Following the analogy of price control, any evidence that the group advocating aggressive relationship bargining are the same ones who would generally benefit by such a policy? On a related note, do the strength of male/female bargining positions in a long term relationship change as male libido decreases over their 20's and 30's and female libido peaks around 35-38? (Think Battle of the Sexes over several periods...) Wild conjectures welcomed. -- John Morrow Quoting Bryan Caplan [EMAIL PROTECTED]: I just read the well-reviewed *Women Don't Ask* by Babcock and Laschever. Main thesis: Women should bargain harder. It is frankly kind of silly. The whole book makes it sound like aggressive bargaining is a strictly dominant strategy, so women will definitely be better off if they do more of it. It never considers the obvious possibility that women will price themselves out of a job. Nor does it explore the interesting possibility that one reason female employees are doing so well in spite of obvious child-related drawbacks is precisely that employers know that they are less likely to demand more money. The book also tries to get women to bargain more aggressively in relationships. I think this is another case where feminist norms are likely to function as a price control - some women will get a better deal, but a lot of others will be unable to get married because their standards are too high. -- Prof. Bryan Caplan Department of Economics George Mason University http://www.bcaplan.com [EMAIL PROTECTED] I hope this has taught you kids a lesson: kids never learn. --Chief Wiggum, *The Simpsons*
I don't know if this is true, but I have been told the #1 shoplifted item is Preparation H and like ointments -- this seems to fit in well with the theory that people want to remain anonymous in purchasing V!agra...
Although I would gamble Schwartz has more ideological than empirical reasons for his conclusions, is there trend data available over multiple years? I don't think a point estimate is any way to gauge something like happiness with respect to time. As for surveys, from what I know of the experimental literature, economists seem to put very little credence in surveys aside from gathering rather concrete data (e.g. demographics, independently verifiable data). My impression is that survey research is generally looked down upon -- if for no other reason than similar research in other fields is often highly contestable and unsophisticated (in both senses). Surveys also beg the question of the incentive and ability of respondents to answer in an externally valid way. Monetary incentives used to help ensure externally valid behavior seem to be a publishing requirement of modern experiments -- incentives completely lacking by nature in a survey. However, this may be completely different in particular subfields. -- John Morrow
I recall a Japanese econ grad student telling me that in fact real interest rates were negative for some span and people were STILL saving in the late nineties in Japan. He also blamed several bubbles at the time (notably, real estate in Japan) on this. Interesting if true... (Anyone know the details and can they justify the connection without resorting to framing biases of investors?) Following: Fred, I think you answered your own question -- even if many people would save some of their money even if the risk-free interest rate were zero, the quantity of funds demanded by borrowers at this rate would exceed the amount saved. So, a positive interest rate induces some people to defer consumption (save) and others to borrow less, until the market clears. And this would be the case even if there were no risk of nonpayment, and no inflation/deflation. By the way, there have been times and places where the measured real interest rate was essentially zero; I think this happened in Japan in the 1990s. --Robert
I believe that even quite recently (in the last year or two) China was found to be inflating its growth estimates significantly, and I have some economically minded Indian friends who claim Indian estimates are also intentionally inflated. I believe at the collapse of the Soviet Union it was found that may growth estimates were also inflated back into the Seventies at least, so I would look towards number tampering in general as being a contributing cause. Quoting fabio guillermo rojas [EMAIL PROTECTED]: In preparing a lecture about socialist economies, I have come across the claim that socialist nations had decent life expectancies. How can that be? We know that: (a) there have been episodes of mass starvation in the largest socialist nations (USSR, China) (b) socialist nations have often engaged in destructive wars against other nations (USSR) and against their own populations (Cambodia) (c) chronic shortages of consumer goods, and in some cases, shortage of basic food stuffs (think of wheat imports to Russia and North Korea) (d) Socialist nations tend to be stressful places with mass arrests and the like I could think of a few mechanisms: socialist nations tend to invest in the kind of infra-structurers that extend life (Education, sanitation, etc.), a vibrant black market, or most likely - vital statistics from these nations are hugely misleading. Any comments? Fabio