Hey, cool, I’m in Newsweek!
Great links from Slate Star Codex today, including an Atlantic article asking whether there is a connection between gender diversity and autism.
Also this interview of Deirdre McCloskey is definitely worth your time.
Monica Straniero: You say economists such as Thomas Piketty and politicians such as Bernie Sanders have been stressing the dangers of economic inequality. What do you argue?
Deirdre McCloskey: I argue that, for one thing, important inequality has not increased. Equality of basic goods, such as housing and food and medical care and education, is much greater in Italy, say, than it was in 1960. For another, why would one care that Liliane Bettencourt, the richest woman in the world and one of Piketty’s black beasts, has an absurdly large number of chateaux and yachts? I am sure that I don’t. Only a silly and sinful envy would make one care. Her riches made no one poorer. For still another, Piketty and Sanders do not include the main capital in the modern world, human capital. They imagine we still live in 1848, the year of the Communist Manifesto, when indeed labor was uneducated and the bosses had all the land and factories. Now the significant factories are mainly inside your head and mine. We own them. For another, inheritance is a very small factor even in financial-asset inequality. For another, policies introduced to stop inequality routinely work to increase it. The Duke of Westminster just died, the richest man in England. Why so rich? Because restrictions on planning permission in London have made land rents soar—as his name implies, he owned much of the land on which London is built.