school choice

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pages: 403 words: 105,431

The death and life of the great American school system: how testing and choice are undermining education by Diane Ravitch


David Brooks, desegregation, hiring and firing, invisible hand, Jane Jacobs, Menlo Park, Ralph Waldo Emerson, RAND corporation, Robert Gordon, Ronald Reagan, school choice, school vouchers, The Death and Life of Great American Cities

The unions opposed school choice, which they saw as a threat to public education and a step toward privatization. Congress rebuffed Reagan’s proposals for school choice, as well as his plan to eliminate the Department of Education. However, the concept of school choice found a home among free-market-oriented foundations and think tanks, such as the Heritage Foundation, the Cato Institute, the John M. Olin Foundation, and the Lynde and Harry Bradley Foundation. The foundations and think tanks incubated a generation of scholars and journalists who advocated school choice long after the end of the Reagan administration. State and local think tanks devoted to free-market principles sprouted up across the nation, inspired in large measure by Friedman’s writings, to continue the battle for school choice.5 Although Friedman’s idea of a market-driven approach to schooling made no headway in Congress, its partisans campaigned for referenda in several states.

This approach was the very opposite of Friedman’s goal of maximizing individual freedom through school choice. As the federal government kept up the pressure for desegregation and as resistance to mandatory busing increased, some school districts attempted to encourage voluntary desegregation through choice. They opened magnet schools—schools with specialized offerings in the arts or sciences or other fields—to encourage white students to attend urban schools that would otherwise be heavily nonwhite. But until the election of Ronald Reagan in 1980, the issue of school choice remained far outside the mainstream, mainly because it was viewed by the media and elected officials as a means to permit white students to escape court-ordered racial desegregation. After Reagan was elected, he advocated school choice, specifically vouchers. Reagan was directly influenced by Friedman’s ideas.

Voucher advocates blamed the political clout of the teachers’ unions for these losses, but it was clear nonetheless that most voters turned down the chance to implement vouchers. Public school choice programs, however, began to gain ground at the same time that vouchers were soundly rejected. In the 1980s, a few local school districts adopted public school choice plans, including Cambridge, Massachusetts, Montclair, New Jersey, and District 4 in East Harlem, New York City. In the late 1980s, Minnesota became the first to adopt a statewide program of “open enrollment,” permitting students to transfer to public schools in districts other than their own, and high school juniors and seniors to enroll in a public or private institution of higher education. As the 1990s opened, the choice movement gained new momentum. First, John E. Chubb and Terry M. Moe’s Politics, Markets, and America’s Schools restarted the campaign for school choice with powerful and contemporary arguments; second, the nation’s first voucher program was established in Milwaukee by Wisconsin’s state legislature in 1990; and third, the charter school movement was born.


pages: 282 words: 80,907

Who Gets What — and Why: The New Economics of Matchmaking and Market Design by Alvin E. Roth


Affordable Care Act / Obamacare, Airbnb, algorithmic trading, barriers to entry, Berlin Wall, bitcoin, Build a better mousetrap, centralized clearinghouse, computer age, crowdsourcing, deferred acceptance, desegregation, experimental economics, first-price auction, Flash crash, High speed trading, income inequality, Internet of things, invention of agriculture, invisible hand, Jean Tirole, law of one price, Lyft, market clearing, market design, medical residency, obamacare, proxy bid, road to serfdom, school choice, sealed-bid auction, second-price auction, second-price sealed-bid, Silicon Valley, spectrum auction, Spread Networks laid a new fibre optics cable between New York and Chicago, Steve Jobs, The Wealth of Nations by Adam Smith, two-sided market

Spreading the Word After our initial experience in New York and Boston, other school districts began to call us for help. Indeed, since founding the nonprofit Institute for Innovation in Public School Choice, Neil Dorosin has become the Johnny Appleseed of market design for school choice. With support from Atila, Parag, and me, IIPSC has helped design school choice mechanisms for Denver and New Orleans and has had input into school choice in Washington, D.C. As I write this, we have projects under way in several other cities as well. Economists in Japan and Belgium also have begun to look into designing school choice systems there, and in England it seems to have become a priority for the Conservative Party. In China, about 10 million students each year are assigned to colleges through a variety of centralized clearinghouses, a different one for each province.

It appears that in some provinces, the new clearinghouses have been modified incrementally, so that they now are somewhere in between immediate acceptance (as in Boston before we helped change the system there) and deferred acceptance (as in Boston and New York school choice today). There’s every reason to hope that in the coming decades, we’ll be able to design even better school choice systems, although they may continue to rest on the same basic principles of making it safe and simple for families to participate and using preference information efficiently. This matters deeply to me because schools play a critical role in some of the biggest issues facing our democracy, from income inequality to intergenerational mobility. We need to use schools better, so that our kids can get the education they need, whether it is provided at the closest school or not. School choice helps us deliver on the promises we make to all our children. That being said, school choice systems, even if they are efficient, simple, and safe, don’t solve the problems created by not having enough good schools.

Notice that we’ve just repeated the logic that we used in the previous chapter to demonstrate Gale and Shapley’s discovery that the final matching that results from the deferred acceptance algorithm is stable. Details, Details I made some simplifications in my explanation of how the deferred acceptance algorithm was adapted to fit New York school choice. It’s worth mentioning a few of these simplifications, because details matter so much in market design. Just as the medical Match had some special features (including couples looking for two jobs), so, too, does New York school choice. Also, school choice operates under a lot of constraints, and many people have to sign off on any innovations. Sometimes this led to unavoidable complications. Not all of these complications were unavoidable, but just as in kidney exchange, my economist colleagues and I were only advisers, and not all of our advice was adopted.


pages: 304 words: 22,886

Nudge: Improving Decisions About Health, Wealth, and Happiness by Richard H. Thaler, Cass R. Sunstein


Al Roth, Albert Einstein, asset allocation, availability heuristic, call centre, Cass Sunstein, choice architecture, continuous integration, Daniel Kahneman / Amos Tversky, desegregation, diversification, diversified portfolio, endowment effect, equity premium, feminist movement, framing effect, full employment, George Akerlof, index fund, invisible hand, late fees, libertarian paternalism, loss aversion, Mahatma Gandhi, Mason jar, medical malpractice, medical residency, mental accounting, meta analysis, meta-analysis, Milgram experiment, pension reform, presumed consent, profit maximization, rent-seeking, Richard Thaler, risk tolerance, Robert Shiller, Robert Shiller, Saturday Night Live, school choice, school vouchers, transaction costs, Vanguard fund, Zipcar

Psychological Science 16 (2005): 689–93. Howarth, Richard B., Brent M. Haddad, and Bruce Paton. “The Economics of Energy Efficiency: Insights from Voluntary Participation Programs.” Energy Policy 28 (2000): 477–86. 271 272 BIBLIOGRAPHY Howell, William. “School Choice in No Child Left Behind.” In Choice and Competition in American Education, ed. Paul E. Peterson, 255–64. Lanham, Md.: Rowman and Littlefield, 2006. Hoxby, Caroline. “School Choice and School Productivity: Could School Choice Be a Tide That Lifts All Boats?” In The Economics of School Choice, ed. Caroline Hoxby, 287–341. Chicago: University of Chicago Press, 2003. Hsee, Christopher K. “Attribute Evaluability and Its Implications for Joint-Separate Evaluation Reversals and Beyond.” In Kahneman and Tversky (2000), 543–63. Huberman, Gur, and Wei Jiang.

Some of the most heated debates in American politics, involving same-sex marriage and related issues, could be made much less hot with a little separation of church and state—and by insisting on freedom both for religious organizations and for people who love each other. This page intentionally left blank 13 IMPROVING SCHOOL CHOICES In 1944 President Franklin Delano Roosevelt included “the right to a good education” in what he called a Second Bill of Rights, designed to promote “security” and suitable for a modern democracy.1 Most Americans seem to believe that children do have a right to a good education; there is a consensus on that point. One reason for that consensus is that educated people are more free. But the consensus breaks down when people explore how, exactly, to achieve that right. School choice remains an intensely polarizing issue in American politics. The case for choice was originally popularized by the great libertarian economist Milton Friedman.

His argument is a simple one: the best way to improve our children’s schools is to introduce competition. If schools compete, kids win. And if schools compete, those who are the least advantaged have the most to gain. Wealthy families already have “school choice,” because they can send their children to private schools. If we give parents vouchers to send their children to any school they want, then we will put children from poor families more nearly on a par with their more privileged middle- and upper-class counterparts. Shouldn’t poor children have the same rights that wealthy ones do? Critics of school choice argue that such programs amount, in practice, to an attack on the public school system that has helped make America great. The critics worry that in the end, public schools, which serve diverse people and allow them to be educated together, will lose both students and money.


pages: 339 words: 95,988

Freakonomics: A Rogue Economist Explores the Hidden Side of Everything by Steven D. Levitt, Stephen J. Dubner


airport security, Broken windows theory, crack epidemic, desegregation, Exxon Valdez, feminist movement, George Akerlof, Joseph Schumpeter, mental accounting, moral hazard, More Guns, Less Crime, oil shale / tar sands, peak oil,, profit maximization, Richard Thaler, school choice, sensible shoes, Steven Pinker, Ted Kaczynski, The Chicago School, The Market for Lemons, Thorstein Veblen, War on Poverty

And since most parents would agree that education lies at the core of a child’s formation, it would make sense to begin by examining a telling set of school data. These data concern school choice, an issue that most people feel strongly about in one direction or another. True believers of school choice argue that their tax dollars buy them the right to send their children to the best school possible. Critics worry that school choice will leave behind the worst students in the worst schools. Still, just about every parent seems to believe that her child will thrive if only he can attend the right school, the one with an appropriate blend of academics, extracurriculars, friendliness, and safety. School choice came early to the Chicago Public School system. That’s because the CPS, like most urban school districts, had a disproportionate number of minority students.

The result is a natural experiment on a grand scale. This was hardly the goal in the mind of the Chicago school officials who conceived the lottery. But when viewed in this way, the lottery offers a wonderful means of measuring just how much school choice—or, really, a better school—truly matters. So what do the data reveal? The answer will not be heartening to obsessive parents: in this case, school choice barely mattered at all. It is true that the Chicago students who entered the school-choice lottery were more likely to graduate than the students who didn’t—which seems to suggest that school choice does make a difference. But that’s an illusion. The proof is in this comparison: the students who won the lottery and went to a “better” school did no better than equivalent students who lost the lottery and were left behind.

