Category Archives: Economics and public policy

Fred Argy: RIP

I was rung yesterday by Ida Argy, wife of Fred Argy and she told me that Fred had recently had a stroke from which he did not recover. Fred was rather like my Dad Fred. A Jewish immigrant – Dad was from Austria … Continue reading

Posted in Economics and public policy, History | 7 Comments

Now is the time for complacency: RBA v Bank of England edition

Reposted from the Mandarin I In our contemporary lexicon ‘independence’ – for instance of a government body – is usually a Good Thing. 1 But if we’re thinking of independence as a good thing for an agency to have – for instance the Productivity … Continue reading

Posted in Cultural Critique, Democracy, Economics and public policy | 6 Comments

Do Black Politicians Matter?

Do black politicians matter Abstract: This paper exploits the history of Reconstruction after the American Civil War to estimate the causal effect of politician race on public finance. I overcome the endogeneity between electoral preferences and black representation using the … Continue reading

Posted in Democracy, Economics and public policy, Race and indigenous | Leave a comment

Evidence-based policy: why is progress so slow and what can be done about it

Here’s a presentation I gave at the anniversary of Australian Policy Online which has been cunningly rebranded under its old acronym as Analysis and Policy Observatory.  I gave a similar one at Kings College London a few weeks previously. Note that some of … Continue reading

Posted in Bullshit, Cultural Critique, Economics and public policy, Philosophy, Political theory, regulation | 10 Comments

Could more “plebisurveys” restore public confidence in Australian democracy?

The extraordinary outpouring of national happiness following the passage of the same sex marriage legislation on Thursday unavoidably gives rise to the question of whether some similar community consultation/plebiscite/survey mechanism (perhaps a well-designed and secure online survey mechanism rather than … Continue reading

Posted in Economics and public policy, Political theory, Politics - national | 15 Comments

Is the end of Brexit nigh?

The EU and the UK government have just agreed to muddle on in their negotiations. Nothing is truly decided until everything is decided, but they have adopted a position document (see here) that details what they want the next steps … Continue reading

Posted in bubble, Democracy, Economics and public policy, History, Political theory, Politics - international, Society | 12 Comments

Why Blockchain has no economic future.

[expanded from the post on JohnMenadue] When Bitcoin went public in 2009 it introduced to the world of finance and economics the technology of blockchain. Even the many who thought Bitcoin would never make it as a major currency were … Continue reading

Posted in bubble, Business, Climate Change, History, Information, Innovation, IT and Internet, Political theory, Politics - national, Science, Social Policy | 12 Comments