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End-of-the-Year Altruists

I’ve been picking on the Freaknomics blog a lot recently, while occasionally adding the qualifier that in general it’s great. What you see here is the result of selection bias: when the Freakonomics blog has material of its usual high quality, I don’t have much to add, and when there’s material of more questionable value, I notice and sometimes comment on it.

In this end-of-the-year spirit, though, I’d like to point to this entry by Stephen Dubner on altruism, which to my mind captures many of the Freakonomics strengths: it’s an engaging, topical, and thought-provoking article on an important topic, and it discusses some current research in economics.

And this is as good a way as any for me to end another year of blogging.


  1. anonimo says:

    Something tells me that you do not like freakonomics that much…you don't dislike it 100%, but you find it a little bit trivial… Happy 2010, and thanks for your blogging!

  2. Andrew Gelman says:

    No, I think Freakonomics is great; I'm just disappointed on the occasions when it does not live up to its potential.

  3. Chris Long says:

    You're being far too generous by calling it great – they've clearly been dumbing down the analysis and cranking up the sensationalism to try to recapture the popularity of the original book.

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