Monday, March 22, 2010

Stumblings on 10 books

Last week or so, MR posted Tyler Cowen's 10 most influential books, and I think lists like these are very important for students like myself to look at and read, or even reread some (but not Fountainhead or Atlas Shrugged, sorry). Here are some more influential book lists from various blogs:

10 books and another list of ten influential books from EconoSpeak

Bryan Caplan's list and Arnold Kling's list from econlog

Econjeff's book list

Hopefully Greg Mankiw, Brad Delong, and some of the bloggers at Angrybearblog or other blogs (maybe Krugman too?) will post their lists as well.

Monday, March 15, 2010

Control fraud and the financial crisis

Recently I attended a public lecture given by William Black of UMKC Law regarding control fraud and its contribution to the financial crises, both the recent recession and the savings and loan crisis. The official title of the lecture was "Why Neoclassical Economics and Modern Finance Create the Perfect Environments for Perfect Crimes, Bubbles, and Crises." In short, the lecture analyzed the perverse incentive-based casino capitalism leading into the crisis from a criminologist's perspective and accused the large mortgage lenders of committing control fraud with the weapons they themselves possess (loans and company culture).

Here are some video clips of William Black giving a similar discussion:

Friday, March 5, 2010

Stumblings and News on Public Education

Yesterday, March 4, was the national day to defend public higher education across many campuses. In solidarity, students from schools in the Northeast to California held protests and rallies to voice against rising tuition costs and widespread budget costs to public institutions:

Campuses all over the country held protests

Students from my own University rallied against budget cuts and tuition hikes

And aptly so, a leading voice behind privatization of education experienced an intellectual U-turn