3 comments on “Timmy Elsewhere

  1. Haven’t read ‘Farewell to Alms’ yet, but one thought about the experiment described is that in order to sort out the static, they quite properly used a stable controlled artificial environment, with no real life consequences for the participants.
    Can this really be scaled up to the real world? I can’t see how.
    Not to say that the paper isn’t valid and interesting, but that’s it.

  2. Tim,

    is the point of your ‘Sunday Business’ column a bit like a non-pornographic version of your ‘tabloid’ site, i.e. you can say things there that even on this site would be seen as absurd?

    The market failure is in the markets that produce CO2 as an externality (e.g. food processing) and don’t cover its cost. You used to know that.

    Tim adds: No, it isn’t a market failure. It is, as I pointed out, the absence of a market: and a market that we have to go and construct.

  3. Just getting into the last chapters of Clark’s book (Thanks to it being highlighted on this blog before the UK publication.) Economic history was my subject at university, and I am not entirely convinced by the thesis. I think he doesn’t emphasise enough the role of worldwide trade combining with the population rise to create larger markets for industries, even if the return on capital was no greater then before. So genetics may not be sufficient – in short, how come a gradual change produced a sharp break? And the demographic transition isn’t explained in genetic terms. Still, he’s better read than I am – so maybe he’s right. I can’t explain why Spain, Portugal, and Holland had world empires before we did and didn’t have an industrial revolution – for the Iberian peninsula, it was almost the reverse. The biggest event in human history still lacks a coherent narrative.

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