Incidences and Cumulative Mass Shooting Casualties Associated with Use of Semi-Automatic Rifles: The Last Ten Years

Reader Bruce Hall, commenting on the focus on mass shootings and semi-automatic weapon use, remarks:

The focus on the AR-15 is illogical.

I agree, to the extent that we should implement stricter controls on all types of semi-automatic weapons, high caliber magazines, as well as other types of guns. Nonetheless, it is becoming harder to dismiss as anomalous and rare the use of semi-automatic weapons in mass shootings, and consequent fatalities.

Count data suggest an increasing frequency of mass shooting attacks using semi-automatic rifles (including those using modifications to emulate automatic fire). Statistics below omit events relying solely on semi-automatic handguns (and other handguns, rifles, shotguns) over the past ten years.


Figure 1: Count of incidents where semi-automatic rifles used (blue), fatalities where other weapons (handguns, semi-automatic handguns, rifles, shotguns) used (red), from April 2008 through May 21, 2018. Orange denotes 2017M01-2018M05. Source: Mother Jones, accessed 5/21/2018, and author’s calculations.

The proportion of fatalities associated with attacks using semi-automatic rifles over the past ten years has risen to 44.7% of total mass shooting fatalities. The corresponding figure for injuries has risen to 80.% These trends are illustrated in Figure 2.


Figure 2: Cumulative mass shooting fatalities from incidents where semi-automatic rifles used (blue), non-fatal injured (light blue), fatalities where other weapons (handguns, semi-automatic handguns, rifles, shotguns) used (red), non-fatal injured (pink), from April 2008 through May 21, 2018. Orange denotes 2017M01-2018M05. Source: Mother Jones, accessed 5/21/2018, and author’s calculations.

93 thoughts on “Incidences and Cumulative Mass Shooting Casualties Associated with Use of Semi-Automatic Rifles: The Last Ten Years

    1. rtd

      @Bruce Hall
      You made very good and clear arguments in the prior post. That’s all you can do. As you stated in the prior comments, Menzie will (likely unknowingly) obfuscate and then he will create an entire post as his “gotcha!” moment while not realizing people don’t understand the full context because a) they often don’t back read completely if at all b) get confused from his constant lowering/raising the nets in prior comments. He isn’t one to have fruitful “discussions” with (his cancer example was awful and I’d suspect that if his comment “if some people are involuntarily restrained because they are violent against others, that might be a price to be paid” were made by someone else, he’d pen an econblog protest). You did your part and did it well.

      1. Moses Herzog

        @ rtd
        It would no doubt take Menzie all day to swat away mosquitos like Bruce and you. So I’m going to put the link up that mentions cancer. And NO, it is not “awful” and people may judge for themselves. Unlike “rtd” and Bruce Hall, Professor Chinn doesn’t endeavor to embarrass himself every time he touches a keyboard.
        http://econbrowser.com/archives/2018/05/semi-automatic-rifle-use-and-mass-shooting-casualties-1982m08-2018m04#comment-209262

        Menzie is also not the kind of man (that word would be applied liberally in bruce’s and “rtd’s” case) who would regret having his own words played back to him as little as one week later.

      2. rtd

        Although I don’t acknowledge certain commenters on here on econbrowser, I do feel compelled to provide clarification as it seems my comment may be misinterpreted. I did not mean “awful” as in poor taste and/or classless. Rather, I meant to imply that the cancer analogy was extremely weak and ineffective in debate. However, Menzie’s other comment that I referenced could very well be interpreted as such. But, people may judge for themselves.

  1. Steven Kopits

    Cases of migrant victimization in the last seven days: 8,795.

    Versus 0 semi-automatic rifle incidents in 2018.

    Man, what planet are you living on?

    1. Menzie Chinn Post author

      Steven Kopits: Actually 4 semi-automatic rifle associated incidents in 2018, accounting for 28 of 38 fatalities, 19 of 32 injuries. Corresponding statistics for the last 12 months: 127 out of 144 fatalities, 595 of 613 injuries.

      Man, what planet are you living on? (And can’t you read a bar chart?)

      1. Moses Herzog

        @ Menzie
        That is the best laugh I have had in the last 2 weeks—maybe longer.

