EconLog small logo

David Henderson: June 2009

An Author Archive by Month (23 entries)

Krugman Misstates Arrow

Economics of Health Care
David Henderson
My co-blogger Bryan Caplan comments today on Paul Krugman's blog post on Arrow's famous 1963 article on health insurance. There is more to be said. Krugman writes: Both George Will and Greg Mankiw basically argue that we don't need a... MORE

Central Planning of Cancer Research

Central Planning vs. Local Knowledge
David Henderson
New York Times Article Shows Pitfalls of Central Planning The weather in Grand Cayman is so-so, which is why I'm blogging today. "Grant System Leads Cancer Researchers to Play it Safe," reads the title of a news story in today's... MORE

Not From the Onion

Regulation
David Henderson
FTC Takes First Step in Regulating Internet Alarming Development on Internet Catches Government's Attention What some fail to realize, though, is that such reviews can be tainted: Many bloggers have accepted perks such as free laptops, trips to Europe, $500... MORE

What Would You do Without a Governor?

Central Planning vs. Local Knowledge
David Henderson
Bizarre Headline in Wall Street Journal "Governor's Trip Confuses South Carolina." So reads the headline of the on-line version of a news story in today's Wall Street Journal. The hard-copy version of the headline is even more dramatic: "State of... MORE

Ezra Klein's Non Sequitur on Health Care

Economics of Health Care
David Henderson
Ezra Klein writes: The [U.S. health care] system is currently biased toward the worst form of cost control: rationing by income. Every year, we contain costs by quietly letting 2 million or so more people fall into the ranks of... MORE

Off on Vacation

International Trade
David Henderson
Dear Econlog Readers, My wife and I get up bright and early tomorrow morning to go to Grand Cayman for a week's vacation. For that reason, I won't be posting as much as usual. Best, David... MORE

I (More or Less) Agree With Krugman

Economics of Health Care
David Henderson
Paul Krugman had a blog post last week that I agree with most of. (Pardon the preposition at the end of the sentence.) He criticized a bill, the Preserving Access to Targeted, Individualized, and Effective New Treatments and Services (PATIENTS)... MORE

Fox News Roundup

Economics of Health Care
David Henderson
My wife and I watch the Fox News Channel more than any other channel. It's not because we agree with everything, or even most of what, they say. My main reasons are twofold: (1) They bring up issues that the... MORE

Samuelson vs. Friedman

Labor Market
David Henderson
Tyler Cowen quotes the following paragraph from an interview with Paul Samuelson: Milton Friedman. Friedman had a solid MV = PQ doctrine from which he deviated very little all his life. By the way, he's about as smart a guy... MORE

Dean Baker on the Uninsured

Economics of Health Care
David Henderson
Dean Baker correctly takes to task people who claim that the estimated average cost of covering the uninsured with Obama's proposal is a whopping $62,500. Here's his key paragraph: Republicans were quick to put the cost at $62,500 for each... MORE

Guys in Suits

Central Planning vs. Local Knowledge
David Henderson
Bankruptcy Judge Actually Understands Law How did I miss this? Judge Robert Drain ordered Delphi to hold an auction and allow bids to challenge the government-brokered sale to Platinum Equity. "What's so special about Platinum?" asked Judge Drain. "They're just... MORE

The New York Times today carries a story about how the Federal Reserve Board is making decisions about who gets loans and who doesn't. The reporter, Edmund Andrews, writes: But the financial crisis has drastically changed the role of the... MORE

Summers vs. Goolsbee

Politics and Economics
David Henderson
President Obama was getting his daily economic briefing one recent morning when a fly distracted him. The president swatted and missed, just as the pest buzzed near the shoes of Lawrence H. Summers, the chief White House economic adviser. "Couldn't... MORE

The Coming Minimum Wage Increase

Labor Market
David Henderson
Early in the Great Depression, President Herbert Hoover made things worse by persuading big businessmen to keep wages high. At those high wages, employers wanted to employ fewer people than otherwise. We are about to suffer another small dose of... MORE

McCraw's Marginal Mistake

Business Economics
David Henderson
In his book, Prophet of Innovation: Joseph Schumpeter and Creative Destruction, business historian Thomas K. McCraw lays out a numerical example of economies of scale. Unfortunately, in doing so he confuses marginal and average cost. McCraw writes (pp. 52-53): Let... MORE

Motives and Outcomes

Politics and Economics
David Henderson
In a comment on my post yesterday, Will Wilkinson defended his parallel between Republicans and Democrats. I had granted him that there were parallels in their hypocrisy. But he went further, writing: I think some libertarians and conservatives are annoyed... MORE

The Aristocracy of Pull, 2

Central Planning vs. Local Knowledge
David Henderson
In a December post, I wrote about the aristocracy of pull, that beautifully descriptive phrase that Ayn Rand used in her classic novel, Atlas Shrugged. It refers to the use of government power to allocate resources. Today, my fellow blogger... MORE

Friedman's Law

Cost-benefit Analysis
David Henderson
In his classic, The Machinery of Freedom (1973, 1989), David D. Friedman formulated Friedman's Law. The law states: It costs any government at least twice as much to do something as it costs anyone else. David Friedman is usually much... MORE

Limits to Progress?

Growth: Consequences
David Henderson
Without the progress of the 20th century, Milton Berle said, we'd all be watching television by candlelight. (Of course, postal delivery might be roughly the same.) This is from Todd G. Buchholz's article on economic growth in last Friday's Wall... MORE

Obama on How Markets Reduce Racial Discrimination

Political Economy
David Henderson
University of Chicago economist Gary Becker, in his Ph.D. dissertation, later made into a book, The Economics of Discrimination, showed that free markets make racial discrimination costly. His basic argument is that discrimination is a self-imposed restriction on trade that... MORE

More on Matt Yglesias

Macroeconomics
David Henderson
Arnold has posted below on Matt Ygelesias's criticism of the view that macroeconomics requires a microeconomic foundation. There's more to say. First, check out comment #21 by one, Matt Rognlie, on Yglesias's site. It's quite good. I was surprised when... MORE

The Bizarre World of Regulation

Regulation
David Henderson
Today's Wall Street Journal carries an article that highlights how strange regulation can be. Before reading, recall that one of the major alleged goals of regulation of cigarettes was to handle the problem of second-hand smoke. The idea was that... MORE

Gorman on Health Reform

Economics of Health Care
David Henderson
This month's featured article on Econlib is by health economist Linda Gorman. Gorman points out that Blue Cross was given an important tax advantage over commercial insurers early in the game and that Medicare and Medicaid were modeled on Blue... MORE

Return to top