Lending is the right model for ebooks: Joshua Gans asks "If lending is the appropriate mode for books, then how would the business of publishing look if it is built around lending rather than ownership?"
Why journalists need Twitter : Often maligned as quick chat for empty headed gossips, Twitter can play a valuable role in news gathering and reporting writes Alan Knight.
The surplus fetish: The "notion that we will be eternally damned in the fires of fiscal hell unless government revenues exceed spending by even a dollar" is a ridiculous idea, says Mr Denmore. But by trying to look like a fiscal tough guy, Wayne Swan has boxed himself into a corner.
Bob Carr is wrong about welfare: Australia’s means-tested welfare system keeps spending down and allows governments to retire debt, says Bob Carr. But Carr is confused says Matt Cowgill. "The ability to pay down debt is obviously a function of both spending and taxes".
A linguistic tax: English is fast becoming Europe’s dominant language says Philippe Van Parijs. In his new book Linguistic Justice for Europe and for the World, he argues that native English speakers share the benefits of a common language without having to meet the costs. A tax on Anglophone countries would reduce this unfairness. Ingrid Robeyns has started an online reading group at Spongia.
Occupy and the mirage of democratic consensus: "The intransigence of the Occupy movement suggests an unwillingness among its numbers to take seriously the fact of pluralism, and the corollary impossibility of consensus, which makes majoritarian democratic procedures necessary in the first place." Will Wilkinson.
Better schools won’t save the American Dream: Early childhood not schooling holds the key reducing the academic achievement gap, writes Sean Reardon in the Boston Review. The article is part of series: Occupy the Future, that includes contributions from Kenneth Arrow, Rob Reich and others.
The meaning of merit : A meritocracy rewards the hardworking and the virtuous writes Luigi Zingales. But at the Monkey Cage Andrew Gelman disagrees: "In a meritocracy, you can be as hardworking as John Kruk or as virtuous as Kobe Bryant and you’ll still get ahead—-if you have the talent and achievement. Throwing in ‘hardworking’ and ‘virtuous’ seems to me to an attempt (unconscious, I expect) to retroactively assign moral standing to the winners in an economic race."
Poking fun at mummy blogs: Parodies of mummy blogs make Blue Milk laugh, but …