Fairly Recently: Must- and Should-Reads, and Writings... (July 25, 2019)

6a00e551f080038834022ad3b05124200d

  • Weekly Forecasting Update: July 19, 2019: We are where we were a year ago: Stable growth at 2% per year with no signs of rising inflation or a rising labor share. The only significant difference that the Fed has recognized that its hope of normalizing the Fed Funds rate in the foreseeable future is vain, and has now recognized that its confidence over the past six years that we were close to full employment was simply wrong...

  • Monday Smackdown: Batshit Insane American Nat-Cs Department: Intellectual Leading Light Samuel P. Huntington: Apropos of our National Conservatives—our Nat-Cs—here in America today. It is worth remembering how batshit insane is right-wing "class of civilizations" urberguru Samuel Hintington. Witness his firm belief that immigrants from Cuba have ruined Miami: "Anglos had three choices... [i] accept their subordinate and outsider position... [ii] assimilate into the Hispanic community—“acculturation in reverse”... [iii] they could leave Miami, and between 1983 and 1993, about 140,000 did just that, their exodus reflected in a popular bumper sticker: 'Will the last American to leave Miami, please bring the flag'...

  • Monday Smackdown/Hoisted from the Archives: Scott Sumner Knew Better than to Do This!: "They are both basically saying: 'if we hold nominal spending constant, fiscal policy can’t fix it.'... [I]t’s really rather sad when people like Krugman and Brad DeLong keep insisting that these guys don’t understand basic macro principles.... I don’t know for sure that Fama was using the same implicit assumption... [but] I think it quite likely that Fama was also cutting corners.... Lots of brilliant people talking past each other.... Welcome to elite macroeconomics, circa 2011.... If I was going to assign blame I’d single out Krugman/DeLong for rudeness and Fama/Cochrane for poor communication skills..." Me: Economists' Views of Fiscal Policy: RetCon Department: The argument that Sumner attributes to Cochrane and Fama (and, wrongly, to Barro) is not a coherent argument: if you say "if I assume that fiscal policy does not affect nominal spending, then fiscal policy does not affect nominal spending, and so I have proved my case" you haven't made an argument at all...

  • Monday Smackdown: Let Me Smackdown Jared Bernstein on International Trade Here...: I really, really wish Jared Bernstein would not do this. It is simply not the case—as he knows well—that policymakers "quickly forgot about the need to compensate for the losses" from expanded international trade. Democratic policymakers—of whom Jared is one—well-remembered this, but after November 1994 did not have the power. Republican policymakers did not see the need as a need at all: they did not forget it: they ignored it...

  • Note to Self: My sense is that "we need to raise reserve requirements in a boom" is very good policy; but that "we need to pop this bubble" is almost always very bad policy. And we do not appear to have any (large) equity bubble. The weirdness is all in bond prices...

  • Looking Backwards from This Week at 16, 8, 4, 2, 1, 1/2, and 1/4 Years Ago: July 23, 2019: Highlights of Highlights: The 1870 Inflection Point in Transport and Trade: An In-Take from "Slouching Towards Utopia": An Economic History of the Long 20th Century: Everyplace in the world was, as long as there were docks and railroads, cheek-by-jowl to every other place. Everyone’s opportunities and constraints, not, as before, just the consumption patterns of the elite, depended on what was going on in every other piece of the world economy.... And once a comparative advantage was established it tended to stick....
     
    Reading Notes for Robert Skidelsky: "Keynes: A Very Short Introduction"...: John Maynard Keynes was brought up a classical liberal and a classical economist... believed in free trade, economic progress, cultural uplift, and political reason... found himself watching as the classical economic mechanisms he had been taught to admire all fell apart. He then picked himself up. After World War I Keynes used what power he had to—don't laugh—try to restore civilization.... And when he lost in the 1920s and the 1930s he picked himself up yet again, and tried yet again in the mid-1930s and thereafter to lay the groundwork for future victories for prosperity, rationality, and technocracy. And, in the end, he succeeded....
     
