Re: Levitt article

2003-08-04 Thread Alex Tabarrok
Here it is. Fabio, we expect better work from you next time! :-) Alex http://www.nytimes.com/2003/08/03/magazine/03LEVITT.html?pagewanted=printposition= -- Alexander Tabarrok Department of Economics, MSN 1D3 George Mason University Fairfax, VA, 22030 Tel. 703-993-2314 Web Page:

Wage-Price Controls Under Nixon

2003-06-13 Thread Alex Tabarrok
Michael Kinsley has an interesting piece in Slate today. http://slate.msn.com/id/2084315/ It's about the Patriot Act and other so-called security measures and whether they infringe on our liberties. He concludes that so-far the infringement has not been so bad but there is potential danger in

Re: Wage-Price Controls Under Nixon

2003-06-13 Thread Alex Tabarrok
Well, the average American is not so pro-freedom as, say, Walter Williams, but considerably more so than the average Frenchman or German. Really? How do you measure this? The remarkable fact is that it is apparently perfectly legal for the government in the United States to control the price

Re: Charity

2003-06-06 Thread Alex Tabarrok
The public good story is also inconsistent with public opinion polls which show that the public always think the foreign aid budget is too *large*. If the public good story were true people would be clamoring for collective action. Alex -- Alexander Tabarrok Department of Economics, MSN 1D3

Re: charity and time preference

2003-06-06 Thread Alex Tabarrok
Sure, the flaw is that this argument would imply that you hold the money forever. Alex -- Alexander Tabarrok Department of Economics, MSN 1D3 George Mason University Fairfax, VA, 22030 Tel. 703-993-2314 Web Page: http://mason.gmu.edu/~atabarro/ and Director of Research The Independent

Re: Charity

2003-06-05 Thread Alex Tabarrok
Eric has me as being nicer than I actually am. I would give up a leg to cure AIDS. For SARS I would take a kick in the leg. Alex -- Alexander Tabarrok Department of Economics, MSN 1D3 George Mason University Fairfax, VA, 22030 Tel. 703-993-2314 Web Page: http://mason.gmu.edu/~atabarro/

New Journal - Econ Journal Watch

2003-06-03 Thread Alex Tabarrok
There is a new online journal that will start publishing in Jan. of 2004 that some of you may be interested in. The journal is called Econ Journal Watch and will essentially be a journal of comments on papers published elsewhere. It will also include discussion about the economics profession

Economics and Beauty

2003-05-31 Thread Alex Tabarrok
Regarding the economic return to beauty this newspaper cite suggests a link through health. http://news.bbc.co.uk/2/hi/health/2943464.stm ... Researchers in Spain have found that men who are regarded as attractive by women are also more fertile. Their sperm move faster and are generally

Re: [Forum] Quoth who?

2003-05-30 Thread Alex Tabarrok
The idea, called regulatory capture is associated with George Stigler. Posner's paper Theories of Economic Regulation, Richard Posner, Bell Journal of Economics and management science, Vol. 5, No. 2, pp. 335-358, 1974. brought the idea ought very clearly as I recall but I am not aware of that

Re: Questions about the stagflation episode...

2003-02-02 Thread Alex Tabarrok
I think that today there is a unified macro (Bill recognized that saying there wasn't was going out on a limb). Macro is now in a period of normal science. The profession has decided that the corect way to do macro is using a stochastic dynamic general equilibrium model. Some people include

Advise to Journalists

2003-02-02 Thread Alex Tabarrok
I will be giving a 15-20 minute talk to a bunch of journalists and proto-journalists ( most of them are editors of student university newspapers) about what economics has to offer journalism. I am interested in the suggestions of list members as to what the most important lessons economics

Re: Employment Index Derivatives

2003-01-07 Thread Alex Tabarrok
It's a good idea. Not much exists yet but Robert Shiller has been actively promoting similar ideas for some time. A good introduction is his paper with co-authors in the volume I edited called Entrepreneurial Economics: Bright Ideas from the Dismal Science, see

Re: [Fwd: a non-profit oddity]

2003-01-07 Thread Alex Tabarrok
This is a multi-part message in MIME format.

