Self-determination: People are satisfied by autonomy, connectedness, and competence. Property rights enforcement costs increase dramatically. Large security industry, gated communities, more people in jail, etc., that result from inequality offsets the incentive effect. Progressive tax may not do much to reduce inequality; and flat tax may not do much to increase it.Russ: connectedness to students; lots of competence, fair amount of autonomy as an academic. Example: Go to an academic conference; everybody still wants to talk to the 75-year old Nobel Prize winner. Book: Uneasy Case for Progressive Taxation, Blum and Kalven: moral and practical case for progressive taxation. Argument: If we put a tax on doctors and lawyers, on argument that their services are overcompensated, or not fair, or that they are so much better off relative to others.High school people work intensely but may retire earlier. Piketty data, interpretation: income distribution of the United States mostly emergent, buffeted by millions of people, though affected by Congress.
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Is there a hidden variable causing both high status and low mortality?
Mandarins--people on the top--just slightly more than half the mortality rate than people at the bottom.
Increase in inequality is not due to some vast right-wing conspiracy; it has to do with a skill premium. One task with 95% accuracy: having 100% accuracy doesn't matter with putting potatoes into the ground; might matter with more modern technology.
O-ring, Challenger explosion, not conspiracy, technological failure. When it comes to inequality and health I think the causation might be reversed.
Michael Marmot, Whitehall Study: street where British civil service centers upon. People at the top of the heap lived far longer even adjusting for income than those at the next level down; etc. Academy Award winners live four years longer on average than runner's up. Let's look at the problems with that kind of statistical analysis. Whitehall Study: The higher you were in the pecking order, holding income and health care access constant, the people with higher status live longer. Peter O'Toole keeps being a runner up, quite old, could still live long enough to get one. People can give you their income before tax but often not after tax; not good at knowing the value of their benefits; no idea of percentile placement; no idea how it's changed in the last 5 or 10 years. Criticism is that that's not what the Census data show.