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I have "delusions of adequacy."
Interests: economics, policy, theatre, music, hiking, geocaching
Recent Activity
The Elder of Ziyon has a blog post about a social get-together between Israelis on the West Bank and Palestinians who live near the settlement. The post quotes heavily from the Washington Post about the nature of peaceful exchanges between the people. It sounded nice, hopeful, though guarded in some ways. An excerpt: Everyone was very polite. A Palestinian farmer... Continue reading
Posted Oct 21, 2016 at EclectEcon
Image Like it or not, when people put their money where their mouths are, they predict reasonably well and certainly better than polls, on average. Continue reading
Posted Oct 20, 2016 at EclectEcon
That's the point made by Don Boudreaux here, with his quotation and discussion of McCloskey's book on the bourgeoisie. Lives spent trying to figure out what customers want and how to get the item to them in a nonruinous way and how to improve service and quality at lower cost, one could argue, lead [sic] the bourgeoisie to ethical attitudes... Continue reading
Posted Oct 19, 2016 at EclectEcon
The upcoming series between Trono and Cleveland should be tight, close, and exciting. Cleveland had a better record during the regular season (94-67 for Cleveland vs 89-73 for Toronto). But the overall performance stats look very close. Using the two statistics I like to rely on for quick summaries, OPS [team on-base average plus slugging pecentage] and pitchers' OOPS [Opponents'... Continue reading
Posted Oct 14, 2016 at EclectEcon
This post is actually about studying statistics. It is not about polls or the misuse of data or anything remotely political. No foolin'. My older son, David Ricardo Palmer, is currently taking an online statistics course. When I learned about it, I suggested that maybe I could do some of the work alongside and along with him because I'd like... Continue reading
Posted Oct 14, 2016 at EclectEcon
You know what frosts my cookies? That some Trump-like clown like Ross Perot kept George H. W. Bush from winning re-election, and yet a sensible third-party option like Gary Johnson can't even appear in the debates and public fora because the major parties rewrote the rules after the inroads made by Perot and Nader. No, I won't defend every position... Continue reading
Posted Oct 13, 2016 at EclectEcon
The current US election presents voters with two major candidates, neither of whom is even slightly desirable as a President of the US. And so voters are faced with a difficult choice between two evils. In some respects, this choice might be viewed by some as Morton's Fork, but really the voters are caught between the horns of dilemma. If... Continue reading
Posted Oct 10, 2016 at EclectEcon
I am disgusted by Trump's abuse of power and position... actually, I always have been. And the recent revelations of his abuse of women, not to mention his abuse of suppliers and others with whom he had financial dealings, just confirms my dis-ease with having that man as president of the US. But given his history, his bullying tactics in... Continue reading
Posted Oct 8, 2016 at EclectEcon
Recently I was sent an audition notice that reads (in part), Seeking AFRICAN CANADIAN, CAUCASIAN AND HISPANIC Grandparents or Senior Couples (ages 70 to 90) for a Telecommunication TV commercial. .... Looking for Seniors who are clueless about technology. (emphasis added)... To apply [please send, inter alia,]... a short description or story of how clueless they are with technology. I... Continue reading
Posted Oct 1, 2016 at EclectEcon
I am appalled by the extent to which so many political leaders of Canada and the US seem to be pandering to vested interests in North America, arguing in favour of protectionism. As the late great Canadian economist Harry Johnson once said, "Trade barriers don't protect jobs; they protect inefficient business owners who can't deal with the competition." And now... Continue reading
Posted Sep 30, 2016 at EclectEcon
There is a commonly accepted view that middle-class incomes have stagnated in Canada. This view is wrong. Here's why. The inflation-adjusted median income of Canadian families before taxes was 7.0 percent lower in 2011 than it was in 1976. It’s easy to conclude from such a statistic that, over the past several decades, middle-class Canadians have indeed not gained economically.... Continue reading
Posted Sep 29, 2016 at EclectEcon
This brief post by Don Boudreaux captures why I reject the economic theories that are used to justify big gubmnt: The economic theory: the state intervenes in the economy in order to prevent free-riding – in order to internalize externalities – in order to better ensure that all private parties pay the full marginal costs of their activities, and that... Continue reading
Posted Sep 27, 2016 at EclectEcon