    A Teaching Note on Barro's (2005) "Rare Events and the Equity Premium" and Rietz's (1988) "The Equity Premium: A Solution": Barro's paper follows Rietz (1988).... A greater fear of future catastrophe is a source of high, not low, price-dividend and price-earnings ratios. THIS CAN ONLY WORK BECAUSE THERE ARE NO BONDS IN THE MODEL: SAFE ASSETS ARE IN ZERO SUPPLY: THE ONLY WAY TO INSURE AGAINST A BAD FUTURE IS TO BUY RISKY EQUITIES NOW IN AN ATTEMPT TO MOVE PURCHASING POWER FORWARD IN TIME!!!!....
     
    World War II at the Operational Level: The Fall of France 1940 (Prompted by the Forthcoming Release of "Dunkirk")_: Three days into the battle it was clear that a major Nazi attack was coming through the Ardennes, and the French began to respond... threw 800 tanks in four armored divisions plus between six and ten infantry divisions in front of the Nazi breakthrough in plenty of time to make a difference—yet (de Gaulle's division aside) they were completely ineffective in a running fight against seven Nazi panzer divisions, which had no more tanks and somewhat fewer soldiers than the French reserves committed to oppose them.... But before we scorn the French army of 1940 as cheese-eating surrender monkeys, remember what happened to the U.S. 106th Infantry Division when Hitler’s Third Reich was on its very last legs, and what happened to Major General Lloyd Fredendall’s U.S. II Corps at Kasserine Pass. Everybody who faced the Nazis did more-or-less equally badly, in their initial encounters at least....
     
    Obama Has Always Been for Premature Fiscal Austerity: January 7 [2009]: TAPPER: "Your team has talked about the stimulus package being 675 to 775 billion. But at the same time... you're going to distribute a memo in which economists say it should be between 800 billion and 1.3 trillion. How do you reconcile that difference...?" OBAMA: "Well, we are still in consultation with members of Congress about the final size of the package. We expect that it will be on the high end of our estimates, but [it] will not be as high as some economists have recommended because of the constraints and concerns we have about the existing deficit...

  • Comment of the Day: Graydon: "It's quite possible to look at the Chinese per-city bans on combustion-powered busses and taxis... as drifting toward the Chinese banning sales of new private combustion-powered automobiles by 2022 or so...

  • Comment of the Day: Grebmorts: ": "Seven thorns. 'Yt' is an abbreviation for 'þat' https://en.wiktionary.org/wiki/yt..." Touché... Why þ and &—not to mention æ, ð, œ—have not made more of a comeback in this Age of Twitter is a mystery to me...

  • For the Weekend: Aretha Franklin: Who's Zoomin' Who?

  • Weekend Reading: Francis Wilkinson: Gun Safety Takes a Back Seat to Gun Culture and Children Die

  • Weekend Reading: Dwight D. Eisenhower (1954): Letter to Edgar Newton Eisenhower: "Should any political party attempt to abolish social security, unemployment insurance, and eliminate labor laws and farm programs, you would not hear of that party again in our political history. There is a tiny splinter group, of course, that believes you can do these things. Among them are H. L. Hunt (you possibly know his background), a few other Texas oil millionaires, and an occasional politician or business man from other areas. Their number is negligible and they are stupid...

  • Weekend Reading: Roger Zelazny: For a Breath I Tarry...


  1. Abraham Lincoln: On the Know Nothing Party: Letter to Joshua F. Speed: "I am not a Know-Nothing. That is certain. How could I be? How can any one who abhors the oppression of negroes, be in favor of degrading classes of white people? Our progress in degeneracy appears to me to be pretty rapid. As a nation, we begin by declaring that 'all men are created equal'. We now practically read it 'all men are created equal, except negroes'. When the Know-Nothings get control, it will read 'all men are created equal, except negroes, and foreigners, and catholics'...