.” / 141 Pinker called Harris’s views “mind-boggling”: Steven Pinker, “Sibling Rivalry: Why the Nature/Nurture Debate Won’t Go Away,” Boston Globe, October 13, 2002, adapted from Steven Pinker, The Blank Slate: The Modern Denial of Human Nature (New York: Viking, 2002). SCHOOL CHOICE IN CHICAGO: This material is drawn from Julie Berry Cullen, Brian Jacob, and Steven D. Levitt, “The Impact of School Choice on Student Outcomes: An Analysis of the Chicago Public Schools,” Journal of Public Economics, forthcoming; and Julie Berry Cullen, Brian Jacob, and Steven D. Levitt, “The Effect of School Choice on Student Outcomes: Evidence from Randomized Lotteries,” National Bureau of Economic Research working paper, 2003. STUDENTS WHO ARRIVE AT HIGH SCHOOL NOT PREPARED TO DO HIGH SCHOOL WORK: See Tamar Lewin, “More Students Passing Regents, but Achievement Gap Persists,” New York Times, March 18, 2004.


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Waiting for Superman: How We Can Save America's Failing Public Schools by Participant Media, Karl Weber


collective bargaining, feminist movement, hiring and firing, index card, knowledge economy, Menlo Park, Robert Gordon, school choice, Silicon Valley, Upton Sinclair

In other words, we need to focus on everybody’s contribution to learning, and we need to hold everybody accountable for the learning gains they do or do not produce. Second, we need to decentralize decision making so that local schools—where the demands are known, where the people are known, and where programs can be designed to increase achievement—have the freedom to perform. We cannot try to specify from the state or national capital how to learn. Third, we have to offer school choice to all parents. Currently, well-off parents exercise school choice through their selection of residential location, but poor parents have many fewer options. Choice options such as those presented by charter schools help all families by putting pressure on schools to improve. Some argue that it is just too hard to make big changes in our schools. Implicitly these people are willing to accept huge losses in the well-being of our children and in the health of our economy.

See also Test scores Reassignment centers, teacher Resnick, Lauren Resource policies(table) Resources Responsibility Revelle, Roger Rhee, Michelle biographical information Rimer, Ned Roberts, Kimberly Rocketship Education (San Jose, California) Rose, Joel Ross, Frank “Rubber rooms,” Safe learning environment Schaeffler, Susan Scholastic Inc. School choice School of One (New York’s Chinatown) Schools characteristics of successful and lotteries and school choice suburban vs. urban See also Charter schools; individual schools School segregation School services Schwarz, Eric Science proficiency Science scores. See also Test scores Scientists, as citizen teachers SEED Charter School and lotteries Segregation Self-confidence Self-interest Seniority September 11th Victim Compensation Fund Services, school Shaw-Garnet-Patterson Middle School (Washington, D.C.)

As mentioned, even specialists do not have sufficient experience to provide any detailed guidance. Nonetheless, preparing local officials for these tasks is where we should be headed. Neither should we assume that every policy that emphasizes student outcomes and provides performance incentives is necessarily effective. The design of incentives is complicated, and many incentive structures lead to unintended and undesirable consequences. For example, if a move to broaden school choice heightens racial or economic segregation in the schools, most people would consider this an undesirable policy. We need to develop more experience with incentives and evaluate these experiences critically. With incentive systems, the details generally prove to be crucial. The ultimate goal of the incentive systems we design must be to attract, encourage, and reward high-performing teachers while pushing low-performing teachers toward either improving their efforts (if they are capable of doing so) or leaving the profession altogether.


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Our Kids: The American Dream in Crisis by Robert D. Putnam


correlation does not imply causation, deindustrialization, demographic transition, desegregation, ending welfare as we know it, epigenetics, full employment, George Akerlof, helicopter parent, impulse control, income inequality, index card, low skilled workers, manufacturing employment, meta analysis, meta-analysis, mortgage tax deduction, new economy, Occupy movement, Ralph Waldo Emerson, randomized controlled trial, school choice, Socratic dialogue, The Bell Curve by Richard Herrnstein and Charles Murray, the built environment, upwardly mobile, Walter Mischel, white flight, working poor

This process clusters advantaged kids with other advantaged kids in one set of schools, like Troy High, and poor kids with other poor kids in another set of schools, like Santa Ana High. Admirable though it may be for other reasons, “school choice” has had at most a slight impact on the class gap. It does allow an increasing proportion of students (roughly 15 percent) to attend schools chosen by their parents, rather than schools based on their residence. But especially among lower-income families, the choices parents make are often not well informed and are constrained by transportation and child care problems.26 School choice would not likely have made much difference for the lower-class children we’ve focused on in this book, for example, because they lacked savvy parents to help them make better choices. Regardless of their own family background, kids do better in schools where the other kids come from affluent, educated homes.

Haurin, “Parents, Peers, or School Inputs: Which Components of School Outcomes Are Capitalized into House Value?,” Regional Science and Urban Economics 39 (September 2009): 523–29. 26. Lareau and Goyette, eds., Choosing Homes, Choosing Schools. For conflicting views on whether school choice narrows class and racial gaps, see Mark Schneider, Paul Teske, and Melissa Marschall, Choosing Schools: Consumer Choice and the Quality of American Schools (Princeton: Princeton University Press, 2000); Tomeka M. Davis, “School Choice and Segregation: ‘Tracking’ Racial Equity in Magnet Schools,” Education and Urban Society 46 (June 2014): 399–433. 27. Jaap Dronkers and Rolf van der Velden, “Positive but Also Negative Effects of Ethnic Diversity in Schools on Educational Performance? An Empirical Test Using PISA Data,” in Integration and Inequality in Educational Institutions, Michael Windzio, ed.

Mansfield, “The Role of Family, School, and Community Characteristics in Inequality in Education and Labor-Market Outcomes,” in Whither Opportunity? Rising Inequality, Schools, and Children’s Life Chances, eds. Duncan and Murnane, 339–58. James E. Ryan, Five Miles Away, a World Apart: One City, Two Schools, and the Story of Educational Opportunity in Modern America (New York: Oxford University Press, 2010), reports that most children attend their neighborhood school, and even participants in school choice programs usually attend nearby schools. 23. Annette Lareau and Kimberly Goyette, eds., Choosing Homes, Choosing Schools: Residential Segregation and the Search for a Good School (New York: Russell Sage Foundation, 2014). 24. Jonathan Rothwell, “Housing Costs, Zoning, and Access to High-Scoring Schools,” Brookings Institution (April 2012). Other estimates of the good schools bonus in housing prices are substantial.


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The Inner Lives of Markets: How People Shape Them—And They Shape Us by Tim Sullivan


Airbnb, airport security, Al Roth, Andrei Shleifer, attribution theory, autonomous vehicles, barriers to entry, Brownian motion, centralized clearinghouse, clean water, conceptual framework, constrained optimization, continuous double auction, deferred acceptance, Donald Trump, Edward Glaeser, experimental subject, first-price auction, framing effect, frictionless, fundamental attribution error, George Akerlof, Goldman Sachs: Vampire Squid, helicopter parent, Internet of things, invisible hand, Isaac Newton, iterative process, Jean Tirole, Jeff Bezos, Johann Wolfgang von Goethe, John Nash: game theory, John von Neumann, Joseph Schumpeter, late fees, linear programming, Lyft, market clearing, market design, market friction, medical residency, multi-sided market, mutually assured destruction, Nash equilibrium, Occupy movement, Peter Thiel,, pez dispenser, pre–internet, price mechanism, price stability, prisoner's dilemma, profit motive, proxy bid, RAND corporation, ride hailing / ride sharing, Robert Shiller, Robert Shiller, Ronald Coase, school choice, school vouchers, sealed-bid auction, second-price auction, second-price sealed-bid, sharing economy, Silicon Valley, spectrum auction, Steve Jobs, Tacoma Narrows Bridge, technoutopianism, telemarketer, The Market for Lemons, The Wisdom of Crowds, Thomas Malthus, Thorstein Veblen, trade route, transaction costs, two-sided market, uranium enrichment, Vickrey auction, winner-take-all economy

So the “market” for coat hooks began to unravel backward in much the same way that, in the absence of a centralized clearinghouse, residency programs and judges raced to recruit medical and law students earlier and earlier. Now, Jonas Vlachos is hardly an apologist for the glories of free enterprise and markets. He’s from Sweden, for one thing, and Scandinavians are known worldwide for their love of big taxes and big government. More personally, Vlachos has been a vocal critic of his country’s market-like approach to education, which is based in part on the school choice vision laid out by Milton Friedman, an icon of laissez-faire ideology. Vlachos’s own kids go to good old-fashioned government-run schools rather than the privately owned voucher ones that exist alongside them. Vlachos had argued that markets were, in many ways, ill suited to serving the educational needs of Swedish students. The private voucher schools he observed in Stockholm were excessively motivated to cut costs to boost profits, to manipulate test scores to attract more students and gain greater prestige, and to skim off the best students by locating or recruiting in prosperous neighborhoods.