        Menzie, let’s try a social experiment. Next blog post, let’s see if “Princeton” Kopits can read a pie chart. If “Princeton” Kopits fails reading a pie chart, then we go to the “Marshmallow Test”. I think Princeton “Kopits” could have his self-esteem completely shattered on the “Marshmallow Test”, so let’s just make this an N=20 sample. We’ll include a “randomly chosen” sample of 19 Alabama Republicans who voted for a pedo judge running for US Senate. This is the best way to avoid shattering the test subject’s feelings.

      2. PeakTrader

        Menzie Chinn, I agree with Bruce, it’s illogical to focus on semi-automatic rifles. They’re not the cause. They’re just the means of gaining notoriety. The sick people causing mass killings will find another way to accomplish their task, if semi-automatic rifles aren’t available. Like using bombs or cars. It’s premeditated and it’s copycat.

        What’s also sick is girls sending love notes and money to the mass murderers in jail, who are almost all male and misfits. The high school student mass murderer likely felt he was treated horribly by other students – kids can be mean. Anyway, we shouldn’t punish and diminish the rights of all law abiding and responsible gun owners, because of a few sick mass murderers. That’s illogical too.

        1. Allan Fabrick

          Maybe you can explain why no other post industrialized county has the plague of mass killing of school children. Are the citizens of these countries morally superior? or is the problem the availability of assault weapons to anyone who wants one.

          1. CoRev

            Allan Fabrick, a semi-automatic rifle is not an assault rifle. Learn something before emoting.

          2. 2slugbaits

            CoRev

            a semi-automatic rifle is not an assault rifle.

            That’s a strange argument for you to be making because in the past you’ve tried to emphasize how there’s nothing functionally special about an assault rifle besides the aggressive look. Now you seem to be saying that there is indeed something uniquely different about assault rifles that sets them apart from just an ordinary semi-automatic weapon.

          3. PeakTrader

            You need to sift through the busy left wing propaganda.

            “Contrary to common perceptions, today both property and violent crimes (with the exception of homicides) are more widespread in Europe than in the United States, while the opposite was true thirty years ago.”

            https://academic.oup.com/economicpolicy/article-abstract/26/67/347/2918389?redirectedFrom=PDF

            Also, it should be noted, a large percentage of crimes go unreported in Europe. Moreover, unsolved rates are higher:

            http://www.icenews.is/2008/11/15/swedens-unsolved-violent-crime-rate-at-95-percent/

          4. PeakTrader

            I don’t know if the study controls for blacks on homicides. In the U.S., 12% of the population is black and commit half the homicides. In Germany, for example, 1% of the population is black.

          5. pgl

            “I don’t know if the study controls for blacks on homicides. In the U.S., 12% of the population is black and commit half the homicides. In Germany, for example, 1% of the population is black.”

            PeakPathetic plays this race card on every issue eventually. Get a clue – he’s a troll on Trump’s payroll.

          6. 2slugbaits

            PeakTrader there are school shootings in other countries too.

            Did you bother to run some basic statistics against your own link? Doesn’t sound like it. The US accounted for about a third of all school attacks. Your math skills are pathetic.

          7. 2slugbaits

            PeakTrader At least try to be consistent. Your earlier link referred to school shootings. Having been shown that your own link showed that your claim about school shootings was flat out wrong (go read your own words), now you decide to shift the discussion to per capita death rates. So I guess it’s just another case of shifting the argument if you can’t win it.

            Notice per capita death rates and per capita frequency of mass shootings that are higher than US rates. Notice anything about them? Hint: they’re mostly countries with very weak gun laws. Some of those countries even require males within a certain age group to own a firearm. Are you surprised that Macedonia and Serbia have high rates of mass shootings? Quite a few of the countries are former Warsaw Pact countries with a lot of ethnic tensions. So how about looking at the “Old Europe” countries that actually have tough gun laws and don’t require the ownership of firearms. They are almost an order of magnitude lower than US rates.

            You should also keep in mind the difference between mass shootings by deranged people and mass shootings done by calculating terrorists. Tough gun laws may not do much to inhibit political terrorists, but they can do a lot to reduce mass shootings by people with psychological problems.

