Monday, May 26, 2014

On Econ Empirics

Noah Smith proposes that economics be taught empirically with much more data. I agree.

In physics the trajectory of a ball thrown in the air can always be predicted with a quadratic curve, whereas in economics the price of milk cannot always be predicted. Some people say, this is the reason why economics is an immature science.
Physics seems to have a power of explanation in this point and teachers should teach econ empirically. However, only with data cannot we tell good econ theory from bad one, nor can we eliminate any political ideology or psychological bias.

The result drawn from the regression is quite hard to read and is always open to dispute. There's much room for biases. We need data when we study econ and I agree, but it's always difficult, not easy, to collect the correct data set and to read the results. That's why there are always disagreements and conflicting views even when experts of econ theory discuss the same econ issue.

Thursday, May 22, 2014

The Japanese Economy Is Dynamically Inefficient 日本経済は動学的非効率

The Japanese economy is more likely to be dynamically inefficient, which means that the capital stock has been over-accumulated. For the Japanese people to get better off, the capital stock should be decreased.

MPK-δ<g ・・・・・(1)

MPK-δ: Real return to capital stock (Marginal product of capital - depreciation rate)
g: Economic growth rate(growth rate of real GNI)

日本経済は動学的に非効率で、資本ストックが過剰に蓄積されている。 日本人がより高い効用を得るためには、資本ストックを減らしていかなければならない。

MPK-δ<g ・・・・・(1)


Saturday, May 17, 2014

Collective Self Defense 集団的自衛権

Mr. Abe tries to re-interpret the Japan's Constitution that prohibits having armed forces to have the right to collective self-defense, or to retaliate for an ally under armed attack. It's because it is very difficult for him to amend the Constitution.

I do not think many people understand him. As one political scientist says, Mr Abe should call a general election to ask if Japan should amend the Constitution, and have the right to collective self-defense. That is a true process of parliamentary democracy representing the will of the people in a free and open manner.


Friday, May 16, 2014


Thursday, May 15, 2014



これを(1+0.0143)×(1+0.0143)×(1+0.0143)×(1+0.0143)=1.0584、すなわち年率換算して 5.9%となる。

6連続四半期プラス成長で、不況の定義が「2連続4半期マイナス成長」なので、今の日本は「景気がいい」となる。日経平均も下がってる し、実感ないのが正直なところ。

Wednesday, May 14, 2014

On Friend and Facebook

A friend is not one who always agrees with you, nor one who always cares you. I believe that a friend is one with whom you can always agree, or one whom you can always care. In my sense, facebook people are neither friends nor nonfriends, but just the ones with whom you share facebook.


Tuesday, May 13, 2014

On Behind Hate Speech

The quarterly estimate of Japan's GDP Jan-March 2014 will soon be released and it is expected to be going up. On the other hand, people's mindset doesn't seem to change little: They refrain from spending and worry about job loss.

What's worse, the press spreads the view that decreasing younger population decreases people's future standard of life, for which there's no clear theoretical or empirical evidence, and makes people worry even further.

In such an atmosphere, some people come insisting on the need to exclude Korean and Chinese residents and to restrict immigration. Basically they are not worth listening to, but it seems to me that there are a lot of people frustrated or bored with their life behind such a hate speech, and I am needlessly afraid that it will gradually escalate into an unexpected disturbance somewhere unexpected.




Saturday, May 10, 2014

On First Lady ファーストレディー

Yesterday the Prime Minister's wife Akie Abe confessed in her facebook, "a woman's life will depend on whom she marries", and caught many people's attention.

I recall Ms. Hillary Clinton: She took a vacation with her husband Bill Clinton and met her old boyfriend at the gas station. Ms.Hillary smirked and said, "if I had stayed with him, he would have been the President of the United States."

Though it is not clear whether the above story is true, Ms.Akie, as is a traditional lady, can be said to be more modest and less bold than Ms.Hillary. At any rate, it can also be said that a man's life will depend on whom he marries. 


ヒラリー・クリントン女史のことを思い出した。彼女の夫のビル・クリントンと休暇をとっているときに、 ガソリンスタンドで女史の昔の恋人に出会った。ヒラリー女史はにんまりしながら「もし、彼と一緒なら、彼がアメリカ大統領よ」と吐いた。


Friday, May 09, 2014

On Gun Control 銃規制について

One guy made guns with 3D printer and was caught on suspicion of violating firearms control law. Some of the guns he made seem to have lethal potential, but he didn't think it was against the law.

I recalled the incidence of Virginia Tech and one Japanese guy, Mr Hattori, killed in Halloween night. These were all gun-related tragedies, but not caused by gun itself, but by criminals. This suspected guy says, if we met a bear in the forest, we would fire at it and, in the same way, if a girl met violence, she could fire to protect herself. However, it is not clear whether he will truly protect girls from violence.

Hearing the violence, I feel it is better for women to have guns to protect themselves though it is illegal to have guns here. Someone says, swimming in the pool is dangerous than having guns. But we can say whether to prevent crimes depends not on whether to have guns, but on how to use guns. I doubt whether people use guns properly.

