University of Chicago event on macroeconomy and tax reforms… Roundtable Discussion with Austan Goolsbee and Edward Lazear

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Summary of key changes in tax code

Preliminary Details and Analysis of the Tax Cuts and Jobs Act from The Tax Foundation

Analysis of Final Tax Reform Legislation, Corporate Perspective Harvard Law School Forum on Corporate Governance

Good summary of provisions from Cooley LLP

Posted in Teaching macroeconomics | Leave a comment

A visit to Bougounam library in #Burkina Faso

FAVL program officer Alidou Boué spent a day at Bougounam library earlier this week.  Here are some photos: Zebret Moumouni, the librarian (who also decorated the building) in his hat at his desk (looking at a great Atlas in the library collection), a reader, and a collection of new books for the library. The library was recently hooked up to the electric grid.

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I have evolved to a proud Type 3.7 Stata user, but know that still has problems

This is awesome! But will I not procrastinate and actually use it? I am already a Type 3.7 but I know exactly what the issue is here. So glad to see my own workflow habits “replicated”… (see here for the underlying discussion). HT: @andrewbhall

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Ancillary Justice by Ann Leckie

Ancillary Justice by Ann Leckie is a fantastic sprawling sci-fi story, set in the far future, with an AI as the central character. The character development is superb, and I especially appreciated the spot-on nuance about how AI might operate. Of course, as in all sci-fi there are incongruities: an amazing AI and stargates, but they are still using paper currency…? But maybe we 21st century readers need that?  Leckie also uses some cool technique, by replicating the AI multiple point of view problem in the narration. The text thus slows you down, the reader, and the complexity forces you to think more, rather than passively absorb the story and setting. Definitely deserved the various major awards.

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What an unfortunate example to use to explain reverse correlation technique in social psychology

From Brinkman, L., Dotsch, R., & Todorov, A. (In press). Visualising mental representations: A primer on noise-based reverse correlation in social psychology. European Review of Social Psychology.

reverse corre Moroccan quote

Apparently the researcher don’t know what a Moroccan person looks like, but they do know what a criminal looks like. Like I said, unfortunate. Imagine if it were the reverse. The researchers ask participants to look for a “criminal” face. They get the composite image. One of them shouts, “Hey, looks just like a Moroccan!”


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Great article by Emily Oster and Geoffrey Kocks on vaccination in California

Great article by Emily Oster and Geoffrey Kocks on vaccination in California:

Under-vaccination is a significant policy problem. As earlier generations knew, people die of measles, and of whooping cough, and of other diseases that vaccines can prevent. Figuring out how to increase vaccination is a challenge. We often rely on education, but it is hard to change people’s minds on this topic, as doctors and policymakers — as well as any parents who have engaged on an internet message board — know all too well.

From a policy standpoint, these findings offer a ray of hope for vaccine proponents. Maybe changing minds isn’t so important. People may not have altered their attitudes about vaccination, but the fact is that these laws actually changed behavior.

In Oregon, parents can opt out of getting their children immunized by completing a 15-minute online “education” module. Many of them do: The share of people in Oregon counties with kindergarten vaccination rates over 95 percent was close to 100 percent in 2000; in 2015, it was about 30 percent. Perhaps lawmakers there and in other states should consider a more stringent exemption policy before, not after, they have their own measles outbreak.

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