school vouchers

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pages: 298 words: 95,668

Milton Friedman: A Biography by Lanny Ebenstein


affirmative action, banking crisis, Berlin Wall, Bretton Woods, Deng Xiaoping, Fall of the Berlin Wall, fiat currency, floating exchange rates, Francis Fukuyama: the end of history, full employment, Hernando de Soto, hiring and firing, inflation targeting, invisible hand, Joseph Schumpeter, Kenneth Arrow, labour market flexibility, Lao Tzu, liquidity trap, means of production, Mont Pelerin Society, Myron Scholes, Pareto efficiency, Paul Samuelson, Ponzi scheme, price stability, rent control, road to serfdom, Robert Bork, Ronald Coase, Ronald Reagan, school choice, school vouchers, secular stagnation, Simon Kuznets, stem cell, The Chicago School, The inhabitant of London could order by telephone, sipping his morning tea in bed, the various products of the whole earth, The Wealth of Nations by Adam Smith, Thorstein Veblen, zero-sum game

I agree with so much of what he says, and yet I disagree absolutely with his methodology and his intolerance.”13 In 1996 Friedman wrote that Mises was “certainly of a quality that would have made him an entirely appropriate recipient of a Nobel Prize.”14 Friedman writes that ideas are important “less by persuading the public than by keeping options open, providing alternative policies to adopt when changes ha[ve] to be made.”15 He expressed similar thoughts in a 1991 question-and-answer session: “Ideas are important, but they take a long time and are not important in and of themselves. Something else has to come along that provides fertile ground for those ideas.”16 This page intentionally left blank 23 SCHOOL VOUCHERS AND SOCIAL ISSUES he primary issue on which Friedman had worked in re Tcent years is school vouchers. He traced evolution of the vouchers idea in 2005: “Little did I know when I published an article in 1955 on ‘The Role of Government in Education’ that it would lead to my becoming an activist for a major reform in the organization of schooling.” His primary reason for supporting educational vouchers—whereby parents would receive financial credits that would be reimbursed or redeemed for their children’s educational costs—was not because he thought that the United States had poor elementary and secondary public schools in 1955.

He does not believe that vouchers would lead to increased socioeconomic or racial separation in or of schools—he believes, in fact, the opposite. In recent years Milton and Rose chose to direct their personal efforts and fortune most to the issue of school vouchers. They established the Milton and Rose D. Friedman Foundation to promote educational choice. Their children, Janet and David, serve on the board of directors along with the elder Friedmans. The school voucher idea has had much influence in the United States and elsewhere. Not only has the school voucher idea been considered outside of this country, but here and abroad the concept of vouchers—providing funding through government but leaving provision of services in competitive, private hands—has proved capable of extension to many other areas, resulting in privatization of government activities.

Milton and Rose were not rich before he received the Nobel Prize and they wrote Free to Choose. The royalties from Free to Choose exceed by a magnitude of several times the royalties from all his other works combined. After the book’s success, the Friedmans’ financial status was higher than it had ever been. Friedman introduced many of his basic themes to television audiences around the world through Free to Choose, including educational vouchers, the monetary source of inflation, the power of the market, and the counterproductiveness of much government activity. In preparing the series, he offered these thoughts. To change the course of the previous half-century from collectivism to renewed individualism will require reinforcing our heritage rather than simply living on it. It will require reining the ambitions of our political authorities....

pages: 226 words: 59,080

Economics Rules: The Rights and Wrongs of the Dismal Science by Dani Rodrik


airline deregulation, Albert Einstein, bank run, barriers to entry, Bretton Woods, butterfly effect, capital controls, Carmen Reinhart, central bank independence, collective bargaining, Daniel Kahneman / Amos Tversky, David Ricardo: comparative advantage, distributed generation, Donald Davies, Edward Glaeser, endogenous growth, Eugene Fama: efficient market hypothesis, Everything should be made as simple as possible, Fellow of the Royal Society, financial deregulation, financial innovation, floating exchange rates, fudge factor, full employment, George Akerlof, Gini coefficient, Growth in a Time of Debt, income inequality, inflation targeting, informal economy, information asymmetry, invisible hand, Jean Tirole, Joseph Schumpeter, Kenneth Arrow, Kenneth Rogoff, labor-force participation, liquidity trap, loss aversion, low skilled workers, market design, market fundamentalism, minimum wage unemployment, oil shock, open economy, Pareto efficiency, Paul Samuelson, price stability, prisoner's dilemma, profit maximization, quantitative easing, randomized controlled trial, rent control, rent-seeking, Richard Thaler, risk/return, Robert Shiller, Robert Shiller, school vouchers, South Sea Bubble, spectrum auction, The Market for Lemons, the scientific method, The Wealth of Nations by Adam Smith, Thomas Kuhn: the structure of scientific revolutions, Thomas Malthus, trade liberalization, trade route, ultimatum game, University of East Anglia, unorthodox policies, Vilfredo Pareto, Washington Consensus, white flight

., 1n Boulding, Kenneth, 11 bounded rationality, 203 Bowles, Samuel, 71n Brazil: antipoverty programs of, 4 globalization and, 166 Bretton Woods Conference (1944), 1–2 Britain, Great, property rights and, 98 bubbles, 152–58 business cycles, 125–37 balanced budgets and, 171 capital flow in, 127 classical economics and, 126–27, 129, 137 inflation in, 126–27, 133, 135, 137 new classical models and, 130–34, 136–37 butterfly effect, 39 California, University of: at Berkeley, 107, 136, 147 at Los Angeles, 139 Cameron, David, 109 capacity utilization rates, 130 capital, neoclassical distribution theory and, 122, 124 capital flow: in business cycles, 127 economic growth and, 17–18, 114, 164–67 globalization and, 164–67 growth diagnostics and, 90 speculation and, 2 capitalism, 118–24, 127, 144, 205, 207 carbon, emissions quotas vs. taxes in reduction of, 188–90, 191–92 Card, David, 57 Carlyle, Thomas, 118 carpooling, 192, 193–94 cartels, 95 Cartwright, Nancy, 20, 22n, 29 cash grants, 4, 55, 105–6 Cassidy, John, 157n Central Bank of India, 154 Chang, Ha-Joon, 11 chaos theory, butterfly effect and, 39 Chicago, University of, 131, 152 Chicago Board of Trade, 55 Chile, antipoverty programs and, 4 China, People’s Republic of, 156, 163, 164 cigarette industry, taxation and, 27–28 Clark, John Bates, 119 “Classical Gold Standard, The: Some Lessons for Today” (Bordo), 127n classical unemployment, 126 climate change, 188–90, 191–92 climate modeling, 38, 40 Cochrane, John, 131 coffee, 179, 185 Colander, David, 85 collective bargaining, 124–25, 143 Colombia, educational vouchers in, 24 colonialism, developmental economics and, 206–7 “Colonial Origins of Comparative Development, The” (Acemoglu, Robinson, and Johnson), 206–7 Columbia University, 2, 108 commitment, in game theory, 33 comparative advantage, 52–55, 58n, 59–60, 139, 170 compensation for risk models, 110 competition, critical assumptions in, 28–29 complementarities, 42 computable general equilibrium (CGE) models, 41 computational models, 38, 41 computers, model complexity and, 38 Comte, Auguste, 81 conditional cash transfer (CCT) programs, 4, 105–6 congestion pricing, 2–3 Constitution, U.S., 187 construction industry, Great Recession and, 156 consumers, consumption, 119, 129, 130, 132, 136, 167 cross-price elasticity in, 180–81 consumer’s utility, 119 contextual truths, 20, 174 contingency, 25, 145, 173–74, 185 contracts, 88, 98, 161, 205 coordination models, 16–17, 42, 200 corn futures, 55 corruption, 87, 89, 91 costs, behavioral economics and, 70 Cotterman, Nancy, xiv Cournot, Antoine-Augustin, 13n Cournot competition, 68 credibility, in game theory, 33 “Credible Worlds, Capacities and Mechanisms” (Sugden), 172n credit rating agencies, 155 credit rationing, 64–65 critical assumptions, 18, 26–29, 94–98, 150–51, 180, 183–84, 202 cross-price elasticity, 180–81 Cuba, 57 currency: appreciation of, 60, 167 depreciation of, 153 economic growth and, 163–64, 167 current account deficits, 153 Curry, Brendan, xv Dahl, Gordon B., 151n Darwin, Charles, 113 Davis, Donald, 108 day care, 71, 190–91 Debreu, Gerard, 49–51 debt, national, 153 decision trees, 89–90, 90 DeLong, Brad, 136 democracy, social sciences and, 205 deposit insurance, 155 depreciation, currency, 153 Depression, Great, 2, 128, 153 deregulation, 143, 155, 158–59, 162, 168 derivatives, 153, 155 deterrence, in game theory, 33 development economics, 75–76, 86–93, 90, 159–67, 169, 201, 202 colonial settlement and, 206–7 institutions and, 98, 161, 202, 205–7 reform fatigue and, 88 diagnostic analysis, 86–93, 90, 97, 110–11 Dijkgraaf, Robbert, xiv “Dirtying White: Why Does Benn Steil’s History of Bretton Woods Distort the Ideas of Harry Dexter White?”

., 113–45 specific events explained by, 138–44 universal validity of, 114 time-inconsistent preferences, 62–63 “Time to Build and Aggregate Fluctuation” (Kydland and Prescott), 101n tipping points, 42 Tirole, Jean, 208–9 trade, 11, 87, 91, 136, 141, 182–83, 194 in business cycles, 127 comparative advantage in, 52–55, 58n, 59, 139, 170 computational models in tracking of, 41 current account deficits and, 153 general-equilibrium effects and, 41, 56–58, 69n, 91, 120 income inequality in, 139–40 liberalization of, 160, 162–63, 165, 169 outsourcing and, 149 public sector size and, 109–10 second-best theory applied in, 58–61, 163–64, 166 2x2 model of, 52–53 trade creation effect, 59 trade diversion effect, 59 trade unions, 124, 143 Transatlantic Trade and Investment Partnership (TTIP), 41 Transforming Traditional Agriculture (Schultz), 75n transportation, congestion pricing and, 2–3 Truman, Harry S., 151 tulip bubble, 154 Turkey, 166 Ulam, Stanislaw, 51 ultimatum game, 104 unemployment, 102 in business cycles, 125–37 classical view of, 126 in Great Recession, 153 wages and, 118, 150 see also employment Unger, Roberto Mangabeira, xi United States: comparative advantage principle and, 59–60, 139 deficit in, 149 educational vouchers in, 24 federal system in, 187 garment industry in, 57–58 Gold Standard in, 127 Great Depression in, 128 Great Recession in, 115, 134–35, 152–59 housing bubble in, 153–54, 156 immigration issue in, 56–57 income inequality in, 117, 124–25, 138–44 labor productivity and wages in, 123–24, 141 national debt in, 153 outsourcing in, 149 trade agreements of, 41 universal validity, 66–67 Uruguay, 86 validity, external vs. internal types of, 23–24 value, theories of, 117–21 Varian, Hal, 20 verbal models, 34 Vickrey, William, 2–3 Vietnam, 57–58 Vietnam War, 108 “Views among Economists: Professional Consensus or Point-Counterpoint?”