          8. [anonymous]

            ” Are the citizens of these countries morally superior ? ”

            Yes, in comparison the United States is a violent country with citizens having a violent mindset.
            Guns are not the root cause. Guns are only the symptom of the mindset.

            We have lost track since the 50s with an increase in obesity and stupidity and obscenity and violence.
            And the root cause of all is the disappearance of the middle class, and the disappearance of stability and honesty and accountability.
            All our politicians are bought by big business, in truth our democracy is an oligarchy.

            And it will end with a revolution.

          9. PeakTrader

            2slugbaits, obviously, countries with far fewer guns Per Capita and much stricter gun control laws, including Norway, France, Finland, and Belgium, have higher mass shooting death rates Per Capita than the U.S.. However, you’re correct, mass school shootings is an American phenomenon. However, your assertions are unproven. The fact is gun control laws haven’t stopped people, who are determined to commit mass murder.

        2. 2slugbaits

          PeakTrader They’re not the cause. They’re just the means of gaining notoriety.

          The problem is that semi-automatic weapons make the job of gaining notoriety a helluva lot easier. Semi-automatic weapons are enablers. You can kill one or two people with a single-shot manually loaded weapon, but it’s very difficult to commit mass murder.

          we shouldn’t punish and diminish the rights of all law abiding and responsible gun owners, because of a few sick mass murderers.

          Maybe it escaped your notice, but most of the mass murders have been committed by people who were perfectly law abiding citizens up until they committed mass murder. How many times do we have to hear how “he always seemed like a nice kid…kind of quiet and kept to himself, but wouldn’t hurt a fly”? Responsible gun owners quickly become irresponsible mass murderers. Likewise, honest bank executives quickly become dishonest bank executives. That’s why we regulate what bankers can and cannot do. We should regulate what gun owners can and cannot do.

          1. PeakTrader

            2slugbaits, recent school shooters have also used smoke bombs, pipe bombs, propane bombs, and diversion explosives. They’re well planned. Using cars isn’t the trend, but can be.

            Mass murder isn’t law abiding. What percentage of the population causes mass murder? – it’s very, very tiny. There are warning signs – like “born to kill” T-shirt posted on internet weeks before the shooting and worn. There are likely many warning signs and where is the parenting?

            Bank executives are in business to make money. Government can pass all kinds of excessive regulations to make it difficult, inefficient, or costly, and make it easier to fine. Yet, over 99% of bank executives follow and closely oversee, at all times, all the burdensome regulations.

          2. 2slugbaits

            PeakTrader Mass murder isn’t law abiding.

            You missed the point. They are law abiding until they aren’t.

            There are warning signs – like “born to kill” T-shirt

            Or when a nutjob tells the world that he could shoot people in the middle of 5th Avenue and get away with it? You mean things like that?

            Given your powers of observation and analysis, I don’t think you should be trying to predict who is likely to commit a mass murder. You’re not living in a futuristic Tom Cruise movie.

            BTW, please show me where the Second Amendment says it’s okay for Congress to abridge the rights of felons, lunatics and mass murderers from owning guns. If you’re really a “strict constructionist” who insists on taking the plain meaning of the words of the Constitution, then how do you justify taking guns away from the very folks you say shouldn’t have them? I’m not arguing that they should have them, but then again, I’m also not arguing for a “strict constructionist” interpretation of the Second Amendment. I suspect that the real answer is that you support rights for you and people like you, but not for people who aren’t like you.

          3. PeakTrader

            2slugbaits, believe it or not, most Americans go through life without committing mass murder.

            Don’t know who you mean by “people who aren’t like you.” Maybe, it’s about wacko leftists creating false narratives.

        3. pgl

          When a drunk driver kills someone – one can say the car is not the cause either. It is just the means. Of course no sane person would let a drunk drive a car. But your NRA buddies have no issue with letting deranged people own military assault weapons.

    2. PeakTrader

      Steven Kopits, are those migrant victims in the U.S. or Mexico? If in Mexico, it’s not our responsibility.

      Are they trying to get in the U.S. illegally? If so, there are consequences to illegal acts.

