The bureaucratic Olympic creed

Cherokee Gothic

First there was the news that Pakistan was sending more officials than athletes to the Olympics: “‘Pakistan contingent will include seven athletes and 17 officials,’ a Pakistan Olympic Association (POA) official told APP.”

and now there is this awesome story about Indian officials behaving badly at the Olympics.   It is aptly titled “India’s Olympians deserve a medal just for putting up with their country’s officials.”  You could probably delete the word Olympians from that title (and replace Indians for India’s) and still have an accurate sentence.

Here are some of the best details:

a. India’s sports minister, Vijay Goel, has been in Rio and has been so rude that he was almost banned from attending events.  Here’s a quote:“‘We have had multiple reports of your Minister for Sports trying to enter accredited areas at venues with unaccredited individuals. When the staff try to explain that this is not allowed, they…

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Some Back of the Envelope Nerdery on Corporate Taxes

Modeled Behavior

Bill Easterly reminds me about a recently published paper on Corporate tax rates and Investment. I decided to run a few back of the envelope calculations to see if a push to eliminate the corporate tax could make basic arithmetic sense.

The up shot is that it does. The effects are quite mild but not trivial. As an critical caveat this based completely on averages and says nothing about distribution.

Here is a chart from the paper that presents a nice downwardly sloping relationship you’d like to start with. They measure the effective corporate tax rate against various measures. Shown below is the effective corporate tax rate versus total economic investment.

image

To make you feel more comfortable I will note that the authors hit the data with a few controls. Its not out of this world robustness, but it does have the kind of checks you would like. They control…

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Who’s been captured?

Modeled Behavior

Jonathan Chait has been having a back and forth with Will Wilkinson over the extent and insurmountability of regulatory capture. In his last reply, Chait summed up his position like this:

If [Will] has access to some study showing that regulation usually, as a rule rather than the exception, become s a weapon of the powers it was intended to regulate and winds up serving the opposite of its intended purpose, then I’m willing to listen. But if his only argument is “look at all of Tim Carney’s articles,” then no, I’m not persuaded, and and not many people outside the economic libertarian world are going to be, either.

Given the varieties and scope of regulation this would be a difficult question to answer with a particular study, or even with a handful of studies. Another problem is defining the challenge as showing that regulations end up “serving the…

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Space chimp lives

Close the Gender Pay Gap, Change the Way We Work – Claudia Goldin

Utopia, you are standing in it!

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