For those of you pondering in your apartments 'why should I read in my shower when I could listen to a podcast in my tub', this edition of links is especially for you.
First of all, EconTalk has been on a tear lately. Three gems:
Out of Poverty: Sweatshops in the Global Economy.
Third, Uber co-founder Travis Kalanick shares how Uber plans to kill Big Traffic. BTW, Lyft is getting in on the carpool action as well.
Now for those who prefer to click and read the way nature intended:
Kavin Senapathy writing in Forbes suggests we not get too excited about the prospects (and promises) of microbiome makeovers.
Leave it to Grumpy to throw cold water on the magical promises coming out of the Sanders for Tsar camp.
So a science professor claims to have discovered a hidden value accruing to certain members of a particular profession, and a history professor is pretty sure he knows how much several groups of people in a profession should be paid. Luckily, Andy Schwartz is here to disagree.
Phil Magness draws interesting parallels between failed economic modeling and failed climate modeling. The money paragraph (HT: Arnold Kling):
In a strange way, modern climatology shares much in common with the approach of 1950s Keynesian macroeconomics. It usually starts with a number of sweeping assumptions about the relation between atmospheric carbon and temperature, and presumes to isolate them to specific forms of human activity. It then purports to “predict” the effects of those assumptions with extraordinarily great precision across many decades or even centuries into the future. It even has its own valves to turn and levers to pull – restrict carbon emissions by X%, and the average temperature will supposedly go down by Y degrees. Tax gasoline by X dollar amount, watch sea level rise dissipate by Y centimeters, and so forth. And yet as a testable predictor, its models almost consistently overestimate warming in absurdly alarmist directions and its results claim implausible precision for highly isolated events taking place many decades in the future. These faults also seem to plague the climate models even as we may still accept that some level of warming is occurring.