||[Oct. 13th, 2005|05:37 pm]
|||||the goon show||]|
So I'm waaaay late on this, but a quick thought on Katrina. It seems like the biggest danger now is that people will start to think that every storm will do that kind of damage. We've already seen small-scale evidence of why that's a bad thing - all of the deaths from Rita were people attempting to evacuate. On a larger scale, money and effort spent preparing for the next Katrina will necessarily take lives, almost certainly more than the expected human cost of another storm. I think the best writing I've seen on this subject in general is Cass Sunstein's, although I don't know if he's written anything about Katrina. The gist is that if that preparation money is being spent to save lives, there are many better ways to achieve that goal - ways that will save more lives more efficiently. I really wish I had more time to spend on this and availability cascades and such, but I don't. If anybody's read anything about it in the Katrina context, let me know.
Another thing I'm late on: Thomas Schelling won the Nobel Prize this week. Because he's one of my favorite economists (although he's sooo much more), his name has been on my livejournal interests list since I started this a couple years ago. Oddly enough, I'm apparently the only one. He won the fucking Nobel Prize, so surely someone else will show some interest now.