Chile’s Inequality Revolt – So, When Do The Riots Start In Costa Rica?

There’s a certain amount of rioting going on in Chile at present. All commentators are entirely convinced that this is about inequality. That dastardly Milton Friedman taught Pinochet’s lads about the joys of free markets and look what happened! Inequality and rioting.

Except, well, if it’s inequality causing the riots then where are the similar riots in Costa Rica?

This does hidden damage to fabric of a city. Unwritten divisions of income that everyone in Santiago understands delineate places and activities.

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Oh Dear, When Physicists Do Economics

Another one of those lovely examples. When physicists decide to come and do economics. The argument here being that look, look, we can prove it! Without redistribution attempts a market economy will inevitably end up in gross oligarchic inequality. Because, you know, our mathematical model says so.

Hmm, well, yes. Except numbers without theory aren’t all that useful. And what’s going wrong here being that our physicists aren’t even interested in the theory. Sigh:

If you simulate this economy, a variant of the yard sale model, you will get a remarkable result: after a large number of transactions, one agent ends up as an “oligarch” holding practically all the wealth of the economy, and the other 999 end up with virtually nothing.

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Mind Gargling Nonsense About Inequality Under Communism

It’s astonishing that people can be this damn ignorant about the past:

Since the fall of the Berlin Wall, despite the fact that eastern European states have became wealthier, the poor in these states have become poorer and the rich richer. In the 1980s, the total earnings of the poorer half of east Europeans was equivalent to 25-35% of national income. Since the end of communism, this figure has dropped to 17% in some countries.

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The Vile Cost Of Neoliberalism

From the Mirrlees Review we get this chart. Showing the true and vile cost of neoliberalism:

As the Senior Lecturer tells us:

If you want an explanation of the consequence of neoliberalism that’s it: over the thirty years when it ran rampant the higher your income was the larger the increase in it was too.

Quite terrible that inequality increased.

Of course, we can view this another way. Neoliberalism led to the real incomes of 95% of the population rising by more than 50%.…

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You Noticed How The World Got Better Last Year As The Rich Got Poorer, Right?

Wealth inequality is the very terror of our age, isn’t it? As Oxfam keeps telling us that the plutocrats swallow up ever more of the global resources us out here are left with mere crumbs, just the lees and dregs of the economy to make us happy. So, we all are cheered by how much better the world became last year, right?

After seven years of steadily rising wealth, the richest people on the planet saw the combined value of their assets slide by 3% from a year earlier to stand at $68.1tn as financial markets plunged against a backdrop of rising tensions, with China hit the hardest by the decline.

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Saez And Zucman’s Failure On Wealth Inequality

For aficionados of how the world is going to pot, the plutocrats are just sucking it all up, a correction to the Saez and Zucman estimates on wealth inequality:

It ain’t happening like they say it is.

There is though this interesting additional question:

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To Explain Rising Mortality Rates By The Change In Population

We’ve another report insisting that austerity is murdering us all in our beds. This not necessarily being quite the truth. For the claim actually is that rising inequality is killing our kidz. Which is a difficult thing to prove:

The report from the Office for National Statistics (ONS), covering 2017, said that “the infant mortality rate increased to 3.9 deaths per 1,000 live births compared with 3.8 in 2016”. In 2014, it was 3.6 deaths per 1,000.

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We Really Don’t Measure Wealth Properly

It’s the Americans who are really going overboard about wealth inequality, here in the UK the polemicists are still warming up. We’re rather more shouting about income inequality still.

There is though a problem with the basic underlying figures that everyone uses. Something built into the very definitions which are being used.

Just as an example, let’s measure pension inequality. Some of us have really great savings in our pension IRAs. Others of us don’t.

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Serious Question Here – Is The Guardian Written By Idiots?

That the vast majority of us don’t grasp the intricacies of economics is fine, just fine. The vast majority of us don’t grasp theoretical physics either, most of us not having caught up with the fact that it’s not all just quantum these days. And Britain has been famous for a millennium on how the vast bulk of the nation is rather behind the curve on cuisine.

However, when it comes to writing about the subject it does help if those doing so have a clue.…

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How To Do Economics Wrong – Theory Without That Real World Checking

This could be seen as a valiant attempt, certainly, but it suffers from an awful problem. They tell us that increased globalisation should – and does – widen global income inequality. Their theoretical construct tells them that it can. The problem being that increased globalisation has lowered global income inequality. The poor countries are growing faster than the rich – this lowers inequality. Thus it’s the theorising wrong – something that could and should be checked by a little look at reality along the way:

The new globalisation and income inequality
Sergi Basco, Martí Mestieri 19 May 2019

Trade in intermediates (or ‘unbundling of production’) and trade in capital have become increasingly important in last 25 years.…

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