Re: Environmental and economic effects of Speed Limits

2002-08-10 Thread Alex Tabarrok
Charles Lave of UC Irvine has done a lot of work on the economics of speed limits - he had an AER paper a few years ago. I doubt that there is much of an environmental effect - the main environmental effect is due to congestion not speed limits. Alex Tabarrok

taxi transitional gains trap

2002-08-04 Thread Alex Tabarrok
Here is an interesting plan to get out of NYCs transitional gain trap regarding taxi medallions. Basically the author suggests buying out the current medallion holders and selling taxi-cab licenses on an open basis. I think his numbers don't add up but this might make an interesting

Re: taxi transitional gains trap

2002-08-04 Thread Alex Tabarrok
Bryan Caplan wrote: If a majority of NYers seriously wanted free entry in cabs, wouldn't it happen regardless of the opinions of cab companies? Bryan is gently pointing out that my assumptions may be inconsistent with my earlier posts on democracy. Nevermind, I contain multitudes. It

Re: free-vs-competitive please reply!!

2002-07-29 Thread Alex Tabarrok
A free market can be defined as a market without direct government intervention. A competitive market is more difficult to define but economists usually have in mind some definition based upon outcomes - something like price tending towards marginal costs and zero profits on average. I

Re: Textbook Econometrics

2002-07-23 Thread Alex Tabarrok
The best text is Jeffrey Wooldridge's Introductory Econometrics: A Modern Approach. Supplement with Peter Kennedy's A Guide to Econometrics (a must have.) Alex -- Dr. Alexander Tabarrok Vice President and Director of Research The Independent Institute 100 Swan Way Oakland, CA, 94621-1428 Tel.

Re: Republican Reversal -- from whence, belief?

2002-07-18 Thread Alex Tabarrok
Tom Grey wrote Further, I derive support for this from limited thought experiments: Society A: more Atheist, Society B: more Bible Believing. In which society do I expect more fraud? more cheating spouses promiscuity? more theft? more murder? Well, even without empirical support, I

Re: Republican Reversal

2002-07-17 Thread Alex Tabarrok
Yes, I believe that the majority of the American public supports farm subsidies. The rational ignorance assumption fails to explain this - it's not like the information that governments spends billions on the farmers is hard to find. Some combination of Bryan's rational irrationality

Re: Republican Reversal

2002-07-17 Thread Alex Tabarrok
us a much better understanding of social change. Alex Gray, Lynn wrote: The implication that those who believe in the historical accuracy of the Bible are ignorant was inappropriate, Alex. Lynn -Original Message- From: Alex Tabarrok [mailto:[EMAIL PROTECTED]] Sent: Wednesday

Re: Republican Reversal

2002-07-17 Thread Alex Tabarrok
Fred Foldvary wrote: ...if the typical American favors subsidies to sugar farmers and does not mind if the domestic price is over twice the world price, and does not care much if candy-making jobs are moving to Canada, why do sugar farmers contribute funds to candidates if the representatives

Re: Why are the simple folk so wrong WAS Republican Reversal

2002-07-17 Thread Alex Tabarrok
Yes, this is precisely my point. Alex Michael Etchison wrote: Alex Tabarrok: The evidence is even stronger in other fields that information per-se often does not change people's minds. . . . If information doesn't change people's minds - what does? You do notice, I trust, that just

Stiglitz v. Rogoff

2002-07-09 Thread Alex Tabarrok
Ken Rogoff has written a stinging and very funny rebuke of Joe Stiglitz and his new book. It's not the sort of thing you see very often. http://www.imf.org/external/np/vc/2002/070202.htm Brad DeLong's comments on the book are also devastating.