This brief post by Don Boudreaux captures why I reject the economic theories that are used to justify big gubmnt: The economic theory: the state intervenes in the economy in order to prevent free-riding – in order to internalize externalities – in order to better ensure that all private parties pay the full marginal costs of their activities, and that... Continue reading
Posted Sep 27, 2016 at EclectEcon
Just a block from where we live is a massive sculpture of a heron. The sculpture hangs from the side of the Renaissance I building out over the sidewalk on Ridout Street at the corner of King Street Here is a plaque on the building telling about the sculpture. I went there this afternoon to take a photo of the... Continue reading
Posted Sep 22, 2016 at EclectEcon
Many people in the middle east (and elsewhere, unfortunately) have refused to acknowledge the existence of the country of Israel ever since its creation in 1947. This attitude has been so strong that their gubmnts insist maps made of the middle east list only Palestine and not show Israel. Oops... some mapmakers in Algeria seemed to have forgotten the prohibition... Continue reading
Posted Sep 18, 2016 at EclectEcon
I was awakened at 5am this morning by a burning sensation on my wrist. I felt my wrist and my Pebble watch was burning hot. I took the watch off as fast as I could, but it left burn marks and blisters on my wrist: I had had the watch for about two months and was really enjoying it. This... Continue reading
Posted Sep 16, 2016 at EclectEcon
From an article in last year's JAMA [Jl of the Amer Med Assoc]: (via Jack) Results.... Compared with placebo, cannabinoids were associated with a greater average number of patients showing a complete nausea and vomiting response ..., reduction in pain ..., a greater average reduction in numerical rating scale pain assessment ..., and average reduction in the Ashworth spasticity scale...... Continue reading
Posted Sep 15, 2016 at EclectEcon
The Goodhue Caper Carleton College Spring, 1963 The Setting: Goodhue Hall, a men’s dormitory with four stories. It was the first year of the dorm. Rooms were assigned by lottery but seniors and juniors first. Sophomores ended up on the first and second floors. There were no cellphones in those days. And students were not allowed to have private phones... Continue reading
Posted Sep 14, 2016 at EclectEcon
Scott Sumner does a good job of describing the Fed: In the past, "unusually severe and persistent recessions" tend to occur when the economy is at the zero bound. Even worse, these recessions are almost certainly caused by a failure of monetary policy. The Fed persists in viewing itself in a role similar to a fireman, rescuing the economy when... Continue reading
Posted Aug 29, 2016 at EclectEcon
Next week I'll be out in Regina, Saskatchewan, visiting with friends and relatives, performing with the Saskatchewan Roughrider Pep Band, and giving seminar in the economics department, "Property Rights and Contract Enforcement in the Post-Zombie Apocalypse". I'll also likely be doing some Pokemon hunting. The coincidences: I thought my plane arrived at 8:30 pm and I'd have to miss some... Continue reading
Posted Aug 25, 2016 at EclectEcon
Recently someone in a local Facebook group asked members to post their ages. In the twelve or so hours since that posting, these are the ages of the people playing Pokemon Go and who are members of the group and who responded (a selective non-representative sample, for sure). Here are the results, grouped unscientifically. They wouldn't be much different with... Continue reading
Posted Aug 23, 2016 at EclectEcon
I just read this piece on the Daily Alert. Iran: Israel's Annihilation Is Imminent Speaking in Tehran on July 1, Revolutionary Guards Deputy Commander Hossein Salami said: "Today, more than ever, there is fertile ground - with the grace of God - for the annihilation, the wiping out, and the collapse of the Zionist regime. In Lebanon alone, over 100,000... Continue reading
Posted Jul 8, 2016 at EclectEcon
I'm doing some research for a paper on "Property Rights and Contract Enforcement in the Post-Zombie Apocalypse." Seriously. In the process of trying to learn more about zombies, I ran across this interview with Max Brooks, in which he says, [Questioner]: How can a layperson like myself distinguish between a zombie and a bureaucrat? Max Brooks: Simply put, a zombie... Continue reading
Posted Jun 14, 2016 at EclectEcon
Today's NYTimes has an article about the battle over bridge sites in Windsor, Ontario. The article seems pretty one-sided to me. A different take on the situation is that an (albeit aggressive) private entrepreneur wants to build a six-lane bridge parallel to the current bridge and has amassed most of the resources necessary to do so. But he is being... Continue reading
Posted Jun 13, 2016 at EclectEcon