Economics and the mid-life crisis have much in common: Both dwell on foregone opportunities

C'est la vie; c'est la guerre; c'est la pomme de terre . . . . . . . . . . . . . email: jpalmer at uwo dot ca

. . . . . . . . . . .Richard Posner should be awarded the next Nobel Prize in Economics . . . . . . . . . . . .

Wednesday, November 09, 2005

The Situation in France

One of the best analyses I have read about the situation in France (rioting young Muslims, generally from Africa) is offered by The Emirates Economist, who contrasts the situation there with the conditions under which guest workers live in the United Arab Emirates.

4. In France discrimination is claimed as a reason for rioting. Discrimination is least costly to the discriminator when there is unemployment and an employer has the choice amongst many qualified job applicants. Why is there such high unemployment in France? Because of excessive government regulation of the labor market.
He has five points in all. It is worth reading his entire posting. In his brief outline, I learned more than I did from either of today's editorials in the NYTimes (reg. req'd; see here and here).

Update 1: also see this by Kip Esquire.
Update 2: Rondi Adamson sees the situation only slightly differently. Check out her blog and the links there.
I don't think any of the disagreements she might have with me or with John Chilton about whether it is appropriate to contrast 3rd and 4th generation immigrants with guest workers go against his hypothesis that labour regulations have contributed to the situation. Indeed, she sees the longer term solution to be twofold:
... freeing the market, and assimilating different cultures, in as much as they can be assimilated.
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