  2. Colin Leys: Samuel Huntington and the End of Classic Modernization Theory

  3. John Ronald Reuel Tolkien (1966): The Homecoming of Beorhtnoth Beorthelm's Son: "Beorhtwold... utters the famous... 'Hige sceal þe heardra, heorte þe cenre/mod sceal þe mare þe ure maegen lytlað' 'Will shall be the sterner, heart the bolder, spirit the greater as our strength lessens'. It is here implied, as is indeed probable, that these words were not "original," but an ancient and honoured expression of heroic will; Beorhtwold is all the more, not the less, likely for that reason actually to have used them in his last hour...

  4. Greg Sargent: "Central to Trump’s racism—and more broadly to Trumpism writ large—is... asserting the right to engage in public displays of racism without it being called out for what it is... to flaunt his racism with impunity.... Nonwhite lawmakers who were born here... are in some sense not members of the American nation.... The flat-out denial that any of this is racist is... crucial to the overall statement: The explicit idea here is that Trump is free to engage in public racism without it being called out for what it really is, that is, with no apology or capitulation to those who label it as such...

  5. Wikipedia: Višegrad Massacres

  6. Jennifer Craig: Value of Shipwreck Data in Databases

  7. Justin Leidwanger: From Time Capsules to Networks: New Light on Roman Shipwrecks in the Maritime Economy

  8. QuantEcon: QuantEcon Notebook Library

  9. A. J. Parker: Artifact Distributions and Wreck Locations: The Archaeology of Roman Commerce

  10. William Bradford: History of Plimoth Plantation

  11. Joseph R. McConnell et al.: Lead Pollution Recorded in Greenland Ice Indicates European Emissions Tracked Plagues, Wars, and Imperial Expansion During Antiquity

  12. Roger Zelazny: For a Breath I Tarry...


  1. I did not pay enough attention to the racist animus underlying Tea Party Republicans in the early 2010s. Vanessa Williamson, Theda Skocpol, and John Coggin tried to warn me. I ignored them. Shame on me: Vanessa Williamson, Theda Skocpol, and John Coggin: The Tea Party and the Remaking of Republican Conservatism: "In the aftermath of a potentially demoralizing 2008 electoral defeat, when the Republican Party seemed widely discredited, the emergence of the Tea Party provided conservative activists with a new identity funded by Republican business elites and reinforced by a network of conservative media sources. Untethered from recent GOP baggage and policy specifics, the Tea Party energized disgruntled white middle-class conservatives and garnered widespread attention, despite stagnant or declining favorability ratings among the general public. As participant observation and interviews with Massachusetts activists reveal, Tea Partiers are not monolithically hostile toward government; they distinguish between programs perceived as going to hard-working contributors to US society like themselves and “handouts” perceived as going to unworthy or freeloading people. During 2010, Tea Party activism reshaped many GOP primaries and enhanced voter turnout, but achieved a mixed record in the November general election. Activism may well continue to influence dynamics in Congress and GOP presidential primaries. Even if the Tea Party eventually subsides, it has undercut Obama’s presidency, revitalized conservatism, and pulled the national Republican Party toward the far right...

  2. I want my country back! I want my country back now!!: Great^10-Grandfather William Bradford: The Project Gutenberg eBook of Bradford's History of 'Plimoth Plantation', by William Bradford: "So being ready to departe, they had a day of solleme humiliation, their pastor taking his texte from Ezra 8:21: And ther at þe river, by Ahava, I proclaimed a fast, that we might humble ourselves before our God, and seeke of him a right way for us, and for our children, and for all our substance. Upon which he spente a good parte of þe day very profitably, and suitable to their presente occasion. The rest of the time was spente in powering out prairs to þe Lord with great fervencie, mixed with abundance of tears. And þe time being come that they must departe, they were accompanied with most of their brethren out of þe citie, unto a towne sundrie miles of called Delfes-Haven, wher the ship lay ready to receive them. So they lefte yt goodly & pleasante citie, which had been ther resting place near 12. years; but they knew they were pilgrimes, & looked not much on those things, but lift up their eyes to þe heavens, their dearest cuntrie, and quieted their spirits...

