Lecturas 22.04.2013

Milton Friedman, Chile, China and lectures.

INTERVIEWER: Do you think the Chile affair damaged your reputation, or more importantly, made it harder for you to get your ideas across?

MILTON FRIEDMAN: That’s a very hard thing to say, because I think it had effects in both directions. It got a lot of publicity. It made a lot of people familiar with the views who would not otherwise have been. On the other hand, in terms of the political side of it, as you realize, most of the intellectual community, the intellectual elite, as it were, were on the side of Allende, not on the side of Pinochet. And so in a sense they regarded me as a traitor for having been willing to talk in Chile. I must say, it’s such a wonderful example of a double standard, because I had spent time in Yugoslavia, which was a communist country. I later gave a series of lectures in China. When I came back from communist China, I wrote a letter to the Stanford Daily newspaper in which I said, “It’s curious. I gave exactly the same lectures in China that I gave in Chile. I have had many demonstrations against me for what I said in Chile. Nobody has made any objections to what I said in China. How come?”

Wood: The fuel of the future. Environmental lunacy in Europe. By The Economist.

Europe does not produce enough timber to meet that extra demand. So a hefty chunk of it will come from imports. Imports of wood pellets into the EU rose by 50% in 2010 alone and global trade in them (influenced by Chinese as well as EU demand) could rise five- or sixfold from 10m-12m tonnes a year to 60m tonnes by 2020, reckons the European Pellet Council. Much of that will come from a new wood-exporting business that is booming in western Canada and the American south. Gordon Murray, executive director of the Wood Pellet Association of Canada, calls it “an industry invented from nothing”.

Lessons from a Feminist Paradise on Equal Pay Day, by Christina Hoff Sommers.

In a 2012 report, the World Economic Forum found that when it comes to closing the gender gap in “economic participation and opportunity,” the United States is ahead of not only Sweden but also Finland, Denmark, the Netherlands, Iceland, Germany, and the United Kingdom. Sweden’s rank in the report can largely be explained by its political quota system. Though the United States has fewer women in the workforce (68 percent compared to Sweden’s 77 percent), American women who choose to be employed are far more likely to work full-time and to hold high-level jobs as managers or professionals. Compared to their European counterparts, they own more businesses, launch more start start-ups, and more often work in traditionally male fields. As for breaking the glass ceiling in business, American women are well in the lead, as the chart below shows.

18 Reasons Why Doctors and Lawyers Homeschool Their Children, by Kathleen Berchelmann.

10) We are able to work on the kids’ behavior and work ethic throughout the day. My son’s poor work effort at school was nearly impossible to address. The teachers didn’t have time to make my son repeat work they felt was average quality. We wouldn’t see the work until days after it was completed. Finally, we’ve been able to push him to his full potential.

Somalia: Protect Displaced People at Risk. New Government Should Tackle Past Injustice, Abuses. By Human Rights Watch.

Rape and sexual abuse of displaced women and girls, including by government soldiers and militia members, has been an enormous problem in the unprotected environment of the camps, Human Rights Watch found. Many victims of sexual violence don’t report their experiences to the authorities because they fear reprisals from their attackers, are wary of the social stigma, and have little confidence in the justice system. The father of a young woman who was allegedly raped by four soldiers told Human Rights Watch, “We didn’t try to go to justice, because the commander was harassing us at the time my daughter was raped. So how I can trust anyone here? We must keep silent.”

Report: “Hostages of the Gatekeepers: Abuses against Internally Displaced in Mogadishu, Somalia".

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