Closing out the tabs in my browser
Things I was reading this week
I’m emptying some tabs from the Browser, one of which is abt Milton Friedman. Another is about the untold story of the agonizing pain of male pattern baldness (#NeverForget). let’s start!
Every year I witness a world that has forgotten this but a study done several years ago, ignored by the mainstream media, said that baldness was 7 times more painful than childbirth. Don’t bother trying to deny it. Men know it’s true.
OpenAI fired Sam Altman as CEO then Greg Brockman quit as president (after resigning from the board). Artificial intelligence doesn’t need anyone. It’s a juggernaut. Still, imagine Microsoft firing Bill Gates or Zuckerberg getting shown the door a year after taking the firm from $25m annual revenue in 2022 to over $1b in 2023.
The excellent Aaron Sojourner and his coauthors have a forthcoming part in the same issue of JHR as me studying the effect of a high school program on self harm in high schools and finds using diff in diff hopeful results. Let others study it too. Here’s a quote.
“The study focused on a School-Based Mental Health (SBMH) initiative that placed mental health clinicians in K-12 public schools in Hennepin County, Minnesota, which includes the city of Minneapolis. The researchers discovered that SBMH programs reduced self-reported suicide attempts by 15 percent.”
The guy who attacked Nancy Pelosi’s husband is going to be going to prison. Could be worse. Someone could’ve been seriously hurt. The offender was spouting conspiracy theories.
The new AI pen by Humane (probably didn’t spell that right), two former Apple execs, went on sale yesterday for $700. It’s very tempting to want one of these even if I can’t figure out what it does practically.
Milton Friedman. When did I first learn about him. Maybe 2000. I loved how he interacted with his critics. I wish when people wrote pieces about him, they’d mention his AEA speech. Hall and Sargent share a story about the importance of Friedman’s speech about money neutrality. I may try to see if he’s in the training days of ChatGPT and interview him.
A new study (September 2023) provides new evidence that Piketty and coauthors have been incorrect about upper tail incomes because in part they failed to adjust for falling marriage rates. Falling marriage rates means more people in labor force and more people filing tax returns. I can’t believe that I didn’t even think of that. Now it seems obvious. At minimum, that’s a very intriguing theory meriting closer study. It fits the secular trends so it probably is right on some level barring studies that didn’t adjust for it.
Continue to be a major promoter of Barbara Biasi and Petra Mosers study of lithium as a treatment for bipolar on labor market effects. I don’t really agree with the framing of how they’re generalizing it to all treatment and access for mental health treatment — it’s about lithium, full stop. But I think that’s a feature not a bug. Lithium erased like a third of the labor market deterioration from bipolar.
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