  3. Steve M.: 2020 Strategy: Everyone Should Scorch Earth The Way Trump Does: "I didn't see this coming, though I probably should have: 'Kellyanne Conway Snaps Back at Reporter: "What’s Your Ethnicity?": When White House reporter Andrew Feinberg posed a question to Kellyanne Conway on Tuesday about the president’s racist tweets against the four congresswomenknown as the “Squad,” he found himself taken aback by her response.... Instead of answering that question, Conway asked him, “What’s your ethnicity?”... Conway still would not answer Feinberg’s question, instead insisting that [the] question was relevant because Trump said “originally” from—he didn’t—and going on a rant about how “a lot of us are sick and tired in this country of America coming last”...'It's not news that Conway would rather kneecap reporters than inform them of the truth. But she hasn't been in the habit of tossing ethnicity into the mix. That's been the president's specialty. That, however, seems to be the Trump team's strategy for 2020: Everyone should become even more like Trump...

  4. Kevin Drum: Trump Hits a New Low... Again: "A very non-exhaustive list of things that have been called new lows for Trump over the past few years. Enjoy...

  5. Ezra Klein: Trump Was Right, and Justin Amash Was Wrong, About Conservatives: "For most conservatives, whether they were prominent pundits or everyday voters... no contradiction between conservatism and Trumpism.... Conservatism isn’t, for most people, an ideology. It’s a group identity.... Michael Barber and Jeremy Pope.... 'There has never been a president (or any party leader) who shifts back and forth so often between liberal and conservative issue positions'.... If conservatism was an ideology... a stronger attachment to that ideology should provide a stronger mooring against the winds of Trump.... Instead, 'we observe exactly the opposite: strong "conservatives" are the most likely to be partisan loyalists—following Trump in a liberal direction when told of his support for a liberal policy.'... Our political language fails us. The terms we use to describe ideologies are often describing social identities. And what matters to an identity group is whether their group is winning or losing. Trump understood this better than most...

  6. Steve M.: 2020 Strategy: Everyone Should Scorch Earth The Way Trump Does: "I didn't see this coming, though I probably should have: 'Kellyanne Conway Snaps Back at Reporter: "What’s Your Ethnicity?": When White House reporter Andrew Feinberg posed a question to Kellyanne Conway on Tuesday about the president’s racist tweets against the four congresswomenknown as the “Squad,” he found himself taken aback by her response.... Instead of answering that question, Conway asked him, “What’s your ethnicity?”... Conway still would not answer Feinberg’s question, instead insisting that [the] question was relevant because Trump said “originally” from—he didn’t—and going on a rant about how “a lot of us are sick and tired in this country of America coming last”...'It's not news that Conway would rather kneecap reporters than inform them of the truth. But she hasn't been in the habit of tossing ethnicity into the mix. That's been the president's specialty. That, however, seems to be the Trump team's strategy for 2020: Everyone should become even more like Trump...

  7. Barry Eichengreen does not appear pleased with Facebook's non-blockchain blockchain called Libra. As I have said, it looks like a second-order grift. There might be real value there—competing with visa and the others is a worthwhile task. But calling it "blockchain"? And calling it "blockchain" when it isn't? There do appear to be several levels here at which Facebook is not on the level. And that makes one wonder about the value to society of the project: Barry Eichengreen: Questions on Facebook's Libra: "In light of my Washington Post op-ed on Libra, I thought I might pose some questions about this new blogpost from Facebook’s David Marcus https://www.facebook.com/notes/david-marcus/libra-2-weeks-in/10158616513819148/ on the same subject: Still no details on what will ensure that Libra continuously trades at par vis-à-vis the underlying basket? Is the idea that Libra will function like an ETF (which won’t work) or like a currency board (which will be incredibly expensive)? Will the members of the Libra Association have the power to decide later to hypothecate the underlying assets? If this is against the rules, what prevents them from changing the rules?... Would Osama Bin Landen have been able to operate a wallet on his own? Would his wallet have had to first be approved by the members of the Libra Association? On what basis can regulators be confident that those members have the information to make a reliable determination? You write that you will have 'proper know-your-customer practices'. What information will you collect from your customers to make this determination? How will you collect it? Ensure its confidentiality?...

