Arnold Kling: June 2003 Archives

Fighting Murphy

In his book Hard Heads, Soft Hearts, Alan Blinder formulated Murphy's Law of economic policy, which states that economists gain attention only when they take unreliable, controversial positions. When most economists agree on a well-supported idea, such as free... Read More

Quack Economic Prescription

In a recent opinion piece for the Washington Post, physician Marc Siegel made a proposal for containing health care costs. The proposal was approximately as follows: Physicians are ripping off the public with excess profits and overhead. The cost... Read More


"The Teflon-like resistance of the US dollar is yet another manifestation of this pervasive sense of denial. Currencies, of course, are relative prices. And in a synchronous global recession everyone gets hurt. Yet if a US-centric world tumbles into recession,... Read More

The Centrifuge Moves You

The information technology industry is undergoing its most fundamental transformation in almost 25 years. The personal computer, which was at the heart of the last major transformation, is disintegrating. The future looks very different from the recent past. Centri Read More

Worse Than Spam

"...public policy that applies governance models from traditional telecommunications to the Internet [is] one of the few ways to do real damage by making the Internet brittle and backward-looking rather than resilient and full of opportunity. It is the duty... Read More

America Is Crazy

America's most expensive health care problem is mental illness. I'm not referring to depression, schizophrenia, or other commonly-diagnosed psychological disorders. I am talking about the neuroses that cause us to remain attached to a complex system of corporate an Read More

Economic Attribution Errors

"Psychologists call this tendency the Fundamental Attribution Error (FAE), which is a fancy way of saying that when it comes to interpreting other people's behavior, human beings invariably make the mistake of overestimating the importance of fundamental character Read More

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