Andrea, Hanna and I argue in Nature Human Behaviour that the public needs to pay attention to how much CBDCs might affect our privacy. Carissa Véliz, a colleague from Oxford’s philosophy department, wrote an amazing book called “Privacy is Power” which I highly recommend to anyone who uses the Internet or owns a smartphone.
The infinitely eloquent and provoking George Monbiot wrote an article in which he said a bunch of silly things:
- “Through the market, we can avoid conflict and hard choices, laws and policies, by replacing political decisions with economic calculations.”
- “Unless something is redeemable for money, a pound or dollar sign placed in front of it is senseless: price represents an expectation of payment, in accordance with market rates. In pricing a river, a landscape or an ecosystem, either you are lining it up for sale, in which case the exercise is sinister, or you are not, in which case it is meaningless.”
- “The natural capital agenda is the definitive expression of our disengagement from the living world.”
We responded, less provokingly, in a letter to the Guardian. In short, we argue that “natural capital does not prepare nature for sale; it calls attention to the worth of what is lost.”
This was a very fun piece to write and Medium liked it so much they made a podcast out of it for their subscribers. I also recently noticed that the mechanism to allocate contestants to “judge’s houses” on the X-Factor “Six Chair Challenge” (see. e.g. Series 14, Ep. 12ff) is also a very simple version of the Gale-Shapley algorithm.
Cool story about four Chicago economists who helped design a market to allocate food to food banks.