Wednesday, January 20, 2021

Grumpy economist podcast: free market tests, vaccines and more

The Grumpy Economist podcast is back, and we're going to aim for a once per two week schedule. This week we talk about vaccines, tests, masks, and how free markets would do better than the government, or at least can usefully complement the government. 

I wanted to get to the larger point, at least can we have a free market in toilet paper? Price controls in crises are one of those econ 101 questions that divide economists from everyone else. Don't transfer income by rationing toilet paper in a crisis. Let prices allocate it to who really has got to go, and give the natural disincentive against hoarding. Next time. 

 Link here if the embed above doesn't work. 


  1. Please post on Spotify! Easier to follow episodes.

    1. Some members of Spotify's staff went ballistic when Joe Rogan moved his material over there and again when he proposed to host a Biden-Trump debate over claims that he supposedly is "transphobic." Rogan had tens of millions worth of audience to motivate management to tell them to shove it.

      While professor Cochrane has interesting comments to make on a plethora of topics, I am doubtful the weak management at Spotify would stick their neck out again to let a small podcast run as the author sees fit.

      Of course, management at Spotify could have learned something from the experience. If I was on the board there, the next day there would be a meeting where I explained that politics no longer crosses that door. If someone cannot stand those conditions, I offer 3 months of full pay as severance package. The offer would be good for a week and, starting the following Monday, anyone who brings politics through the door will be fired on the spot. Then, I'd instruct HR of a new hiring policy: look on social media accounts of any and all applicants for signs of support for identity politics and reject any and all applicants, however qualified, for it.

      But, of course, they don't have the balls to do it. I would, in a heartbeat, because I am not delusional about the extensive damage these lunatics can cause.


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