Two interesting ideas from economists on gun control. First: require gun owners to take out liability insurance. Second, create a fund which for every dollar the NRA pays to a political candidate would pay $2 to the opponent.Continue reading
Europe’s approach to development could be characterized as energetically tackling the symptoms of poor economic opportunities for developing countries by providing substantial and effective aid, while doing relatively little to tackle the underlying structural causes of poverty.Continue reading
An explanation of why CGD in Europe is starting work on illicit financial flows.Continue reading
CGD in Europe is now embarking on an exciting new programme looking at how various kinds of illicit financial flows affect development and what, if anything, rich countries should be doing about them.Continue reading
A disarmingly simple but effective way to put more pressure on illegitimate regimes: declare that any future contracts will not be enforceable against their successors.Continue reading
An interesting Economist article about the uses of prizes to promote innovation is a missed opportunity to explain the economic logic of prizes for innovations for developing countries. The reported comments by Tachi Yamada at the Gates Foundation about the value of market success do not seem to take account of the shortcomings of the system of patents and markets when it comes to developing drugs for diseases that mainly affect developing countries, nor to the problem of ensuring access in developing countries for new drugs.Continue reading
I am grateful to Oxfam’s Duncan Green for his fair and thoughtful review of my paper about improving aid, Beyond Planning: Markets and Networks for Better Aid.
I’m glad that Duncan and Chris, his Oxfam colleague, endorse a… Continue reading
I’ve just watched Steve Jobs at the Apple event today. I was glad he paid tribute to the man whose liver he received, and that he called on others to register as organ donors.
But it is less impressive… Continue reading
Over on Huffington Post, Seth Berkley and Orin Levine make a plea for the United States to consider an Advance Market Commitment for an AIDS vaccine:
Traditionally it has taken up to 20 years for new vaccines to reach children… Continue reading
It worries me that people who are interested in reducing world poverty leap so readily on the Tobin Tax bandwagon.
There are three questions to answer:
- should we spend more on reducing global poverty?
(my answer: yes, if we have to)
- should we tax transactions in financial markets?
(my answer: maybe, though I am not persuaded)
- should we link aid budgets to revenues from such a tax?
(my answer: definitely not)
My answers are explained below the fold.
I can see why some people are attracted by a combination of extra money for the world’s poor and a poke in the eye for the unacceptable face of capitalism. But to support the Tobin Tax on these grounds is at best opportunism, and at worst reveals a hostility to the functioning of markets which will, in the end, not serve the poor.