      Why tell us? Tell Mexico.

      What about American victims of illegal immigrants?

      1. Steven Kopits

        Peak –

        Victimization can be put into four categories:

        – Migrants en route in Guatemala, Mexico or the US border zone. The 642,000 number covers just migrants en route in the US and Mexico, but excludes Guatemala

        – Predation of illegal aliens in the US. For example, we have at least 20,000 people in forced labor or prostitution. Take 10,000 women x 365 days, well, it’s really bad number. We also calculate the income impact at $3 / work hour for undocumented aliens in the US.

        – General crime rates in Mexico. In the US, Prohibition was responsible for 40% of the crime rate. In Mexico, it is likely higher because 1) there are black markets in both migrants and drugs, 2) it is a weak governance environment overall and 3) Central American migrants in Mexico are illegal 24/7, whereas participants in Prohibition were only illegal when they were actively involved in illegal activities. Thus, I think it likely that 60% of the violent crime rate — the equivalent of 15,000 deaths per year — is the direct result of US immigration and drug policy and Mexican government responses to that.

        – Finally comes the impact on US citizens. To be honest, I have not looked at this in detail. There is certainly an impact, but I have not pieced out the portion directly attributable to the black market in drugs and migrant labor. I should do that at some point, but it involves some nit-picky and detailed analytics, some of it on a state and sub-state level. In general, the greater impact of black markets is on the supply, ie, Mexican / migrant, side.

      2. Steven Kopits

        “Steven Kopits, are those migrant victims in the U.S. or Mexico? If in Mexico, it’s not our responsibility.”

        Let me categorically disagree with this statement. If our policies are causing harm in another country, then we are directly responsible. That’s the whole point I am making.

        Prohibitions create black markets. Black markets will be manned by low income people, generally from distinct ethnic groups, because that’s where the organizational requirements of a black market — a business — take you. We take these black market gangs to be indicative of the morals of the ethnic groups involved (eg, all Italians are mafiosi), rather than the predictable result of a prohibition. That’s how prohibitions become the key agents of institutional racism — while being condoned by people who do not think of themselves as racists.

        In the case of migrants, the Wall itself is the object of the prohibition. With the violence occurring primarily on the supply side (market share maintenance, or ‘turf wars’ as we may call it), US migrant policy literally outsources the violence to Mexico. That’s why prohibitions and black markets are so stable. We outsource the cost of US immigration policy to Mexico, and US drug policy to the black community. And then we say, “Oh, well they are low lifes, that’s how we should think of them.” We attribute the organic result of a prohibition to ethnic or national character–when the key driver is US policy! But no one thinks that way. That’s why Menzie is struggling with the whole issue. Because prohibitions create ‘them’ and the costs are principally foisted on ‘them’, the pressure to change policy — policy that is dreadful from any of a fiscally conservative, socially conservative, or egalitarian perspective — is remarkably muted. The policy ship has capsized, but it is stable in that position. I’ve known about that migrant labor is a black market for 25 years. And I’ve known for probably 30 years that a black market is solved by legalization and taxation. This is not a deep point.

        But policy never righted itself. So why not? Menzie — and most other economists — assumes it’s for lack of interest. No, it’s because the costs and benefits are asymmetrically allocated.

        In black markets where the costs are born principally by the dominant society — whites in the US — we can see action. Why did Prohibition end? Because the cost was being born by the white community. Why is DeBlasio talking about safe places to shoot up heroin? Because heroin victims are largely white. It is happening to ‘us’ and not ‘them’. If it’s happening to ‘them’, then we don’t feel the pressure to change. That’s why Menzie writes about mass shootings, because it’s happening to ‘us’. He never writes about black inner city violence — most of it related to the drug trade! — because it’s happening to ‘them’, people who are fundamentally different from ‘us’.

        Note where legalizations come from. In 10 of the 11 states which legalized pot, legalization came from the ballot, not the legislature. The average guy — my reader — gets it. Simple math: Wage in Mexico is $2.50 / hour. Another $2.50 for higher cost of living in the US. Another $2.50 to make it worth the while of Mexicans to come work here. But the last $2.50 / hour of the $10 / hour which a Mexican might earn here belongs to the US government and the taxpayers of the United States. That’s not deep. The housewife in Topeka gets that.