., 22 Liu, Qihong, 128–129 Lyft car service, 173 MAD (doctrine of nuclear deterrence by mutually assured destruction), 26 mail-in-bids, for auctions, 83–84 “The Market for Lemons” (Akerlof), 44–51, 64 market frictions, 169–174 market fundamentalists, 16–17 market insights, 14–15 market makers, 107–110, 118–121 markets 18th-century book, 90–91 competitive, 35, 124–126, 172–174, 180–181 design, 133, 137–142 dysfunction of, 36, 75–77, 143 economics of platform, 107–112 equilibrium, 33 fixed-price versus auctions, 96–97 food bank system, 154–160 image problem of, 152–153 labor, 48, 64–66 lemon, 44–51, 58–59, 64, 112 multisided, 108–112, 118–124 one-sided, 108–112 in POW camps, 4, 7–13, 175–177 rules for platform, 112–117 school choice in Sweden, 151–152 selfishness in, 177–179 technology and, 169–173 trade with uninformed parties, 166–169 transformation of, 13–17 two-sided, 108–112, 118–124 See also auctions; economics; platforms Marx, Karl, 20, 23 matching problems middle school dance partners, 131–132, 134, 137–140 student to school, 138–139, 141–142, 143–149 mathematics algebraic topology, 44–45 economic theory transformed by, 15, 19–27 game theory, 136 general equilibrium model, 29, 31–34, 36–37, 40, 45, 76 kidney exchange algorithm, 163–165 models, 20, 24–25, 30 in real world economics, 35–37 Samuelson connecting economics and, 28–29 Shapley-Gale algorithm, 137–140 Matsuzaka, Daisuke, 79–81, 87–89 Maxwell, James Clark, 24 McManus, Brian, 73–75 mechanism design, 133, 134 medical residency programs, 140 merchant from Prato, 105–107 middle school dance-matching, 131–132, 134, 137–140 Milgrom, Paul, 70–71, 98, 102–103 mobile market platform, 116 modeling applied theory, 45, 50, 75–76 competition, 35, 166, 172–173 congestion pricing, 86, 94 dysfunction of, 75–77 economic, 15, 24–29 mathematical, 20, 24–25, 30 reality-based economic, 35–37, 45, 49–51, 141 models auction, 82–84 eBay, 43, 46, 48 general equilibrium, 31–34, 36–37, 40, 76 lemons, 44–51, 58–59, 64, 112 Solow, 35 See also platforms; signaling model Moldovanu, Benny, 90–91 money burning costs, 70–71 money-back guarantees, 69–71 Morals & Markets: The Development of Life Insurance in the United States (Zelizer), 153 Morgenstern, Oskar, 25–27 mortality rates, of Japanese vs German POW camps, 10–13 MS-13 gang, 67 multisided markets, 108–112, 118–124 multisided platform, 14 multiunit Vickrey auction, 93 Murphy, Frank, 9 Nasar, Sylvia, 29 Nash, John, 32 National Archives’ World War II Prisoners of War Data File, 11 network externalities, 121–124 New England Program for Kidney Exchange, 164–165 New York Department of Education, 143–144, 145, 149 Nobel Prize in Economics, 34 See also Sveriges Riksbank Prize in Economic Sciences in Memory of Alfred Nobel noncustomers, paying, 123–124 Nordstrom’s return policy, 69–70 no-risk money-back guarantees, 69–71 normal good, 180 no-trade rule, Japanese POW camps, 10–13 nuclear deterrence, 26 Omidyar, Pierre, 39–40 one-sided markets, 108–112 online retail, 41–43, 52–55 optimized efficiency, 85–86, 133 organ sales, 160–161 organizations, sick, 142–143 out-of-town bids, for auctions, 83–84 Pareto, Vilfredo, 20, 21–22 Pareto efficiency, 22 Penny Black stamp, 82–84 Percy P.

., 7–10, 22–23 Ranau Japanese POW camp, 10–11 RAND Corporation, 25, 27, 134–136 reality-based economic modeling, 35–37, 49–51, 141 See also lemon markets theory recessions, 36, 48, 75 Roberts, John, 66, 70–71 Ross, Lee, 177–179 Roth, Al, 140, 141, 163–165 rush, fraternity/sorority, 140 Rutland, VT, 1 Rysman, Marc, 109 Samuelson, Paul, 28–29, 44 Samuelson, William, 55–57 San Fernando Valley gangs, 61–62 San Fers gang, 61–62 Sandakan camp, Borneo, 10–11 Sauget, IL, 168–169 scams internet, 52–55 money-back, 69–70 Scarf, Herbert, 163–164 school choice, in Sweden, 151–152 school to student matching, 138–139, 141–142, 143–149 Schultz, Theodore, 35 Schumpeter, Joseph, 24, 49–50 Scottish auctions, 82 Sears, 115–116 second-bid auction, 81–82 second-price sealed-bid auctions, 87–89 “Selection process starts with choices, ends with luck” (article), 146 self-destructive behaviors, signaling theory and, 67–68 selfish, markets making us, 177–179 seller misrepresentation, 52–55 sellers, knowing more than buyers, 41, 44–55 Seven Minute Abs, 172 Shakin’ Cat Midgets gang, 61 Shapley, Lloyd, 134–136, 137–138, 163–164 Shapley-Gale algorithm, 137–140 Shi, Peng, 148 Shleifer, Andrei, 180–181 shopping malls, as two-sided markets, 122–123 Shoup, Carl, 85 sick organizations, 142–143 signaling model applications of, 66–68 commitment signs, 62–66 competitive signaling, 69–71 integrity, 71–75 Silicon Valley, market friction and, 169–173 Skoll, Jeff, 39–40, 43, 51 Smith, Adam, 21 Snider, James, 42 social efficiency, auctions, 89 social well-being, assessing, 22 Solow, Robert, 35 Solow model, 35 Sönmez, Tayfun, 144 Sony’s Blu-ray format war, 125–126 sorority rush, 140 spectrum auction theory, 102–103 Spence, Michael, 62–66 Stack, Charles, 42–43 Stalag VII-A POW camp market, 5–6, 7–10, 13 stamp collecting, 82–84 Stiglitz, Joseph, 35–36, 76, 182 strategy proofness mechanism, 145 student to school matching, 138–139, 141–142, 143–149 Summers, Larry, 166–167 Super Bowl advertising, 70–71 supply and demand, 96 survival rates, of Japanese vs.


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Milton Friedman: A Biography by Lanny Ebenstein


affirmative action, banking crisis, Berlin Wall, Bretton Woods, Deng Xiaoping, Fall of the Berlin Wall, fiat currency, floating exchange rates, Francis Fukuyama: the end of history, full employment, Hernando de Soto, hiring and firing, inflation targeting, invisible hand, Joseph Schumpeter, labour market flexibility, Lao Tzu, liquidity trap, means of production, Mont Pelerin Society, Ponzi scheme, price stability, rent control, road to serfdom, Ronald Coase, Ronald Reagan, school choice, school vouchers, secular stagnation, Simon Kuznets, stem cell, The Chicago School, The Wealth of Nations by Adam Smith, Thorstein Veblen

Friedman writes passionately of the benefits that he believes students would receive from the voucher system—of the increased opportunities that they would experience through diversity, choice, and competition, and of the improved performance that all schools, including existing public ones, would experience. School vouchers would primarily benefit lower socioeconomic students in large, urban school districts and Friedman thinks that a system of voucher schools would especially benefit African American students. He does not understand why more African American leaders do not embrace school choice through vouchers. He believes that the main opponent of vouchers is the educational establishment, particularly teachers’ unions. His essential formula for improving inner cities and reducing racial tension is to implement vouchers in education, legalize drugs, cut welfare, and eliminate affirmative action. Friedman endorses the argument of Thomas Sowell that among the negative consequences of affirmative action is that it mismatches participants’ fields of endeavor with their abilities, to their detriment (an individual who would be a success at a state university is instead, for example, admitted to an Ivy League university, where he or she is more likely to fail).

Not only has the school voucher idea been considered outside of this country, but here and abroad the concept of vouchers—providing funding through government but leaving provision of services in competitive, private hands—has proved capable of extension to many other areas, resulting in privatization of government activities. Moreover, within education, notwithstanding the lack of political success that vouchers have had up to this point, the idea of expanding school choice has had many ramifications, from open student transfer policies to, in part, charter schools and home schooling. Although he rejects any comparison with John Dewey, Friedman is not just, with Keynes, one of the two leading economists of the twentieth century; he is arguably, with Dewey, one of the two leading educational reformers. Notwithstanding that he is the great champion of school vouchers, Friedman would ultimately support the complete withdrawal of government from education, including even vouchers.

., 160 Pinochet, Augusto, 189 Piven, Frances Fox, 202 Popper, Karl, 68 Porter, Alan, 83 positive economics, 63–75, 119, 217, 234, 239–40 Powell, Jim, 125–26 price theory, 59, 86–90, 94, 105, 147 prohibition against carrying mail for profit, 172, 173 prohibition, alcohol, 10, 226, 227 quantity theory, 17, 23–24, 100, 107, 110, 114, 131, 133, 136, 161–62, 213 Rand, Ayn, 151 Rathbone, Anne, 103 Reagan, Ronald, 153, 175–78, 185, 198, 205–210, 213, 220, 232, 235 Reder, Melvin, 57–58, 133, 167 Regan, Donald, 209 rent control, 35, 49–50, 136, 171, 172 Ricardo, David, 36 Robbins, Lionel, 85 Rockefeller, John D., 19 Roosevelt recession, 121 Roosevelt, Franklin D., 23, 34, 35, 114, 121, 123 Rosten,Leo,37 Rowley, Charles, 103 Rumsfeld, Donald, 167, 202, 236 Rutgers University, 13–18, 19, 34, 36, 38, 50, 122 Samuelson, Paul, 21, 49, 94–95, 130, 138, 155–57, 160, 169, 180, 216, 241 Savage, Jimmie, 46, 60, 68, 85–86 school choice, 225, 228 school vouchers, 3, 173, 204, 223–29, 234 Schultz, Henry, 22, 24, 25, 32–33, 35, 37, 50, 54 Schultz, Theodore, 60 Schuman Plan, 80 Schumpeter, Joseph, 99, 132 Schwartz, Anna Jacobson, 1, 113, 117–18, 120, 125–26, 173, 186, 232, 238 Schwarzenegger, Arnold, 237 Seldon, Arthur, 211, 232 sequential analysis, 45, 47 Shanker, Albert, 202 Shils, Edward, 21–22 Shoup, Carl, 42 Shultz, George, 73, 167, 181, 186, 197, 207–209, 226, 237 Silk, Leonard, 35 Simon, William, 208–209 Simons, Henry, 22, 24–25, 54, 68, 70, 116, 131, 142, 162, 175 Sjaastaad, Larry, 90, 219 Skole, Robert, 191 Skousen, Mark, 117, 131, 156, 241 Slutzky, Eugen, 115 Smiley, Gene, 125–26 Smith, Adam, 20, 187, 192, 193–94, 200–202, 220, 237 Sobel, Robert, 44 social security, 171–72 socialism, 3, 34, 69, 109, 144 Socrates, 65 Solow, Robert, 57, 80, 157, 159 Soper, C.


pages: 76 words: 20,238

The Great Stagnation by Tyler Cowen


Asian financial crisis, Bernie Madoff,, financial innovation, Flynn Effect, income inequality, indoor plumbing, life extension, liquidity trap, Long Term Capital Management, Mark Zuckerberg, meta analysis, meta-analysis, Peter Thiel, RAND corporation, school choice, Tyler Cowen: Great Stagnation, urban renewal

Clay Shirky’s idea of a “cognitive surplus” suggests that billions of people rapidly are becoming smarter and better connected to each other. Self-education has never been more fun, and that is because we are in control of that process like never before. Third, we now see a critical mass in the American electorate favoring concrete steps to bring greater quality and accountability to K-12 education, whether through better incentives, school choice, charter schools, better monitoring, or whatever works. Siding with the schools, as they currently operate, is no longer a political winner. If we look at the current administration, the Democratic Party is often considered the “party of teachers’ unions.” Yet President Obama has opted for an education policy that, on the whole, teachers’ unions strongly dislike. We haven’t yet seen much in the way of results, but the tide is turning in a positive direction, and over time I expect this to produce results.


pages: 271 words: 82,159

David and Goliath: Underdogs, Misfits, and the Art of Battling Giants by Malcolm Gladwell


affirmative action, Berlin Wall, cuban missile crisis, Daniel Kahneman / Amos Tversky, delayed gratification, medical residency, Menlo Park, meta analysis, meta-analysis, RAND corporation, school choice, Silicon Valley

And that feeling—as subjective and ridiculous and irrational as it may be—matters. How you feel about your abilities—your academic “self-concept”—in the context of your classroom shapes your willingness to tackle challenges and finish difficult tasks. It’s a crucial element in your motivation and confidence. The Big Fish–Little Pond theory was pioneered by the psychologist Herbert Marsh, and to Marsh, most parents and students make their school choices for the wrong reasons. “A lot of people think that going to an academically selective school is going to be good,” he said. “That’s just not true. The reality is that it is going to be mixed.” He went on: “When I was living in Sydney, there were a small number of selective public schools that were even more prestigious than the elite private schools. The tests to get into them were incredibly competitive.

