Tag Archives: meta

Meta: New things in May

May will be an exciting month for me. I’ll be increasing the amount of work I post as more projects come to maturity. New and expanded topics include the mathematics of complexity and systems theory, markets as complex adaptive systems, policy work on Missouri’s earning tax, policy work on civil asset forfeiture, policy work on payday lending, policy work on comparative legal systems, sabremetrics and soccer.

One of the items not mentioned above because I wanted to mention it specifically is wine. Wine is a serious hobby of mine and this summer I hope to take the Certified Sommelier examination of the Court of Master Sommeliers. Hopefully that’ll mean a trip to someplace interesting and fun. There is also fun and very interesting work on the economics of wine that has been working its way my pile of drafts that I think will be worthwhile.

And finally, Daniel Maconald over at Imagining History has graciously invited me to begin writing in collaboration with him on economics; his initial thought was to use ‘Anti-Mankiw‘ as a starting point and see where that takes us.


Blog Meta

I’ve decided to change the way the main page of this blog appears by using the wordpress option to hide a selected portion of larger posts under a “fold” that you can click through. The reason is that I want visitors to the homepage to see the headings of 3-5 posts instead of having to scroll through longer posts that they’re not necessarily interested in. Thoughts?

As an aside, here is Rory Sutherland giving a Ted Talk titled “Life Lessons From an Ad Man“. Key concept: The interface determines behavior. You could write several papers on information economics from the ideas contained within.

Additionally, I’ve asked a couple friends and academics to co-blog a couple posts on this blog. I’ll keep you updated if I have responses and hash out specifics. I will say that I’ve asked a close friend to blog about the structural features of some fascinating emerging markets, and another to blog about their research into ethnomusicology. I’m excited.

Oh, and a quick book recommendation: Beppe Fenoglio’s Twenty-Tree Days in the City of Alba. Picked this up Monday, finished it tonight (after many interruptions). This is incisive, wonderful Hemingway-esque prose from a relatively unknown author. Truly remarkable.

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Some Quick Links

What I’m reading/seeing lately:

1. The National Spelling Bee is on Twitter! This is Bee Week in DC and they’re live tweeting the competition. My brother, George, won the National Spelling Bee in 2000 and I have several other siblings who have placed highly at Nationals. As an aside, why don’t I have a wikipedia entry?

2. A friend and budding viticulturist, Tammy Jones, is visiting wine country in the Rhone Valley. You can read her blog here. Of particular note is her visit to the Barruol estate in Gigondas; Louis and Cherry Barruol are well respected negotiants and made a phenomal 2007 Cotes-du-Rhone rouge from 100% syrah that is one of the best wines I’ve tasted in the past year.

3. Sotomayor’s legal history reviewed in the NYT. Of particular note is the discussion about how female judges are “more sensitive to claims that strip searches of young girls are unduly intrusive”. It is an implicit argument that diversity in the judiciary is good. It also provides a good paradigm for thinking about Obama’s comments on how a good judge displays traits like ’empathy’ and ‘compassion’ and when it matters.

4. On a related note, the Republican party is scrambling to attract women and minorities. I have long argued that though it’s not the case that the Republican party hates women (or for that matter, black people), it is the case that they are really indifferent to the concerns of people who don’t have money.

5. From Paul Krugman, why the military wasn’t involved in Katrina rescue efforts (turns out Rumsfeld didn’t think it was necessary). Money quote from Bush: “Rumsfeld, what the hell is going on there? Are you watching what’s on television? Is that the United States of America or some Third World nation I’m watching? What the hell are you doing?”

6. From Tyler Cowen, the relative value of health care. Key line (from Ralph Sisson): “Two economists working at Dartmouth, Katherine Baicker and Amitabh Chandra, found that the more money Medicare spent per person in a given state the lower that state’s quality ranking tended to be. In fact, the four states with the highest levels of spending—Louisiana, Texas, California, and Florida—were near the bottom of the national rankings on the quality of patient care.” Perhaps the best way to control healthcare spending is to stop spending money on healthcare?