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El Norteno is now Complex Effects!
I'm taking this blog in a new, more exciting direction... externalities, complexity, and policy
I’ve decided to rebrand this newsletter into something new. Introducing:
I want to take this project to the next level. To do that, I needed a name that represents what I tend to write about - externalities.
An externality is a cost or benefit imposed on society due to the actions of others. One example of an external benefit is the benefit of getting a covid booster - if you spend the time to get a covid shot, society benefits. Everyone around you will be less likely to get covid, but you’re the one that has to go get the shot. To incentivize people to get pricked, the government might subsidize the shot.
An external cost is structured in the opposite way. The most pressing externality is the cost of climate changing emissions. If you burn fossil fuels and emit climate-changing CO2 and particulate matter, you don’t have to pay for the fires, droughts, hurricanes, or lung disease caused when you release harmful emissions into the air - even though you’re that one that emitted. To discourage people from emitting CO2, the government might tax carbon emissions by the metric ton.
Externalities reveal where there is market failure, and they reveal where we might need to rethink the prices of things we use everyday. Externalities are everywhere and they can tell us where inequities lie.
Complex Effects is my way of finding those inequities and revealing them to you through data-driven journalism. My first post under the new name will come out tomorrow morning - stay tuned!
- Austin M. Anaya
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