        For the elites, though, this is a scary thought. You have to put some prestige and credibility behind this simple notion. So they resist it. But that in turn implies condoning the vast predation associated with illegal immigration. There will be pressure to change.

        1. PeakTrader

          Steven Kopits, alcohol use was widespread before Prohibition. Legalizing illegal drugs will also make it common – it’ll spread like wildfire – then society will have to deal with the hell.

          There are consequences to more low skilled foreign labor – like lower wages and more low income government assistance. There are more Hispanics in California than whites. Many whites and blacks, including teens, simply dropped out of the workforce, because wages are too low. Maybe, you want to turn the U.S. into Northern Mexico, a Central American country, or some other Third World country.

          1. PeakTrader

            I guess, California can absorb lots of poor people. There are lots of very rich – upper class – areas in California, in San Diego, LA, SF, and along the coast. None even exist in Colorado at that level – Boulder, the area in and around the Denver Tech Center, Cherry Hills, etc. look like middle class neighborhoods in comparison. Most of the rest of the U.S. would likely find it much harder to support more poor immigrants. I heard, Nevada had to spend a lot more money just to teach English, because test scores were so low.

          2. pgl

            “alcohol use was widespread before Prohibition. Legalizing illegal drugs will also make it common”.

            WTF? I guess you do not know we ended Prohibition. People drank a lot during Prohibition too. Its only effect was to reward organized crime. Same with making drugs illegal.

            Milton Friedman explained this clearly many times. Only the dumbest person in the world would have written what you wrote here. Oh wait – you are the dumbest person in the world. Never mind.

          3. Steven Kopits

            Best I can tell, Prohibition reduced alcohol consumption by 16%. See this page. https://www.princetonpolicy.com/illegalimmigration/

            Greater availability of drugs can lead to greater use. I personally expect marijuana use to increase by 2-3x (in terms of number of people who use, not volumes consumed) over the next several decades, and I expect it to take market share form alcohol primarily.

            A greater availability of hard drugs has been linked to higher usage rates at various times historically. This is not debated. The issue is whether the costs of legalization are higher or lower than the costs of prohibitions. I think my work lends support to the notion that the costs of prohibitions are far, far higher than commonly appreciated. I am not opposed to the Japanese model of demand suppression–say, anyone given naloxone is automatically packed off to cold turkey rehab. I don’t know that you would find sufficient political support in the electorate.

            The track record of marijuana legalization to date is largely a wash. Some things are worse, but no great disaster.

          4. Steven Kopits

            “There are consequences to more low skilled foreign labor…”

            A market-based system is likely to reduce the year round population of current illegals. In the Northeast, many undocumented workers are employed as seasonal labor — landscapers, construction — and they are essentially starved of work in the winter. These folks would leave if they knew they could come back on demand. Further, if they could leave, they would not bring their families up. So a market-based system would in fact lower the full time migrant population. You are correct in saying, however, that it could increase seasonal peaks.

            “… – like lower wages…”

            Most empirical work suggests immigrants do not lower wages materially, and only transiently. I can concede that a steadily supply of new immigrant labor will tend to depress wages in some cases. However, capital will expand to accommodate new labor, and wages will return to marginal productivity. Menzie could do a nice graph of this, but i think it’s in the NAS study also.

            Interestingly, if one believes the Pew Research demographic estimates, border enforcement was actually reducing undocumented wages in the 2010-2015 period by creating a barrier to exit.

            It’s important to note that more people working means greater GDP. Thus, a lack of labor today is holding back GDP, contributing to, for example, a housing shortage. That has a cost, too.

            “…and more low income government assistance.”

            Undocumented aliens are not eligible for most federal programs. This source of the income assistance comes from, for example, EITCs, which disappear to a market-based system. The greater assistance is associated with educating the US born children of illegal aliens. MBVs can also help with this. Otherwise, if an undocumented immigration is paying $5,000 per year for nothing more than the right to work and basic healthcare, that looks like a profit-center to me.