  8. Right-wing U. Penn professor Amy Wax brings the racism pure: Joe Patrice: Professor Amy Wax Declares Black Students ‘Rarely’ Graduate In The Top Half Of Law School Class: "And have never graduated in the top quarter as far as she can remember: Comedian Cristela Alonzo has this bit about walking through a racist locale and facing shouts of 'Mexicans are lazy' and that 'Mexicans are taking all our jobs', forcing her to wonder 'well, which one is it?' Professor Amy Wax of Penn Law would do well to remember this little life lesson in racist contradiction.... Right after she’s finished explaining how black people would be better off if they understood that they’re better at menial tasks... Wax claims that a black student has never finished in the top quarter of a graduating class Penn Law as far as she can remember and that they 'rarely, rarely' finish in the top half. That prompts.... [Glenn] Loury: 'Do you have a racial diversity mandate for law review appointments at Penn?' [Amy] Wax: 'Yes. Yes.' Loury: 'So you’re telling me that students of color who have served on law review are pretty much in the bottom half of their law classes at Penn?' Wax: '…' Silence. The audience is just treated to long beats of dead air as she rolls her eyes back into her head to access whatever part of the reptilian brain controls explicit bias and scrambles to put together something to justify her wildly unsupported claim...

  9. Samuel P. Huntington: The Hispanic Challenge: "Unlike past immigrant groups, Mexicans and other Latinos have not assimilated into mainstream U.S. culture, forming instead their own political and linguistic enclaves—from Los Angeles to Miami -- and rejecting the Anglo-Protestant values that built the American dream.... The Hispanization of Miami is without precedent.... The Cuban takeover had major consequences... a Cuban-led, Hispanic city... in which assimilation and Americanization were unnecessary and in some measure undesired..... By 1999, the heads of Miami’s largest bank, largest real estate development company, and largest law firm were all Cuban-born or of Cuban descent... the mayor of Miami and the mayor, police chief, and state attorney of Miami-Dade County, plus two-thirds of Miami’s U.S. Congressional delegation and nearly one half of its state legislators.... Anglos (as well as blacks)... outside minorities that could often be ignored. Unable to communicate with government bureaucrats and discriminated against by store clerks, the Anglos... could accept their subordinat[ion]... assimilate into the Hispanic community... leave... their exodus reflected in a popular bumper sticker: 'Will the last American to leave Miami, please bring the flag'...

  10. Anne is wrong: the turning point came long, long ago: Anne Applebaum: Conservative Intellectuals Are at a Turning Point: Normalize Trump or Resist Him?: "We have consistently spoken about civic patriotism and not nationalism in the United States.... We are not... held together by ethnic blood ties.... Our imagined community is based on... a more complex, more cerebral national ideal... democracy and justice as opposed to blood and soil.... Those who promote a... nativist definition of America... weaken and divide us, as the president [does].... I have some sympathy [for] the conservative movement[. It] is at a real turning point... decide whether they will continue to normalize Trump, providing him with the intellectual framework to indulge the dangerous impulses on display in Greenville, or whether they will try to create something that gives the Republican Party, at least, some viable alternative once Trumpism fails. If they can bring themselves to abandon the word “nationalism,” that will be a good sign...

  11. Mistermix: Only Play with Money, Careful: "Atrios, on why Democratic Senators in purple states don’t support popular things....'Polls say it’s popular but a candidate can’t win if they support it? Does not compute does not compute beep beep beep. The reason it does compute is that... the calculation is not 'boy if I support a higher minimum wage then the voters will get mad'. The calculation is 'boy if I support a higher minimum wage then the voters will like that, BUT the Chamber of Commerce types will dump a bunch of money into the race to oppose me and run ads calling me a child molester (or highlighting something else that might be unpopular about me)'. Supporting the popular thing is a problem not because the popular thing is unpopular (by definition!), but because it’s tough to win as a Democrat generally and extra hard if the big money comes after you.' I think this describes the mindset correctly, but I don’t know if it reflects the current reality.  Whether or not you support something popular, if you’re a Democrat in a state that’s anything but completely blue, there is so much third-party money in these races that you’re going to be awash in negative ads for months prior to the election. So you might as well shout out loud and proud about popular things like a minimum wage hike, because the millions in third party spending will be there anyways...