Chapter Three: Caroline Sacks The discussion of the Impressionists is based on several books, principally: John Rewald, The History of Impressionism (MOMA, 1973); Ross King, The Judgment of Paris (Walker Publishing, 2006), which has a marvelous description of the world of the Salon; Sue Roe, The Private Lives of the Impressionists (Harper Collins, 2006); and Harrison White and Cynthia White, Canvases and Careers: Institutional Change in the French Painting World (Wiley & Sons, 1965), 150. The first academic paper to raise the issue of relative deprivation with respect to school choice was James Davis’s “The Campus as Frog Pond: An Application of the Theory of Relative Deprivation to Career Decisions of College Men,” The American Journal of Sociology 72, no. 1 (July 1966). Davis concludes: At the level of the individual, [my findings] challenge the notion that getting into the “best possible” school is the most efficient route to occupational mobility. Counselors and parents might well consider the drawbacks as well as the advantages of sending a boy to a “fine” college, if, when doing so, it is fairly certain he will end up in the bottom ranks of his graduating class.


pages: 283 words: 73,093

Social Democratic America by Lane Kenworthy


affirmative action, Affordable Care Act / Obamacare, barriers to entry, Celtic Tiger, centre right, clean water, collective bargaining, corporate governance, David Brooks, desegregation, Edward Glaeser, full employment, Gini coefficient, hiring and firing, Home mortgage interest deduction, illegal immigration, income inequality, invisible hand, labor-force participation, manufacturing employment, market bubble, minimum wage unemployment, new economy, postindustrial economy, purchasing power parity, race to the bottom, rent-seeking, rising living standards, Robert Gordon, Robert Shiller, Robert Shiller, Ronald Reagan, school choice, shareholder value, sharing economy, Skype, Steve Jobs, too big to fail, Tyler Cowen: Great Stagnation, union organizing, universal basic income, War on Poverty, working poor, zero day

SIEPR 2008 Economic Summit Conference, Stanford, CA. DeLong, J. Bradford. 2009. “Slow Income Growth and Absolute Poverty in the North Atlantic Region.” Unpublished paper. DeLong, J. Bradford. 2012. “The Changing Structure of Prices since 1960.” Grasping Reality with Both Invisible Hands, December 8. DeLuca, Stefanie and Peter Rosenblatt. 2010. “Does Moving to Better Neighborhoods Lead to Better Schooling Opportunities? Parental School Choice in an Experimental Housing Voucher Program.” Teachers College Record 112: 1443–1491. DeParle, Jason. 2004. American Dream. New York: Penguin. DeParle, Jason. 2012. “Welfare Limits Left Poor Adrift as Recession Took Hold.” New York Times, April 7. Dertouzos, Michael L., Lester C. Thurow, Robert M. Solow, and the MIT Commission on Industrial Productivity. 1989. Made in America. Cambridge, MA: MIT Press.

., “Effects of Public Opinion on Policy”, 154 Skocpol, Theda, 118 social democratic countries government revenues and employment hours in, 99 fig. 4.12 social institutions, 3–4 social policy American, 12–15, 79–80, 80 Fig. 4.4, 110–111, 149–180 future of, 177–180 and political shifts, 13, 14, 170 and public support, 154–156 complex, 108–109 policy persistence and, 13 problem solving and, 13 Social Security as a program that works well, 10, 22–23, 54, 109 as an entitlement, 110 cap on earnings subject to tax on, 79 disability benefits, 5 increasing, 73 opinions on spending for, 152 restructuring, 122, 168 Soskice, David, 86, 87 Spain, government revenues and employment hours in, 99 fig. 4.12 special education, 5 stagflation, 93 student loan funding, 167 Stimson, James, 154 Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (SNAP), 6 Supplemental Security Income (SSI), 17 Survey of Consumer Finances (SCF), 42 Survey of Income and Program Participation (SIPP), 25, 26 Sweden, 119, 121, 124–127 benefits following childbirth in, 60, 116 early childhood programs in, 100, 16 employment programs in, 100, 138 family-friendly programs in, 138, government revenues and economic growth in, 83, 84 fig. 4.6, 85, 89, 90 fig. 4.9, 95 government revenues and employment hours in, 99 fig. 4.12 GDP per capita, 91 fig. 4.10 higher education in, 58 household income in, 63 innovation in, 92 low income in, 55 Rehn-Meidner model, 139 school choice in, 59 social expenditures and living standards in, 125 fig. 4.21 unions in, 132 Switzerland employment in, 98 government revenues and employment hours in, 99 fig. 4.12 taxes and increased lobbying by interest groups, 107 and receipt of public goods, 80 fig. 4.4 as share of GDP, 74 boosting household income, 168 fig. 5.6. carbon, 78 ”clawbacks”, 125 deduction removed for mortgage interest, 78 effective rate of, 75 in Nordic countries, 147 increasing and reducing incentive to work harder, 81, 98, 99 by 10 percent of GDP, 77 fig. 4.3 on top earners, 92 national consumption, 92 on financial transactions, 78 on top 5 percent of incomes in U.S., 76 fig. 4.2, 78 payroll, 100, 178 progressive, 74–75, 79 proportional, 74–75 regressive, 74–75 sales, 110 Social Security payroll, 78–79 value-added tax (VAT), 77–78 Temporary Assistance for Needy Families (TANF), 6, 17, 20, 52–53, 135, 153 See also AFDC Teixeira, Ruy, The Emerging Democratic Majority, 160 Thatcher, Margaret, 156 Third Way orientation, 94 Three Worlds of Welfare Capitalism, The (Esping-Andersen), 119 Tocqueville, Alexis de, 118 Twenty-first Century Community Learning Centers program, 167 Uchitelle, Louis, The Disposable American, 18 unemployment compensation.


pages: 246 words: 81,843

David and Goliath: The Triumph of the Underdog by Malcolm Gladwell


affirmative action, Berlin Wall, cuban missile crisis, Daniel Kahneman / Amos Tversky, delayed gratification, medical residency, Menlo Park, meta analysis, meta-analysis, RAND corporation, school choice, Silicon Valley

And that feeling—as subjective and ridiculous and irrational as it may be—matters. How you feel about your abilities—your academic “self-concept”—in the context of your classroom shapes your willingness to tackle challenges and finish difficult tasks. It’s a crucial element in your motivation and confidence. The Big Fish–Little Pond theory was pioneered by the psychologist Herbert Marsh, and to Marsh, most parents and students make their school choices for the wrong reasons. “A lot of people think that going to an academically selective school is going to be good,” he said. “That’s just not true. The reality is that it is going to be mixed.” He went on: “When I was living in Sydney, there were a small number of selective public schools that were even more prestigious than the elite private schools. The tests to get into them were incredibly competitive.

Chapter Three: Caroline Sacks The discussion of the Impressionists is based on several books, principally: John Rewald, The History of Impressionism (MOMA, 1973); Ross King, The Judgment of Paris (Walker Publishing, 2006), which has a marvelous description of the world of the Salon; Sue Roe, The Private Lives of the Impressionists (Harper Collins, 2006); and Harrison White and Cynthia White, Canvases and Careers: Institutional Change in the French Painting World (Wiley & Sons, 1965), 150. The first academic paper to raise the issue of relative deprivation with respect to school choice was James Davis’s “The Campus as Frog Pond: An Application of the Theory of Relative Deprivation to Career Decisions of College Men,” The American Journal of Sociology 72, no. 1 (July 1966). Davis concludes: At the level of the individual, [my findings] challenge the notion that getting into the “best possible” school is the most efficient route to occupational mobility. Counselors and parents might well consider the drawbacks as well as the advantages of sending a boy to a “fine” college, if, when doing so, it is fairly certain he will end up in the bottom ranks of his graduating class.


pages: 497 words: 130,817

Pedigree: How Elite Students Get Elite Jobs by Lauren A. Rivera


affirmative action, availability heuristic, barriers to entry, Donald Trump, fundamental attribution error, glass ceiling, income inequality, job satisfaction, knowledge economy, meta analysis, meta-analysis, new economy, performance metric, profit maximization, profit motive, school choice, Silicon Valley, Silicon Valley startup, The Wisdom of Crowds, unpaid internship, women in the workforce, young professional

But research shows that affluent and educated parents pass on critical economic, social, and cultural advantages to their children that give their kids a leg up in school success as well as the race for college admissions.18 Scholars often refer to these three types of advantages as forms of “capital,” because each can be cashed in for access to valued symbolic and material rewards, such as prestigious jobs and high salaries.19 Economic Advantages Income, wealth, and other types of economic capital are the most obvious resources that well-off parents can mobilize to procure educational advantages for their children. Simply put, affluent parents have more money to invest in their children’s educational growth and indeed do spend more on it.20 A crucial manner in which economic capital can provide children with educational advantages is through enabling school choice. The United States is one of the few Western industrialized countries where public primary and secondary school funding is based largely on property values within a given region. Consequently, high-quality public schools are disproportionately concentrated in geographic areas where property values are the highest and residents tend to be the most affluent. Families with more money are better able to afford residences in areas that offer high-quality schools and school districts.

