Wednesday, February 08, 2006

Mid-Week Responses

I am trying to set up a blog that will summarise the issues that concern me in my work and also to facilitate comments from my co-workers and colleagues. I am also just interested in communicating and having fun. If the interaction does not develop I may retain the blog purely as an online diary. My ideas about blogging are very much influenced by John Quiggin's blog where I am an active discussant.

My approach is obviously a bit naive but I find it easier to try this thing and then to learn-by-doing.

What do you think about my blogging idea? Any comments welcome.

Specific advice on hosting and suggestions for better ways of constructing a forum are welcome.

Any issues you want to discuss are welcome - an open forum!


Bring Back EP at LP said...

About time Harry.

damned good to see.

Hope you stay around a long time

P.M.Lawrence said...

This is as much as anything a test, based on Bosco's feedback of difficulties blogging here that he reported at JQ's blog.

Here's a substantive question: if an economy has several imperfections, is it necessarily the case that removing a few of them will usually improve matters? Obviously not, in the specialised case where one is a deliberate Pigovian offset to the other.

But, can it happen where the original imperfections were more or less random, but the priority in which they were cleared away was determined by vested interests, just as much rent seeking in setting the priorities as earlier vested interests were in creating imperfections in their favour? My intuition is yes, but I won't go into my thinking until I've seen some feedback.

hc said...

PML. That's a bloody tough question to address to a 2-day old blogger but maybe someone out there can see some simplicity I don't.

The general theory of 'second-best' says that piecemeal pricing reforms don't necessarily increase efficiency. So if move from underpricing to marginal cost pricing of something, like waste disposal, without enforcing property rights on neighbouring bushland, you can make things worse since people may avoid the charges by illegally dumping -- this might have big social costs. You need to deal with both externalities simultaneously.

If the vested interests were the local government who wanted to charge an efficiency toll at their legal dump then welfare need not be improved. Generally it depends on who the vested interests are.

Beyond that I don't know.

I assume you mean that property rights are randomly distributed throughout the economy (some enforced, some not) and that those who own rights ('the vested interests') move first to price. In general I think you won't get a welfare gain.

Anonymous said...

I reckon your approach is good idea. I keep 2 anonymous, unpromoted, mostly invisible blogs: one as a personal diary, the other just to record interesting information (esp. because bookmarks are cumbersome to navigate and search, and I don't how useful delicious is yet) and because too frequently I revisit a link to find the story gone. Summarising a news item onto my private blog is a good way of mentally ordering and assimilating the message.

James Farrell said...

A bold and admirable step, Harry. And a prodigious volley of posts to get underway. Good luck with traffic. The challenge in that respect, I guess, is to be provocative without being nasty or getting out of your depth and drowning.

My only complaint is that you're bound to cut back now on comments chez JQ. There is economy in having the informed and thoughtful people in one place. Trackback mitigates the diffusion of wisdom to some extent, though. In any case, I'll try to visit regularly.

Mark Upcher said...

Look forward to your blog Harry. Have already made some comments elsewhere.

I am surprised that you describe your views as conservative. So far they seem fairly eclectic with a possible bias to classic (small l) liberalism.