Such experiments have become very popular in economics recently, and they are sometimes thought to generate knowledge that is model-free; that is, they’re supposed to provide insight about how the world works without the baggage of assumptions and hypothesized causal chains that comes with models. But this is not quite right. To give one example: In Colombia, the randomized distribution of private-school vouchers has significantly improved educational attainment. But this is no guarantee that similar programs would have the same outcome in the United States or in South Africa. The ultimate outcome relies on a host of factors that vary from country to country. Income levels and preferences of parents, the quality gap between private and public schools, the incentives that drive schoolteachers and administrators—all of these factors, and many other potentially important considerations, come into play.8 Getting from “it worked there” to “it will work here” requires many additional steps.9 The gulf between real experiments carried out in the lab (or in the field) and the thought experiments we call “models” is less than we might have thought.

pages: 376 words: 118,542

Free to Choose: A Personal Statement by Milton Friedman, Rose D. Friedman


affirmative action, agricultural Revolution, air freight, back-to-the-land, bank run, banking crisis, Corn Laws, Fractional reserve banking, full employment, German hyperinflation, invisible hand, labour mobility, means of production, minimum wage unemployment, oil shale / tar sands, oil shock, price stability, Ralph Nader, RAND corporation, rent control, road to serfdom, school vouchers, Simon Kuznets, The Wealth of Nations by Adam Smith, union organizing, Unsafe at Any Speed, Upton Sinclair, urban renewal, War on Poverty, working poor, Works Progress Administration

A revised version of this article is Chapter 6 of Capitalism and Freedom. 15. Ibid., p. 86. 16. See Christopher Jencks and associates, Education Vouchers: A Report on Financing Elementary Education by Grants to Parents (Cambridge, Mass.: Center for the Study of Public Policy, December 1970); John E. Coons and Stephen D. Sugarman, Education by Choice: The Case for Family Control (Berkeley: University of California Press, 1978). 17. Coons and Sugarman, Education by Choice, p. 191. 18. Ibid., p. 130. 19. Wealth of Nations, vol. II, p. 253 (Book V, Chap. I). 20. For example, the Citizens for Educational Freedom, the National Association for Personal Rights in Education. 21. Education Voucher Institute, incorporated in May 1979 in Michigan. 22. Kenneth B. Clark, "Alternative Public School Systems," in the special issue on Equal Educational Opportunity of the Harvard Educational Review, vol. 38, no. 1 (Winter 1968), pp. 100–113; passage cited from pp. 110–11. 23.

A number of national organizations favor it today.20 Since 1968 the Federal Office of Economic Opportunity and then the Federal Institute of Education encouraged and financed studies of voucher plans and offered to help finance experimental voucher plans. In 1978 a constitutional amendment was on the ballot in Michigan to mandate a voucher plan. In 1979 a movement was under way in California to qualify a constitutional amendment mandating a voucher plan for the 1980 ballot. A nonprofit institute has recently been established to explore educational vouchers.21 At the federal level, bills providing for a limited credit against taxes for tuition paid to nonpublic schools have several times come close to passing. While they are not a voucher plan proper, they are a partial variant, partial both because of the limit to the size of the credit and because of the difficulty of including persons with no or low tax liability. The perceived self-interest of the educational bureaucracy is the key obstacle to the introduction of market competition in schooling.

Despite the limited scope of that experiment, giving parents greater choice had a major effect on education quality. In terms of test scores, McCollam School went from thirteenth to second place among the schools in its district. But the experiment is now over, ended by the educational establishment—the same fate that befell Harlem Prep. The same resistance is present in Great Britain, where an extremely effective group called FEVER (Friends of the Education Voucher Experiment in Representative Regions) have tried for four years to introduce an experiment in a town in the county of Kent, England. The governing authorities have been favorable, but the educational establishment has been adamantly opposed. The attitude of the professional educators toward vouchers is well expressed by Dennis Gee, headmaster of a school in Ashford, Kent, and secretary of the local teachers' union: "We see this as a barrier between us and the parent—this sticky little piece of paper [i.e., the voucher] in their hand—coming in and under duress—you will do this or else.

pages: 147 words: 45,890

Aftershock: The Next Economy and America's Future by Robert B. Reich


Berlin Wall, declining real wages, delayed gratification, Doha Development Round, endowment effect, full employment, George Akerlof, Home mortgage interest deduction, Hyman Minsky, illegal immigration, income inequality, invisible hand, job automation, labor-force participation, Long Term Capital Management, loss aversion, mortgage debt, new economy, offshore financial centre, Ralph Nader, Ronald Reagan, school vouchers, sovereign wealth fund, Thorstein Veblen, too big to fail, World Values Survey

Such a tax would not only give employers more incentive to keep workers on, but would also help pay for the wage insurance and skill upgrades of the reemployment system. • • • School vouchers based on family income. Over the longer term, the best way to boost the earnings of Americans in the bottom half is to improve their education and skills. To that end, spending on public schools should be replaced by vouchers in amounts inversely related to family income that families can cash in at any school meeting certain minimum standards. For example, the $8,000 now spent per child in a particular state would be turned into $14,000 education vouchers for each school-age child in a poor family, and $2,000 vouchers for each child in a very wealthy family. School vouchers in this progressive form would improve overall school performance by introducing competition into the school system.

pages: 318 words: 93,502

The Two-Income Trap: Why Middle-Class Parents Are Going Broke by Elizabeth Warren, Amelia Warren Tyagi


activist fund / activist shareholder / activist investor, business climate, Columbine, declining real wages, equal pay for equal work, feminist movement, financial independence, labor-force participation, late fees, McMansion, mortgage debt, new economy, New Journalism, payday loans, school choice, school vouchers, telemarketer, urban sprawl, women in the workforce

Children who required extra resources, such as those with physical or learning disabilities, could be assigned proportionately larger vouchers, which would make it more attractive for schools to take on the more challenging (and expensive) task of educating these children. It might take some re-jiggering to settle on the right amount for a public school voucher, but eventually every child would have a valuable funding ticket to be used in any school in the area. To collect those tickets, schools would have to provide the education parents want. And parents would have a meaningful set of choices, without the need to buy a new home or pay private school tuition. Ultimately, an all-voucher system would diminish the distinction between public and private schools, as parents were able to exert more direct control over their children’s schools.65 Of course, public school vouchers would not entirely eliminate the pressure parents feel to move into better family neighborhoods. Some areas would continue to have higher crime rates or better parks, and many parents might still prefer to live close to their children’s schools.

See under Bankruptcies Fresno, California, public schools Friedan, Betty Gephardt, Richard Gore, Al Grapes of Wrath (Steinbeck) Great Depression Hadassah Harvard University Hatch, Orrin Health issues and filing for bankruptcy health insurance See also Disability coverage Herring Hardware Himmelstein, David Hispanics Homes of African Americans and Hispanics age of appliances/furnishings for bidding wars for of divorced fathers down payments foreclosures. See also Foreclosure rates of Hispanics home equity and bankruptcy home equity loans home ownership being “house poor,” housing and joint custody of children housing market and public education voucher system prices regulation of housing market renting and school quality single mothers owning size of spending on as proportion of family income vacation homes See also Mortgages Hospitals Housing and Urban Development, department of Hyde, Henry Illinois bankruptcy data collection Income, discretionary(fig.) before and after divorce (fig.) See also Families, with one income; Families, with two incomes Income gap between single/married parents Inflation Insurance.

—Senator John Edwards “Original solutions that go beyond ideology. . . . I highly recommend to my viewers that they get THE TWO-INCOME TRAP.” —Bill Moyers “[Warren] argues movingly that the misery and shame of bankruptcy is as pungent as ever—it’s just more widely experienced . . . The book is brimming with proposed solutions to the nail-biting anxiety that the middle class finds itself in: subsidized day care, school vouchers, new bank regulations, among other measures.” —Wall Street Journal “Astounding.” —Mortimer B. Zuckerman, editor-in-chief, U.S. News & World Report “Warren and Tyagi argue persuasively that mass ‘over-consumption’ is not the problem . . . Moreover, the book does offer unexpectedly fresh discussions of “deadbeat dads” (it turns out there aren’t very many of them) and the credit-card industry (where the current business strategy is to get financially troubled families ‘to borrow [still] more money’).”

pages: 403 words: 105,431

The death and life of the great American school system: how testing and choice are undermining education by Diane Ravitch


David Brooks, desegregation, hiring and firing, invisible hand, Jane Jacobs, mega-rich, Menlo Park, Ralph Waldo Emerson, RAND corporation, Robert Gordon, Ronald Reagan, school choice, school vouchers, The Death and Life of Great American Cities

By 2009, studies by different authors came to similar conclusions about vouchers, suggesting an emerging consensus. Cecelia E. Rouse of Princeton University and Lisa Barrow of the Federal Reserve Bank of Chicago published a review of all the existing studies of vouchers in Milwaukee, Cleveland, and the District of Columbia. They found that there were “relatively small achievement gains for students offered educational vouchers, most of which are not statistically different from zero.” They could not predict whether vouchers might eventually produce changes in high school graduation rates, college enrollment, or future wages. But they did not find impressive gains in achievement. Nor was there persuasive evidence that the public school systems that lost voucher students to private schools had improved. Since no one claimed that the voucher programs had produced dramatic changes, Rouse and Barrow cautioned against anticipating that voucher programs were going to produce large academic gains in the future.20 A team of researchers that included both supporters and critics of vouchers launched a five-year longitudinal study of the Milwaukee program.

He came to see charter schools as dangerous to public education, as the cutting edge of an effort to privatize the public schools. When Baltimore handed over nine public schools to a for-profit business called Education Alternatives Inc. in 1992, Shanker was appalled. When Republican governor John Engler of Michigan endorsed charter legislation, Shanker denounced him for ignoring his state’s poor curriculum and standards. In his paid weekly column in the New York Times, he repeatedly condemned charter schools, vouchers, and for-profit management as “quick fixes that won’t fix anything.”14 After he turned against charter schools, Shanker steadfastly insisted that the biggest problem in American education was the absence of a clear national consensus about the mission of the schools. He repeatedly decried the lack of a national curriculum, national testing, and “stakes” attached to schooling; these, he said, were huge problems that would not be solved by letting a thousand flowers bloom or by turning over the schools to entrepreneurs.

