Saturday, March 27, 2010

Quick Cayman Island Economics

Just got back from a brief spring break trip to the Cayman Islands. Ever since R- and I learned Scuba Diving during our honey moon, we've been taking a lot of tropical trips. Cayman is supposed to be one of the best and delivered as one of the best we've been to (compared to Bali, Hawaii, the Great Barrier Reef, the Florida Keys, Puerto Rico).

On Paradise Drive: How We Live Now (And Always Have) in the Future Tense1) The island felt very American (half the people on the island are tourists and the tourists are mostly American). Moreover, it felt very Red State American. As in every person we talked to was from what felt very Red (e.g. South Dakota, Minnesota, Ohio, Michigan--ok those last two are swing states but the people we met were clearly from the red parts). Which is cool because a Bobo from among the "coastal elites" you don't come across these people very often, (people that David Brooks calls, on Paradise Drive). Also, notable since I don't we saw a single Asian person on the half of the island our hotel was on during the whole trip. Not that there's anything wrong with that, just odd and notable and weirdly surreal.

2) So the South Dakotan couple did have two daughters finishing college on the coasts (Computer Science majors at Stanford and UC Davis). That also struck me as anachronistic. Majoring in CS seems so 2000. Reminded me why Economists tend to instinctively distrust government planners. Back in 2000, we talked about a massive shortage in computer scientists, which promptly went away with a deflating bubble, Indian and Chinese and Russian outsourcing, and shifts in technology, leaving many of my friends and family who majored in computer science unemployed for long periods of time. And all the government effort to get people to shift to computer science proved to be a bad idea.

The current health-care bill has the same flavor of government planning, as it tried to address a "shortage" of primary care doctors by creating more of them. That sounds like trouble.

Otherwise, the trip was great. Photos coming soon.
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