An essential part of telling an effective story was to present one’s experiences as resulting from a series of personal decisions rather than from serendipitous circumstances, such as chance or luck, or from access (or barriers) to valuable opportunities. Another banker, Donovan, explained, “I just try to talk to them about what they’ve done in the past, why they made the decisions they had, what they were interested in, how that manifested itself in their lives, and things specifically developed from that.” Targeted questions about undergraduate or graduate school choice as well as job and summer internship choices were particularly common. A consultant named Caitlin was a little more specific. She told me, “A lot of it is pushing in on what’s the why behind something. And so being able to, when asked a question, respond thoughtfully about, you know, why did I choose this major in college.” Ironically, given that firms played on elite university students’ desires for high-status prizes in soliciting applications (see chapter 3), the best paths and values were those presented as having been guided by intrinsic versus extrinsic motivations.4 For instance, although firms prioritized individuals who participated in prestigious educational, extracurricular, and occupational activities, it was in a candidate’s interests to frame the pursuit of a high-status track in terms of decisions prompted by inner drives, loves, and values as opposed to external motivators, such as the need to make money, please parents, or maintain status among peers.

Hiring manager Vivian provided a particularly colorful example: One person told me he didn’t really want to go to law school, but he wanted to do a PhD and study the deviant sexual behavior of giants in medieval literature, but his father wouldn’t pay for it…. I am only here because my father wouldn’t pay for grad school…. Seriously? Other people say they chose to go to law school because they didn’t know what else they wanted to be…. Stories like that really make you question their motivation. Attorney Keith, describing a more common but equally poor narrative of law school choice, said, “A bad answer [to the ‘why did you choose this law school’ question] is, ‘It’s the only one I got into. (He smirked.) Come on.” When I asked him to elaborate on what a good answer would be, he replied, “Maybe they wanted to be in New York to be closer to the big firms or purposely limited their search [geographically] to help run a family business or something. I don’t know. But ‘I didn’t get in anywhere else’ isn’t going to work.”


pages: 399 words: 116,828

When Work Disappears: The World of the New Urban Poor by William Julius Wilson


affirmative action, citizen journalism, collective bargaining, conceptual framework, declining real wages, deindustrialization, deliberate practice, desegregation, Donald Trump, edge city, ending welfare as we know it, full employment, George Gilder, ghettoisation, glass ceiling, income inequality, informal economy, labor-force participation, labour market flexibility, low skilled workers, low-wage service sector, manufacturing employment, new economy, New Urbanism, pink-collar, race to the bottom, RAND corporation, school choice, The Bell Curve by Richard Herrnstein and Charles Murray, The Chicago School, upwardly mobile, urban decay, urban renewal, War on Poverty, working poor, working-age population, Works Progress Administration

This would enable parents of all backgrounds, including those in disadvantaged neighborhoods, to compare nearby schools and make appropriate decisions about which ones their children should attend. However, families from disadvantaged neighborhoods would be in a much better position to make and act on such decisions if an effective public school choice program were in place. This would involve the availability not only of vouchers for the selection of public schools but also information about school performance that could be interpreted with ease. Although the empirical data on the effectiveness of existing school choice programs on student achievement is scant, new evidence suggests that increased competition among public schools (as reflected by a larger number of school districts in a metropolitan area) improves average student performance and restrains levels of spending.

Harvey: Rotberg and Harvey (1993). 12 Recent research on the nationwide distribution of science and mathematics opportunities: Oakes (1990). 13 Teacher shortages in many central-city and poor rural schools: Darling-Hammond (1990 and 1994). 14 the kind of support that would enable schools in disadvantaged neighborhoods to meet the standards that are set: Darling-Hammond (1994). 15 Since two-thirds of all new jobs will require the use of computers: Hundt (1995). 16 According to the U.S. Bureau of the Census, only 35 percent of black youths: Weaver (1995). 17 quotation from Frank C. Weaver: Weaver (1995), p. 7. Also see Krieg (forthcoming). 18 Although the empirical data on the effectiveness of existing school choice programs: Katz (1995). 19 new evidence suggests: Hoxby (1994) and Katz (1995). 20 The basic assumption underlying the act is that the role of the federal government is to “encourage experimentation”: Marshall (1994), p. 21. 21 Congress appropriated $125 million for Goals 2000 in 1994: Marshall (1994). 22 The learning system in other industrial democracies: Marshall (1994). 23 quotations from Marshall: Marshall (1994), P 7 24 In France, children are supported by three interrelated government programs: Bergmann (1993). 25 quotation from Bergmann: Bergmann (1993), pp. 343–44. 26 quotations from Marshall: Marshall (1994), p. 3. 27 Unlike employers in Germany and Japan: Marshall (1994). 28 quotations from Marshall: Marshall (1994), p. 9. 29 The delay in hiring youths has a number of critical consequences: Marshall (1994). 30 According to a recent report by the U.S.


pages: 339 words: 105,938

The Skeptical Economist: Revealing the Ethics Inside Economics by Jonathan Aldred


airport security, Berlin Wall, carbon footprint, citizen journalism, clean water, cognitive dissonance, congestion charging, correlation does not imply causation, Diane Coyle, experimental subject, Fall of the Berlin Wall, first-past-the-post, framing effect, greed is good, happiness index / gross national happiness, invisible hand, job satisfaction, John Maynard Keynes: Economic Possibilities for our Grandchildren, labour market flexibility, laissez-faire capitalism, libertarian paternalism, new economy, pension reform, positional goods, Ralph Waldo Emerson, RAND corporation, risk tolerance, school choice, spectrum auction, trade liberalization, ultimatum game

Second, an ‘audit culture’ of targets, incentives and quantitative measurement, which attempts to package up public services into bundles of commodities with clearly demarcated boundaries and values measured in terms of money. Focusing on these activities directly rather than the abstract idea of commodification also allows me to avoid using ugly language like ‘commodification’. The choice culture Recent governments on both sides of the Atlantic have been seduced by the mantra of ‘choice’. In the US much of the current debate focuses on school choice, while in the UK a range of policies has been used in an attempt to widen choice in both education and health care. The first argument for widening choice is very simple: it is what public service users want. Politicians of all shades who support widening choice point to opinion poll evidence of strong support for increased choice. But appearances are deceptive. To begin with, surveys may show support for choice although there is little real desire to choose.

But the administrative costs of choice mechanisms would remain. This third type of cost should not be underestimated. As well as the obvious costs of providing information -maintaining and monitoring an elaborate system of school and hospital performance measures — there is the cost of employing a new class of public service worker, the choice adviser. These advisers are now in place throughout England to assist parents with school choice, and have also been introduced in parts of the NHS. It is difficult to deny that such advisers help pawns become queens, but might it not be better simply to spend the money on more doctors and teachers? And why not let the doctors and teachers provide the choice advice? This brings us back to the question of motivation, both of public service workers and those attempting reform. Introducing choice advisers suggests the government believes doctors and teachers cannot be trusted to offer advice in the patient or child’s best interests.


pages: 407 words: 109,653

Top Dog: The Science of Winning and Losing by Po Bronson, Ashley Merryman


Asperger Syndrome, Berlin Wall, conceptual framework, crowdsourcing, delayed gratification, deliberate practice, Edward Glaeser, experimental economics, Fall of the Berlin Wall, fear of failure, game design, Jean Tirole, knowledge worker, loss aversion, Mark Zuckerberg, meta analysis, meta-analysis, Mikhail Gorbachev, phenotype, Richard Feynman, Richard Feynman, risk tolerance, school choice, shareholder value, Silicon Valley, six sigma, Steve Jobs

Gender Differences in Responding to Competitive Academic Environments: Angrist, Joshua, & Victor Lavy, “The Effects of High Stakes High School Achievement Awards: Evidence from a Randomized Trial,” American Economic Review, vol. 99(4), pp. 1384–1414 (2009) Barankay, Iwan, “Gender Differences in Productivity Responses to Performance Rankings: Evidence from a Randomized Workplace Experiment,” Working Paper, Wharton School of Business, University of Pennsylvania (2011) Cotton, Christopher, Frank McIntyre, & Joseph Price, “The Gender Gap Cracks under Pressure: A Detailed Look at Male and Female Performance Differences during Competitions” (2010) Deming, David J., Justine S. Hastings, Thomas Kane, & Douglas Staiger, “School Choice and College Attendance: Evidence from Randomized Lotteries,” DHKS Draft (2009) Deming, David J., Justine S. Hastings, Thomas J. Kane, & Douglas O. Staiger, “School Choice, School Quality, and Postsecondary Attainment,” American Economic Review (forthcoming) (July 2012) Dobbie, Will, & Ronald G. Fryer Jr., “Are High-Quality Schools Enough to Increase Achievement Among the Poor? Evidence from the Harlem Children’s Zone,” American Economic Journal: Applied Economics, vol. 3(3), pp. 158–187 (2011) Guggenheim, Davis (dir.), Waiting for Superman, Participant Productions / Walden Media / Paramount, Film (2010) Han, Li, & Tao Li, “The Gender Difference of Peer Influence in Higher Education,” Economics of Education Review, vol. 28(1), pp. 129–134 (2009) (quoting their conclusion that female roommates serve as a “shining star”) Hastings, Justine S., Thomas Kane, & Douglas O.


pages: 318 words: 93,502

The Two-Income Trap: Why Middle-Class Parents Are Going Broke by Elizabeth Warren, Amelia Warren Tyagi


business climate, Columbine, declining real wages, equal pay for equal work, feminist movement, financial independence, labor-force participation, late fees, McMansion, mortgage debt, new economy, New Journalism, payday loans, school choice, school vouchers, telemarketer, urban sprawl, women in the workforce

Solutions that improve the financial footing of married couples will help divorcing parents by putting them in a stronger position as they embark on their newly separated lives. So, for example, if decent public schools were made available to all children, regardless of the child’s zip code, then the bidding wars for suburban housing would let up and the newly single mother could start off divorced life with a more modest mortgage. She also might be less reluctant to give up the family home and move into a cheaper house if a school choice policy ensured that she wouldn’t be forced to transfer the kids to an unfamiliar—and often inferior—public school. Similarly, if publicly funded preschool were made available to all children, a single mother with young children would have more leeway in her budget. In addition, policies that encourage personal savings (see chapter 3) and discourage debt (which we’ll discuss in chapter 6) would help both spouses survive the economic aftermath of divorce.

