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  1. Stiglitz on wealth, recessions and inequality. I don’t know why I continue to be frustrated by the ability to predict conclusions from the author and titles alone. Here is his, ” the adverse effects of austerity appear much greater than suggested by the standard national income accounts.” By the way, this may in fact be right, but part of the frustration is the choice of research questions, even if the project is done honestly and fairly, is as biased a process as the research process itself is. Would you ever imagine someone examining something that may make the effects of austerity to look less “awful” than suggested by the standard approaches? Also, he makes a point ahout rents in the abstract – but don’t all rents, even if unearned, have to come from value and productivity improvements somewhere?

  2. Related: Gabaix et al model that the trend in inequality increases at the top is driven by the rise of superstar entrepreneurs and managers. That would seem to be to my benefit.
  3. A really interesting theory on how optimal corporate social responsibility policies may emerge. I am not sure I believe it, but I tend to want to believe it. Here is part of the abstract:
    ” Because firms can capture part of the rent created by allowing socially responsible employees to
    correct social ills, in some settings they find it optimal to lobby for inefficient rules and then capture the surplus associated with
    being “good citizens” in the face of bad regulation.  In equilibrium, this means CSR can either increase or decrease social welfare,
    depending on the costs of political capture.
  4. Do some anti-competitive regulations NOT raise alcohol prices?
  5. A rebuttal to a Friedman classic?
  6. Is officer quality lower under an All Volunteer Force military?
  7. Governments increase spending in response to increasing tax increases. Now, about that proposal for a “revenue-neutral” global warming program …
  8. Hey, here’s a paper that I would not have predicted the outcome based on what folks think of the ideology of the author. Definitely upgrade this finding – that anti-discrimination laws do not seem to make it harder to hire the senior disabled. That made my day, and also surprised me.
  9. The term “optimal taxation” makes me cringe.
  10. What happened when the state of Utah moved away from a Defined Benefit Public Pension Program? Many employees simply defaulted into one of the two new options. The paper does not go into other outcomes. My theory about all of this is that public employment is _____.

Have a nice week. I’m off to watch a 21 year win the third golf major of the year.

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