            I would note that market-based visas are not a panacea for 50 years of bad policy. What do you do with the 4 million undocumented aliens who have been here 15+ years? I think the end up on the books in the most expensive possible manner, but maybe I’m wrong.

            “Many whites and blacks, including teens, simply dropped out of the workforce, because wages are too low.”
            Wages are what they are. Then again, black unemployment is at historic lows, and labor force participation rates are creeping up. You may wish to commiserate with Menzie, for example, about the failed state of Wisconsin, suffering under the egregiously high unemployment rate of 2.8%

            “Maybe, you want to turn the U.S. into Northern Mexico, a Central American country, or some other Third World country.”
            No, I want to turn Mexico into Singapore. How did they do that? Let me think. Oh, yes, I remember now.

            My primary concern is to prevent the US from turning into some sort of fascist state. You do that by making sure you address conservative needs — safety, permission, identity, standards and self-sufficiency — all universal requirements, to prevent public opinion from turning to fascist solutions. You would love market-based visas, Peak. Life would be so much better.

          5. PeakTrader

            And, poor people from all over the world will want to move and live in the U.S., just to escape their poor countries, if they had the opportunity.

    1. 2slugbaits

      Steven Kopits You might be interested in a new book (20 Mar 2018) published by the Yale University Press: Anti-Pluralism: The Populist Threat to Liberal Democracy by William A. Galston.

      1. Steven Kopits

        Thanks. I think Galston is a bit too poli-sci and romantic for my taste. The Conservative Hierarchy is pure cookbook. It’s about mechanics.

        By the way, Galston confuses populism with fascism. These are not the same. The Orban government is fascist in spirit, not populist. So are Putin and Xi. Populist means ‘popular in the short run at the cost of long-term sustainability’. That’s the new Italian government, any Argentine government, and the thinking underpinning the tax cuts in the US. Populism can be both right and left wing. Orban and Putin are both looking for sustainable models which revolve around the core nationalist, cultural and religious values of the middle class, ie, fascist, not populist.

        I wrote ‘The Conservative Hierarchy’ for a couple of reasons. First, we clearly need some concepts and vocabulary in our discussions here at Econbrower, and I think the conservative hierarchy provides that.

        Second, as you know, I believe we have a ready solution to the illegal immigration problem, notably a market-based approach. The chief criticism of this approach has been that it is ‘too Ayn Rand’, ‘too Cato’ and ‘too libertarian’. I have made the case from the conservative side, thus, it is incumbent upon me to demonstrate that a market solution can address conservative goals. To do that, I decompose conservative requirements into their constituent parts — safety, permission, identity, self-sufficiency, etc. — and then will line up a market-based solution against these objectives.

        The current approach to illegal immigration on the right is fundamentally fascist, ie, close the border, kick out the Mexicans, because ‘illegal’ is tied to ‘Mexicans’. Notwithstanding, black markets historically create resistance via the adjective, not the noun. Thus, I believe most Americans are reacting to the ‘illegal’ component. If we can resolve that, then I believe we can liberate, in large part, Mexicans from negative stereotypes. Put another way, we are attempting to take a fascist problem, reduce it to a conservative problem, and upgrade the abilities of Mexicans to meet conservative requirements.

        In doing so, we end the civil strife associated with illegal immigration. We put our society back on the path to healing and a shared vision of the future. That’s a key element in sustaining democracy.

        1. ilsm

          It is the motives, underlying the goals, Process and path cannot go forward. Sort of like Kim saying “I have other options” that scares Trump away from Singapore.

    2. CoRev

      Steven, where would you like to discuss? Surely not here. BTW, using your examples, liberal groups which you did not include, are purely fascist.

      1. Steven Kopits

        We can start here.

        You’re correct that it is a conservative hierarchy, not an egalitarian one. Good and bad in the conservative sense are domestic versus foreign. For egalitarians, it’s upper class versus lower class. To put it another way, conservatives slice on the east-west axis, egalitarians on the north-south axis. I could do a comparable pyramid for an egalitarian hierarchy of needs which starts at simple social democracy at the bottom and rises to communist totalitarianism at the top. It’s largely analogous to the presentation I’ve made.

