Category Archives: Society

Your new barons. When and how did the super-rich escaped taxation?

Together with Benno Torgler and Katharina Gangl, I published a piece recently on how to tax the powerful and sophisticated. Our substantive argument on what one should do becomes relatively simple once you understand what happened in the world of Western … Continue reading

Posted in Democracy, History, Law, Politics - international, Politics - national, regulation, Society | 2 Comments

What to expect during a cold war with China?

In 2005 I did my first economic projections of the major powers (published in a textbook) and concluded from the trends then that China would have a larger economy in purchasing power terms than the US in 2017, which is … Continue reading

Posted in Democracy, History, Philosophy, Politics - international, Society | 15 Comments

Covid-congestion effects: why are lockdowns so deadly?

Consider the picture below of two hypothetical Accident and Emergency departments (A&E), one that has no covid-regulations and simply has the available nurses trying to help all comers as fast as possible. In the other one the nurses try to … Continue reading

Posted in Coronavirus crisis, Death and taxes, Education, Health, Science, Society | 29 Comments

Can you spot the countries with high vaccinations? Or recent lockdowns?

I am all for effective vaccines and have been impressed with how fast vaccines have been developed against covid, but I never expected them to be the wonder weapons some promised them to be. After all, the yearly new vaccines … Continue reading

Posted in Coronavirus crisis, Health, History, Innovation, Medical, Politics - international, Politics - national, Society | 12 Comments

What stock markets tell us about the covid-mania.

Stock markets give us a glimpse what people with money have deduced about world events before they happen. Investors can make mistakes, sometimes terrible mistakes, but they are honest mistakes: you don’t buy a stock at a 100 if you … Continue reading

Posted in Business, Coronavirus crisis, IT and Internet, Politics - international, regulation, Society | 15 Comments

Three lessons on Chinese culture and politics

The animosity between the Chinese and Australian authorities is heating up, so we Westerners need to understand some of Chinese culture and politics. I do not have all the answers, but some 10 years of working and teaching on China … Continue reading

Posted in History, Life, Science, Social, Society, Uncategorized | 40 Comments

Histories of the Great Panic.

How will Western historians in 2050 remember 2020? In scenario 1, “The Great Panic, a lost generation”, I sketch my best guess. Scenario 2, “A job well done” is the one I imagine many current Western governments hope is told. … Continue reading

Posted in Coronavirus crisis, Cultural Critique, Dance, Geeky Musings, Health, History, Humour, Innovation, Libertarian Musings, Life, Philosophy, Politics - international, Politics - national, Public and Private Goods, Social Policy, Society | 91 Comments