- Gavin Kennedy has New Thoughts On The Invisible Hand Metaphor
I have argued for seven years on Lost Legacy against modern interpretations of Adam Smith, which assert, contrary to the evidence in his books, that he ascribed some mystical general quality to his use on only two occasions of the well-known 17th-18th-century metaphor of an invisible hand.
- Tim Worstall asks Isn't it great that Apple makes everything in China?
Via The Guardian I find a paper doing the usual bleating about how it's simply just terrible that Apple works the way it does, gets all that grubby manufacturing work done in China. True, this paper is a little more sophisticated than the usual we're all exploiting the Chinee stuff. But then again they do use "Foucaldian" and not as a term of derision so they're not that good.
- Gary Becker asks Concern About The Decline in Manufacturing in the United States?
Many other steps can be taken to help the American economy, especially by limiting the growth of entitlements and the federal budget. None of the steps to improve the economy involve favoring manufacturing employment and the manufacturing sector. The call by many for special treatment of manufacturing jobs is basically misguided.
- The Economic Logician on Bruno Frey: the story that keeps giving
A few weeks ago, I had a post entitled Bruno Frey, the epilogue, thinking that now that the University of Zurich made him a gigantic gift by manipulating the investigation into his behavior and keeping mum, Bruno Frey would have learned to finally shut up. But no, he has still not understood a thing a keeps going on, to the point that was getting daily updates in my email about the latest on him. Let me run a few highlights by you.
- Michael Giberson asks Do you want to be intellectually honest?
Some techniques for checking the tendency toward extreme partisanship, which can be a ready source of intellectual errors
- Tim Worstall asks Innovation is Booming: But Why Can't We See it in GDP?
The great question at the moment is that we know that we have an industrial revolution going on. The internet in short. This allows us to do new things and also to do old things differently. This is pretty much the definition of innovation and of productivity growth. But we’ve a problem: we cannot actually see this in the figures for economic growth.
- Peter Klein on The Bizarro World of Professor Sen
Here is another of those head-scratchers, this one from Amartya Sen, about how neoclassical economics is partly responsible for the financial crisis because neoclassical economists believe that markets work “perfectly”.
- Alberto Alesina and Daniel Nadler on A tale of two divergences
The divergence in sovereign spreads across Eurozone members has been the object of much attention. This column looks at divergence across US states and finds that unexpected deficits are correlated with higher state bond yields across all states. This effect is larger for states with left-leaning political systems, suggesting that bond-market participants view political variables as relevant in assessing the risk characteristics of sub-sovereign bonds.
- Chidem Kurdas on European Austerity in Perspective
Attempts to rein in government spending necessarily have unpleasant side effects. Thus the Dutch government collapsed amid budget talks to control the deficit. And British national output appears to be shrinking. Keynesians and advocates of the Obama administration’s colossal budget see this as vindication for unrestrained government spending. But in fact what we see in Europe is a very unfortunate consequence of past unrestrained spending.