  12. I disagree: at some level, this is a joke; I'm just not sure at what level: Justin Weinberg: Mini-Heap: "Colin McGinn launches consulting firm handling matters 'from workplace ethics to catastrophe avoidance'—I’m assured this is not a joke. Do check out the list of advisors... Philosophical Applications: "We bring the right people together to challenge established thinking and drive transformation.... Advisors: Roger Scruton... Rebecca Goldstein... Simon Blackburn... Thomas Nagel... Stephen Pinker... Michael Shermer... A.C. Grayling... Marie McGinn...

  13. Alan Murray: China Takes Lead in Fortune Global 500: "The new Fortune Global 500 list goes live this morning, and marks an important world power transition. The number of companies on the list based in China, including the 10 in Taiwan, reached a record 129—exceeding for the first time the number of companies based in the U.S. (121). The Fortune  Global 500 ranks companies on size, and of course, size is not everything. Many of the largest Chinese companies are state-owned enterprises which owe their heft to government-supported monopolies in the world’s most populous market, and aren’t necessarily the world’s most dynamic companies. Nevertheless, the list signals a significant global power shift. Ten years ago, there were only 43 Chinese companies on the list. Twenty years ago, there were just eight. And a boatload of fast-growing private Chinese companies are rapidly working their way up the ranks...

  14. James D. Muhly: Sources of Tin and the Beginnings of Bronze Metallurgy: "Although there is still some uncertainty over exact details, it is now generally agreed that arsenical copper was produced by the direct smelting of an arsenical copper ore. The arsenic came down into the molten copper because it was present in the ore body, not because it had been added as a separate alloying element. It was thus impossible to control the amount of arsenic present in the copper. Published analyses of arsenical copper artifacts covering the years 4000-2000 B.C. show that arsenic content varied widely, supporting the theory that arsenical copper is a natural alloy...

  15. Scott Aaronson: On Two Blog Posts of Jerry Coyne: "David Gelernter... right-wing commentator... argued that recent work has definitively disproved Darwinism as a mechanism for generating new species, and until something better comes along, Intelligent Design is the best available alternative.... Gelernter’s argument falls flat... because it indulges in bad math and computer science.... Gelernter says that (a) a random change to an amino acid sequence will pretty much always make it worse, (b) the probability of finding a useful new such sequence by picking one at random is at most ~1 in 10^77, and (c) there have only been maybe ~10^40 organisms in earth’s history. Since 10^77 >> 10^40, Darwinism is thereby refuted—not in principle, but as an explanation for life on earth. QED. Gelernter can’t personally see how a path could cut through the exponentially large solution space in a polynomial amount of time, so he asserts that it’s impossible. Many of the would-be P≠NP provers who email me every week do the same. But this particular kind of 'argument from incredulity' has an abysmal track record: it would’ve applied equally well, for example, to problems like maximum matching that turned out to have efficient algorithms. This is why, in CS, we demand better evidence of hardness—like completeness results or black-box lower bounds—neither of which seem however to apply to the case at hand. Surely Gelernter understands all this, but had he not, he could’ve learned it from my lecture at the workshop in France!...

  16. Scott Aaronson: Why Philosophers Should Care About Computational Complexity: "One might think that, once we know something is computable, how efficiently it can be computed is a practical question with little further philosophical importance. In this essay, I offer a detailed case that one would be wrong. In particular, I argue that computational complexity theory—the field that studies the resources (such as time, space, and randomness) needed to solve computational problems—leads to new perspectives on the nature of mathematical knowledge, the strong AI debate, computationalism, the problem of logical omniscience, Hume’s problem of induction, Goodman’s grue riddle, the foundations of quantum mechanics, economic rationality, closed timelike curves, and several other topics of philosophical interest. I end by discussing aspects of complexity theory itself that could benefit from philosophical analysis...