See also Banking industry; Interest rates, regulated/deregulated; Regulations, reregulating lending practices; Usury laws Disability insurance Discrimination Divorce costs of discretionary income before and after(fig.) divorced fathers. See also Child support; Deadbeat dads divorced women. See also Mothers, single mothers divorce explosion of the 1970s and joint custody of children and two-income families See also Child support Domestic violence Duke University Economist Education age of children starting school college education preschool private schools public schools school choice voucher programs of women Elderly people and long-term care insurance Elections/campaigns. See also Political contributions Equal Credit Opportunity Act Equal opportunity Failing schools. See also Education, public schools Falling from Grace (Newman) Families with children (fig.). See also Education without children cohabiting family values of a generation ago managing money in marital problems in.


pages: 196 words: 53,627

Let Them In: The Case for Open Borders by Jason L. Riley


affirmative action, David Ricardo: comparative advantage, declining real wages, deindustrialization, desegregation, guest worker program, hiring and firing, illegal immigration, immigration reform, income inequality, labor-force participation, labour market flexibility, low skilled workers, lump of labour, open borders, RAND corporation, Ronald Reagan, school choice, Silicon Valley, trade liberalization, War on Poverty, working poor, working-age population

Considering that black children also watch more TV, read fewer books, and are overrepresented in the worst public schools in the country, those findings shouldn’t come as a surprise. What’s truly jarring is that so many black lawmakers, from Congressmen on down, support policies that keep black children stuck in those failing schools. In deference to the National Education Association teachers’ union, which is anathema to school choice, the black political class works diligently to block black access to vouchers and charter schools and other reforms that could facilitate a decent education. Before blaming the diminished job prospects of Jamal on Jorge, blacks would do better to address the anti-intellectualism that permeates the culture of the black underclass. And legislators might first consider revisiting the racially tinged protectionist laws and public policies already on the books.


pages: 219 words: 65,532

The Numbers Game: The Commonsense Guide to Understanding Numbers in the News, in Politics, and inLife by Michael Blastland; Andrew Dilnot


Atul Gawande, business climate, correlation does not imply causation, credit crunch, happiness index / gross national happiness, pension reform, pensions crisis, randomized controlled trial, school choice, very high income

One school, Kesteven and Grantham Girls’ School, went from 30th in the raw GCSE tables to 317th out of the 370 sampled. Another, St. Albans C of E School in Birmingham, traveled in the opposite direction from 344th to 16th. Parents could be forgiven for wondering, in light of all this, what the comparisons of the past fifteen years that had put so many millions of them into a rabid panic about school choice had actually told them. And there, so far, ends the history, but not the controversy. The CVA tables—complicated and loaded with judgments—have moved far from the early ideal of transparent accountability. It also turns out that the confidence intervals (how big the range of possible ranking-chart positions for any school must be before we are 95 percent sure that the correct one is in there) are still so large that we cannot really tell most of the schools apart, even though they will move around with much drama from one year to the next in the published charts.


pages: 330 words: 77,729

Big Three in Economics: Adam Smith, Karl Marx, and John Maynard Keynes by Mark Skousen


Albert Einstein, banking crisis, Berlin Wall, Bretton Woods, business climate, David Ricardo: comparative advantage, delayed gratification, experimental economics, financial independence, Financial Instability Hypothesis, full employment, Hernando de Soto, housing crisis, Hyman Minsky, inflation targeting, invisible hand, Isaac Newton, John Maynard Keynes: Economic Possibilities for our Grandchildren, John Maynard Keynes: technological unemployment, Joseph Schumpeter, laissez-faire capitalism, liquidity trap, means of production, microcredit, minimum wage unemployment, open economy, paradox of thrift, price stability, pushing on a string, rent control, Richard Thaler, rising living standards, road to serfdom, Robert Shiller, Robert Shiller, rolodex, Ronald Coase, Ronald Reagan, school choice, secular stagnation, Simon Kuznets, The Chicago School, The Wealth of Nations by Adam Smith, Thomas Malthus, Thorstein Veblen, Tobin tax, unorthodox policies

Keynes concluded, "It would not be foolish to contemplate the possibility of a greater progress still" (Keynes 1963 [1930], 365). Market forces are on the march. The collapse of the Keynesian paradigm and Marxist communism has turned "creeping socialism" into "crumbling socialism." There is no telling how high the world's standard of living can reach through expanded trade, lower tariffs, a simplified tax system, school choice, Social Security privatization, a fair system of justice, and a stable monetary system. Yet bad policies, wasted resources, and class hatred die slowly. As Milton Friedman once wrote, "Freedom is a rare and delicate flower" (1998, 605). Unless market economists are vigilant, natural liberty and universal prosperity will be on the defensive again. Bibliography Anderson, Terry L., and Donald R.


pages: 231 words: 73,818

The Achievement Habit: Stop Wishing, Start Doing, and Take Command of Your Life by Bernard Roth


Albert Einstein, Build a better mousetrap, Burning Man, cognitive bias, correlation does not imply causation, deskilling, fear of failure, Mahatma Gandhi, Mark Zuckerberg, school choice, Silicon Valley, The Wealth of Nations by Adam Smith

I believe these experiences made me more autonomous and capable than I would have been if I had received the same degree of parental guidance as most of my peers. In addition to the personal, lifelong sense of loss associated with not having my mother, the downside of being on my own was that I received my guidance from the people on the street. Not everything they advised was wise or legal. My high school choice was basically made by Charlie, a senior playing football for Stuyvesant High School. I still recall his words of wisdom, “Go to Stuyvesant; you’re not smart enough to get into Bronx Science.” I allowed guys like Charlie to define the limits of what I could achieve. I could beat myself up for that. I am wiser now, and can look back on my earlier years with empathy for my former self and realize that I had a lot going on in my life emotionally, and that I had not yet figured out who I was or what I wanted.


pages: 237 words: 64,411

Humans Need Not Apply: A Guide to Wealth and Work in the Age of Artificial Intelligence by Jerry Kaplan


Affordable Care Act / Obamacare, Amazon Web Services, asset allocation, autonomous vehicles, bank run, bitcoin, Brian Krebs, buy low sell high, Capital in the Twenty-First Century by Thomas Piketty, combinatorial explosion, computer vision, corporate governance, crowdsourcing,, Erik Brynjolfsson, estate planning, Flash crash, Gini coefficient, Goldman Sachs: Vampire Squid, haute couture, hiring and firing, income inequality, index card, industrial robot, invention of agriculture, Jaron Lanier, Jeff Bezos, job automation, John Maynard Keynes: Economic Possibilities for our Grandchildren, Loebner Prize, Mark Zuckerberg, mortgage debt, natural language processing, Own Your Own Home, pattern recognition, Satoshi Nakamoto, school choice, Schrödinger's Cat, Second Machine Age, self-driving car, sentiment analysis, Silicon Valley, Silicon Valley startup, Skype, software as a service, The Chicago School, Turing test, Watson beat the top human players on Jeopardy!, winner-take-all economy, women in the workforce, working poor, Works Progress Administration

“Fact Sheet on the President’s Plan to Make College More Affordable: A Better Bargain for the Middle Class,” press release, the White House, August 22, 2013, -make-college-more-affordable-better-bargain-. 44. Daniel Kaplan, “Securitization Era Opens for Athletes,” Sports Business Daily, March 12, 2001, 45., 1955. 46. For a recent policy analysis, see Miguel Palacios, Tonio DeSorrento, and Andrew P. Kelly, “Investing in Value, Sharing Risk: Financing Higher Education Through Income Share Agreements,” AEI Series on Reinventing Financial Aid, Center on Higher Education Reform, American Enterprise Institute (AEI), February 2014, 47.


pages: 249 words: 66,383

House of Debt: How They (And You) Caused the Great Recession, and How We Can Prevent It From Happening Again by Atif Mian, Amir Sufi


Andrei Shleifer, asset-backed security, balance sheet recession, bank run, banking crisis, Ben Bernanke: helicopter money, Carmen Reinhart, collapse of Lehman Brothers, debt deflation, Edward Glaeser,, financial innovation, full employment, high net worth, Home mortgage interest deduction, housing crisis, Joseph Schumpeter, Kenneth Rogoff, liquidity trap, Long Term Capital Management, market bubble, Martin Wolf, moral hazard, mortgage debt, paradox of thrift, quantitative easing, Robert Shiller, Robert Shiller, school choice, shareholder value, the payments system, the scientific method, tulip mania, young professional

Elena Del Rey and Maria Racionero argue that “an income contingent loan with risk-pooling can induce the optimal level of participation provided that the scheme is universal and the loan covers both financial costs of education and foregone earnings.” See Elena Del Rey and Maria Racionero, “Financing Schemes for Higher Education,” European Journal of Political Economy 26 (2010): 104–13. 10. Milton Friedman, “The Role of Government in Education,” in Economics and the Public Interest, ed. Robert A Solo (New Brunswick, NJ: Rutgers University Press, 1955), percent281995 percent29.aspx. 11. We are not the first to propose risk-sharing arrangements in mortgage finance. See, for example, Andrew Caplin, Sewin Chan, Charles Freeman, and Joseph Tracy, Housing Partnerships (Cambridge, MA: MIT Press, 1997); Andrew Caplin, Noel Cunningham, Mitchell Engler, and Frederick Pollock, “Facilitating Shared Appreciation Mortgages to Prevent Housing Crashes and Affordability Crises” (discussion paper 2008-12, Hamilton Project, September 2008); and David Miles, “Housing, Leverage, and Stability in the Wider Economy” (speech at the Housing Stability and Macroeconomy: International Perspectives Conference, Federal Reserve Bank of Dallas, November 2013), available at 12.


pages: 327 words: 103,336

Everything Is Obvious: *Once You Know the Answer by Duncan J. Watts


affirmative action, Albert Einstein, Amazon Mechanical Turk, Black Swan, butterfly effect, Carmen Reinhart, Cass Sunstein, clockwork universe, cognitive dissonance, collapse of Lehman Brothers, complexity theory, correlation does not imply causation, crowdsourcing, death of newspapers, discovery of DNA, East Village, easy for humans, difficult for computers, edge city,, Erik Brynjolfsson, framing effect, Geoffrey West, Santa Fe Institute, happiness index / gross national happiness, high batting average, hindsight bias, illegal immigration, interest rate swap, invention of the printing press, invention of the telescope, invisible hand, Isaac Newton, Jane Jacobs, Jeff Bezos, Joseph Schumpeter, Kenneth Rogoff, lake wobegon effect, Long Term Capital Management, loss aversion, medical malpractice, meta analysis, meta-analysis, Milgram experiment, natural language processing, Netflix Prize, Network effects, oil shock, packet switching, pattern recognition, performance metric, phenotype, planetary scale, prediction markets, pre–internet, RAND corporation, random walk, RFID, school choice, Silicon Valley, statistical model, Steve Ballmer, Steve Jobs, Steve Wozniak, supply-chain management, The Death and Life of Great American Cities, the scientific method, The Wisdom of Crowds, too big to fail, Toyota Production System, ultimatum game, urban planning, Vincenzo Peruggia: Mona Lisa, Watson beat the top human players on Jeopardy!, X Prize