Sterr, and Christopher A. Thorn, Fifth-Year Report: Milwaukee Parental Choice Program (Madison, WI: Robert LaFollette Institute of Public Affairs, University of Wisconsin-Madison, 1995); Paul E. Peterson, “A Critique of the Witte Evaluation of Milwaukee’s School Choice Program,” Occasional Paper 95-2, Harvard University Center for American Political Studies, 1995. 20 Cecelia Elena Rouse and Lisa Barrow, “School Vouchers and Student Achievement: Recent Evidence and Remaining Questions,” Annual Review of Economics 1 (2009), 17-42. A study of the Florida voucher program in 2009 found that the 23,259 students using publicly funded vouchers to attend private schools did no better or worse than similar students in public schools. The study, commissioned by the state legislature, was conducted by economist David Figlio; Ron Matus, “Study Finds Vouchers Don’t Make Difference,” St.

pages: 777 words: 186,993

Imagining India by Nandan Nilekani


affirmative action, Airbus A320, BRICs, British Empire, business process, business process outsourcing, call centre, clean water, colonial rule, corporate governance, cuban missile crisis, deindustrialization, demographic dividend, demographic transition, Deng Xiaoping, digital map, distributed generation, farmers can use mobile phones to check market prices, full employment, ghettoisation, glass ceiling, global supply chain, Hernando de Soto, income inequality, informal economy, Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC), joint-stock company, knowledge economy, labour market flexibility, land reform, light touch regulation, LNG terminal, load shedding, Mahatma Gandhi, market fragmentation, mass immigration, Mikhail Gorbachev, Network effects, new economy, New Urbanism, open economy, Parag Khanna, pension reform, Potemkin village, price mechanism, race to the bottom, rent control, rolodex, Ronald Reagan, school vouchers, Silicon Valley, smart grid, special economic zone, The Wealth of Nations by Adam Smith, Thomas L Friedman, Thomas Malthus, transaction costs, trickle-down economics, unemployed young men, upwardly mobile, urban planning, urban renewal, women in the workforce, working poor, working-age population

This has met with mixed success due to resistance at every level of the government, the lack of awareness among local and elected ward members of their powers and the sheer political clout of the teachers’ unions. A key reform to address this issue of accountability, which could also potentially converge the roles of state and private education, is school vouchers. This idea was suggested by Milton Friedman in 1955, and different kinds of voucher programs have seen successes in some U.S. states as well as in Chile, Sweden and Ireland. The basic idea of an education voucher is that the government funds students instead of schools—a transfer of power, since the money follows the student rather than the institution, and allows student choices to determine where the government’s education funds go. The voucher system not only removes ideological tilts toward either private or state schools but also brings in competition that can improve both these school systems, making one less exclusive and the other less bottom of the barrel.

These concerns now loom large over us, affecting our ability to execute new ideas effectively, challenging the long-term success of our reforms. Our prereform, but still persistent, perception of the state as the “giver and taker of all” has doomed many of our most urgent policy proposals. I think that the single reform that will change this is bringing direct benefits into our welfare system. With health and education vouchers, citizens can choose between private- and public-sector alternatives. These and similar vouchers for essential commodities will free the poor of the middleman in India’s public distribution system and from the tyranny of the bureaucracy. Putting benefits such as cash in the hands of the poor, which would in turn allow them to participate in markets more effectively, can also rid us of the confrontational relationship that now exists between the government and our markets.

Such reform effectively removes ideology from funding and implementation and makes it easier, say, to hand over management of existing and failing government schools to the private sector, if this will attract students. This can bring the private sector and NGOs into already existing school infrastructure and government school buildings, instead of the current approach where we are constructing an alternative, private school system from scratch. There are still challenges to such solutions; for example, direct benefits like school vouchers are effective only if there are competing education providers, and this is a high bar to clear in the rural areas. Governments may have to specifically target such regions through incentives such as gap financing options for school entrepreneurs. A truly competitive market in education that involves both private and state schools offers a unique advantage—a rapid dissemination of best practices and effective teaching methods.

India's Long Road by Vijay Joshi

Affordable Care Act / Obamacare, barriers to entry, Basel III, basic income, blue-collar work, Bretton Woods, business climate, capital controls, central bank independence, clean water, collapse of Lehman Brothers, collective bargaining, colonial rule, congestion charging, corporate governance, creative destruction, crony capitalism, decarbonisation, deindustrialization, demographic dividend, demographic transition, Doha Development Round, eurozone crisis, facts on the ground, failed state, financial intermediation, financial repression, first-past-the-post, floating exchange rates, full employment, germ theory of disease, Gini coefficient, global supply chain, global value chain, hiring and firing, income inequality, Indoor air pollution, Induced demand, inflation targeting, invisible hand, land reform, Mahatma Gandhi, manufacturing employment, Martin Wolf, means of production, microcredit, moral hazard, obamacare, Pareto efficiency, price mechanism, price stability, principal–agent problem, profit maximization, profit motive, purchasing power parity, quantitative easing, race to the bottom, randomized controlled trial, rent-seeking, reserve currency, rising living standards, school choice, school vouchers, secular stagnation, Silicon Valley, smart cities, South China Sea, special drawing rights, The Future of Employment, The Market for Lemons, too big to fail, total factor productivity, trade liberalization, transaction costs, universal basic income, urban sprawl, working-age population

Reform of the Indian education system depends critically on improving teacher accountability in government schools. What is ideally needed is a drastic cull of delinquent teachers! But change from within the government sector is very unlikely to happen, given entrenched union power and the inertia in the system. There is thus a strong pragmatic case in India for an education voucher system in which all schools, including government schools, would charge fees to cover their costs, and poor people would be given education vouchers to enable them to send their children to government or private schools, whichever they prefer, with the presumption that schools that fail to attract applicants would have to contract or close down. (Of course, government schools would have to continue to be the sole source of instruction in remote areas where private schools do not exist or do not come up.)

[ 180 ] Stability and Inclusion 181 Of course, we have to be cognizant of the fact that though private schools are cheaper than public schools from the national standpoint, they are not so for the average citizen, whose child has to pay fees in a private school but can attend a government school for free. Indeed, one of the main arguments for public education is that it ensures universal free access (at the expense of the taxpayer) and makes up for the effects of income inequality. But this is a deficiency that could be corrected by offering all parents, or poor parents in particular, the option and the means to choose private or public schools for their children, by giving them ‘education vouchers’. Under such a scheme, both public and private schools would charge fees but students would ‘carry their school fees with them’ in the form of vouchers that are paid for out of general taxation. A voucher scheme would thus match the equity objective of free public education but would have the additionally important feature of enabling competition between public and private schools. In the Indian context, it is hard to imagine that government schools could deliver greater teacher effort and better education outcomes solely on the basis of reform within the public school system, in response to the ‘voice’ of citizens.

In the Indian context, it is hard to imagine that government schools could deliver greater teacher effort and better education outcomes solely on the basis of reform within the public school system, in response to the ‘voice’ of citizens. Or to put it another way, ‘voice’ alone would be ineffective if parents did not also have the possibility of ‘exit’. Thus the case for education vouchers in India is not ideological but pragmatic: competition and the threat of student-​exit are necessary conditions for public education to improve. There are two counter-​arguments. The first is that if vouchers were introduced, the children of parents in vocal elite-​groups would leave government schools, which would lead to further deterioration of these schools by reducing the pressure for reform. But there is little point in locking the stable door after the horse has bolted: not merely the top elite but also the broader elite, including panchayat leaders and teachers in government schools, already send their children to private schools.

pages: 370 words: 112,602

Poor Economics: A Radical Rethinking of the Way to Fight Global Poverty by Abhijit Banerjee, Esther Duflo


Albert Einstein, Andrei Shleifer, business process, business process outsourcing, call centre, Cass Sunstein, charter city, clean water, collapse of Lehman Brothers, congestion charging, demographic transition, diversified portfolio, experimental subject, hiring and firing, land tenure, low skilled workers, M-Pesa, microcredit, moral hazard, purchasing power parity, randomized controlled trial, Richard Thaler, school vouchers, Silicon Valley, The Fortune at the Bottom of the Pyramid, Thomas Malthus, urban planning

The Rise of Affordable Private Schools,” working paper (2010). 20 Sonalde Desai, Amaresh Dubey, Reeve Vanneman, and Rukmini Banerji, “Private Schooling in India: A New Educational Landscape,” Indian Human Development Survey, Working Paper No. 11 (2010). 21 However, among applicants to a lottery for secondary school vouchers for private schools in the Colombian city of Bogotá, the difference persisted: The winners did better than the losers on standardized tests, were 10 percentage points more likely to graduate, and scored better on the graduation exam. See Joshua Angrist, Eric Bettinger, Erik Bloom, Elizabeth King, and Michael Kremer, “Vouchers for Private Schooling in Colombia: Evidence from a Randomized Natural Experiment,” American Economic Review 92 (5) (2002): 1535– 1558; and Joshua Angrist, Eric Bettinger, and Michael Kremer, “Long-Term Educational Consequences of Secondary School Vouchers: Evidence from Administrative Records in Colombia,” American Economic Review 96 (3) (2006): 847–862. 22 Desai, Dubey,Vanneman, and Banerji, “Private Schooling in India.” 23 Abhijit Banerjee, Shawn Cole, Esther Duflo, and Leigh Linden, “Remedying Education: Evidence from Two Randomized Experiments in India,” Quarterly Journal of Economics 122 (3) (August 2007): 1235–1264. 24 Abhijit Banerjee, Rukmini Banerji, Esther Duflo, Rachel Glennerster, and Stuti Khemani, “Pitfalls of Participatory Programs: Evidence from a Randomized Evaluation in Education in India,” American Economic Journal: Economic Policy 2 (1) (February 2010): 1–30. 25 Trang Nguyen, “Information, Role Models, and Perceived Returns to Education: Experimental Evidence from Madagascar,” MIT Working Paper (2008). 26 Abhijit Banerjee and Esther Duflo, “Growth Theory Through the Lens of Development Economics,” in Steve Durlauf and Philippe Aghion, eds., Handbook of Economic Growth, vol. 1A (Amsterdam: Elsevier Science Ltd.

In some cases, it may involve ensuring that the price of a product sold by the market is attractive enough to allow the market to develop. For example, governments could subsidize insurance premiums, or distribute vouchers that parents can take to any school, private or public, or force banks to offer free “no frills” savings accounts to everyone for a nominal fee. It is important to keep in mind that these subsidized markets need to be carefully regulated to ensure they function well. For example, school vouchers work well when all parents have a way of figuring out the right school for their child; otherwise, they can turn into a way of giving even more of an advantage to savvy parents. Fourth, poor countries are not doomed to failure because they are poor, or because they have had an unfortunate history. It is true that things often do not work in these countries: Programs intended to help the poor end up in the wrong hands, teachers teach desultorily or not at all, roads weakened by theft of materials collapse under the weight of overburdened trucks, and so forth.

pages: 482 words: 122,497

The Wrecking Crew: How Conservatives Rule by Thomas Frank


affirmative action, anti-communist, barriers to entry, Berlin Wall, Bernie Madoff, British Empire, collective bargaining, corporate governance, Credit Default Swap, David Brooks, edge city, financial deregulation, full employment, George Gilder, guest worker program, income inequality, invisible hand, job satisfaction, Mikhail Gorbachev, Mont Pelerin Society, mortgage debt, Naomi Klein, new economy, P = NP, Plutocrats, plutocrats, Ponzi scheme, Ralph Nader, rent control, Richard Florida, road to serfdom, rolodex, Ronald Reagan, school vouchers, shareholder value, Silicon Valley, stem cell, Telecommunications Act of 1996, the scientific method, too big to fail, union organizing, War on Poverty

All of which, by extension, made Jack Abramoff “a kind of hero to the indigenous people of the CNMI”; “an ardent champion of the little guy—of the much maligned Northern Marianas as well as the Choctaw Indian tribe of Mississippi.”69 Abramoff apparently thought this picture of indigenous people resisting liberal imperialism was so compelling that it could pull onto the Marianas bandwagon the leaders of the African-American community, who had traditionally been strong critics of imperialism. According to a 1998 memo, members of the Congressional Black Caucus were to be particular targets of Abramoff’s campaign to “develop” Democrats for the CNMI; two of them actually took trips to the islands (since their trips were sponsored by yet another friendly nonprofit, these representatives were unaware of Abramoff’s involvement). Another tactic in this quixotic campaign was school vouchers, the issue which always seems to come up when conservatives are moved to consider the black electorate. Proclaiming in 1997 that the CNMI—as part of its well-known devotion to free-market principle—was about to approve a vouchers program, Abramoff’s team brought various CNMI officials to the mainland and hooked them up with leading conservative voucher advocates and inner-city education activists in Cleveland, Milwaukee, and Washington, D.C.