          1. CoRev

            I just read the previous comments, and I am not sure I can agree with this: “…we end the civil strife associated with illegal immigration. We put our society back on the path to healing and a shared vision of the future…” In recent history removing one issue, illegal immigration, just allows the parties to attack another issue with the same tribal ferocity.

            It’s tribalism and lack of respect for alternative views which cause much of the angry, heated rhetoric and strife. Much of that anger is being turned against the existing politicians, who are perceived to be ineffective and not full members of any tribe but their own.

          2. CoRev

            Steven, I have some time this morning before hitting the road.

            My first thoughts are this is incomplete without at least the counterpoint Liberal/Egalitarian group hierarchy.
            Preliminarily, let’s start with:
            (1) Physiological Needs: simple social democracy .
            (2) Safety Needs: belief that Government provides most or is the best source.
            (3) Belongingness / Love Needs: control of major influence groups (government agencies/functions, education, press, political party(s)).
            (4) Esteem Needs: achieve leadership or overall control of government at all levels.
            (5) Self-Actualization Needs: totalitarianism-dictators.

            Accordingly I find that the major difference in the groups is belief in individual alone to achieve versus no one achieves without government assistance. That flies in the face of the history of human development before group formation.

            In the liberal/egalitarian hierarchy – Early after a group forms the hierarchy is based upon individual capabilities, and then expands into some group sharing, and this is driven by the physiological needs expanding to safety. Representative of belonginess established groups then convert into organized tribes with a hierarchy within and among them. At this level leadership is usually simple chieftains or ruling councils. At the higher levels of group development we start to see the negatives of established groups where the (tribal) competitiveness results in attempts to dominate and or destroy. And, finally, we find the dominant tribe and its leader controlling. The difference then is only one leader or group can exist.

            For me that is the definition and end result of true fascist behavior. Accordingly I believe them to be more fascist than the conservative model you described.

            I would rearrange the hierarchical group model you provided to reflect the tribal versus individual difference between the two groups, but don’t have the time now some of the identity levels would be lower to support tribal identity and safety.

          3. Steven Kopits

            Right now, the WH and Congress have yet to demonstrate they can produce on anything. The tax cut is unpopular, and voters are ambivalent about a backdoor Obamacare unwind.

            Illegal immigration is without question the most divisive political issue on the table right now. If the WH and Congress can provide a material solution to this problem, it takes one item off the agenda. It will not make Chuck Schumer love Donald Trump, but it shows that at least one issue can be addressed.

            It is even more important for voters. The entire premise of the conservative hierarchy is that issues in the hierarchy can be solved using either conservative or fascist approaches. MBVs are a conservative approach in that they provide safety, permission, identity, improved standards compliance and a higher degree of self-sufficiency. They do not, however, deport anyone or close the border with force. Thus, we solve the issue by addressing universal conservative values rather than specific fascist values.

            Now, if the government cannot even deliver on conservative vales — safety to self-sufficiency — then voters will turn to fascist solutions, which today simply involves physically sealing the border and kicking out the undocumented. That also addresses conservative concerns in principle, because if there are no illegals in the country, then the questions of safety, permission, identity etc. are moot. No need — because there are no Mexicans in the country! So, if we can address some legitimate conservative needs, we can lessen the emotional impetus to turn to more aggressive and destructive solutions.

            Second, keep in mind that the biggest left-right divide today is over sanctuary cities. That’s where the rubber meets the road. Sanctuary cities disappear in a market-based system. There is no one to protect. Want to work in the US? Buy a visa. These are available in unlimited quantity 24/7 on demand at a known price. The Mayor of Oakland wants to protect someone? Easy, buy them a visa. So that whole issue disappears.

            Now, will this solve every problem? No, but it shows 1) that the US can implement conservative policies which will gain Democratic support as well; 2) it removes a key point of contention between the political parties; and 3) signals that the WH is able to cope with at least one issue. It will make people feel better, feel like there is still an America out there, and one with a future.

          4. Steven Kopits

            So, to step up a level.

