Thursday, January 12, 2012

Random Links: food governance, being LDS, behavioral economics

C. Juma on how to improve Africa's research infrastructure - basically, make research institutions more like teaching institutions and teaching institutions more research oriented.

A fascinating Kenyan website called I paid a bribe. The tagline is: uncover the market price of corruption.

The price of orange juice at a 34-year high.

Price transmission in NYC from subway to pizza.

Why are Americans eating less meat? Partly higher relative prices, partly recession, party "Flexitarianism."

WalMart pays Nicaraguan farmers less than other retail outlets, but offers much less price variance in compensation. Since food price variance has increased, this might be a better deal than it used to be.

"What is essential to being a good Mormon? According to the [Pew] survey [of pretty active American members of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints], 80 percent said "believing Joseph Smith saw God the Father and Jesus Christ" is essential to being a good Mormon, 73 percent said "working to help the poor,"" Other interesting sound bites:
  • The Latter-day Saints surveyed had a more favorable opinion of Pres. Obama than LDS Senate Majority Leader Reid (25 to 22)
  • 97% of us identify as being Christians, believe in Jesus' resurrection, and use the word "Christian" as the single word that best describes us, while 49% of non-Mormons do not think we're Christian
  • Most of us rank being a good parent as more important than career or religious activities
  • 60% of converts cited church beliefs as why they joined. 60% of converts joined between 18 and 35 years old.
  • 82% say they have a food storage, and almost half have 3 months stored up. When Pres. Ensign came to check on us and assess our needs, we were happy to report that we had 1-2 weeks of food stored up and enough cash to satisfy our needs. Water was another story, but we could boil the tap water to make more as needed and had already refilled a 5 gallon (20 liter) drum with boiled water.
  • Even though most identified as conservative, we are much more positive about immigrants and immigration than the average conservative.
Asking people to give a lot of examples actually convinces them that something is less likely than asking them only a few examples. It is the ease of coming up with the marginal example that matters rather than the total number.

Bellemare on how to do well in an economics class.

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