- Over at Korea Business Central, I am the author of the latest "Korea Economic Slice," a regular feature in which guest writers are invited to comment on current issues in the Korean economy. My intro:
If the election of Park Won-soon as Seoul’s mayor last October is any indication, the upcoming April parliamentary elections will turn on matters of social welfare and inequality. More importantly, however, these elections will be a sign of the degree to which Koreans are willing to accept the vagaries of a market economy which, while leading to unequal outcomes of wealth accumulation, is a precondition for a sustainable welfare state. Discussion of such matters could scarcely come at a more pivotal time for Korea, facing as it does an aging and declining population, a slowing economic growth rate, and reinvigorated concerns about reunification with North Korea. Unfortunately, Korea’s political class shows little sign that it understands the gravity of the moment, competing not in a battle of ideas over how to revive the economy but rather to see who can most flamboyantly give away other people’s money.
- As the old joke says: if you want to save the polar bears, start eating them. For the past few decades, some Texas ranchers have taken that advice to heart with regard to endangered African critters, raising them on their huge spreads and allowing big game hunters to bag a trophy. Animal rights activists, meanwhile, appear to be more concerned with simply not hunting the animals rather than actually preserving their numbers. This segment from 60 Minutes (also above) is a great lesson in incentives, private property rights and how easy it is to be self-righteously wrong. (h/t Carpe Diem)
- My friend Steven Denney informs me that PEAR (Papers, Essays, and Reviews), the Yonsei Journal of International Studies is seeking submissions for its Spring/Summer 2012 issue. The website is here if you've got something you think might interest Steve.
- Finally, you'll be doing yourself a favor to read this piece by the always-insightful Mark Pennington on "'The Left' and Public Choice Theory." (h/t Cafe Hayek)