Firing Line

2002-07-08 Thread Alex Tabarrok
Italy's restrictions on firing employee's are so bad that a bank was prevented from firing a money launderer and it are so entrenched that recent attempts to reform the system have led to the assasination of the reformers. See Alan Krueger's piece

Re: Quantity/Bulk discounts

2002-07-07 Thread Alex Tabarrok
The industrial organization textbook by Carlton and Perloff is good on issues of price discrimination, quantity discounts etc. Alex -- Dr. Alexander Tabarrok Vice President and Director of Research The Independent Institute 100 Swan Way Oakland, CA, 94621-1428 Tel. 510-632-1366, FAX:

Amusement Park Lines and Concert Tickets

2002-07-03 Thread Alex Tabarrok
Economist's have long puzzled over why tickets for almost sure to sell-out concerts aren't sold for more and similarly why amusement parks don't congestion price their attractions. Yet, at long last, concert promoters have started to do exactly this. Prime tickets for the recent Rolling

Re: Fwd: Cheap parking spaces drive up fuel prices

2002-07-02 Thread Alex Tabarrok
The news article was based on the work of Don Shoup of UCLA who is the leading author on the free parking issue. You can find one of his papers, The Trouble With Minimum Parking Requirements, here http://www.vtpi.org/shoup.pdf this is the abstract Urban planners typically set the minimum

Re: double vs. single entry

2002-06-27 Thread Alex Tabarrok
Double entry accounting makes it very difficult to hide losses and massively inflate your profits...wait, that can't be right, scratch that. I don't know. Alex -- Dr. Alexander Tabarrok Vice President and Director of Research The Independent Institute 100 Swan Way Oakland, CA, 94621-1428 Tel.

Brouwer's Puzzle Answer

2002-06-26 Thread Alex Tabarrok
Answer: Here is an elegant solution. Let the ascent and descent be divided between two persons on the same day. They must meet. Alex -- Dr. Alexander Tabarrok Vice President and Director of Research The Independent Institute 100 Swan Way Oakland, CA, 94621-1428 Tel. 510-632-1366, FAX:

Brouwer's Fixed Point Theorem - Puzzle

2002-06-26 Thread Alex Tabarrok
Here is a nice application/proof of Brouwer's Theorem in one dimension from Mark Rubinstein's page http://www.in-the-money.com/ which has some other nice material as well. -- One morning, exactly at sunrise, a Buddhist monk began to climb a tall mountain. The narrow path, no more than a

Re: fantastically entertaining paper

2002-06-21 Thread Alex Tabarrok
Robin probably regrets using the word cheap in regard to entry as this has clearly confused some people. As Robin later pointed out he meant cheap to mean the journal industry approximates the economic concept of free entry (more than many other industries we all think of as

Not such a fantastically entertaining paper

2002-06-20 Thread Alex Tabarrok
In addition to Robin's comments I found the motivating factor of Frey's paper to be weak. I take it that his main complaint is that referee's force authors to prostitute themselves by making changes the authors think are wrong. I personally have never experienced this problem and I would

Re: Not such a fantastically entertaining paper

2002-06-20 Thread Alex Tabarrok
I said I happen to think that much of what the profession demands is unnecessary, boring, absurd, and counter-productive but what has this to do with the way journals are refereed? Pete responded Well, that is the question isn't it? Yes, it is the question that Frey doesn't answer. Pete writes

Re: Consumer Reports on Deregulation

2002-06-13 Thread Alex Tabarrok
Bill notes that prior to deregulation In flight meals were more substantial and more frequent. Ticket lines were shorter for coach passengers. Major airline employees were more polite. There were lots of give always (decks of cards, airline pins, etc.) Flight attendants with time on their hands

Re: 3 questions on Buridan's Ass

2002-05-20 Thread Alex Tabarrok
In the Austrian economics tradition the point of the argument has always been that indifference is impossible to observe in action. Choice always implies ranking - thus indifference curves are verbotten. See Bryan's SEJ article for a critique. Note that the Austrians, i.e. those who take

real free market environmentalism

2002-05-07 Thread Alex Tabarrok
This came across my desk today, thought others might be interested. Alex FREE-MARKET ECONOMY ON CORAL REEFS Market forces appear to be at work on coral reefs, where fish that perform a cleaning service risk losing customers if they get sloppy. Scientists studying these fish conclude that

misc

2002-04-24 Thread Alex Tabarrok
Hi Bryan, Thanks for your hospitality. I regret that we did not have the opportunity to speak more but time had to be allotted to the big wigs. Most important benefit of being at GMU I did not know before the trip? All economist DD game - excellent! Cheers Alex

Re: misc - ignore!

