04 June 2013

Anything but water

  1. National Geographic on risk: "dopamine helps control motor skills but also helps drive us to seek out and learn new things as well as process emotions such as anxiety and fear. People whose brains don’t produce enough dopamine, such as those who are afflicted with Parkinson’s disease, often struggle with apathy and a lack of motivation... robust dopamine production holds one of the keys to understanding risk taking... the dopamine system is what compels humans to move forward."

  2. Based on the words we use "society has become more individualistic... it has also become less morally aware, because social and moral fabrics are inextricably linked. The atomization and demoralization of society have led to certain forms of social breakdown, which government has tried to address, sometimes successfully and often impotently."

  3. Bias beware: Economists funded by two sides of the dispute over damage from the Exxon Valdez came up with values for damages that differed by 1000x. Maybe economists are NOT so objective...

  4. ...which brings us to James Buchanan, a genius economist and founder of public choice theory (i.e., that "public servants" serve themselves); he died a few months ago. Anyone interested in governance and regulation should read his work, my papers on international aid workers and water managers [pdf], this post on how eminent domain "for the public good" may just harm private property, and the post I put up later today (deserves its own space).

  5. Speaking of government failure, Jon Stewart derides the Obama's Administration's persecution of "hackers and journalists" and disinterest in punishing the bankers that lost or stole $trillions. Don't listen to what he says; watch what he does. I'm disgusted.

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