Episode #81 - Free-Rider Friday - February 2016

Ed’s Topics

Frank Kless, Ed’s Dad, would have turned 73 today. He taught Latin part-time and instilled in Ed a fascination with etymologies. Ed shared a story about the word - mortgage.

Ed and Ron will be at the Libertarian Party Presidential Debate in San Antonio, April 8th, which will air on VoiceAmerica’s Live channel. Follow along on Twitter at #LPDEBATE.

Article by Steven Landsburg on how Republican party faces a classic prisoners dilemma with Donald Trump.

Economist Donald Bordreaux asks the following: How much money would it take for you to live back in 1916?

The Apple vs. FBI imbroglio was discussed. Should Apple be forced to create a back door to access its iPhones? Both Ed and Ron say no, but don’t dispute the government’s ability to get what it wants.

Speaking of iPhones, the first person to hack an iPhone, George Hotz, is now working on a driverless car, as explained in this article from Bloomberg, and be sure to watch the accompanying video, it’s truly amazing.

Ron’s Topics

Is Twitter flat lining? From The Economist, “Clunky Dorsey,” February 13, 2014.

From an article in The Economist’s The World in 2016, they are predicting a backlash over fees charged by law firms, and more accounting scandals, possibly in the tech industry.

From The Economist, January 2, 2016, “Prediction 2016.” Prediction markets go back to 1820s, when punters made public wagers on candidates. The losers who couldn’t pay were subject to public humiliation, such as rolling peanuts up and down streets with toothpicks, eating crow, etc. 11 of 12 elections between 1884 and 1940 were correctly predicted.

PredictIt.org, sponsored by Victoria University of Wellington, NZ, has an $850 wager cap, authorized by America’s Commodity Futures Trading Commission, as does Iowa’s Electronic Markets.

Are the Chinese becoming supply-side economists? Check out “Reagan’s Chinese echo” from the January 2, 2016 issue of The Economist.