Friday, October 28, 2005

One Excuse and two Links

No doubt due to a severe manpower shortage in the Fergusson College Economics Department, I have been selected to represent FC in the Second All India Economics Students Meet, which will be in Delhi in December. I am part of the Paper Presentation team. Our topic is "the National Rural Employment Guarantee Scheme 2005: A Stopgap Measure or a Revolutionary Approach to tackling Poverty?" (No prizes for guessing what stand we're taking). So while I'm leafing through old issues of EPW or even older tomes on Indian Poverty, blogging might suffer. Apologies.

In the meanwhile, here are two good links.

Warren Meyer has a great article on Republicans abandoning their small-government platform, with some excellent gyan on why governments ought to be small in the first place:
Despite what politicians may argue, the government has only one unique quality no one else can match. They are not uniquely smart, or uniquely capable, or uniquely compassionate, or uniquely efficient, or even uniquely able to run large organizations. Their only unique capability is to deal with people by force, and to use force and the threat of force and imprisonment to compel individuals to do things they would no choose to do themselves.
Good stuff. You can read it here.

Russel Roberts has an article up on The Fallacy of Affordability:

Exxon and Mobil made a lot of money last quarter. The Drudge Report headline on the story:


I'd be tempted to answer by saying, well, Drudge, if they lower prices when profits are high, are you willing to make a charitable contribution to oil company stockholders when profits are low or negative? But the real error isn't the asymmetry. It's the assumption that transactions are zero sum--the implict assumption in the headline that when prices are high, I'm exploited so it's time to give me a rebate.
You can read it here.


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