For a detailed argument about the failures of planning in economic development, particularly with respect to Africa, see Easterly (2006). For an even more negative viewpoint of the effect of foreign aid in Africa, see Moyo (2009), who argues that it has actually hurt Africa, not helped. For a more hopeful alternative viewpoint see Sachs (2006). 19. See Jacobs (1961, p. 4) 20. See Venkatesh (2002). 21. See Ravitch (2010) for a discussion of how popular, commonsense policies such as increased testing and school choice actually undermined public education. See Cohn (2007) and Reid (2009) for analysis of the cost of health care and possible alternative models. See O’Toole (2007) for a detailed discussion on forestry management, urban planning, and other failures of government planning and regulation. See Howard (1997) for a discussion and numerous anecdotes of the unintended consequences of government regulations.


pages: 329 words: 103,159

People of the Lie: The Hope for Healing Human Evil by M Scott Peck


Milgram experiment, profit motive, school choice, the scientific method

One respect in which it is difficult to write about evil is its subtlety. I began with the case of Bobby and his parents because of its obvious clarity. To give a child his older brother’s suicide weapon is an act of such gross outrageousness that anyone would think, yes, that is evil all right. But there was no such grossly outrageous act committed by Roger’s parents; we are dealing only with trip permissions and school choices—the ordinary kind of decisions that parents routinely make. Simply because the judgment of Roger’s parents in these matters differed from my own may not seem grounds for labeling them evil. Indeed, might I not be guilty of evil myself by so labeling clients who disagree with my opinions and fail to take my advice? Might I not be misusing the concept of evil by facilely applying it to any and all who oppose my judgment?


pages: 353 words: 91,520

Most Likely to Succeed: Preparing Our Kids for the Innovation Era by Tony Wagner, Ted Dintersmith


affirmative action, Airbnb, Albert Einstein, Bernie Sanders, Clayton Christensen, David Brooks,, Frederick Winslow Taylor, future of work, immigration reform, income inequality, index card, Jeff Bezos, jimmy wales, Khan Academy, Kickstarter, knowledge economy, knowledge worker, low skilled workers, Lyft, Mark Zuckerberg, means of production, new economy, pattern recognition, Paul Graham, Peter Thiel, Ponzi scheme, pre–internet, school choice, Silicon Valley, Skype, Steven Pinker, TaskRabbit, the scientific method, unpaid internship, Y Combinator

When our Defense Department invests in new technologies, it has the wherewithal to award contracts to turn innovations into production systems. To date, there’s no national strategy for identifying successful innovations in specific schools or networks and determining how they can scale across our 137,000 schools. Compounding the problem, business leaders generally believe that if we could only introduce free-market dynamics into schools (e.g., charter schools, choice vouchers for parents), our most promising education innovations would thrive. But profound advances in education have impacts that stretch out over lifetimes, not months. Real innovation in education often isn’t readily transparent to those funders or politicians who just want to see numbers on paper. As a result, we underfund education R&D, focusing on initiatives that produce near-term results on hollow metrics.


pages: 332 words: 104,587

Half the Sky: Turning Oppression Into Opportunity for Women Worldwide by Nicholas D. Kristof, Sheryl Wudunn


agricultural Revolution, correlation does not imply causation, demographic dividend, feminist movement, Flynn Effect, illegal immigration, Mahatma Gandhi, microcredit, paper trading, rolodex, Ronald Reagan, Rosa Parks, school choice, special economic zone, transatlantic slave trade, transatlantic slave trade, women in the workforce

The boys were helped by these social networks but also were locked into low-level jobs. Because girls didn’t matter and traditionally were outside the networks, they were allowed to choose English-language schools. Once the girls learned English, they were able to compete for well-paying jobs. Kaivan Munshi and Mark Rosenzweig, “Traditional Institutions Meet the Modern World: Caste, Gender, and Schooling Choice in a Globalizing Economy,” The American Economic Review 96, no. 4 (September 2006): 1225–52. 210 Sweatshops have given women a boost: A feminist critique of trade has emerged that disputes our arguments; it asserts that young women are often exploited and preyed upon in sweatshops. There is an element of truth to such charges. Trade-based factories are grim and exploitative, but they are still better than the alternative of life in the village—and that’s why women seek the factory jobs.


pages: 440 words: 108,137

The Meritocracy Myth by Stephen J. McNamee


affirmative action, Affordable Care Act / Obamacare, Bernie Madoff, British Empire, collective bargaining, computer age, conceptual framework, corporate governance, deindustrialization, delayed gratification, demographic transition, desegregation, deskilling, equal pay for equal work, estate planning, failed state, fixed income, gender pay gap, Gini coefficient, glass ceiling, helicopter parent, income inequality, informal economy, invisible hand, job automation, joint-stock company, labor-force participation, low-wage service sector, marginal employment, Mark Zuckerberg, mortgage debt, mortgage tax deduction, new economy, New Urbanism, obamacare, occupational segregation, pink-collar, Plutocrats, plutocrats, Ponzi scheme, post-industrial society, prediction markets, profit motive, race to the bottom, random walk, school choice, Scientific racism, Steve Jobs, The Bell Curve by Richard Herrnstein and Charles Murray, The Spirit Level, The Wealth of Nations by Adam Smith, too big to fail, trickle-down economics, upwardly mobile, We are the 99%, white flight, young professional

By the 2003–2004 school year, for instance, 73 percent of black students attended schools with a student body made up primarily of minority students (Orfield and Lee 2006). Much of the resegregation that exists today is between school districts and is due to the abandonment of integration measures such as school busing. In addition, the rise of charter schools, magnet schools, and other alternate school choice settings have accelerated the trend toward resegregation as white families seek alternatives to sending their children to school districts with high minority enrollments. Finally, official segregation figures often underestimate the actual amount of segregation because calculations are typically based only on public school data. Private schools, except for some inclusive Catholic schools in large cities in the Northeast, are overwhelmingly white.


pages: 369 words: 90,630

Mindwise: Why We Misunderstand What Others Think, Believe, Feel, and Want by Nicholas Epley


affirmative action, airport security, Amazon Mechanical Turk, Cass Sunstein, crowdsourcing, cuban missile crisis, friendly fire, invisible hand, meta analysis, meta-analysis, Milgram experiment, payday loans, Peter Singer: altruism, pirate software, Richard Thaler, school choice, the scientific method, theory of mind

Men and women get along well enough. Not so in cases of true conflict or in politics, where the dangers of defining groups by their differences is even more apparent. Consider politics. Surveys of the American electorate over the last thirty-five years have shown surprisingly stable differences of opinion between Republicans and Democrats on attitudes such as government-run health care, military defense spending, school choice, and funding for government welfare programs. The American electorate has also exaggerated the magnitude of these differences, particularly in recent years, as elected officials have become more polarized in their own behavior.30 Graphical depictions that highlight the differences between “red states” and “blue states” only make matters worse, according to research, increasing the perceived differences between groups rather than merely reflecting them.31 And on specific issues ranging from affirmative action to welfare policies, people on opposing sides of each issue consistently assume that the other side is more extreme than it actually is.32 The sad fact is that real partisanship increases partly because of imagined partisanship on the other side.


Django Book by Matt Behrens


create, read, update, delete, database schema, distributed revision control,, Firefox, full text search, loose coupling, MVC pattern, revision control, school choice, slashdot, web application

Note that this is different than null. null is purely database-related, whereas blank is validation-related. If a field has blank=True, validation on Django’s admin site will allow entry of an empty value. If a field has blank=False, the field will be required. choices An iterable (e.g., a list or tuple) of 2-tuples to use as choices for this field. A choices list looks like this: YEAR_IN_SCHOOL_CHOICES = ( ('FR', 'Freshman'), ('SO', 'Sophomore'), ('JR', 'Junior'), ('SR', 'Senior'), ('GR', 'Graduate'), ) The first element in each tuple is the actual value to be stored. The second element is the human-readable name for the option. The choices list can be defined either as part of your model class: class Foo(models.Model): GENDER_CHOICES = ( ('M', 'Male'), ('F', 'Female'), ) gender = models.CharField(max_length=1, choices=GENDER_CHOICES) or outside your model class altogether: GENDER_CHOICES = ( ('M', 'Male'), ('F', 'Female'), ) class Foo(models.Model): gender = models.CharField(max_length=1, choices=GENDER_CHOICES) You can also collect your available choices into named groups that can be used for organizational purposes in a form: MEDIA_CHOICES = ( ('Audio', ( ('vinyl', 'Vinyl'), ('cd', 'CD'), ) ), ('Video', ( ('vhs', 'VHS Tape'), ('dvd', 'DVD'), ) ), ('unknown', 'Unknown'), ) The first element in each tuple is the name to apply to the group.


pages: 434 words: 150,773

When the Iron Lady Ruled Britain by Robert Chesshyre


Berlin Wall, Big bang: deregulation of the City of London, British Empire, deskilling, Etonian, Fall of the Berlin Wall, financial deregulation, full employment, housing crisis, manufacturing employment, means of production, North Sea oil, oil rush, Plutocrats, plutocrats, Ronald Reagan, school choice, Silicon Valley, the market place, trickle-down economics, union organizing, young professional

Further choice, as outlined in the 1987 Conservative manifesto proposal to allow schools to ‘opt out’ of local education authorities – giving mobility to the already mobile – would lead to greater polarization between the best and the worst in the schools. Those who could ‘work’ the system would do so, adding another tier of opting-out parents to the six per cent who now pay: the children of those who couldn’t exercise that ‘right’ would be more thoroughly segregated in sink schools. Choice, said Mrs Joan Sallis, the national organizer of the Campaign for the Advancement of State Education, means that he with the longest arm reaches the highest shelf. ‘It is a nice word for a nasty process.’ A few parents are candid enough to admit that choice is about advantage – the right school tie, influential friends, an acceptable accent – as well as about a decent education. Put crudely, people pay school fees to get their children ahead in the rat-race.


pages: 924 words: 198,159

Blackwater: The Rise of the World's Most Powerful Mercenary Army by Jeremy Scahill


air freight, anti-communist, Berlin Wall, Bernie Sanders, business climate, business intelligence, centralized clearinghouse, collective bargaining, Columbine, facts on the ground, Fall of the Berlin Wall, Naomi Klein, private military company, Ronald Reagan, school choice, school vouchers, stem cell, urban planning

