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Experiments in economics? You bet!

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Experiments in economics? You bet!

Every year around this time, the Royal Swedish Academy of Sciences awards the Sveriges Riksbank Prize in Economic Sciences in Memory of Alfred Nobel—aka the Nobel Prize in Economics. This year, the Prize went to Abhijit Banerjee, Esther Duflo and Michael Kremer “for their experimental approach to alleviating global poverty.” The three economists pioneered the use of randomized…

Luxembourg is right about tax ruling court cases

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Blogger: Bill Wirtz
Luxembourg is right about tax ruling court cases

The European Commission is cracking down on tax advantages of individual member states. This will undermine the competitiveness of the entire continent. Margrethe Vestager will be confirmed in her place as Commissioner for Competition of the European Union. In the last five years, the Danish politician has put forward a legal theory, suggesting that tax benefits granted to companies constitute…

One frontier: two different worlds

One frontier: two different worlds

The comparison between the two approaches to American life and values represented by the books of Laura Ingalls Wilder (Little House on the Prairie series) and Bess Streeter Aldrich (A Lantern in Her Hand and its sequel White Bird Flying) opens some significant, and possibly uncomfortable, differences that lay at the root of the contrast of the families’ fortunes, despite living in the same…

EU elites use more private jets as they tax flying for others

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Blogger: Bill Wirtz
EU elites use more private jets as they tax flying for others

"Climate action" politicians are collapsing under the weight of their own hypocrisy.   The European moraliser   Think Paris Climate Accord, renewable energy, hybrid cars, Greta Thunberg. All either a product of or very popular in Europe. Environmentalists in the United States are looking up to the courage of European politicians to solve climate change, be it by…

Pay transparency is unaffordable for businesses and employees

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Blogger: Bill Wirtz
Pay transparency is unaffordable for businesses and employees

The new EU Commission president Ursula von der Leyen has promised to move closer to closing the gender pay gap. The new instrument she intends on using is pay transparency. Big mistake. The European Commission works on creating pay transparency in the European Union. In an effort to fight the gender pay gap (which exist if you do statistics wrong on purpose), it wants to lay open the salaries…

Does vaccine skepticism affect immunization rates?

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Does vaccine skepticism affect immunization rates?

Believe it or not, vaccination is still a controversial issue in many countries. Despite the scientific consensus that vaccines pose no risk to human health, some parents are still skeptical regarding their safety and effects, leading some of them to avoid vaccinating their children often based on pseudo-scientific arguments. Our World in Data recently released a series of articles that shed…

"A Lantern in Her Hand": an alternative view of the American frontier

"A Lantern in Her Hand": an alternative view of the American frontier

For the last few weeks, I have catalogued the flaws of the American “spirit” as represented in Laura Ingalls Wilder’s Little House on the Prairie series and the unsuitability of the family as role models. Recognizing the inadequacy of the Ingalls-Wilder family as representative of an ideal American way of life and society is important because, due to a long-running TV show and…

The German hate speech saga

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Blogger: Bill Wirtz
The German hate speech saga

A federal court in Berlin decided that it was a legitimate expression of an opinion to call a politician a "slut", "piece of shit", and "brainless" on Facebook. The politician (who had indeed sued the user) and her supporters are outraged that the court would allow this "hate speech" to exist online. After having been insulted on social media, senior Green…

ECB's latest move won't work

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ECB's latest move won't work

Draghi never disappoints. In his penultimate monetary-policy meeting, the still President of the ECB announced that the Eurozone’s central bank would soon resume the net asset purchase program in an attempt to get inflation back to the ECB’s 2 percent target after some months of lower-than-expected inflation. The Governing Council also agreed to lower the deposit rate to -0.5%,…

Burrowing into Books - "The Man in the White Linen Suit" by David Handler

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Burrowing into Books - "The Man in the White Linen Suit" by David Handler

“It was 1993 now. No one makes a witty remark unless they’re getting paid to, preferably on  their own nationally syndicated TV talk show. And nine times out of ten, they’re not even witty.”…

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