Bacon Ice Cream and Intertemporal Choice

Photo: lilivanili and shawnzam Yesterday I suggested that tastes may not be stable. And then last night, I had the chance to confront the data directly; my local restaurant was serving bacon ice cream. Bacon: Delicious! Ice cream: My favorite! The combination of bacon and ice cream: a direct threat to my views of economics. […]

A Beet Paradox

Photo: Darwin Bell Beets are the new broccoli. Or at least they will be after Obama takes office on January 20, as the president-elect recently revealed his distaste for this vitamin-laden root vegetable. And Obama is not alone: Even as beet salads have become popular in trendy eateries, most American kids I know also reject […]

The Economic Downturn Takes Its Toll on Well-Being

The usual economic data make it clear that the current downturn is causing financial pain. And now, thanks to an amazing new collection of data, we can also track the effects of our current recession on subjective well-being. Since the start of this year, the good folks at Gallup have partnered with Healthways to create […]

An Election Form Guide

Today, all eyes are on the U.S. presidential election. There’s certainly plenty to follow, and in my latest Wall Street Journal column, David Rothschild and I begin by highlighting the most interesting markets to track. The big one is obviously who will be the next president: Barack Obama‘s stock has risen in recent days, and […]

America’s Best Pundit: Economix vs. Freakonomics

Economix, a blog run by The New York Times newsroom, is running a fun prediction contest ahead of tomorrow’s election. You have to pick three prediction-market stocks, and the winner is the person with the most profitable portfolio. You can enter here and read more here. Economix is running this contest partly because David Leonhardt […]

Presidential Prognostications

As the presidential race enters the home stretch, my most recent Wall Street Journal column assesses the likely outcomes. My conclusion probably comes as no surprise: “Barack Obama is the hot favorite to win.” I begin by noting that prediction markets currently rate Obama an 85 percent chance to win. But I think that these […]

The Most Compelling Political Event of the Year

It wasn’t meant to be political. In fact, Saturday night, while beautiful, was pretty conventional: two of my dear friends from graduate school were getting married. They are fellow economists who have spent 18 years together; they have supported each other through their careers, each has followed the other to different cities, and they provide […]

Gilbert and Sullivan on the Financial Crisis

About a month ago, I shared a fun song that Yale economist Ray Fair wrote, adapting a Gilbert and Sullivan song to describe some of my research. Not to be outdone, Sharon Oster, his spouse and fellow Yale economist, has written her own Gilbert and Sullivan piece: “The Financial Crisis: Here’s a How-De-Do!” (To the […]

When to Buy World Series Tickets

What a World Series! I can’t wait to see the Phillies try to break “the curse of Billy Penn,” which has prevented any major Philly sports franchise from winning anything since 1983. That’s right, not a single sporting success across the four major sports franchises over 25 years, which adds up to a century-long accumulated […]

Economic Gangsters

Columbia’s Ray Fisman and Berkeley’s Ted Miguel are two of the most creative and interesting economists I know. Each is driven to better understand just what keeps poor countries in poverty, and they are willing to try some pretty amazing research strategies to figure it out. They have traveled far and wide — both geographically […]