Quotes & Links #50

1) vox.com: The truth about medicine – we usually overestimate the benefits and underestimate the harms

Looking at 36 studies on a range of medical interventions […] a pair of Australian researchers discovered that, overwhelmingly, patients overestimated the benefits and underestimated the harms.

2) economist.com: The weaker sex – Boys are being outclassed by girls at both school and university, and the gap is widening

Perhaps because they can be so insufferable, teenage boys are often marked down. The OECD found that boys did much better in its anonymised tests than in teacher assessments.

I thought it was the other way around? Why is it different here? Maybe in math girls are being marked down?

3) guardian.com: House of Cards – not about to start making sense any time soon

Because, Christ, is this show dumber than a bag of hammers.

I’m also surprised how many people like it. I always thought of it as “Game of Thrones without dragons but more fantasy”.

4) rachelstrohm.com: Five myths about governance and development

The history of human progress, from 17th century England to 21st century China and Vietnam, is completely clear on this point: governance ideals are realised over time on the back of economic progress, not the other way round.

“Completely clear”? Huh? Worded rather strongly, no? There are many people who believe inclusive institutions (I’ve written about them before, too!) precede economic progress. Sadly, the WHO blogpost doesn’t list any sources. I’d nit-pick with his other points as well (not necessarily disagree though), but they are not my forte.

5) faz.net: Drei ökonomische Erdbeben

6) washingtonpost.com/monkeycage: ‘House of Cards’ is the worst show about American politics. Ever.

I’m working through a number of different theories about why “House of Cards” is so profoundly wrong about American politics while still being a rather entertaining and addictive show. Maybe it’s actually a comedy.

Another smack down of House of Cards? IT’S A POWER FANTASY BOYS AND GIRLS CAN GET BEHIND!

7) vox.com: The murder of Ahmed Al-Jumaili in Texas should be a front-page story

In many ways, the onus of responsibility lies with the larger mainstream that neither promotes nor resists Islamophobia, that immediately classifies the murder of three Muslim-American students as a “parking dispute” and doesn’t bother to even acknowledge the dead-of-night murder of Al-Jumaili.

Such a sad story. Islamophobia will probably get worse before it (hopefully) gets any better.

8) salon.com: The 1 percent’s white privilege con: Elites hold “conversations” about race, while resegregating our schools

9) washingtonpost.com/monkeycage: Think of Russia as an ordinary petrostate, not an extraordinary superpower

From this perspective, Russia is not so much an insecure superpower as it is a typical petrostate with a short-term horizon that gets aggressive and ambitious once it accumulates substantive oil revenues.

10) medium.com/bull-market: The Global Economy in 10 Charts & 2 Rules

They say a picture is worth a thousand words but in economics a good chart is worth at least 10,000.

11) growthecon.com: Genetic Factors in Savings Behavior

The end result is that roughly 1/3 of variation in savings behavior can be accounted for by genetics.

12) blogs.faz.net/Fazit: Thomas Piketty spricht sich die Aktualität ab

Der angesehene Wirtschaftshistoriker Hans-Joachim Voth fasste die Kritik mit dem Satz zusammen: Pikettys historische Analyse sei weitgehend richtig, doch seine Vorhersagen über die weitere Entwicklung der Ungleichheit ließen sich daraus nicht ableiten.

13) bloomberg.com: History Suggests OPEC’s Days Could Be Numbered


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