Archive for 2008 年 07 月

Obama in Berlin

I am not sure why Germans are so crazy about Obama.

Here is German news about his visit.

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如果你問十個學過經濟學的人「何謂經濟學?」你或許會得到11個答案。如果你問我「何謂經濟學?」,我想我只能告訴你,「經濟學是一種社會科學」。既然我連經濟學是什麼都搞不太懂了,如何能回答「經濟學的極限」這個問題呢?答案是「我不能!」所以這篇文章只能算是閒聊,像是我和詩人朋友討論理性的極限,大家來討論看看吧! (繼續閱讀…)

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Fear, God, and State

A stunning hypothesis from the latest Journal of Personality and Social Psychology:

High levels of support often observed for governmental and religious systems can be explained, in part, as a means of coping with the threat posed by chronically or situationally fluctuating levels of perceived personal control. Three experiments demonstrated a causal relation between lowered perceptions of personal control and … increased beliefs in the existence of a controlling God and defense of the overarching socio-political system. A 4th experiment showed … a challenge to the usefulness of external systems of control led to increased illusory perceptions of personal control. … A cross-national data set demonstrated that lower levels of personal control are associated with higher support for governmental control.

It seems we hope a stronger and more benevolent God or State will protect us when feel less able to protect ourselves. I’d guess similar effects hold for medicine and media – we believe in doc effectiveness more when we fear out of control of our health, and we believe in media accuracy more when we rely more on their info to protect us. Can we find data on which beliefs tend to be more biased: confidence in authorities when we feel out of control, or less confidence in authorities when we feel more in control? (繼續閱讀…)

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昨天和母親聊到投資的事情,他說:「你學經濟的,不要只會讀死書,投資理財的東西都要懂一些。」社會上大部分的人不會說他懂醫學,但是談到經濟議題,總是能說得頭頭是道。為了不要跟那些人一樣,我承認我不懂投資,但是藉著基本的經濟學知識,我可以揭穿那些理財專員口若懸河的謊言。然而,當我建議母親「定期定額投資法會增加風險」時,他卻寧可相信理財專員的「專業」知識。 (繼續閱讀…)

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馬政府上任至今唯二對社會的貢獻:1.證明笨蛋病會傳染,2.證明什麼屁股決定什麼腦袋。 (繼續閱讀…)

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Biofuel caused food crisis

Biofuels have forced global food prices up by 75% – far more than previously estimated – according to a confidential World Bank report obtained by the Guardian.

Read here.

Another case against government intervention. When will we learn…

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