Since laypersons rather than pastors may run these groups, they may not have a high profile even in the church community outside the Family Forum network.”46 The MFF also established the Michigan Prayer Network, which consisted of “prayer warriors” assigned to nearly every legislator in the state.47 While the groups were prohibited from expressly lobbying, the effect of asking legislators to “pray” for issues like school choice and against gay rights made it, as one Michigan legislator put it, “just another lobbying gimmick.”48 While opening his wallet to the Christian right, Edgar Prince also became a patron to the entire community of Holland, investing millions of dollars into Hope College, founded by Albert Van Raalte, and its equally devout rival Calvin College, Edgar’s wife’s alma mater.49 He and Elsa almost single-handedly reengineered and brought a boom to Holland’s downtown, saving it from the fate hundreds of other small towns had suffered throughout the Midwest as they gradually slipped into economic oblivion due to poor urban planning coupled with outsourcing, downsizing, layoffs, and the overall decline of U.S. manufacturing.


pages: 662 words: 180,546

Never Let a Serious Crisis Go to Waste: How Neoliberalism Survived the Financial Meltdown by Philip Mirowski


Andrei Shleifer, asset-backed security, bank run, barriers to entry, Basel III, Berlin Wall, Bernie Madoff, Bernie Sanders, Black Swan, blue-collar work, Bretton Woods, Brownian motion, capital controls, Carmen Reinhart, Cass Sunstein, central bank independence, cognitive dissonance, collapse of Lehman Brothers, collateralized debt obligation, complexity theory, constrained optimization, credit crunch, Credit Default Swap, credit default swaps / collateralized debt obligations, crony capitalism, dark matter, David Brooks, David Graeber, debt deflation, deindustrialization, Edward Glaeser, Eugene Fama: efficient market hypothesis, experimental economics, facts on the ground, Fall of the Berlin Wall, financial deregulation, financial innovation, Flash crash, full employment, George Akerlof, Goldman Sachs: Vampire Squid, Hernando de Soto, housing crisis, Hyman Minsky, illegal immigration, income inequality, incomplete markets, invisible hand, Jean Tirole, joint-stock company, Kenneth Rogoff, knowledge economy, l'esprit de l'escalier, labor-force participation, liquidity trap, loose coupling, manufacturing employment, market clearing, market design, market fundamentalism, Martin Wolf, Mont Pelerin Society, moral hazard, mortgage debt, Naomi Klein, Nash equilibrium, night-watchman state, Northern Rock, Occupy movement, offshore financial centre, oil shock, payday loans, Ponzi scheme, precariat, prediction markets, price mechanism, profit motive, quantitative easing, race to the bottom, random walk, rent-seeking, Richard Thaler, road to serfdom, Robert Shiller, Robert Shiller, Ronald Coase, Ronald Reagan, savings glut, school choice, sealed-bid auction, Silicon Valley, South Sea Bubble, Steven Levy, technoutopianism, The Chicago School, The Great Moderation, the map is not the territory, The Myth of the Rational Market, the scientific method, The Wisdom of Crowds, theory of mind, Thomas Kuhn: the structure of scientific revolutions, Thorstein Veblen, Tobin tax, too big to fail, transaction costs, War on Poverty, Washington Consensus, We are the 99%, working poor

You have to tailor your advice to what people want to hear, and then shade it in the direction of common sense.”156 In the same period, Cochrane pursued agnotology most directly by denying that his Cato-blessed position was ideologically right wing, or that it unsubtly served as a shill for the financial sector: “Milton Friedman stood for freedom, social, political, and economic. He realized that they are inextricably linked. If the government controls your job or your business, dissent is impossible. He championed economic freedom as much as a means to political freedom as for its own sake. He favored, among other things, legalizing drugs, school choice, and volunteer army. To call him or his political legacy ‘right wing’ is simply ignorant, and I mean that also as a technically accurate description rather than an insult.”157 Agnotology delights in preaching everything you thought you knew about politics was wrong. Cochrane, as already mentioned, went on to become president of the American Finance Association in 2010. The other major agnotological juggernaut in the immediate crisis was the Mercatus Center at George Mason University (GMU), just a short drive up Route 66 from Washington, D.C.


Understanding Power by Noam Chomsky


anti-communist, Ayatollah Khomeini, Berlin Wall, Bretton Woods, British Empire, Burning Man, business climate, cognitive dissonance, continuous integration, Corn Laws, cuban missile crisis, dark matter, David Ricardo: comparative advantage, deindustrialization, Deng Xiaoping, deskilling, European colonialism, Fall of the Berlin Wall, feminist movement, global reserve currency, Howard Zinn, labour market flexibility, Mahatma Gandhi, Mikhail Gorbachev, Monroe Doctrine, mortgage tax deduction, Ralph Nader, reserve currency, Ronald Reagan, Rosa Parks, school choice, strikebreaker, structural adjustment programs, the scientific method, The Wealth of Nations by Adam Smith, union organizing, wage slave, women in the workforce

Inner-City Schools WOMAN: Noam, a number of activists I know are on welfare, and their children are going to public schools that increasingly are resembling prisons: there are armed guards in the halls, there’s a high level of violence. And I know some of these kids, they’re really brutalized—if they’re not chronically depressed, then they’re violent: violent in language, violent in fact. One of the mothers recently told me—and she’s a pretty radical person—that the conservative “School Choice Movement” [whereby the state would subsidize tuition at private institutions instead of administering public schools] really is appealing to her. It surprised me, but she said, “The left isn’t addressing the problem of the schools, the left is sentimental about public education.” I’m wondering what you think about that? I think there’s a lot of truth to it. I mean, it’s the same with crime—people are really scared, especially people in poor neighborhoods.


pages: 558 words: 168,179

Dark Money: The Hidden History of the Billionaires Behind the Rise of the Radical Right by Jane Mayer


affirmative action, Affordable Care Act / Obamacare, anti-communist, Bakken shale, bank run, battle of ideas, Berlin Wall, Capital in the Twenty-First Century by Thomas Piketty, carried interest, centre right, clean water, Climategate, Climatic Research Unit, collective bargaining, crony capitalism, David Brooks, desegregation, diversified portfolio, Donald Trump, energy security, estate planning, Fall of the Berlin Wall, George Gilder, housing crisis, hydraulic fracturing, income inequality, invisible hand, job automation, low skilled workers, market fundamentalism, Mont Pelerin Society, More Guns, Less Crime, Nate Silver, New Journalism, obamacare, Occupy movement, offshore financial centre, oil shale / tar sands, oil shock, Plutocrats, plutocrats, Ralph Nader, Renaissance Technologies, road to serfdom, Ronald Reagan, school choice, school vouchers, The Bell Curve by Richard Herrnstein and Charles Murray, The Chicago School, the scientific method, University of East Anglia, Unsafe at Any Speed, War on Poverty, working poor

It paid for some six hundred graduate and postgraduate fellowships, right-wing think tanks, conservative journals, activists fighting Communism abroad, and its own publishing house, Encounter Books. Continuing the strategic emphasis on prestigious schools, the foundation gave both Harvard and Yale $5.5 million during its first decade under Joyce’s management. It was an activist force on the secondary-school level, too. The Bradley Foundation virtually drove the early national “school choice” movement, waging an all-out assault on teachers’ unions and traditional public schools. In an effort to “wean” Americans from government, the foundation militated for parents to be able to use public funds to send their children to private and parochial schools. When Joyce took over the Bradley Foundation, he continued to fund many of the same academic organizations he had at Olin, including half of the same colleges and universities.


pages: 1,104 words: 302,176

The Rise and Fall of American Growth: The U.S. Standard of Living Since the Civil War (The Princeton Economic History of the Western World) by Robert J. Gordon


3D printing, Affordable Care Act / Obamacare, airline deregulation, airport security, Apple II, barriers to entry, big-box store, blue-collar work, Capital in the Twenty-First Century by Thomas Piketty, clean water, collective bargaining, computer age, deindustrialization, Detroit bankruptcy, discovery of penicillin, Donner party, Downton Abbey, Edward Glaeser,, Erik Brynjolfsson, everywhere but in the productivity statistics, feminist movement, financial innovation, full employment, George Akerlof, germ theory of disease, glass ceiling, high net worth, housing crisis, immigration reform, impulse control, income inequality, income per capita, indoor plumbing, industrial robot, inflight wifi, interchangeable parts, invention of agriculture, invention of air conditioning, invention of the telegraph, invention of the telephone, inventory management, James Watt: steam engine, Jeff Bezos, jitney, job automation, John Maynard Keynes: Economic Possibilities for our Grandchildren, labor-force participation, Loma Prieta earthquake, Louis Daguerre, Louis Pasteur, low skilled workers, manufacturing employment, Mark Zuckerberg, market fragmentation, Mason jar, McMansion, Menlo Park, minimum wage unemployment, mortgage debt, mortgage tax deduction, new economy, Norbert Wiener, obamacare, occupational segregation, oil shale / tar sands, oil shock, payday loans, Peter Thiel, pink-collar, Productivity paradox, Ralph Nader, Ralph Waldo Emerson, refrigerator car, rent control, Robert X Cringely, Ronald Coase, school choice, Second Machine Age, secular stagnation, Skype, stem cell, Steve Jobs, Steve Wozniak, Steven Pinker, The Market for Lemons, Thomas Malthus, total factor productivity, transaction costs, transcontinental railway, traveling salesman, Triangle Shirtwaist Factory, Unsafe at Any Speed, Upton Sinclair, upwardly mobile, urban decay, urban planning, urban sprawl, washing machines reduced drudgery, Washington Consensus, Watson beat the top human players on Jeopardy!, We wanted flying cars, instead we got 140 characters, working poor, working-age population, Works Progress Administration, yield management

Effective preschool education is devoted not only to vocabulary and other learning skills, but also to “character skills such as attentiveness, impulse control, persistence and teamwork.” 12 Secondary and Higher Education Preschool comes first, because each level of disappointing performance in the American educational system, from poor outcomes on international PISA tests administered to 15-year-olds to remedial classes in community colleges, reflects the cascade of underachievement that children carry with them from one grade to the next. No panacea has emerged in the form of school choice and charter schools, although there has been much experimentation—with some notable successes in which children from low-income backgrounds have earned high school diplomas and gone on to college.13 An important component of the inequality and education headwinds is the U.S. system of financing elementary and secondary education by local property taxes, leading to the contrast between lavish facilities in rich suburbs which coexist with run-down, often outmoded schools in the poor areas of central cities.