Trial lawyers give millions to their liberal confederates in the Democratic Party; Norquist suggested that conservatives undermine them with “tort reform,” a lawsuit-quashing measure that “will potentially cost trial lawyers billions of dollars of lost income.” Labor unions were number two; Norquist proposed that conservatives “crush labor unions as a political entity” with some sort of “paycheck protection” measure and weaken them more generally with strategic expansions of NAFTA, like forcing Teamsters “to compete with Mexican truck drivers.” Third were school vouchers, which would put paid to what he called the “2.1 million Democratic precinct workers belonging to the National Education Association.” Fourth, a few “modest reforms” at HUD and the Department of Education that would cut off funds to “big city machines.” And then—the coup de grâce—the Democratic Party would become “a dead man walking” when Team R privatized Social Security, permitting everyone in the country to own stock and thus share in those pleasures heretofore known only to the elite: “watching their investments grow—rather than shrink in the face of trial-lawyer parasites, labor-union work rules, and government-worker-driven taxes.”3 And much of this program was accomplished during the conservative era, if not on the precise terms Norquist suggested.

Rhodesian Sellout, The (Skimin) Rice, Condoleezza Rich, Frank Ridenour, Amy Moritz Robertson, Pat Rock the House (Norquist) Roe v. Wade Roosevelt, Franklin D. Rothbard, David Rove, Karl Saarinen, Eero Saipan. See Commonwealth of the Northern Mariana Islands (CNMI) Saipan Tribune SALT treaties San Francisco Chronicle Santorum, Rick Saturday Evening Post Savage, Michael Savimbi, Jonas Scanlon, Michael schools vouchers science, war on Science Applications International Corporation (SAIC) Seattle Times Sellars, Duncan Sequent (newspaper) Sessions, William sex industry shareholder revolts Shaw Group Shelby, Richard Shelk, John Sherman Anti-Trust Act Shriver, Sargent Silicon Valley Simpfenderfer, Mike Singapore “small government” “smart-growth” faction social Darwinism Social Security privatization of Social Security Administration South Africa Truth and Reconciliation Commission Southern Baptists Soviet Union collapse of Spain Special Operations Technology Spike, The (de Borchgrave) SSA Marine firm Stalin, Joseph Starr, Ken State, Department of Stayman, Allen Steffens, Lincoln Stevens, Ted Stewart, Scottn Stigler, George Stockman, David stock market crash of 1929 stock options strike suppression strip-mining Student Coalition for Truth student loan programs Students for a Better America Students for a Democratic Society (SDS) Students for America subcontractors “supply-side” theory Swann, Ingon Switzerland Syria Tan, Willie Target America (Tyson) tariffs tax-and-spend mantra taxes Ciskei and CNMI and cuts in income tax lobbyists and tax-exempt foundations tax revolts teamsters union Teapot Dome scandal Telecommunications Act (1996) Telling It Like It Is (videotape) Ten Commandments Tennessee Valley Authority (TVA) Tenorio, Froilan terra nova (journal) terrorism Tet Offensive Thailand Thatcher, Margaret think tanks Third Wave, The (Toffler) Threlkeld, John Tierney, John timber industry Tinian air base “Tinkering with the Success of Liberty” (Ferrara) Torres, Stanley tort reform tourist industry toy industry Tozzi, Jim trade associations tradition, destruction of Transportation Safety Administration Treason (Coulter) “Treason of the Senate, The” (Phillips series) Treasury Department trial lawyers “trips” program Trotsky, Leon trucking industry Tyson, James Ukraine union-busting firms Union Pacific Railroad UNITA United Brotherhood of Carpenters (UBC) United Nations U.S.

pages: 924 words: 198,159

Blackwater: The Rise of the World's Most Powerful Mercenary Army by Jeremy Scahill


air freight, anti-communist, Berlin Wall, Bernie Sanders, business climate, business intelligence, centralized clearinghouse, collective bargaining, Columbine, facts on the ground, Fall of the Berlin Wall, Naomi Klein, private military company, Project for a New American Century, Robert Bork, Ronald Reagan, school choice, school vouchers, stem cell, urban planning, zero-sum game

For a time, Betsy and Dick lived down the street from the Prince family, including Erik, who is nine years younger than his sister.34 In 1988, Gary Bauer and Focus on the Family founder James Dobson began building what would become the Family Research Council (FRC), the crusading, influential, and staunchly conservative evangelical organization that has since taken the lead on issues ranging from banning gay marriage to promoting school vouchers for Christian schools to outlawing abortion and stem-cell research. To get it off the ground, though, they needed funding, and they turned to Edgar Prince. “[W]hen Jim Dobson and I decided that the financial resources weren’t available to launch FRC, Ed and his family stepped into the breach,” wrote Bauer. “I can say without hesitation that without Ed and Elsa and their wonderful children, there simply would not be a Family Research Council.”35 Young Erik would go on to become one of Bauer’s earliest interns at the FRC.36 It was one of many right-wing causes that the Princes would join the DeVoses in bankrolling, leading to what would be known as the Republican Revolution in 1994, which brought Newt Gingrich and a radical right-wing agenda known as the Contract with America to power in Congress, wrestling control from the Democrats for the first time in forty years.

In 2004 she was the single largest donor to the successful campaign to ban same-sex marriage in Michigan, kicking in $75,000 of her own money.89 She served on the boards of the Family Research Council and Focus on the Family and was active in the Council for National Policy and a host of other right-wing religious organizations.90 “My main thrust is to do things that Jesus would want you to do to further your knowledge of him and his ways,” she told the Holland Sentinel in 2003.91 Edgar, Elsa, and her new husband, Ren, cumulatively donated nearly $556,000 to Republican candidates and political action committees,92 along with untold millions to right-wing causes. Along with the DeVos family, the Princes remain major players in the conservative Christian movement in Michigan and nationally. One of their recent hard-fought but unsuccessful battles was to implement school vouchers in Michigan. The DeVos family itself spent upwards of $3 million in 2000 pushing the perennial conservative education ideal.93 Erik Prince adopted his father’s behind-the-scenes demeanor, as well as his passion for right-wing religious causes, but with a twist. “Erik is a Roman Catholic,” said author Robert Young Pelton, who has had rare access to Prince. “A lot of people brand him in his father’s religion, but he converted to Roman Catholicism.”94 Indeed, many of the executives who would later form the core of Prince’s Blackwater empire are also Catholics, and when Prince’s first wife, Joan, died, Catholic Mass was celebrated for her both near her hometown outside Schenectady, New York, and near where the family lived in McLean, Virginia.95 In 1997, Lt.

In many nations—right now—Christians are harassed, tortured, imprisoned, and even martyred for their faith in Jesus Christ.”151 Jim Jacobson, a former aide to Gary Bauer in Ronald Reagan’s White House, runs the group, which has taken public positions against the work of the United Nations, calling some of its agencies “merchants of misery,”152 and has protested that Iraqi self-determination could harm Christians.153 In calling for the United States to attack Afghanistan after 9/11, Jacobson declared, “Only unequivocal military strikes will express our commitment to world peace and the rule of law.”154 The board of directors included Blackwater lobbyist Paul Behrends, former Republican Senator Don Nickles, and former Voice of America director Robert Reilly, who began his career as a Reagan White House propagandist for the Nicaraguan Contras and worked briefly for war contractor SAIC on its ill-fated attempt to create a new Iraqi information ministry.155 In 2000 Erik Prince was on hand for a Michigan benefit to raise money for one of his family’s (and the theoconservative movement’s) pet causes—school vouchers. At the event, Prince spoke to the Wall Street Journal, saying both his family and the DeVos clan believe in conservative, Christian, free-market ideals, and that his beloved father’s business—the one responsible for building up Focus on the Family and the Family Research Council—“was an engine that generated cash that he could use to do good things.”156 He said his sister Betsy was using those “same energies.”157 By that time, the thirty-year-old Prince had his own small cash-generating engine, on the brink of becoming much, much bigger.

Crisis and Dollarization in Ecuador: Stability, Growth, and Social Equity by Paul Ely Beckerman, Andrés Solimano


banking crisis, banks create money, barriers to entry, capital controls, Carmen Reinhart, carried interest, central bank independence, centre right, clean water, currency peg, declining real wages, disintermediation, financial intermediation, fixed income, floating exchange rates, Gini coefficient, income inequality, income per capita, labor-force participation, land reform, London Interbank Offered Rate, Mexican peso crisis / tequila crisis, microcredit, money: store of value / unit of account / medium of exchange, offshore financial centre, old-boy network, open economy, pension reform, price stability, rent-seeking, school vouchers, seigniorage, trade liberalization, women in the workforce

Other early responses to the crisis took the form of an expansion of in-kind transfer programs, specifically the school meals program and the provision of integrated early childhood care and expanded prenatal and neonatal care. The envisaged expanded coverage of these programs has progressed slowly, however. Various new socialprogram initiatives were discussed during early stages of the crisis, but budget restrictions and, more importantly, political indecisiveness impeded their progress. Some, such as employment programs, never materialized at all and others, such as an education voucher program, were only implemented as of late 2001. By that time, the economy was showing signs of recovery, with GDP growing at 2.3 and 4.5 percent in 2000 and 2001, respectively, and with open unemployment down from a peak level of 14 percent in 1999 to around 10 percent in 2000 and 2001. Economic recovery was helped by rising oil prices (in 2000), migration abroad of large numbers of Ecuadorans, and several rounds of real-wage adjustments.

