Tylerisms Glossary

Straussian: Implicit, subtle

Mood affiliation: Bias

Very Good Sentences: Sentences better than average in writing quality and conversational stimulation. Frequently overwrought in tone.

Cowen’s three laws:

“Many of you have been asking for a canonical statement of what I sometimes refer to as Cowen’s Laws. Here goes:

1. Cowen’s First Law: There is something wrong with everything (by which I mean there are few decisive or knockdown articles or arguments, and furthermore until you have found the major flaws in an argument, you do not understand it).

2. Cowen’s Second Law: There is a literature on everything.

3. Cowen’s Third Law: All propositions about real interest rates are wrong.

I coined those some time ago, when teaching macroeconomics, yet I remain amazed how often I see blog posts which violate all three laws within the span of a few paragraphs.

There is of course a common thread to all three laws, namely you should not have too much confidence in your own judgment.”

The November 19, 2009 MR vocabulary guide:

“1. “Self-recommending“: the very nature of the authors and project suggest it will be good or very good. This also often (but not always) means I haven’t read it yet. I am reluctant to recommend *anything* I haven’t read, but I am signaling it is very likely recommendation-worthy and I wish to let you know about it sooner rather than later.

2. An “Assorted link” that ends with a question mark: Worth thinking about, but I wish to distance myself from the conclusion and the methods of the study, without being contrary per se.

3. Hansonian: of, or relating to Robin Hanson. Yesterday I asked Garett Jones whether his date was as pretty as Robin is smart.

4. The Jacksonian mode of discourse. I am opposed to this. Political and economic pamphlets in the Jacksonian era were excessively polemical and sometimes the Jacksonian mode is still used today, in 2009, believe it or not.

5. Wunderkind: Take the average age of that person’s relevant peers. If said person is either under twenty or less than half that average, that person may qualify for “Wunderkind” status.

6. Markets in everything: Some of these are celebratory but many of these are sad or tragic. Usually I am trying to get you to think about — as a philosophical question — why the market exists at all and not whether it should be legal.

7. Tyrone is my brother and alter-ego who believes the opposite of what Tyler believes. Trudie offers personal advice. Neither has good time management skills and thus they don’t write very much these days.

8. “Shout it from the rooftops“: What to do with wordy, obscure truths which the world badly needs to learn.”

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