2002-04-24 Thread Alex Tabarrok
I am a dunce and I have inadvertently given Bryan's secret away. I promise, however, not to reveal the names of the other participants (especially if they send me large wads of cash - you know who you are.) My apologies to all. Alex Alex Tabarrok wrote: Hi Bryan, Thanks for your

Unselfish Capitalism

2002-04-19 Thread Alex Tabarrok
This came across my desk - I thought others might be also interested. Alex UNSELFISH CAPITALISM Capitalism has been criticized for centuries for its single- minded pursuit of self-interest. It is often claimed that pastoral and agrarian societies foster social cooperation and sharing, while

Re: Grade Inflation

2002-04-15 Thread Alex Tabarrok
The real problem with grade inflation is not the reduction in information that might be used by employers. As with regular inflation, the real problem is that grade inflation is not uniform - some departments and some professors are more subject to inflation than others. In particular, grade

Re: Grade Inflation

2002-04-15 Thread Alex Tabarrok
In response to Fabio's comments: If you just start by saying what's the optimal number of math or english PhDs then obviously you are going to get nowhere. A better procedure, however, is to say that the current situation is non-optimal if it is based upon arbitrary factors. In

Re: Grade Inflation

2002-04-11 Thread Alex Tabarrok
Jason wrote This could (and in my observation does) mean that non-academics jobs are looking for other characteristics that are hard to test for- good people skills and leadership ability. Yes, as I tell my children, Son, don't worry about those grades - even a C student can become President

Re: economic history question

2002-04-10 Thread Alex Tabarrok
Most observers have always been very surprised that there never was a big demand for socialism in the United States - even at the height of the depression. The New Deal was very much driven by the Executive branch not by Congress - thus I think things could have been quite different had

Re: Securities analysis

2002-04-04 Thread Alex Tabarrok
There are actually two issues 1) Is the market efficient? and 2) Can someone, using public information, systematically earn higher returns than those on a suitably risk-adjusted market basket? These issues are related but they are not the same. If the market is efficient the answer to

Re: Securities exchanges shutdowns

2002-04-02 Thread Alex Tabarrok
Robin Hanson wrote: Alex Tabarrok wrote: Yes, in 1968 the exchange closed on Wednesday's in order to deal with backlog. French and Roll (1986) find that variance of stock returns on days when the market is closed is much lower than on days when the market is open which suggests

Margarine - silly business regulations

2002-04-01 Thread Alex Tabarrok
Almost from the time it was invented margarine came under attack from butter manufacturers and farmers. In the late 1880s there were even laws requiring margarine to be colored pink - but these were overturned by the Supreme Court. Bans on yellow margarine, however, were upheld. There were

Re: Margarine - silly business regulations

2002-04-01 Thread Alex Tabarrok
Art Woolf is having trouble posting to the list but sent me an email noting that there was a recent article in the JEH on the regulation of margarine. I found the reference with a quick search it's Dupre, Ruth. 1999. 'If It's Yellow, It Must Be Butter:' Margarine Regulation in North America

Re: Securities exchanges shutdowns

2002-04-01 Thread Alex Tabarrok
Yes, in 1968 the exchange closed on Wednesday's in order to deal with backlog. French and Roll (1986) find that variance of stock returns on days when the market is closed is much lower than on days when the market is open which suggests that trading itself, rather than say information

Re: long-lasting cars

2002-03-28 Thread Alex Tabarrok
Gustavo wrote Let's assume for a minute that: (A1) It costs the manufacturer the same $8 000 to produce 1 long-lived car as it costs them to produce 1 short-lived car. (A2)...Since the manufacturers' profit per unit is more or less proportional to the cost of production (call this