More likely, the real economy has become more sensitive to the effects of such shocks without the short-term cushion—albeit imperfect—that used to be provided by exchange-rate and monetary adjustment. The need for an adequate social-protection system remains. In the aftermath of the crisis, the Ecuadoran government has taken measures to allow for a recovery of real social spending after severe declines during the crisis, and it has introduced new programs, including the educational voucher program, targeted to the poor. Overall, however, the social safety net in many ways still suffers from the deficiencies it had at the start of the crisis. Much more is needed to provide effective protection to the vulnerable. This chapter aims to analyze the effects of the crisis on poverty and human development during the crisis and the response capacity of Ecuador’s social safety net. The remainder of the chapter is organized as follows.

pages: 128 words: 38,187

The New Prophets of Capital by Nicole Aschoff


3D printing, affirmative action, Affordable Care Act / Obamacare, Airbnb, American Legislative Exchange Council, basic income, Bretton Woods, clean water, collective bargaining, commoditize, crony capitalism, feminist movement, follow your passion, Food sovereignty, glass ceiling, global supply chain, global value chain, helicopter parent, hiring and firing, income inequality, Khan Academy, late capitalism, Lyft, Mark Zuckerberg, mass incarceration, means of production, performance metric, profit motive, rent-seeking, Ronald Reagan, Rosa Parks, school vouchers, shareholder value, sharing economy, Silicon Valley, Slavoj Žižek, structural adjustment programs, Thomas L Friedman, Tim Cook: Apple, urban renewal, women in the workforce, working poor, zero-sum game

Hedge fund do-gooders started Democrats for Education Reform, and the Business Roundtable has its own Education Working Group. Billionaires like the Waltons, the Broads, and the Fishers have spent hundreds of millions on education reform, and the Gateses are at the center of it all. They argue that we need to completely re-envision public education if we are to prepare children for a high-tech future. There are varying opinions on how to do it. Some, like the Waltons and the Broads, want school vouchers (government-issued certificates of funding that enable parents to send their children to private schools instead of public ones) and complete privatization. The Gateses think that vouchers have “some very positive characteristics” and praise the efficiency of parochial schools, but they think the public is too invested in public education and thus resistant to these kinds of sweeping change.23 Instead, the Gates Foundation is pursuing incremental change through the increased application of market mechanisms to public schooling.

pages: 637 words: 128,673

Democracy Incorporated by Sheldon S. Wolin


affirmative action, Berlin Wall, British Empire, centre right, collective bargaining, colonial rule, corporate governance, creative destruction, cuban missile crisis, David Ricardo: comparative advantage, dematerialisation, Donald Trump, Fall of the Berlin Wall, full employment, illegal immigration, invisible hand, mass incarceration, money market fund, mutually assured destruction, new economy, offshore financial centre, Ralph Nader, Ronald Reagan, school vouchers, single-payer health, stem cell, The Wealth of Nations by Adam Smith, Thomas Kuhn: the structure of scientific revolutions, Thorstein Veblen

While 83 percent of Americans believe in the Virgin Birth of Jesus, only 28 percent admit to a belief in evolution.3 These statistics take on added significance in light of the remarkable commingling of politics and religion that has occurred in recent years and gives every indication of increasing in the future. In that mixture it is not religion generally but primarily fundamentalist and evangelical religion whose energetic political activism is helping to shape the course of some public policies (e.g., antiabortion, school vouchers, and welfare programs) and playing a pivotal part in elections. Evangelical Protestants are in the vanguard of these developments, both as foot soldiers for the Republican Party and as influential players in Beltway politics.4 Contrary to a common assumption—that an “outdated” belief is similar to an old-model refrigerator or auto, that its antique status connotes inefficiency, feebleness, lack of power—the exact opposite is true of religious fundamentalists.

How influential the phony version can be was illustrated when, during the 2004 elections, the Democratic presidential candidate testified plaintively, “I am not a redistributionist Democrat. Fear not.” He identified himself as “an entrepreneurial Democrat.”22 The nationalistic, patriotic, and “originalist” ideology being hawked by Republicans promotes a myth of national unity, consensus, that obscures real cleavages in order to substitute synthetic ones (“the culture wars,” school vouchers, abortion) that leave power relationships unchallenged. Manufactured divisiveness complements the politics of gridlock; both contribute to induce apathy by suggesting that the citizenry’s involvement in politics is essentially unneeded, futile. In the one case, of consensus, active involvement is superfluous because there is nothing to contest—who wants to dispute the wisdom of The Founders?

pages: 212 words: 49,544

WikiLeaks and the Age of Transparency by Micah L. Sifry


1960s counterculture, Amazon Web Services, banking crisis, barriers to entry, Bernie Sanders, Buckminster Fuller, Chelsea Manning, citizen journalism, Climategate, crowdsourcing, Google Earth, Howard Rheingold, Internet Archive, Jacob Appelbaum, John Markoff, Julian Assange, Network effects, RAND corporation, school vouchers, Skype, social web, source of truth, Stewart Brand, web application, WikiLeaks

SIFRY In 2007, Steve Urquhart, the Republican chairman of the Utah House of Representatives Rules Committee, launched a wiki called Politicopia, where he promised to post the text of pending legislation before his committee and invited the public in to comment. Thousands of people did, and Urquhart credits the dialogue that resulted in affecting the outcome on several pending bills, including one on school vouchers and another on abortion. Commenting on the passage of the voucher legislation, Urquhart said, “For six years we’ve been chasing our tail on this bill, and today the bill passed in very large part because of Politicopia.” He explained how: “When private dialogue was made public, the main area of criticism was publicly revealed to be fictitious.”15 Another valuable experiment that also happened in 2007 was something called “Legislation 2.0.”

pages: 251 words: 44,888

The Words You Should Know to Sound Smart: 1200 Essential Words Every Sophisticated Person Should Be Able to Use by Bobbi Bly


Albert Einstein, Alistair Cooke, Anton Chekhov, British Empire, Columbine, Donald Trump, George Santayana, haute couture, Honoré de Balzac, John Nash: game theory, Network effects, placebo effect, Ralph Waldo Emerson, school vouchers, Stephen Hawking, Steve Jobs

diaphanous (die-APH-uh-nuss), adjective Fine and sheer; or, insubstantial and vague. “To behold the day-break! / The little light fades the immense and DIAPHANOUS shadows, / The air tastes good to my palate.” – Walt Whitman, American poet and humanist diatribe (DIE-uh-tribe), noun A speech railing against injustice; a vehement denunciation. The editorial was a mean-spirited DIATRIBE against school vouchers written to prevent children from other towns from being sent by bus to Centerville High School. dichotomy (die-KOT-uh-me), noun Division into two parts, especially into two seemingly contradictory parts. A DICHOTOMY between good and evil is present in every human heart. didactic (dye-DAK-tik), adjective Designed, made, or tailored for purposes of education, self-improvement, or ethical betterment.

pages: 252 words: 73,131

The Inner Lives of Markets: How People Shape Them—And They Shape Us by Tim Sullivan


Airbnb, airport security, Al Roth, Alvin Roth, Andrei Shleifer, attribution theory, autonomous vehicles, barriers to entry, Brownian motion, centralized clearinghouse, Chuck Templeton: OpenTable, clean water, conceptual framework, constrained optimization, continuous double auction, creative destruction, deferred acceptance, Donald Trump, Edward Glaeser, experimental subject, first-price auction, framing effect, frictionless, fundamental attribution error, George Akerlof, Goldman Sachs: Vampire Squid, Gunnar Myrdal, helicopter parent, information asymmetry, Internet of things, invisible hand, Isaac Newton, iterative process, Jean Tirole, Jeff Bezos, Johann Wolfgang von Goethe, John Nash: game theory, John von Neumann, Joseph Schumpeter, Kenneth Arrow, late fees, linear programming, Lyft, market clearing, market design, market friction, medical residency, multi-sided market, mutually assured destruction, Nash equilibrium, Occupy movement, Pareto efficiency, Paul Samuelson, Peter Thiel,, pez dispenser, pre–internet, price mechanism, price stability, prisoner's dilemma, profit motive, proxy bid, RAND corporation, ride hailing / ride sharing, Robert Shiller, Robert Shiller, Ronald Coase, school choice, school vouchers, sealed-bid auction, second-price auction, second-price sealed-bid, sharing economy, Silicon Valley, spectrum auction, Steve Jobs, Tacoma Narrows Bridge, technoutopianism, telemarketer, The Market for Lemons, The Wisdom of Crowds, Thomas Malthus, Thorstein Veblen, trade route, transaction costs, two-sided market, uranium enrichment, Vickrey auction, Vilfredo Pareto, winner-take-all economy

But instead of being distributed by Second Harvest’s central office, the food bank that wanted it the most would express that preference by parting with precious shares to get it. The nine food bank presidents who comprised the rest of the working group did not all greet the idea of using markets to fix their not-really-broken system with a standing ovation. It may not have helped that the pitch came from a group of University of Chicago economists, whose ranks include libertarian extremists like Milton Friedman (of school-voucher fame) and Gene “Efficient Markets” Fama. Prendergast recalls that at some point during the preliminary discussions, John Arnold, then president of the West Michigan Food Bank, stood up and announced, “Look, I’ve got to tell you guys. I’m a card-carrying member of the American Socialist Party. I was a conscientious objector. I have no interest in using your f***ing market.” From where the socialist, peace-loving Arnold sat, markets looked, first and foremost, like institutions of exploitation, not allocation.

pages: 223 words: 77,566

Hillbilly Elegy: A Memoir of a Family and Culture in Crisis by J. D. Vance

Affordable Care Act / Obamacare, blue-collar work, cognitive dissonance, late fees, medical malpractice, obamacare, payday loans, Peter Thiel, Ronald Reagan, Rubik’s Cube, school vouchers, Silicon Valley, unbiased observer, upwardly mobile, working poor

So unquenchable was my appetite for violence that night that Mom and Ken decided that my new stepbrother and I should be separated. I wasn’t even particularly angry. My desire to fight arose more out of a sense of duty. But it was a strong sense of duty, so Mom and I went to Mamaw’s for the night. I remember watching an episode of The West Wing about education in America, which the majority of people rightfully believe is the key to opportunity. In it, the fictional president debates whether he should push school vouchers (giving public money to schoolchildren so that they escape failing public schools) or instead focus exclusively on fixing those same failing schools. That debate is important, of course—for a long time, much of my failing school district qualified for vouchers—but it was striking that in an entire discussion about why poor kids struggled in school, the emphasis rested entirely on public institutions.

pages: 233 words: 75,712

In Defense of Global Capitalism by Johan Norberg


Asian financial crisis, capital controls, clean water, correlation does not imply causation, creative destruction, Deng Xiaoping, Edward Glaeser, Gini coefficient, half of the world's population has never made a phone call, Hernando de Soto, illegal immigration, income inequality, informal economy, Joseph Schumpeter, Kenneth Rogoff, land reform, Lao Tzu, liberal capitalism, manufacturing employment, market fundamentalism, Mexican peso crisis / tequila crisis, Naomi Klein, new economy, open economy, profit motive, race to the bottom, rising living standards, school vouchers, Silicon Valley, Simon Kuznets, structural adjustment programs, The Wealth of Nations by Adam Smith, Tobin tax, trade liberalization, trade route, transaction costs, trickle-down economics, union organizing, zero-sum game

