

Best... Compliment... Ever

Politics and Economics
Bryan Caplan
If you're thinking of becoming an academic, be warned: You aren't going to get a lot of positive reinforcement. Most of the time you will simply be ignored. Almost all of the remaining feedback is negative. (Stop by my office,... MORE

The Joy of Market-Clearing Wages

Labor Market
Bryan Caplan
When people compare the U.S. and Europe, they often conclude that the U.S. is richer and more economically efficient, but that Europe is happier because they don't measure everything in dollars and cents (or even Marks and Pfennings). One of... MORE

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