Airlines Again

2002-03-05 Thread Alex Tabarrok
Fabio mentioned the long string of unprofitable airlines in an earlier post. The Feb. 17, 2002 NYTimes Magazine had a good piece by Rich Lowenstein this. Among others, the following points caught my eye: One reason the major airlines find themselves in this predicament is that they use huge

Re: Campaign finance changes

2002-03-04 Thread Alex Tabarrok
(In response to Gustavo) The real problem is not how to get money out of politics but how to get politics out of money. Alex -- Dr. Alexander Tabarrok Vice President and Director of Research The Independent Institute 100 Swan Way Oakland, CA, 94621-1428 Tel. 510-632-1366, FAX: 510-568-6040

Re: Campaign finance changes

2002-03-03 Thread Alex Tabarrok
Campaign financing regulations inevitably protect incumbents - incumbents already have huge advantages so challengers need relatively more money to compete, thus campaign finance laws raise rival's costs. Alex -- Dr. Alexander Tabarrok Vice President and Director of Research The Independent

Re: Economics of rank vs. Economics of the most money

2002-02-20 Thread Alex Tabarrok
Concerning Robin's point about the details of the relative coonsumption models, Steven Landsburg made the same point in a review of one of Frank's books in The Independent Review http://www.independent.org/tii/content/pubs/review/TIR42Landsberg.html Here are a few excerpts But

Organ shortage - a tragedy of the commons

2002-02-18 Thread Alex Tabarrok
of the best pieces on pricing organs. Alex Tabarrok -- Dr. Alexander Tabarrok Vice President and Director of Research The Independent Institute 100 Swan Way Oakland, CA, 94621-1428 Tel. 510-632-1366, FAX: 510-568-6040 Email: [EMAIL PROTECTED]

Re: Organ shortage - a tragedy of the commons

2002-02-18 Thread Alex Tabarrok
The organ shortage issue can be broken down and analyzed from a number of different perspectives. My view is that the key issue is *not* the supply of organs per-se but rather the *supply of people who sign their organ donor cards*. Take care of this and the other problems are of

Re: Organ donation

2002-02-17 Thread Alex Tabarrok
Every major religion supports organ donation. Alex

Restaurants Again

2002-02-10 Thread Alex Tabarrok
for Valentines or something like that.) This sort of waiting seems much more amenable to a Becker type explanation involving non-linearities and prestige factors. Alex Tabarrok

Re: Life Expectancy and Immigration

2002-01-28 Thread Alex Tabarrok
You can find lots of data on life-expectancy and health broken down by age, race, hispanic origin and much else at tbe National Center for Health Statistics http://www.cdc.gov/nchs/about.htm after a quick search, however, I couldn't find anything on country of birth, let alone age of

Re: Spam: Legal, economic or technical problem?

2002-01-26 Thread Alex Tabarrok
this number and send me back the factors - if the factorization took even a few micro-seconds that would not be an issue for non-spammers but would shut spammers down. Alex Tabarrok

Re: Photographers

2002-01-23 Thread Alex Tabarrok
Sure, if you take your own pictures you get the negatives. But if you hire a profesional photographer for say a wedding or if you have a portrait done they are insistent on keeping the negatives. Alex -- Dr. Alexander Tabarrok Vice President and Director of Research The Independent Institute

Re: Photographers

2002-01-23 Thread Alex Tabarrok
Tbe adverse selection story, really a price discrimination story, assumes monopoly power in the photography market. But there is free entry into photography and hundreds of photographers easily available in the phone book thus price should fall to MC which implies that photographers should be

Re: Only Economists Tell the Truth?

2002-01-11 Thread Alex Tabarrok
I think Robin exaggerates the extent to which social science would be easier if we could just ask people why they do things. To be sure, there is a tradition in economics that survey results about intentions and ideas (as opposed to age and income!) are not to be trusted. I agree this

Survivor - game theory

2002-01-11 Thread Alex Tabarrok
Anyone see survivor last night? When asked to pick a number between 1 and 1000 (presumably the closest number to the one in the questioner's head would win her vote) the first contestant chose 3 and the second chose 886! Incredibly poor strategy on both contestants part especially when a

Re: Only Economists Tell the Truth?