See Gender equity Shang Ying, 44 Short-term capital flows, regulation, 250–52 Short-term debts, 260–61 Shortages of raw materials, 234–35 Simon, Julian, 149 Singapore, Asian crisis and, 251, 262 326 The Skeptical Environmentalist: Measuring the Real State of the World, 231–33 Slavery, 23–24 Smith, Adam, 122, 271 Social development, India, 53 Social dumping, 193 Social mobility, 82–83 Socialism, China, 47 Society, freedoms and voluntary relations in, 17 South America failed government industrial initiatives, 174 meat importation, 238 South Asia girls attending school, 45 girls’ life expectancy, 46 hunger, 31 South Korea Asian crisis and, 259–60, 263 economy, 72 government intervention, 100, 102 growth and income differences, 86 labor-intensive industries, 172 ‘‘open’’ economy, 103 post-WWII production and prosperity, 119 standard of living, 99 wealth, 134 Southeast Asia child labor, 200 dictatorships, 269 hunger, 31 Soviet Union (former), starvation, 34 Spain, employment, 137 Specialization, 115–19, 120 Speculation, currency, 254–57, 261, 266 Standards of living, 59f economic freedom and, 74f HDI and, 56 income, 77f Starvation, 33–34 See also Hunger State-directed capital flows, 247 Steel manufacturing, cleaner technology, 227–28 Stiglitz, Joseph, 15 Stock market fluctuations, 241–42 Subsidies, 157–61, 237–38 domestic subsidies as de facto trade barriers, 126–27 Sudan, human rights violations, 40 Surplus exchange, 117, 121 grants and, 159 Sweden agricultural efficiency and employment, 138 child labor, 199–200 educational voucher system, 201 employment, 137 example of ‘‘catch-22’’ in trade conditions, 195 failure of digital television, 174 need for immigrants, 148 Symbolic sanctions, dictatorships, 201 Syria, human rights violations, 40 Taiwan Asian crisis and, 251, 262 economy, 72 government intervention, 100 327 growth and income differences, 86 labor-intensive industries, 172 ‘‘open’’ economy, 103 standard of living, 99 Tanzania, foreign debt, 182–83 Tariff walls, 174–75 Tariffs and quotas, 114 antidumping tariffs, 126 developing countries’ tariffs, 173–76 ‘‘infant industry tariffs,’’ 173 tariff reduction negotiations, 122–25 tariff reductions, 156–62 See also Tobin tax, 254 Tax avoidance, 82 Taxation, 82–83, 275 Taxpayers debt cancellation and, 182 subsidies and, 237 Technological advances, 17, 68 addressing raw material shortages, 234–35 ‘‘creative destruction and,’’ 140 developing countries and, 278–80 Technology, 23 cleaner technology, 227–28 expediting social progress, 45 growth and, 134–35 importing new ideas and techniques, 128–29 Terrorist attacks of September 11, 2001, 145–46 Thailand Asian crisis and, 259, 260 equality/inequality, 133 government intervention, 100 growth and income differences, 86 labor-intensive industries, 172 ‘‘open’’ economy, 103 worker satisfaction, 219 Third World.

pages: 304 words: 22,886

Nudge: Improving Decisions About Health, Wealth, and Happiness by Richard H. Thaler, Cass R. Sunstein


Al Roth, Albert Einstein, asset allocation, availability heuristic, call centre, Cass Sunstein, choice architecture, continuous integration, Daniel Kahneman / Amos Tversky, desegregation, diversification, diversified portfolio, endowment effect, equity premium, feminist movement, fixed income, framing effect, full employment, George Akerlof, index fund, invisible hand, late fees, libertarian paternalism, loss aversion, Mahatma Gandhi, Mason jar, medical malpractice, medical residency, mental accounting, meta analysis, meta-analysis, Milgram experiment, money market fund, pension reform, presumed consent, profit maximization, rent-seeking, Richard Thaler, Right to Buy, risk tolerance, Robert Shiller, Robert Shiller, Saturday Night Live, school choice, school vouchers, transaction costs, Vanguard fund, Zipcar

.: JAI Press, 1985. Perry, Ronald W., and Michael K. Lindell. “The Effects of Ethnicity on Evacuation Decision-Making.” International Journal of Mass Emergencies and Disasters 9 (1991): 47–68. Perry, Ronald W., Michael K. Lindell, and Marjorie R. Greene. Evacuation Planning in Emergency Management. Lexington, Mass.: Lexington, 1981. Peterson, Paul E., William Howell, Patrick Wolf, and David E. Campbell. “School Vouchers: Results from Randomized Experiments.” In The Economics of School Choice, ed. Caroline Hoxby, 107–44. Chicago: University of Chicago Press, 2003. Pittsburgh Post-Gazette. “D Is for Daunting: The Medicare Drug Program.” November 6, 2005, Health section, Five-star ed. Polikoff, Nancy D. “We Will Get What We Ask For: Why Legalizing Gay and Lesbian Marriage Will Not ‘Dismantle the Legal Structure of Gender in Every Marriage.’”

pages: 358 words: 106,729

Fault Lines: How Hidden Fractures Still Threaten the World Economy by Raghuram Rajan


accounting loophole / creative accounting, Andrei Shleifer, Asian financial crisis, asset-backed security, assortative mating, bank run, barriers to entry, Bernie Madoff, Bretton Woods, business climate, Clayton Christensen, clean water, collapse of Lehman Brothers, collateralized debt obligation, colonial rule, corporate governance, credit crunch, Credit Default Swap, credit default swaps / collateralized debt obligations, crony capitalism, currency manipulation / currency intervention, diversification, Edward Glaeser, financial innovation, fixed income, floating exchange rates, full employment, global supply chain, Goldman Sachs: Vampire Squid, illegal immigration, implied volatility, income inequality, index fund, interest rate swap, Joseph Schumpeter, Kenneth Rogoff, knowledge worker, labor-force participation, Long Term Capital Management, market bubble, Martin Wolf, medical malpractice, microcredit, money market fund, moral hazard, new economy, Northern Rock, offshore financial centre, open economy, price stability, profit motive, Real Time Gross Settlement, Richard Florida, Richard Thaler, risk tolerance, Robert Shiller, Robert Shiller, Ronald Reagan, school vouchers, short selling, sovereign wealth fund, The Great Moderation, the payments system, The Wealth of Nations by Adam Smith, too big to fail, upwardly mobile, Vanguard fund, women in the workforce, World Values Survey

We also need to find ways of publicizing school-performance assessments in a manner that is both comparable across schools and easily understood by parents. Failing schools need to be given initial support to improve, but not multiple chances to do so. The No Child Left Behind Act of 2002 goes some way toward these goals but needs to be strengthened. Finally, parental choice can help bring the discipline of competition to schools. School voucher programs, if properly administered, can allow students to vote with their feet and prevent failing schools from holding talented but poor students hostage. Charter schools can also help. These are quasi-public schools that have more freedom from regulation than public schools in return for greater accountability. They obtain tuition payments from school districts in proportion to the students they attract from them.

pages: 364 words: 99,613

Servant Economy: Where America's Elite Is Sending the Middle Class by Jeff Faux


back-to-the-land, Bernie Sanders, Black Swan, Bretton Woods, BRICs, British Empire, call centre, centre right, cognitive dissonance, collateralized debt obligation, collective bargaining, creative destruction, Credit Default Swap, credit default swaps / collateralized debt obligations, crony capitalism, currency manipulation / currency intervention, David Brooks, David Ricardo: comparative advantage, falling living standards, financial deregulation, financial innovation, full employment, hiring and firing, Howard Zinn, Hyman Minsky, illegal immigration, indoor plumbing, informal economy, invisible hand, John Maynard Keynes: Economic Possibilities for our Grandchildren, lake wobegon effect, Long Term Capital Management, market fundamentalism, Martin Wolf, McMansion, medical malpractice, mortgage debt, Myron Scholes, Naomi Klein, new economy, oil shock, old-boy network, Paul Samuelson, Plutocrats, plutocrats, price mechanism, price stability, private military company, Ralph Nader, reserve currency, rising living standards, Robert Shiller, Robert Shiller, rolodex, Ronald Reagan, school vouchers, Silicon Valley, single-payer health, South China Sea, statistical model, Steve Jobs, Thomas L Friedman, Thorstein Veblen, too big to fail, trade route, Triangle Shirtwaist Factory, union organizing, upwardly mobile, urban renewal, War on Poverty, We are the 99%, working poor, Yogi Berra, Yom Kippur War

When the department began to tighten up on the rules for such loans, Donald Graham, the Washington Post’s CEO, led an intense campaign to protect his investment, hiring high-priced lobbyists and editorializing against the tighter rules in the paper. One result was that in the 2011 budget standoff between President Obama and Speaker of the House John Boehner, the president acquiesced to Boehner’s demand that a District of Columbia’s policy of refusing to provide local tax money for private school vouchers be overruled.15 Even more profit may lie in the reformers’ ultimate goal of making charter schools the model for U.S. primary and secondary education. Charter schools are supposed to be community based, run by boards of parents and local residents and therefore more responsive to neighborhood needs than “faraway” city school boards. The notion that low-income parents who are struggling to survive economically have the time and capacity to adequately oversee the complicated task of educating children and managing a school was itself problematic.

pages: 377 words: 110,427

The Boy Who Could Change the World: The Writings of Aaron Swartz by Aaron Swartz, Lawrence Lessig


affirmative action, Alfred Russel Wallace, American Legislative Exchange Council, Benjamin Mako Hill, bitcoin, Bonfire of the Vanities, Brewster Kahle, Cass Sunstein, deliberate practice, Donald Knuth, Donald Trump, failed state, fear of failure, Firefox, full employment, Howard Zinn, index card, invisible hand, John Gruber, Lean Startup, More Guns, Less Crime, peer-to-peer, post scarcity, Richard Feynman, Richard Feynman, Richard Stallman, Ronald Reagan, school vouchers, semantic web, single-payer health, SpamAssassin, SPARQL, telemarketer, The Bell Curve by Richard Herrnstein and Charles Murray, the scientific method, Toyota Production System, unbiased observer, wage slave, Washington Consensus, web application, WikiLeaks, working poor, zero-sum game

One, in November 2001 in Delaware, told him that he simply wasn’t allowed on the search committees. Conservatives, Horowitz says, believe in process and different points of view. But the leftists just wanted to hire another Marxist. At another university, a prospective professor says that he was about to get a job as an Asian history professor but the offer was rescinded after he let slip that he supported school vouchers. When Horowitz was a Marxist he was never singled out like that. Professors, he says, should never reveal their political perspectives. After all, doctors don’t have politics; they’re professionals. But professors have the audacity to put political cartoons on their doors, scaring away timid conservatives. The administration should stop them. (Yes, he just promoted a ban on posting cartoons on your door.)

pages: 273 words: 34,920

Free Market Missionaries: The Corporate Manipulation of Community Values by Sharon Beder


anti-communist, battle of ideas, business climate, corporate governance,, full employment, income inequality, invisible hand, liquidationism / Banker’s doctrine / the Treasury view, minimum wage unemployment, Mont Pelerin Society, new economy, old-boy network, popular capitalism, Powell Memorandum, price mechanism, profit motive, Ralph Nader, rent control, risk/return, road to serfdom, Ronald Reagan, school vouchers, shareholder value, spread of share-ownership, structural adjustment programs, The Chicago School, the market place, The Wealth of Nations by Adam Smith, Thomas L Friedman, Torches of Freedom, trade liberalization, traveling salesman, trickle-down economics, Upton Sinclair, Washington Consensus, wealth creators, young professional

Share-owning employees also will become more determined than others in their companies to pull their weight, and that abuse of work practices and overmanning should cease.’22 176 FREE MARKET MISSIONARIES A survey commissioned by the ASA found that ‘mass ownership of financial assets has midwifed a new birth of freemarket opinion’. It found that Republican affiliation correlated with the length of time that a person had been in a retirement plan. After 10 years those in a 401(k) plan were 7 per cent more likely to support a corporate tax cut, 9 per cent more like to oppose a minimum wage, 10 per cent more likely to support school vouchers, and 17 per cent more likely to support social security privatization than non-investors. They were also more likely to support free trade, death-tax reduction and market-based energy policies. Those owning stocks directly, as opposed to indirectly via pension funds, developed a capitalist ideology even more rapidly.23 A Gallup poll in 1999 found that shareowners were more likely to support cuts in capital gains tax, as did Rasmussen Research, which found that the result held for all demographic groups.

