Assorted Links (11/15/2011)

Here’s a list of articles that I have been reading lately:

Economic Law vs. Occupy Wall Street

Interesting things are happening these days at Harvard, with a student “walkout” in professor Greg Mankiw’s principles of economics course; the students were apparently objecting to the “conservative” nature of microeconomics.  “The protestors probably should have stayed in class, because their open letter to the professor betrays a formidable level of economic ignorance. It’s highly doubtful that any of these students have actually taken the time to understand the logic behind the laws of supply and demand… ”

The 1% Across Space And Time

Apparently the growing income share of the top 1 percent is not a uniquely American phenomenon. A graph posted by Princeton economist and Nobel laureate Paul Krugman at shows the income share of the top 1 percent in the United Kingdom from 1908-2010. Basically the graph is U-shaped, with high (in the 15–20% range) income shares for the top 1 percent in the earlier and later periods of that century and lower income shares in between (e.g., in 1978 it was 6%, compared with roughly 15% in 2010).  Harvard economist Greg Mankiw (see notes that “You find a similar U-shaped pattern in Australia, Canada, Ireland, and New Zealand but much less so in France, Germany, Japan, and Sweden”.

Catholic Losses Are Baptist Gains

“In the zero-sum game of competitive markets, one company’s misstep is often a rival’s gain. But what about in the marketplace of religion?”

Supreme Court will hear health care case this term

“The Supreme Court said Monday it will hear arguments next March over President Barack Obama’s health care overhaul — a case that could shake the political landscape as voters are deciding if Obama deserves another term.”

Obama’s Oil Abdication

“In The Wall Street Journal, Alaska Sen. Lisa Murkowski writes that Cuba, Mexico, the Bahamas, Canada and Russia are all moving ahead on offshore oil projects adjacent to our borders.”

The growing US jobs challenge

“It could take more than five years—longer than after any postwar downturn—to replace the millions of jobs lost to the 2008–09 recession. How can the US rev up its job creation engine?”

The Devil and Joe Paterno

“When a life of virtue becomes an excuse for extraordinary vice.”

Listen Up, Boomers: The Backlash Has Begun

In an excellent essay, Walter Russell Mead calls out the boomer generation for its culture of narcissism and entitlement…

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