  17. Miriam Bruhn, Dean Karlan, and Antoinette Schoar: The Impact of Consulting Services on Small and Medium Enterprises: Evidence from a Randomized Trial in Mexico: "A randomized control trial with 432 small and medium enterprises in Mexico shows positive impact of access to 1 year of management consulting services on total factor productivity and return on assets. Owners also had an increase in 'entrepreneurial spirit' (an index that measures entrepreneurial confidence and goal setting). Using Mexican social security data, we find a persistent large increase (about 50 percent) in the number of employees and total wage bill even 5 years after the program. We document large heterogeneity in the specific managerial practices that improved as a result of the consulting, with the most prominent being marketing, financial accounting, and long-term business planning...

  18. Betty Cracker: The Mythical Moderating Influence: "I’m not sure why the media is so invested in propping up the female Trumps as a “moderating influence” on the demagogue in the White House: 'CBS News has learned President Trump took a lot of heat from his family over the racist chants at a campaign rally in North Carolina on Wednesday. He heard from first lady Melania Trump, his daughter Ivanka and Vice President Mike Pence.' I suppose it’s remotely possible that Pence, a professional politician, winked and said 'ix-nay on the acism-ray' because he’s afraid a full-blown “send them back to Africa” campaign will hurt the reelection effort. Pence’s lips are so firmly affixed to Trump’s ass that it’s difficult to imagine such a confrontation, but okay, maybe. But we’re seriously supposed to believe FLOTUS Birther McBirtherface and Princess Complicity give a s--- what the unwashed MAGA hordes in North Carolina chanted? They didn’t say jack-shit about the racist tweet that inspired the chant, but now they’re concerned? Give me a f---ing break. The press really needs to stop falling for this bullshit PR spin. It makes them look like suckers every time. Absolute and complete bullshyt...

  19. Well, at least this is better than anonymously mailing bags of excrement to those one believes are one's enemies: Joe Patrice: Law School Professor Doesn’t Understand Twitter, Basic Legal Concepts: "Brian Leiter... occasionally just makes stuff up about us and then doubles down on his easily debunked claims... it all shakes out. But Leiter reached 'old man yells at cloud' status this week when he took to Twitter to make a curious claim that manages to screw up Twitter, intellectual property law, and basic contracts all at once: 'My lawyer told me that I would have to copyright all my tweets to stop assholes from reposting them, as some are still doing. I have however been purging followers without real names, unless I know them. I will continues to add followers with real identities.' Hmmmmm. Indeed! My advice for Professor Leiter based on this tweet would be to find a new lawyer who is aware that Leiter’s tweets actually ARE copyrighted the instant he commits his thoughts to writing.... Copyright is automatic. But that’s the sort of stuff that doesn’t come up in 'Law and Philosophy' courses, so it’s probably not a legal concept that’s top of mind for the professor. But... Leiter’s still not going to be able to prevent people from reposting them, because Twitter’s terms of service make very clear that users are affording the service—and its other users — a license to use the content anywhere: 'By submitting, posting or displaying Content on or through the Services, you grant us a worldwide, non-exclusive, royalty-free license (with the right to sublicense) to use, copy, reproduce, process, adapt, modify, publish, transmit, display and distribute such Content in any and all media or distribution methods (now known or later developed). This license authorizes us to make your Content available to the rest of the world and to let others do the same'...

  20. Once again, why "Agrarianism"?: Fayetteville Weekly Observer: Fayetteville, NC: 25 Feb 1856: "The horrible doctrines of the absolute equality of all things, of colors and sexes, free love, agrarianism and amalgamation...