Propaganda and the Public Mind by Noam Chomsky, David Barsamian


Albert Einstein, Asian financial crisis, Bretton Woods, capital controls, deindustrialization, European colonialism, experimental subject, Howard Zinn, Hyman Minsky, interchangeable parts, labour market flexibility, labour mobility, liberation theology, Martin Wolf, one-state solution, Ralph Nader, RAND corporation, school vouchers, Silicon Valley, structural adjustment programs, Thomas L Friedman, Tobin tax, Washington Consensus

We can’t compete.31 It was taken apart by specialists and it was shown pretty quickly that it was mostly fakery. But the point is to make people afraid that there’s an educational crisis coming. The second thing is, Make that crisis come by underfunding, Not enough school construction, low salaries and so on. Then propose alternatives, which sound at the beginning like good ideas: charter schools, magnet schools, vouchers, who could be against that? You gradually chip away, making the public system less and less functional, less and less popular because it’s nonfunctional, producing propaganda about how awful it is, offering alternatives which begin small and end up where the big investment firms are expecting it to. A couple of years ago Elaine Bernard from the Harvard Trade Union Program sent me a brochure from Lehman Brothers.

pages: 497 words: 150,205

European Spring: Why Our Economies and Politics Are in a Mess - and How to Put Them Right by Philippe Legrain


3D printing, Airbnb, Asian financial crisis, bank run, banking crisis, barriers to entry, Basel III, battle of ideas, Berlin Wall, Big bang: deregulation of the City of London, Bretton Woods, BRICs, British Empire, business process, capital controls, Capital in the Twenty-First Century by Thomas Piketty, Carmen Reinhart, Celtic Tiger, central bank independence, centre right, cleantech, collaborative consumption, collapse of Lehman Brothers, collective bargaining, corporate governance, creative destruction, credit crunch, Credit Default Swap, crony capitalism, currency manipulation / currency intervention, currency peg, debt deflation, Diane Coyle, Downton Abbey, Edward Glaeser, Elon Musk,, energy transition, eurozone crisis, fear of failure, financial deregulation, first-past-the-post, forward guidance, full employment, Gini coefficient, global supply chain, Growth in a Time of Debt, hiring and firing, hydraulic fracturing, Hyman Minsky, Hyperloop, immigration reform, income inequality, interest rate derivative, Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC), Irish property bubble, James Dyson, Jane Jacobs, job satisfaction, Joseph Schumpeter, Kenneth Rogoff, labour market flexibility, labour mobility, liquidity trap, margin call, Martin Wolf, mittelstand, moral hazard, mortgage debt, mortgage tax deduction, North Sea oil, Northern Rock, offshore financial centre, oil shale / tar sands, oil shock, open economy, peer-to-peer rental, price stability, private sector deleveraging, pushing on a string, quantitative easing, Richard Florida, rising living standards, risk-adjusted returns, Robert Gordon, savings glut, school vouchers, self-driving car, sharing economy, Silicon Valley, Silicon Valley startup, Skype, smart grid, smart meter, software patent, sovereign wealth fund, Steve Jobs, The Death and Life of Great American Cities, The Wealth of Nations by Adam Smith, too big to fail, total factor productivity, Tyler Cowen: Great Stagnation, working-age population, Zipcar

Governments ought to prioritise education spending, especially on children from poorer backgrounds. Manifestly, money makes a difference: witness the dominance that Eton, a school for the rich, has over British public life. Equally clearly, private, non-profit schools have no problem delivering a good education. So one way of ensuring there are Etons for everyone would be to provide parents with generous education vouchers, with top-ups for kids from underprivileged backgrounds. That way schools would be motivated to attract them and then have the resources to provide them with better education. Paying higher salaries to attract better teachers would help; as would valuing teaching more highly as a profession; perhaps one would lead to the other. Let a wide range of new schools open. Combine that with choice over which school to attend, with successful schools allowed to expand and failing ones either taken over or closed down, and access to excellent education could be democratised.

pages: 538 words: 147,612

All the Money in the World by Peter W. Bernstein


Albert Einstein, anti-communist, Berlin Wall, Bill Gates: Altair 8800, call centre, corporate governance, corporate raider, creative destruction, currency peg, David Brooks, Donald Trump, estate planning, family office, financial innovation, George Gilder, high net worth, invisible hand, Irwin Jacobs: Qualcomm, Jeff Bezos, job automation, job-hopping, John Markoff, Long Term Capital Management, Marc Andreessen, Martin Wolf, Maui Hawaii, means of production, mega-rich, Menlo Park, Mikhail Gorbachev, new economy, Norman Mailer, PageRank, Peter Singer: altruism, pez dispenser, popular electronics, Renaissance Technologies, Rod Stewart played at Stephen Schwarzman birthday party, Ronald Reagan, Sand Hill Road, school vouchers, Search for Extraterrestrial Intelligence, shareholder value, Silicon Valley, Silicon Valley startup, stem cell, Stephen Hawking, Steve Ballmer, Steve Jobs, Steve Wozniak, the new new thing, Thorstein Veblen, too big to fail, traveling salesman, urban planning, wealth creators, William Shockley: the traitorous eight, women in the workforce

So far, Broad admits, progress is “uneven.” But he prefers to focus on the successes. “We’ve trained more superintendents than any other group in America,” says Broad. “We have placed fifty-seven MBAs with experience into large urban schools. We feel good about that.” Meanwhile, in New York City, hedge fund manager Bruce Kovner (2006 net worth: $3 billion) is (like Ted Forstmann) deeply involved with education vouchers as well as in creating small, independent charter schools. Kovner sees competition and freedom of choice as a way for children and their families to break out of huge, crime-ridden, dead-end schools. “More than one out of every three hundred people in the United States is in New York City public schools,” says Kovner. “And 25 percent are in schools that are failures and destructive. It’s one of the great scandals of the city.”

pages: 598 words: 140,612

Triumph of the City: How Our Greatest Invention Makes Us Richer, Smarter, Greener, Healthier, and Happier by Edward L. Glaeser


affirmative action, Andrei Shleifer, Berlin Wall, British Empire, Broken windows theory, carbon footprint, Celebration, Florida, clean water, congestion charging, declining real wages, desegregation, diversified portfolio, Edward Glaeser, endowment effect, European colonialism, financial innovation, Frank Gehry, global village, Guggenheim Bilbao, haute cuisine, Home mortgage interest deduction, James Watt: steam engine, Jane Jacobs, job-hopping, John Snow's cholera map, Mahatma Gandhi, McMansion, megacity, mortgage debt, mortgage tax deduction, New Urbanism, place-making, Ponzi scheme, Potemkin village, Ralph Waldo Emerson, rent control, RFID, Richard Florida, Rosa Parks, school vouchers, Seaside, Florida, Silicon Valley, Skype, smart cities, Steven Pinker, strikebreaker, the built environment, The Death and Life of Great American Cities, the new new thing, The Wealth of Nations by Adam Smith, trade route, transatlantic slave trade, upwardly mobile, urban planning, urban renewal, urban sprawl, William Shockley: the traitorous eight, Works Progress Administration, young professional

Well-meaning urban advocates, motivated by the real suffering in the Crescent City, proposed spending up to $200 billion rebuilding New Orleans. That’s more than $400,000 for every man, woman, and child living in the city before the hurricane, or more than $200,000 for every household in the much larger New Orleans metropolitan area. Surely the people of New Orleans would have been better off just getting that money directly, in the form of checks or housing and school vouchers, than for great gobs of cash to go to contractors. If it wasn’t for the durability of its homes, the city would have been much smaller a long time ago. No matter how much we all love New Orleans jazz, it never made sense to spend more than $100 billion putting infrastructure in a place that lost its economic rationale long ago. By wrapping policy discussions up in misty dreams of urban comeback, absurdly expensive projects suddenly seem reasonable.

pages: 487 words: 151,810

The Social Animal: The Hidden Sources of Love, Character, and Achievement by David Brooks


Albert Einstein, asset allocation, assortative mating, Atul Gawande, Bernie Madoff, business process, Cass Sunstein, choice architecture, clean water, creative destruction, Daniel Kahneman / Amos Tversky, David Brooks, delayed gratification, deliberate practice, disintermediation, Donald Trump, Douglas Hofstadter, Emanuel Derman,, fear of failure, financial deregulation, financial independence, Flynn Effect, George Akerlof, Henri Poincaré, hiring and firing, impulse control, invisible hand, Joseph Schumpeter, labor-force participation, loss aversion, medical residency, meta analysis, meta-analysis, Monroe Doctrine, Paul Samuelson, Richard Thaler, risk tolerance, Robert Shiller, Robert Shiller, school vouchers, six sigma, Steve Jobs, Steven Pinker, the scientific method, The Spirit Level, The Wealth of Nations by Adam Smith, Thorstein Veblen, transaction costs, Walter Mischel, young professional

For a generation, no matter who was in power, the prevailing winds had been blowing in the direction of autonomy, individualism, and personal freedom, not in the directions of society, social obligations, and communal bonds. Harold also found that his new colleagues shared a materialistic mind-set. Both liberals and conservatives gravitated toward economic explanations for any social problem and generally came up with solutions to this problem that involved money. Some conservatives argued for child–tax credits to restore marriage, low-tax enterprise zones to combat urban poverty, and school vouchers to improve the education system. Liberals emphasized the other side of the fiscal ledger, spending programs. They tried to direct more dollars to fix broken schools. They expanded student-aid subsidies to increase college-completion rates. Both sides assumed there was a direct relationship between improving material conditions and solving problems. Both sides neglected matters of character, culture, and morality.

pages: 406 words: 113,841

The American Way of Poverty: How the Other Half Still Lives by Sasha Abramsky


2013 Report for America's Infrastructure - American Society of Civil Engineers - 19 March 2013, Affordable Care Act / Obamacare, American Legislative Exchange Council, bank run, basic income, big-box store, collective bargaining, deindustrialization, fixed income, Francis Fukuyama: the end of history, full employment, ghettoisation, Gini coefficient, housing crisis, illegal immigration, immigration reform, income inequality, indoor plumbing, job automation, Mark Zuckerberg, Maui Hawaii, microcredit, mortgage debt, mortgage tax deduction, new economy, Occupy movement, offshore financial centre, payday loans, Plutocrats, plutocrats, Ponzi scheme, Potemkin village, profit motive, Ronald Reagan, school vouchers, upwardly mobile, War on Poverty, Washington Consensus, women in the workforce, working poor, working-age population, Works Progress Administration