2002-01-11 Thread Alex Tabarrok
Here is another reason, that just occured to me, why survey questions may not help us as much as we would like even on those questions where they are relevant. In economics we are typically interested in what matters at the margin and this may be difficult to discover in a survey question.

odds and terrorism

2001-11-28 Thread Alex Tabarrok
Here is a nice article on the odds of various events and terrorist related odds. It's familiar material to this audience but might make a good discussion item in a class. Best Alex http://www.washingtonpost.com/wp-dyn/articles/A7812-2001Nov23.html -- Dr. Alexander Tabarrok Vice President

Re: Austrians and markets

2001-11-26 Thread Alex Tabarrok
Hello? If the history of the twentieth century is not an undeniable argument against the hypothesis that the market for social science is not efficient then what is? Alex -- Dr. Alexander Tabarrok Vice President and Director of Research The Independent Institute 100 Swan Way Oakland, CA,

Re: Austrians and markets

2001-11-26 Thread Alex Tabarrok
Sorry, double negatives confuse me. I mean of course that the history of the twentieth century (Marxist-Leinism, communism, fascism etc.) is an argument against the efficiency of the market in social science. alex Alex Tabarrok wrote: Hello? If the history of the twentieth century

Chronicle on Levy

2001-11-15 Thread Alex Tabarrok
There is a nice article here from the Chronicle of Education on David Levy's important work on the classical economists, the poets and slavery. The link may not last forever so get it while its hot. Alex http://chronicle.com/free/v48/i12/12a01601.htm -- Dr. Alexander Tabarrok Vice President

Re: Taliban Tipping Game

2001-11-15 Thread Alex Tabarrok
Here is a chunk of William Saletan's analysis from Slate, It is very supportive of Fabio's tipping interpretation. http://slate.msn.com/?id=2058705 Alex In the north, the Taliban's enemies failed to advance. In the south, they failed to speak up. The American press suggested that the war had

Re: subsidies for renewable energies and the environment

2001-11-12 Thread Alex Tabarrok
I've often made the point that the main benefit of subsidies for renewable energy sources is to increase price competition on OPEC thereby resulting in lower oil prices and greater oil consumption. I like the irony. More generally, the economics of subsidizing a substitute for a

Re: Studying Economics

2001-11-02 Thread Alex Tabarrok
Gray, Lynn wrote: But in terms of getting into a high ranking grad school isn't going to the right undergraduate institution important? Lynn You can get into a top graduate school from any decent undergraduate program in the country so long as your grades are superb and you have

FAQ: Where Should I Go to Graduate School?

2001-10-31 Thread Alex Tabarrok
if you are interested in teaching economics at the undergraduate level, going into policy work, or working for government. Alex Tabarrok Dr. Alexander Tabarrok Vice President and Director of Research The Independent Institute 100 Swan Way Oakland, CA, 94621-1428 Tel. 510-632-1366, FAX: 510-568

Re: Tax with positive growth effect

2001-10-31 Thread Alex Tabarrok
Holding spending constant, it is certainly true that some taxes are better for growth than other taxes. To summarize a large literature taxes on capital tend to be very bad for growth because of positive externalities associated with capital, taxes on income are better and something like a

Urban Planning

2001-10-26 Thread Alex Tabarrok
Brian, The first idea that Since they won't be living in the places more than 5 or 10 years they don't care if the place is ugly to most people or shoddily constructed. This leaves the rest of the population with only ugly and shoddy houses to choose from when they eventually need to move.

