Monday, August 09, 2004

We had joy, we had fun, we had seasons in the sun

The blogging have been light the last week. It's all because of the summer that decided to show up at last (except for some heavy lightening last thursday). But you can't stay out in the sun all days without doing some reading (at least I can't), so here's some suggestions.

Simulating the New Economy
by Gunnar Eliasson, Dan Johansson and Erol Taymaz.

Abstract: The IT, the Internet, or the Computing & Communications (C&C) technology revolution has been central to the economic discussion for several decades. Before the mid-1990s the catchword was the “productivity paradox” coined by Robert Solow, who stated in 1987 that “computers are everywhere visible, except in the productivity statistics”. Then the New Economy and fast productivity growth fueled by C&C technology suddenly became the catchword of the very late 1990s. Its luster however, faded almost as fast as it arrived with the deaths of the first years of the new millennium. With this paper we demonstrate that the two paradoxes above are perfectly compatible within a consistent micro (firm) based macro theoretical framework of endogenous growth. Within the same model framework also a third paradox can be resolved, namely the fact that the previous major New Industry creation, the Industrial Revolution, only involved a handful of Western nations that had got their institutions in order. If the New Economy is a potential reality, one cannot take for granted that all industrial economies will participate successfully in its introduction. It all depends on the local receiver competence to build industry on the new technology. We, hence, also demonstrate within the same model the existence of the risk of failing altogether to capture the opportunities of a New Economy.

Liberty, Markets and Environmental Values: A Hayekian Defence of Free Market Environmentalism
by Mark Pennington

Abstract: Communitarian conceptions of the 'situated self' lie at the core of 'green' critiques of market approaches to environmental problems. According to this perspective resource management issues should be dealt with in the 'public sphere' of democratic politics rather than the 'private sphere' of market drien consumer choice. This paper suggests that such arguments rest on a series of non-sequiturs. Drawing on Hayek's non-rationalist liberalism it shows that a 'situated' view of the self offers a radical endorsement of the case for privatisating environmental assets, wherever it is possible to do so.

Competence in Health Care - An Industrial Systems Analysis Using Competence Bloc Theory to Compare European and US Health Care
by Gunnar Eliasson and Åsa Eliasson

Abstract: While European health care systems are mostly public and similar the contrast is large to the US health industry based to a large extent in the market. Using competence bloc theory the industrial potential of Swedish and European health care is assessed and compared with US health industry. To get the the analysis properly framed health industry is defined to include health insurance, health care and the supporting biotech, pharmaceutical and medical instrument industries. A gradually aging industrialized world makes wealthy customers demand the sophisticated life quality enhancing medical support new technology offers. The overwhelming influence of substitute customership in Europe, through politicians, social insurance, doctors etc., however, holds back development through suppressing the preferences of the true customer (the patient), discouraging innovative product competition and entrepreneurship. The larger part of cost escalation in US health care can be attributed to quality improvements, and luxury health care has stimulated innovative product development. While Swedish health care so far has been a technological winner, commercial competence to become internationally competitive is lacking. It appears politically difficult to recognize that private for profit health care may be both more efficient and profitable than publicly run services. However, once competition for profit has been introduced public providers have to improve performance and the differences will disappear.

WHAT IS WRONG WITH NEOCLASSICAL ECONOMICS (And What is Still Wrong With Austrian Economics)
by Peter Boettke

HACER: Cuba economy hinges on Chávez vote
by Richard Brand

Timothy Sandefur's Libertarian Bookworm: The Calculus of Consent
by James M. Buchanan and Gordon Tullock

Cato Institute: The Myths of Individualism
by Tom G. Palmer

Reason: Origin of the Specious - Why do neoconservatives doubt Darwin?
by Ronald Bailey