Friday, September 10, 2010

Law of Unintended Consequences

This Fall I am teaching two Intro Macro classes. This would be the students' first Econ class, so I am covering basic Micro Principles as well. Last week we talked at length about Unintended Consequences and I think my students get the idea. Here is a piece from the WSJ that gives some more examples. I must say, I never thought about smoking rules and obesity as having some correlation. My classes will be reading Freakonomics next week and we will also see the movie in late October and have a discussion on it. 

Wednesday, September 08, 2010

Outsourcing and Indian companies

Today's main tech news in Indian news outlets is that Indian IT companies are fuming over Ohio state ban on using public funds on outsourcing. Apparently Indian IT companies are crying foul over this proposed idea. For over 50 years, and continuing on to today, Indian government money is not spent abroad is it? So, why is it wrong that US state government decided not to use its tax-payers money on services outside the country? What is good for the goose is bad for the gander eh! How come this policy is trade protection, and 50 years and continued harrassment of entrepreneurs trying to legitimately import into or export from India is not trade protection. In six years of living abroad, the Indian government has banned the exports of lentils and other items from India at least 6 times due to a domestic shortage. Is that not trade protection? Why should the US give any special status to India. Besides, this policy only bans public funds from being used for outsourcing. If a private entrepreneur wants to outsource with her own funds, the Ohio state does not ban it. I find such holier-than-thou attitudes in India ridiculous. Incidentally, a simple google search does not show any US news outlets running this story, so I am already pretty suspect of the source and content of these reports in India. A policy such as this ban as touted by the Indian news outlets, would be big news. Besides, I am in Ohio right now, and see nothing even in the local newspapers.