Russ Roberts

May 2017

A Monthly Archive (8 entries)
 

Podcast episode David Boaz, P.J. O'Rourke, and George Will on the State of Liberty

EconTalk Episode with David Boaz, P.J. O'Rourke, and George Will
Hosted by Russ Roberts

future.jpg What is the state of liberty in America? Is liberty increasing or decreasing? Should we be optimistic or pessimistic about the future? This week EconTalk features David Boaz, P. J. O'Rourke, and George Will discussing these questions and more with EconTalk host Russ Roberts in front of a live audience at the Cato Institute.

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Piling On the Problem of Poverty

EconTalk Extra
by Amy Willis

gravel pile.jpg What's the best way to help the world's poor? Should we give them cash or chickens? Or is the best way to eradicate poverty something else entirely? This week, EconTalk host Russ Roberts welcomed back Lant Pritchett, of Harvard's Center for International Development. Their starting point was a series of "letters" attempting to answer these questions, each initially responding to Bill Gates's plan of providing chickens to the global poor.

Just how bad is the world poverty situation today, and what's our best approach to reducing poverty in the world's lowest productivity areas? Pritchett has his ideas, and Roberts is on board with some of them. What about you? We'd love to hear from you.

Why does Pritchett object to giving cash- or chickens- to people in poverty-stricken countries? What does he mean by making an analogy to a cancerous tumor?

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Podcast episode Lant Pritchett on Poverty, Growth, and Experiments

EconTalk Episode with Lant Pritchett
Hosted by Russ Roberts

cash%20chicken.jpg How should we think about growth and poverty? How important is the goal of reducing the proportion of the world's population living on less than a dollar a day? Does poverty persist because people lack skills or because they live in economic systems where skills are not rewarded? What is the role of experimental methods in understanding what reduces poverty? Author and economist Lant Pritchett of Harvard University talks with EconTalk host Russ Roberts about these questions and more in a wide-ranging discussion of how best to help the world's poorest people.

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Podcast episode Cass Sunstein on #Republic

EconTalk Episode with Cass Sunstein
Hosted by Russ Roberts

#republic.gif Author and legal scholar Cass Sunstein of Harvard University talks with EconTalk host Russ Roberts about his latest book, #Republic. Sunstein argues that the internet has encouraged people to frequent informational echo chambers where their views are reinforced and rarely challenged. In addition, there is a loss of public space where people might have to encounter dissonant ideas or causes they might wish to champion. Sunstein considers this a threat to democracy and discusses a variety of ways the situation might improve.

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Blame the Millennials

EconTalk Extra
by Amy Willis

complacent.jpg This week, EconTalk host Russ Roberts welcomed back economist, author, and blogger Tyler Cowen of George Mason University. The subject was Cowen's newest book, The Complacent Class: The Self-Defeating Quest for the American Dream. In it, Cowen argues that Americans have become less innovative, less geographically mobile, and more segregated due to a cultural shift toward complacency. And yes, he thinks Millennials are particularly afflicted with complacency.

Have Americans- especially Millennials- become addicted to a soma-like state of leisure? What's needed to get folks out of their parents' basements and designing beautiful new buildings and making movies great again? As always, we'd like to hear your thoughts on this week's conversation.

1. How does Cowen define "complacency" in his book, and how does he argue it's affecting the US economy? Why does Roberts suggest it may instead be an income effect, and why does Cowen think it's not?

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CATEGORIES: Books , Extras



Podcast episode Tyler Cowen on The Complacent Class

EconTalk Episode with Tyler Cowen
Hosted by Russ Roberts

Complacent%20Class.jpg Author and economist Tyler Cowen of George Mason University talks with EconTalk host Russ Roberts about his book, The Complacent Class. Cowen argues that the United States has become complacent and the result is a loss of dynamism in the economy and in American life, generally. Cowen provides a rich mix of data, speculation, and creativity in support of his claims.

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mobile.jpg How can government be made more user-friendly and to work better for everybody? That's the question that seems to motivate Jennifer Pahlka, founder of Code for America and this week's EconTalk guest. As you might expect, there's some divergence in Pahlka's and Roberts's views as to what government ought to do, and I suspect the same holds true of you...So please let us know your thoughts on this week's episode. As always, we love to hear from you.

1. Code for America's website claims, "The two biggest levers for improving people's lives at scale are technology and government." To what extent do you believe this to be true?

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Podcast episode Jennifer Pahlka on Code for America

EconTalk Episode with Jennifer Pahlka
Hosted by Russ Roberts

code%20US.jpg Jennifer Pahlka, founder of Code for America, talks with EconTalk host Russ Roberts about the organization she started. Code for America works with private sector tech people to bring technology to the provision of government services. Pahlka discusses some of the success Code for America has had with improving government and the challenges of citizenship and technology in the 21st century.

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