Re: Signaling

2001-10-15 Thread Alex Tabarrok
*Warning* the following message contains shameless promotion. Milton Friedman, Armien Alchian and William Baumol recently blurbed a book that I edited that is forthcoming on Oxford University Press called Entrepreneurial Economics: Bright Ideas from the Dismal Science. I would like to say

Re: 2001 Economic Nobelists

2001-10-10 Thread Alex Tabarrok
Stiglitz would have liked to get the prize for the Modigliani-Miller theorem but that one was already taken. Alex -- Dr. Alexander Tabarrok Vice President and Director of Research The Independent Institute 100 Swan Way Oakland, CA, 94621-1428 Tel. 510-632-1366, FAX: 510-568-6040 Email: [EMAIL

Friedman Prize

2001-10-10 Thread Alex Tabarrok
Speaking of prizes, Cato has just announced a biennial Milton Friedman Prize for the Advancement of Liberty. The award will be a cash prize of $500,000 to one individual for significant achievement in the advancement of liberty. The first prize will be presented May 9, 2002. Any

Re: Disaster Raises Happiness, Trust

2001-10-09 Thread Alex Tabarrok
Why not deny the empirical fact - given all we have for data is a second-hand report about a newspaper column! Indeed, the ease with which the clever people on this list are able to generate explanations that go either way seems to me to be a bad sign for evolutionary psychology. Alex -- Dr.

Re: Disaster Raises Happiness, Trust

2001-10-01 Thread Alex Tabarrok
Bryan Caplan wrote: A lot of Soviet citizens, similarly, (retrospectively) claimed they were happiest during World War II, when something like 1-out-of-8 perished! Selection bias! Alex -- Dr. Alexander Tabarrok Vice President and Director of Research The Independent Institute 100 Swan Way

Airlines

2001-09-26 Thread Alex Tabarrok
The President has authorized some 15 billion dollars to bail out the airlines and now travel agents and a host of others are asking for help also. Question: Is there any economic defense for this sort of action? After all, if the demand for air travel has fallen then isn't the optimal

Self-financing Terrorism?

2001-09-18 Thread Alex Tabarrok
The San Francisco Chronicle reports today that there was an unusually large number of puts placed on United and American airline stock in the day before the terrorist attacks. http://www.sfgate.com/cgi-bin/article.cgi?f=/c/a/2001/09/18/MN63703.DTL Apparently, strong-form efficient market

Re: Excessive drinking

2001-09-12 Thread Alex Tabarrok
When a good is made illegal consumers react by squeezing more consumption into a shorter period of time in order to minimize the chances of getting caught per unit of pleasure. Thus, it is a common observation that adults drink more often than teenagers but in less quantity (Thus, I have

Re: help, please

2001-09-05 Thread Alex Tabarrok
Marc, Look at Kelvin Lancaster's old book Consumer demand; a new approach also do a search on econlit looking for product characteristics and demand, you should come up with quite a bit of recent material. I have also seen the Dixit-Stiglitz utility function adapted for this purpose,

Argentian Monetary Economics

2001-08-27 Thread Alex Tabarrok
A recent article in the NYTimes raises some interesting issues in monetary economics. (Might be fun for class discussion.) The article has been emailed to this list under separate title. -- Provincial governments in Argentina are short of pesos so they are paying their workers in

Re: lobbying as a public goods problem

2001-02-05 Thread Alex Tabarrok
Wei wrote "Reading Jonathan Rauch's _Government's End: Why Washington Stopped Working_ (http://www.amazon.com/exec/obidos/ASIN/1891620495) made me wonder how special-interest lobbies solved the public goods problem." See Mancur Olson's The Logic of Collective Action and The Rise and Fall of

Re: Voluntary Pollution Control

2001-02-02 Thread Alex Tabarrok
Bryan, You don't need altruism to get a crowding-out effect if people are initially contributing towards the public good as part of a Nash equilibrium. In the Nash Equilibrium people contribute to the public good but less than the optimum amount (the case where people contribute nothing is

The Dismal Science

2001-01-22 Thread Alex Tabarrok
All economists ought to be aware of the true story of why economics was named the dismal science. It's not because of Malthus and the population issue but rather because the classical liberal economists thought that everyone, including blacks, were equal a proposition that that bastard

