Wednesday, October 14, 2015

Book: Mortality, by Christopher Hitchens

Hitchens, Christopher. 2012. Mortality. New York: 12.

This is a short book of Hitchen's musings on death and, even more so, on the process of slowly dying from cancer. Topics range from the reactions of Hitchens' religious opponents, some of whom pronounced the disease judgement and others of whom offered unrequested prayers, to the physical frustrations of bodily decay, to the deluge of largely dodgy medical advice from well-meaning friends and associates. If you like Hitchens more generally, you will like this one too, but, spoiler alert, there is no happy ending.

Tuesday, October 13, 2015

College football: Steve Sarkisian fired at USC

From the Seattle Times. It all sounds like a pretty sad business.

Sark did a great job of raising Washington up out of its 0-12 muck. I wish him well.

Monday, October 12, 2015

Nobel Prize

Congratulations to Angus Deaton, who just won the prize.


Thoughts from my colleague Justin Wolfers, from Alex Tabarrok, and from Tyler Cowen. The piece from Chris Blattman is good as well, but neglects to note that many of the criticisms of experiments voiced by Deaton were already around in the labor literature, which had a similar, though arguably more civil, discussion about randomized trials a decade or so prior to the one in the development literature.

Overall, this is an excellent prize in my view. We used the Deaton and Muellbauer book, along with Varian's text, in first year micro when I was at Chicago. It is excellent.  The bits of the household survey book that I have read were really helpful as well.

Going after the economics Nobel

A member of the Swedish Academy calls for a suspension on the economics Nobel prize.

Hat tip: ASAK

Friday, October 2, 2015

Alpha Chi discovers that baseball is, like, totally boring. I agree!

 From the Daily Mail, which oversells a bit. Hat tip to you-know-who.

Update: The women of Alpha Chi Omega paid more attention in their marketing classes than they did at the baseball game.

Thursday, October 1, 2015

Treat meat like cigarettes

I suspect that the UK labour party under Jeremy Corbyn and company will provide a wealth of trans-Atlantic entertainment. Today's installment features the shadow minister for farming, who wants to put warning labels on meat like those on cigarettes. Worth noting in the article is that the shadow minister's main concern about this policy is not its imposition on consumer choice but rather its potential effect on agribusiness. Not very lefty that, one might have thought.