銃規制について。ある男が3Dプリンターで銃を作成し、銃刀法違反容疑で警察に逮捕された。 彼の作成した銃の一部は殺傷能力があり、違法ではないと思っていたという。

ヴァージニア工科大学の事件やハロウィーンに殺された服部氏の件を思い出す。これらは銃に関連する悲劇ではあったが、 銃そのものが引き起こしたのでなく犯罪者によるものであった。容疑をかけられた男性は、クマに出会えば発砲するように、女性が暴行に会えば、身を守るため発砲するだろうという。しかし、容疑者が本当に女性を守るつもりであったかは不明だ。

ここでは銃を所持することは違法だが、女性の暴力を耳にすると、銃を持った方がよい気がする。 誰かが言うように、プールで泳ぐ方が銃を持つより危険だと。 しかし、犯罪を防ぐかどうかは、銃を持っているかどうかではなく、その使い方次第だ。 人々がうまく銃を使うかどうか私は疑問だ。

Wednesday, May 07, 2014

On Tourists  観光客

Yesterday I walked downtown in Osaka City and saw many, many tourists from abroad. I heard Chinese and some English spoken there. 

I saw one middle aged couple speaking German and taking photos of a dirty street and a shopping mall, and then I wondered what and where they found interesting. 

Tourists usually find interesting what we do not usually think interesting. If I were a tourist, I would probably seek what I have in common in different places, and so would they.





Tuesday, May 06, 2014

On Gary S Becker From Obituaries

Chicago Tribune  04/05/2014 In 1992, (Gary) Becker won the Nobel Prize, “for having extended the domain of microeconomic analysis to a wide range of human behavior and interaction, including non-market behavior.”

“He just pushed economics in so many different directions,” said (Kevin) Murphy, who collaborated with Mr. Becker in research on human capital, education, addiction and the economics of the family.

“He believed that economics was helpful to understanding and improving people’s lives and that’s how he did his research and that’s how he taught.”

Bloomberg  04/05/2014
In a May 2009 post, Becker said the Republican Party had created a “crisis in conservatism” by focusing increasingly on social and military issues.

“I believe that the best way to restore the consistency and attractiveness of the conservative movement,” he wrote, “is for modern conservatism to return to its roots of skepticism toward governmental actions,” which would mean “more flexible approaches toward hot-button issues like gays in the military, gay marriage, abortions, stem-cell research.”

In July 2004, he wrote: “Along with many others of my generation, I was a socialist when I started my university studies.

But my first few economics courses taught me the power of competition, markets, and incentives, and I quickly became a classical liberal. That means someone who believes in the power of individual responsibility, a market economy, and a crucial but limited role of government.” 

Among his findings: welfare payments to unmarried mothers in the U.S. discouraged marriage and encouraged fertility among poorer women.

He extended his theory of rational behavior to criminals, looking at how they might balance the benefits of a successful heist against the risk of capture and punishment.

He said his interest in crime stemmed from his own experience in New York City, weighing whether he should risk a ticket by parking illegally.

WSJ  04/05/2014
 "Along with others, I have tried to pry economists away from narrow assumptions about self interest. Behavior is driven by a much richer set of values and preferences."

Postscript 10/05/2014
For more information on Prof Gary Becker

渡辺淳一さん 享年80歳


恋人の看護師の自宅へ押しかけ警察沙汰になった騒動(阿川 佐和子氏との対談で事実だと認めていました)を小説にする一方で、野口英世や医学を描いた作品もあります。

文章も読みやすく綺麗で繊細で、理想的な(女か らすると男の妄想でしょうが)女性、大概着物で登場するが、大好きです。渡辺先生、さようなら。

On Human Capital 人的資本について

Human Capital is three-fourths, or so, of the wealth in the United States, and the value of human capital did not seem to have been much affected by the stock market (1987) crash. The Age of Human Capital, Gary S. Becker

That means, the economic activities are mainly made from individual skills, experiences, ideas, and health, and that being glad and sad by changes in stock prices doesn't make sense. May he rest in peace.




Saturday, May 03, 2014

On the Japanese Constitution and the Nobel Peace Prize 日本国憲法とノーベル平和賞

Japan has never fought with any other country in the world since the end of WW2. This is because the Article 9 of the Japanese Constitution prohibits Japan from having military forces and the USA is supposed to protect Japan instead due to the Security Treaty of 1960. That means that the US citizens bleed for Japan in exchange for Japan's disarming, and there's great possibility that the Treaty has maintained the peace in the East Asia for 69 years.

However, some Japanese think that it is rather the Japanese Constitution that has kept this long peace, and one woman is appealing to the Nobel Committee to nominate the Japanese Constitution as the candidate of the Nobel Peace Prize.

Those who believe that only the Japanese Constitution has worked for the peace seem to me so naive and so ignorant that they will not understand the real power politics. They will not gain any support from many people all over the world. Mr Abe struggles to strengthen Japan's forces and causes fear in part, but first of all, Japanese people have to note that they have luck to enjoy peace and that they may forget that peace cannot be maintained without any kind of sacrifice.

日本は第2次大戦後世界のどの国とも戦争をしていない。これは憲法第9条が日本の武装を禁止し、安全保障条約によって、アメリカが日本を代りに守ることに なっているからである。すなわち、日本の武装解除と引き換えにアメリカ市民が血を流すということであり、この条約が69年もの間東アジアの平和を維持して きたと考えられる。


日本国憲法だけが平和に貢献してきたと信じる 人々が、私には実際の力による政治を理解しないとても無邪気で無知な人たちに思える。世界中の人々からは何ら支持を取り付けることはないだろう。安倍首相 が日本の武力を強化し、これが一部に不安を招いているが、まず第一に日本人は平和を享受する幸運に恵まれていることと、 平和があらゆる犠牲なしには維持できないことを忘れているかもしれないことを認識しなければならない。