  21. Yet more on "agrarianism": Mr. McWillie (27 Apr 1850): of Mississippi, on the President's Message Communicating the Constitution of California: "I have heard the objection urged against the institution of slavery at the South, that it entered into competition with the free labor of there North, and therefore must be abolished. This is agrarianism. It is confiscating the estates of one half of the people of this union for he benefit of the other half. And permit me, in this connection to suggest to my friends of the North, that when they advice gotten through with this negro agrarianism, and the agrarianism truth is going on in relations to the public land that the next move may vie real bona fide agrarianism at home. The idea that all men are born free and equal is a very pretty one, and I suppose that equality in proporty is about as desirable as equality in political rights and as much political capital could be made out of this idea, as most of the humbugs of the day; and I suppose it might be made to meet the ideas of the foreign emigrants who are arriving by hundreds of thousands in our northern cities and for whose votes so many political aspirants appear to be most anxious. The idea of every man having his own independent estate, sufficient for every comfort, would be very taking...

  22. Kaili Joy Gray: Trump Adviser Says Trump 'Doesn't Make Things Up' After India Calls Out Trump Lie: "Monday, Trump... claimed India's prime minister had asked him to help resolve the conflict in Kashmir.... 'No such request has been made by PM @narendramodi to US President', Indian External Affairs Ministry spokesperson Raveesh Kumar tweeted.... Larry Kudlow... was asked whether Trump simply made his story up.... Kudlow... 'The president doesn't make anything up.... That's a very rude question in my opinion'...

  23. Thomas Piketty and Emmanuel Saez: Top 1% Subdivided

  24. Somehow I have not yet noted here the existence of Rodney Andrews, who and is now—with Logan Hardy, and Casey—merging the Chetty et al. (In)equality of Opportunity dataset with other information sources in what looks to me like a very promising line of research: Bradley Hardy, Rodney Andrews, Marcus Casey, and Trevon Logan: The Historical Shadow of Segregation On Human Capital And Upward Mobility: "Regional differences in opportunity might be explained not only by contemporary characteristics but also by historical disparities. The researchers will merge the Panel Study of Income Dynamics (PSID) with Raj Chetty and others’ Equality of Opportunity dataset, and the Logan-Parman index of inequality...

  25. Jacob Jensen, Suresh Naidu, Ethan Kaplan, and Laurence Wilse-Samson: Political Polarization and the Dynamics of Political Language: Evidence from 130 Years of Partisan Speech: "We... study the polarization of political discourse and the diffusion of political language since 1873. We statistically identify highly partisan phrases from the Congressional Record and then use these to impute partisanship and political polarization to the Google Books corpus.... We also find that polarization of discourse in books predicts legislative gridlock, but polarization of congressional language does not.... We find that polarized phrases increase in frequency in Google Books before their use increases in congressional speech. Our evidence is consistent with an autonomous effect of elite discourse on congressional speech and legislative gridlock, but this effect is not large enough to drive the recent increase in congressional polarization...

  26. Why is Google selling this as AI rather than as functioning human-AI teams?: Chris Smith: Surprise: The ‘AI Bot’ People Talk to on Google Duplex Calls Is Sometimes Actually a Person: "25% of calls placed through Duplex started with a human. Beyond that, 15% of calls that started off with the Duplex AI bot had a human intervene at some point.... Yes, maybe Duplex needs human oversight and the best way to train AI is by having it work with a lot of examples to learn from. But Google never really mentioned this human aspect of Google Duplex, which sort of ruins the magic of it all...


  1. George Stigler (1962): Weekend Reading: The Problem of the Negro: "The stream of demonstrations, growing in size and in insolence, approved or at least tolerated by the political, intellectual, and religious leaders of the nation...

  2. Wikipedia: Abuja

  3. Wikipedia: Œ

  4. Hieronymus Bosch: Last Judgement

  5. Wikipedia: Tetragrammaton

  6. Wikipedia: Tetragrammaton: "An image on the piece of pottery found at Kuntillet Ajrud is adjacent to a Hebrew inscription 'Berakhti etkhem l’YHVH Shomron ul’Asherato' ('I have blessed you by Yahweh of Samaria and [his] Asherah') dated around 800 BCE...

  7. KJV: Jeremiah 22


#noted #weblogs

Comments