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  1. John Taylor gives a Simple Proof That Strong Growth Has Typically Followed Financial Crises
    People are looking for answers to why the economy is growing so slowly. Is the answer that economic growth is normally weak following deep recessions and financial crises, as, for example, Kenneth Arrow argued in the presidential election event with me this week at Stanford? Or is poor economic policy the answer, as I argued?
  2. The Pin Factory blog raises The problem of BBC bias
    The Chairman of the BBC Trust, Chris Patten, has launched an enquiry into impartiality in BBC news reporting. It should be noted that the BBC controls 60% of the broadcast news audience in the UK, which makes a mockery over any fears that Sky might pose a threat to competition in the market. The BBC is required by its statutes to adhere to impartiality in its reportage. This position is reinforced by the requirement that all broadcasters in the UK present impartial views on news. Clearly this presents some serious issues for freedom of speech; it allows politicians and bureaucrats to have general oversight over the content of news broadcasts as they are in a position to arbitrate what constitutes impartiality.
  3. Welly Gnome on Lee Hsien Loong in the Herald
    Singapore’s leader Lee Hsien Loong has a great op-ed in the Herald today.He talks about the strong links between New Zealand and Singapore, and the opportunities for New Zealand to use Singapore as a launching pad for doing business in Asia.
  4. Jacob Funk Kirkegaard on Youth unemployment in Europe: More complicated than it looks
    Youth unemployment in the Eurozone looks like a social and economic disaster in the making – 30%, 40%, even 50% of young people sitting on their hands instead of building skills and experience. This column argues the headline numbers are misleading. While youth unemployment is a serious problem, a large share of EZ youth are not in the labour force, so the headline figures overstate the labour-market ‘scar tissue’ that will be left over from the crisis.
  5. Anders Olofsgård on Why political short-sightedness and randomised control trials can be a deadly mix for aid effectiveness
    The recent focus on impact evaluation within development economics has led to increased pressure on aid agencies to provide evidence from randomised controlled trials. This column argues this reinforces a political bias towards immediately verifiable and media-packaged results at the expense of more long-term and complex processes such as institutional development.
  6. Daron Acemoglu and James Robinson on The Sad State of Civil Liberties
    Two excellent articles in the latest issue of The New York Review of Books powerfully underscore the sad state that respect for civil liberties has sunk in the United States in the 11 years since the war on terror was declared (and yes, we know that US record of civil liberties wasn’t always exemplary before then, but still). Perhaps it’s in the nature of declaring war against concepts that takes us down the slippery slope.