- Nolan over at TVHE has been on a roll lately. I particularly endorse his critique of the Labour/Green manufacturing inquiry and his critique of Key's trying to push RBNZ beyond its mandate and capacity. Both of these have saved my having to add anything.
- Brennan McDonald chalks the Labour/Green manufacturing policy up to rent-seeking: the parties wanting Ministerial rents and playing to public biases to get it, and manufacturers running normal rent-seeking. I'd amend slightly: if voters are better at detecting dissembling than at understanding economic policy, then we'd expect MPs to share their base's biases.
- Mark White on the dangers of Nudge policies.
- Jessica Irvine reports on 43 recommendations from the former head of the Oz Productivity Commission for boosting Australian productivity.
- Note that NZ is well ahead of Oz on numbers 1, 2, 3, 5 (though Labour wants to re-implement it), 7 (although the taxi camera regs and dispatching rules here work to similar effect), 8, 9, 11, 19, 21, 22 (barring RONS), 23, 24, 27 (though Labour/Green would reverse), 30 (if we believe that the RIS is more than a tick-box), 34-35 are underway, 36 (though Labour/Green would reverse), 37, 42, and 43. I'm not sure we're worse than Oz on the others. Stupid tyranny of distance and inefficiency of scale.
- Chris Bertram on the dangers of the surveillance state.
- The Church of Rationality walks us through the econometrics of bicycle helmet mandates. As is often the case, the standard for statistical evidence in med journals, the BMJ included, is pretty bad. If you're testing for the effects of cycle helmet laws, you probably shouldn't correct for cycling-related injuries.
- Alex at Marginal Revolution on the Oocyte Cartel.