Crimes of forgiveness

Forgiveness is good for the soul. Debt forgiveness is the juice that keeps the economy fresh. If all debts were honoured then capitalism would close up shop. Debt forgiveness can be  egalitarian. Social movements promoted the forgiveness of odious debts incurred by developing world governments. Debt cancellation has been a recurring plank of radical politics …

Encryption and entropy

What is the physics of society? Its chemistry, its biology? We are beings who live through these material stuffs. Biochemistry matters for mind and behaviour. For example, the distribution of energy in the form of food is a critical question for health, for cultural symbolism, for life. The distribution of time is another dimension. That …

Is it a university building or an unethical experiment in social psychology? Why not both?

Visiting the art college and the Informatics school reminds me how uncreative most academic buildings and arrangements are. Many bear a striking resemblance to Dunder Mifflin, a monastery made of MDF, or the offices of a well established but slightly shady law company specialising in lengthy divorce battles. Students are often skilled in working the …

My reading list for the next wee while

Inspired by a discussion of corporate fraud and wage theft I am aiming to incorporate this work into my Illicit Markets course: Smith D (2013) The “Hyper-meritocracy” – an Oxymoron Led by Criminal Morons. In: New Economic Perspectives. Available at: http://neweconomicperspectives.org/2013/10/hyper-meritocracy-oxymoron-led-criminal-morons.html(accessed 14 October 2020). Akerlof GA, Romer PM, Hall RE, et al. (1993) Looting: the …