They might want to think about expanding programs like the federally funded Race to the Top, in which states compete to create templates for new learning environments that merit the infusion of extra dollars from the feds. They might want to push legislation such as that championed, so far without success, by Denise Juneau, Montana’s energetic superintendent of education, mandating that all students remain in high school until they turn 18. They might want to argue the merits of charter schools, or school vouchers, both of which have engendered spirited, frequently overheated, debate in recent years. They might want to emulate Oregon’s recent efforts to create an all-encompassing education strategy that goes from preschool to higher education, with an oversight board empowered to shift resources into particular settings as the need demands. In poorer communities, in particular, they might want to supplement property taxes, which provide a core part of the funds for education in most states, with additional state and federal grants; or intervene with federal emergency funds, as was done in the two years following passage of the 2009 American Recovery and Reinvestment Act, to stop teachers from being pink-slipped during recessions.

pages: 386 words: 122,595

Naked Economics: Undressing the Dismal Science (Fully Revised and Updated) by Charles Wheelan


affirmative action, Albert Einstein, Andrei Shleifer, barriers to entry, Berlin Wall, Bernie Madoff, Bretton Woods, capital controls, Cass Sunstein, central bank independence, clean water, collapse of Lehman Brothers, congestion charging, creative destruction, Credit Default Swap, crony capitalism, currency manipulation / currency intervention, Daniel Kahneman / Amos Tversky, David Brooks, demographic transition, diversified portfolio, Doha Development Round, Exxon Valdez, financial innovation, fixed income, floating exchange rates, George Akerlof, Gini coefficient, Gordon Gekko, greed is good, happiness index / gross national happiness, Hernando de Soto, income inequality, index fund, interest rate swap, invisible hand, job automation, John Markoff, Joseph Schumpeter, Kenneth Rogoff, libertarian paternalism, low skilled workers, lump of labour, Malacca Straits, market bubble, microcredit, money market fund, money: store of value / unit of account / medium of exchange, Network effects, new economy, open economy, presumed consent, price discrimination, price stability, principal–agent problem, profit maximization, profit motive, purchasing power parity, race to the bottom, RAND corporation, random walk, rent control, Richard Thaler, rising living standards, Robert Gordon, Robert Shiller, Robert Shiller, Ronald Coase, Ronald Reagan, school vouchers, Silicon Valley, Silicon Valley startup, South China Sea, Steve Jobs, The Market for Lemons, the rule of 72, The Wealth of Nations by Adam Smith, Thomas L Friedman, Thomas Malthus, transaction costs, transcontinental railway, trickle-down economics, urban sprawl, Washington Consensus, Yogi Berra, young professional, zero-sum game

If it costs more, we will use less—and therefore pollute less, too. I have powerful childhood memories of my father, who has no great affection for the environment but could squeeze a nickel out of a stone, stalking around the house closing the closet doors and telling us that he was not paying to air-condition our closets. Meanwhile, American public education operates a lot more like North Korea than Silicon Valley. I will not wade into the school voucher debate, but I will discuss one striking phenomenon related to incentives in education that I have written about for The Economist.4 The pay of American teachers is not linked in any way to performance; teachers’ unions have consistently opposed any kind of merit pay. Instead, salaries in nearly every public school district in the country are determined by a rigid formula based on experience and years of schooling, factors that researchers have found to be generally unrelated to performance in the classroom.

pages: 494 words: 116,739

Geek Heresy: Rescuing Social Change From the Cult of Technology by Kentaro Toyama


active measures, Albert Einstein, Berlin Wall, Bernie Madoff, blood diamonds, Capital in the Twenty-First Century by Thomas Piketty, Cass Sunstein, cognitive dissonance, commoditize, computer vision, conceptual framework, delayed gratification, Edward Glaeser,, end world poverty, epigenetics, Erik Brynjolfsson, Francis Fukuyama: the end of history, fundamental attribution error, germ theory of disease, global village, Hans Rosling, happiness index / gross national happiness, income inequality, invention of the printing press, invisible hand, Isaac Newton, Khan Academy, Kibera, knowledge worker, liberation theology, libertarian paternalism, M-Pesa, Mahatma Gandhi, Mark Zuckerberg, means of production, microcredit, mobile money, Nicholas Carr, North Sea oil, pattern recognition, Peter Singer: altruism, Peter Thiel, post-industrial society, Powell Memorandum, randomized controlled trial, rent-seeking, RFID, Richard Florida, Richard Thaler, school vouchers, self-driving car, Silicon Valley, Simon Kuznets, Steve Jobs, Steven Pinker, technoutopianism, The Fortune at the Bottom of the Pyramid, Upton Sinclair, Walter Mischel, War on Poverty, winner-take-all economy, World Values Survey, Y2K

Democracy in a Box Packaged interventions come in all shapes and sizes: iPads to supply children’s education; condoms to prevent the spread of HIV/AIDS; and you may have seen ads from organizations such as Oxfam and Heifer International asking you to donate a goat – great as food and fertilizer source for a poor farming family. But, as with microcredit, packaged interventions aren’t limited to physical goods. They can be abstract ideas or institutional structures: school vouchers, charter schools, home mortgages, elections. Elections are hailed as the means to achieve democracy, and US foreign policy seems fixated on having other countries hold them. Few events provoke the media frenzy as a nation’s first election. Recent events in the Middle East and Afghanistan, though, remind us how little voting accomplishes in and of itself. Tunisia, Egypt, and Libya overthrew their dictators and held elections for new leaders, but it’s far from clear that democracies will follow.

pages: 444 words: 151,136

Endless Money: The Moral Hazards of Socialism by William Baker, Addison Wiggin


Andy Kessler, asset allocation, backtesting, bank run, banking crisis, Berlin Wall, Bernie Madoff, Black Swan, Branko Milanovic, break the buck, Bretton Woods, BRICs, business climate, capital asset pricing model, commoditize, corporate governance, correlation does not imply causation, credit crunch, Credit Default Swap, crony capitalism, cuban missile crisis, currency manipulation / currency intervention, debt deflation, Elliott wave,, Fall of the Berlin Wall, feminist movement, fiat currency, fixed income, floating exchange rates, Fractional reserve banking, full employment, German hyperinflation, housing crisis, income inequality, index fund, inflation targeting, Joseph Schumpeter, laissez-faire capitalism, land reform, liquidity trap, Long Term Capital Management, McMansion, mega-rich, money market fund, moral hazard, mortgage tax deduction, naked short selling, negative equity, offshore financial centre, Ponzi scheme, price stability, pushing on a string, quantitative easing, RAND corporation, rent control, reserve currency, riskless arbitrage, Ronald Reagan, school vouchers, seigniorage, short selling, Silicon Valley, six sigma, statistical arbitrage, statistical model, Steve Jobs, The Great Moderation, the scientific method, time value of money, too big to fail, upwardly mobile, War on Poverty, Yogi Berra, young professional

He goes so far to say that most observers agree on this, and that to achieve modernity and progress we would follow a natural tendency for power to gravitate to the state and be taken away from those who hold private property. With privatization reemerging in the late 20th century, affecting prisons, security forces, port administration, Medicare drug plans, universities (funding crowded out by endowments), and soon public schools (vouchers) or social security, he laments that this favorable trend began to reverse decades ago.10 The folly of this view is that privatization and big government are bedfellows. Once government gets to the size that it is involved in nearly every industry and aspect of our lives, people are naturally going to engage with it to shape outcomes. Tobacco companies agreeing to 264 ENDLESS MONEY large settlements are going to have a say in how their future proceeds, namely that competition would be banned.

pages: 331 words: 60,536

The Sovereign Individual: How to Survive and Thrive During the Collapse of the Welfare State by James Dale Davidson, Rees Mogg


affirmative action, agricultural Revolution, bank run, barriers to entry, Berlin Wall, borderless world, British Empire, California gold rush, clean water, colonial rule, Columbine, compound rate of return, creative destruction, Danny Hillis, debt deflation, ending welfare as we know it, epigenetics, Fall of the Berlin Wall, falling living standards, feminist movement, financial independence, Francis Fukuyama: the end of history, full employment, George Gilder, Hernando de Soto, illegal immigration, income inequality, informal economy, information retrieval, Isaac Newton, Kevin Kelly, market clearing, Martin Wolf, Menlo Park, money: store of value / unit of account / medium of exchange, new economy, New Urbanism, offshore financial centre, Parkinson's law, pattern recognition, phenotype, price mechanism, profit maximization, rent-seeking, reserve currency, road to serfdom, Ronald Coase, school vouchers, seigniorage, Silicon Valley, spice trade, statistical model, telepresence, The Nature of the Firm, the scientific method, The Wealth of Nations by Adam Smith, Thomas L Friedman, Thomas Malthus, trade route, transaction costs, Turing machine, union organizing, very high income, Vilfredo Pareto

In Western countries, and now in practically the entire earth, this has come to mean the necessity of securing majority support of a democratic political system. The requirement to involve a majority imposes massive transaction costs between you and achieving what in all likelihood is a relatively straightforward and rational goal. Milton Friedman discussed the merits of the economic, as opposed to the political, mode of expression in advancing his proposal for school vouchers in Capitalism and Freedom: Parents could express their views about schools directly, by withdrawing their children from one school and sending them to another, to a much greater extent than is now possible. In general they can now take this step only by changing their place of residence. For the rest, they can express their views only though cumbrous political channels.5 Albert 0. Hirschman, speaking as a partisan of politics, took exception to Friedman's preference for "exit as the 'direct' way of expressing one's unfavorable views of an organization.

pages: 558 words: 168,179

Dark Money: The Hidden History of the Billionaires Behind the Rise of the Radical Right by Jane Mayer


affirmative action, Affordable Care Act / Obamacare, American Legislative Exchange Council, anti-communist, Bakken shale, bank run, battle of ideas, Berlin Wall, Capital in the Twenty-First Century by Thomas Piketty, carried interest, centre right, clean water, Climategate, Climatic Research Unit, collective bargaining, corporate raider, crony capitalism, David Brooks, desegregation, diversified portfolio, Donald Trump, energy security, estate planning, Fall of the Berlin Wall, George Gilder, housing crisis, hydraulic fracturing, income inequality, Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC), invisible hand, job automation, low skilled workers, mandatory minimum, market fundamentalism, mass incarceration, Mont Pelerin Society, More Guns, Less Crime, Nate Silver, New Journalism, obamacare, Occupy movement, offshore financial centre, oil shale / tar sands, oil shock, Plutocrats, plutocrats, Powell Memorandum, Ralph Nader, Renaissance Technologies, road to serfdom, Ronald Reagan, school choice, school vouchers, The Bell Curve by Richard Herrnstein and Charles Murray, The Chicago School, the scientific method, University of East Anglia, Unsafe at Any Speed, War on Poverty, working poor

Her brother Erik Prince, meanwhile, founded the global security firm Blackwater, which the reporter Jeremy Scahill described as “the world’s most powerful mercenary army.” Betsy DeVos, who eventually became the chairwoman of Michigan’s Republican Party, was said to be every bit as politically ambitious as her husband, if not more so. With her support, in 2002 Dick DeVos ceased managing Amway in order to devote more time to his political career. The results, though, were dismal. The DeVos family spent over $2 million in 2000 on a Michigan school voucher referendum that was defeated by 68 percent of the voters. The family then spent $35 million in 2006 on Dick DeVos’s unsuccessful bid to become the state’s governor. In their zeal to implement their conservative vision, few issues were more central to the DeVos family’s mission than eradicating restraints on political spending. For years, the family funded legal challenges to various campaign-finance laws.