Re: California Power Crisis/Mises Cycle

2001-01-18 Thread Alex Tabarrok
Fabio, The situation in CA is, as I understand it, as follows. Wholesale electricity was sort of deregulated (more on the sort of later) but price caps remain at the retail level. Currently, wholesale electricity prices have soared and the two largest utilities PGE and So.Cal Edison

Re: California Power Crisis/Mises Cycle

2001-01-18 Thread Alex Tabarrok
Fabio, It's difficult to build a power plant in CA for the same that gas prices are higher here than anywhere else (special processing and additives are required in CA fuel) and you can't bring in a car from another state without it passing special CA tests, i.e. CA has long been hostile to

USPS hires FED EX

2001-01-11 Thread Alex Tabarrok
RE our discussion on the mails the post office has hired Fed Ex. http://www.washingtonpost.com/wp-dyn/articles/A43459-2001Jan10.html -- Dr. Alexander Tabarrok Vice President and Director of Research The Independent Institute 100 Swan Way Oakland, CA, 94621-1428 Tel. 510-632-1366, FAX:

Re:

2001-01-10 Thread Alex Tabarrok
What do you mean by "gauge for" international trade? (By the way, if you have read Krugman, Obstfeld, Appleyard etc. you are unlikely to get a better answer here but it will help if you make the question clearer.) Alex -- Dr. Alexander Tabarrok Vice President and Director of Research The

Re: The Medieval Postal Service

2001-01-09 Thread Alex Tabarrok
You don't have to go back that far. The Pony Express had speeds comparable to today's US Post Office on routes like New York to Boston etc. Fed. Ex. UPS etc. are also superior for packages so why wouldn't they be superior for letters? Alex -- Dr. Alexander Tabarrok Vice President and

Re: Canada

2001-01-04 Thread Alex Tabarrok
The Fraser Institute has done quite a bit of work on this subject. See http://www.fraserinstitute.ca/ A good place to start for leads is NCPA which collects short newspaper articles of itnerest (not scholary papers) see www.ncpa.org. Alex -- Dr. Alexander Tabarrok Vice President and Director

Re: Pocket Change

2000-12-15 Thread Alex Tabarrok
What does this have to do with economics? Answer: Not much. -- Dr. Alexander Tabarrok Vice President and Director of Research The Independent Institute 100 Swan Way Oakland, CA, 94621-1428 Tel. 510-632-1366, FAX: 510-568-6040 Email: [EMAIL PROTECTED]

Re: Why not refinance when interest rates rise?

2000-12-14 Thread Alex Tabarrok
Robin, Note that you can't be better off "refinancing" since your payments continue to be $7000 a year - thus consumption never rises and your puzzle must involve an illusion! So where is it? Run your example in reverse. You borrow $70,000 at 10% paying $7000 per year forever. The

Re: Landsburg Column

2000-11-27 Thread Alex Tabarrok
Bill, As I read Landsburg the Klenow-Bils idea is that if at time 1 the rich own 100% more microwaves than the poor at a 25% higher price then at time 2 when the poor own 100% more microwaves than at time 1 the quality-adjusted price (unobserved) has fallen 25%. What they need to assume is

Re: Software Patents

2000-11-17 Thread Alex Tabarrok
I do not want to get into a debate on the morality of patents - there is plenty of that in the Armchair archive. On the economics here are some notes and references written for another purpose which may be of interest. Patents can *reduce* investment in RD in *theory* as well as in

Re: More Election Statistics

2000-11-16 Thread Alex Tabarrok
Bill, I thought the recount that had been done so far was a machine recount in all of the counties - thus only yesterday was the last of the 67 counties reported. My understanding is that the hand recount in the four counties you mention has yet to be done and may not ever be done if Harris

More Election Statistics

2000-11-15 Thread Alex Tabarrok
http://www.lasvegassun.com/sunbin/stories/archives/2000/nov/10/511018638.html -- Dr. Alexander Tabarrok Vice President and Director of Research The Independent Institute 100 Swan Way Oakland, CA, 94621-1428 Tel. 510-632-1366, FAX: 510-568-6040 Email: [EMAIL PROTECTED]

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