June 2011

Cognitive dissonance

26 June 2011

Let’s say you think of yourself as a good person (bear with me for a moment if you don’t). Now you do something nasty to somebody. This leaves you with two contradictory thoughts in your mind: “I am good” and “I am nasty”. In George Orwell’s Nineteen Eighty-Four, “doublethink” is quite routine, but in practice […]

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Looking beyond the financial crisis

13 June 2011

The IMF has been busy of late, what with their attempts to stave off European sovereign defaults and shenanigans of its erstwhile managing director, Dominic Strauss-Kahn. I have been busy too (for rather different reasons I hasten to add) and so it has taken me a while to get to looking at the IMF’s most […]

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Gibbons and welfare

5 June 2011

Regular contributor James Glover, aka Zebra, returns in a post that manages to combine gibbons, tax and a beer coaster. A question I often ask myself is how could gibbons possibly develop a civilisation comparable to our own? Gibbons are solitary creatures so do not form troops, groups or tribes. Developing and passing on knowledge […]

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Why deficits are bad

2 June 2011

There have been many posts here on the blog arguing that government debt and deficits should not be feared, at least not in countries with their own free-floating currency and without foreign currency public debt*. In doing so, I have never discussed the reasons people may have for holding a contrary view. But I have […]

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