On Mon, Aug 18, 2003 at 05:28:34PM -0400, Bryan Caplan wrote:
One idea he did not explore: Maybe there is no inter-stellar travel
because the benefits almost never exceed the costs. It takes years to
get anywhere, and at best you find some unused natural resources. If
James Surowiecki has an article in the New Yorker (available at
in favor of child tax credits, on the grounds that raising children
produces positive externalities. My question is, has anyone done a study
that quantifies how
On Fri, Aug 22, 2003 at 10:50:35AM -0700, Fred Foldvary wrote:
However, the earth is not a closed system, as we continually get energy
from the sun, so even if we use up some resources, solar radiation will
supply energy, and technologicalp progress will make ever more efficient
use of it.
Given that there is significant existing variation in human intelligence,
it's curious that we are not all much smarter than we actually are.
Besides the well-known costs of higher intelligence (e.g., more energy
use, bigger heads causing more difficult births), it seems that being
smart can be a
On Wed, Nov 26, 2003 at 04:47:17PM -0500, Robin Hanson wrote:
There certainly do seem to be some situations in which it can pay not be
seen as too clever by half. But of course there are many other situations
in which being clever pays well. So unless the first set of situations are
Here's a funny comic strip about using game theory for dating:
You might also want to check out the blog it was based on:
On Sun, Nov 30, 2003 at 11:18:21AM -0500, Robin Hanson wrote:
That and the difficulty of creating intelligence.
It can't be the latter, because the intelligence that already exist was
not selected for. Consider again the fact that Jews have an average IQ
that is about one standard deviation
On Thu, Mar 11, 2004 at 01:44:42PM -0500, Bryan Caplan wrote:
My new paper on the economics of mental illness, entitled The Economics
of Szasz can now be downloaded from my webpage at:
The paper makes the point that what psychology
On Wed, Mar 24, 2004 at 10:54:25AM -0500, Stephen Miller wrote:
I'm confused. How does one decide whether the younger version's
preferences are more right than the elder's?
When considering whether or not to return stolen goods to its original
owner, how does one decide whether the original
Does anyone know if there is a correlation between a person's
willingness to buy lottery tickets, and his willingness to vote in large
elections (where the chances of any vote being pivotal is tiny)?
A simple explanation for both of these phenomena, where people choose
to do things with
On Tue, Aug 31, 2004 at 08:25:16PM -0500, Jeffrey Rous wrote:
When people ask me why I vote, my standard answer is because I can. Voting simply
reminds me that we have something special going here in the free world. I do a
decent job of learning about the candidates and issues not because I
On Tue, Aug 31, 2004 at 07:50:08PM -0400, [EMAIL PROTECTED] wrote:
I've been discussing with my undergradute students the rationality of voting.
What about the possibility that many people do not deal well with with
small probabilities, and mistakenly think that their votes matter?
In other words, what you're suggesting is that for some, lotteries and
voting are like candy, pornography, birth control, or narcotics, i.e., a
legitimate way (in some cultures) for a person to deliberately subvert his
own genetic programming and obtain pleasure that he doesn't deserve.
Ok, I can
On Tue, Oct 19, 2004 at 11:32:16AM -0700, Peter C. McCluskey wrote:
I think it's harder than this to adequately model p(x), because it acts
differently in close races because the incentive for the losing side to
cheat is highest when it's most likely to change the result.
Yes, to be more
On Wed, Oct 20, 2004 at 02:13:23AM -0400, Robert A. Book wrote:
I think what you want is the Banzhaf Power Index, developed by Banzhaf
(surprise!) in the 1960s. I forwarded your post to a friend of mine
who's done some work on this, and discovered he's giving a talk on
this very topic on
According to page 18 of
http://www.stern.nyu.edu/~adamodar/pdfiles/cfovhds/divid.pdf, for tax
reasons, the average price drop of a stock on the ex-dividend day is only
90% of the dividend.
Microsoft has declared a $3 per share special dividend, with the
ex-dividend day being November 15, 2004
On Sun, Nov 21, 2004 at 07:27:32AM -0500, Robin Hanson wrote:
I was at a workshop this weekend where we discussed the possibility of
regulating human genetic enhancements, and it was suggested that positional
goods were a valid reason for regulation. It might make sense, for
example, to tax
I thought of one more positional-goods related policy: limiting the number
of hours in a work week. In other words, forced spending on leisure,
which as this survey indicates is non-positional:
Do You Enjoy Having More Than Others? Survey Evidence of Positional Goods
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