Reading Feed (July 2020)
A collection of things that I was glad I read. Views expressed by linked authors are chosen because I think they’re interesting, not because I think they’re correct, unless indicated otherwise.
Blog: Tyler Cowen @ Bloomberg View | The NBA’s Reopening Is a Warning Sign for the U.S. Economy — "If so many NBA players are pondering non-participation, how keen do you think those workers — none of whom are millionaire professional athletes — are about returning to the office?"
Blog: Marginal Revolution | Tales from Trinidad barter markets in everything — "Since December he’s been trying to get his taxi badge... The day arrives to collect. He’s told typewriter is not working over a week... The post goes on to say that officials at Licensing agreed that if they got a typewriter they would be able to provide the taxi badge... Money paid. He calls later to say everyone is getting their license today. He actually called twice while at licensing office to get further instruction on operating the typewriter. Well done, young man. Well done!"
Blog: Marginal Revolution | Combining life insurance and health insurance — "We estimate the benefit of life-extending medical treatments to life insurance companies. Our main insight is that life insurance companies have a direct benefit from such treatments because they lower the insurer’s liabilities by pushing the death benefit further into the future and raising future premium income. We apply this insight to immunotherapy, treatments associated with durable gains in survival rates for a growing number of cancer patients. We estimate that the life insurance sector’s aggregate benefit from FDA-approved immunotherapies is $9.8 billion a year..."
Blog: Schneier on Security | The Security Value of Inefficiency — "All of the overcapacity that has been squeezed out of our healthcare system; we now wish we had it. All of the redundancy in our food production that has been consolidated away; we want that, too. We need our old, local supply chains -- not the single global ones that are so fragile in this crisis. And we want our local restaurants and businesses to survive, not just the national chains..."
Blog: Marginal Revolution | Why American lockdown exceptionalism? — "There is a mechanism of social conformity at work here. Most people will not tolerate a small risk to their lives to dine out, for instance — but they might if all their friends are doing the same. The appeal of a restaurant isn’t just the food, it’s the shared experience and the sense that others are doing it, too..."
Blog: Marginal Revolution | When Police Kill — "Both the Bureau of Justice Statistics’ Arrest-Related Deaths and the FBI’s Supplemental Homicide Reports estimated around 400-500 police kills a year, circa 2010. But the two series have shockingly low overlap–homicides counted in one series are not counted in the other and vice-versa. A statistical estimate based on the lack of overlap suggests a true rate of around 1000 police killings per year..."
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