            In liberal economics, the individual is the unit of analysis and the individual seeks to maximize his own utility. From the liberal perspective, we max, say, GDP by summing the output of utility-maximizing individuals to create aggregate GDP. So here we’re talking about Tom Brady and the other individual Patriots. If they all have great individual talent, then the team wins. That’s the approach in this method: people over process. In this world, Tom Brady seeks to maximize his own utility, for example, by obtaining the best contract.

            In conservative economics, the group is the unit of analysis, and group leadership seeks to maximize the utility of the group as a whole, with the outcome allocated back to the individuals (ie, politics). In this world, it is the coordination of the players which is the first priority. It is process over talent. Here, Tom Brady takes less than the maximum salary to help the team acquire more talent in the hopes of winning a Super Bowl, and Belichick ruthlessly cuts anyone who the team doesn’t want to pay or does not perform. It is the aggregate outcome, not the individual utilities which matter, and indeed, some members of the team may experience negative utility, something which does not ordinarily occur with utility maximizing individuals. The individual is not the principal actor in the conservative approach.

            Both of these perspectives are legitimate — and illegitimate — in their own ways, depending on the circumstances. They equate to principal and agent, to duty and desire, and they are often in conflict which cannot easily be resolved through analysis. In the Three Ideology Model, these are two of them.

            I prefer not to discuss egalitarianism for the moment, because this is two sub-ideologies, rather than one ideology. Also, for purposes of market-based visas, I do not need to convince egalitarians–they are already trapped. Consider: The Menzie Counter stands at 17,598, the number of migrant victimization events since Menzie told us he was busy grading papers on the 14th. (For purposes of comparison, the Kopits counter stands at 849,551.) And yet nothing from Menzie. Why not? Well, it comes down to knowledge, conscience and courage.

            Menzie doesn’t not need me to tell him about black markets. He knows the associated theory and solution at least as well as I do. Nor do I question Menzie’s conscience.

            But he lacks the intellectual, ideological and professional courage to engage with the topic. He could start a discussion on the topic, but he knows I have the theory, the historical track record and the body count on my side. If he does that, he will have effectively conceded the point.

            Over he could defend the current system, but then he is defending 100,000 rapes a year — and much worse. So he can’t do that.

            Or he could propose something else, but Menzie knows that no other solution will come even close, because black markets are so hard to beat.

            So right now, Menzie — and a large portion of the left — is effectively trapped. The safe strategy is to ignore the challenge, and maybe it goes away. Perhaps I perish in the effort. I might. If I climb the mountain, though, the Menzies of the world will at a minimum acquiesce, because they have no other viable position. Democrats will vote for market-based visas, because they really don’t have a choice. Can you imagine legislation that legalizes eight million undocumented Hispanics and the Democrats vote ‘no’?

            Thus, I don’t have to make an ideological case to the left (I could), because they have nowhere to hide. I do, however, have to make a case to the conservative right, for the approach lives and dies with their approval. That’s the purpose of the conservative hierarchy of needs.

          5. CoRev

            Steven in your: Steven Kopits May 24, 2018 at 11:36 am comment in paras 2 & 3 you defined your views of the liberal and conservative economics. In my estimation we have opposing views. Your liberal is my conservative and your conservative is my liberal. My opinion is based on the individual versus group/tribal structure of beliefs and actions.

            My biggest concern with your paper is there is no definition for your terms, conservative and fascist, and no reference at all to liberal/egalitarian groups. Without them there is no common ground from which to start. This is especially true since we can not agree on the hierarchy without these fundamental foundations.

            I’m not even sure that Illegal immigration is without question the most divisive political issue on the table right now. Obama administration weaponizing of the executive agencies certainly sits at least equal coupled with the Democratic attempts to delegitimize the administration. It has only reinforced the Trump efforts to drain the swamp.

            As for your immigration proposal, it can only work with a secure border. Otherwise it is just paid entry for unlimited immigration, the equivalent of an US open borders instead of the current limited immigration and illegal entry of US open borders. The vast majority of American voters want some kind of border control.

            I do agree that voters are approaching a breaking point. Not because of the immigration issue, but because of legislators ignoring their political wants to support the legislators’ personal betterment, corruption. Instead of voters turning to your fascist approach it is quite possible we could see a revolution.

            The country was created by one and another is not impossible. If conservative legislators want to use fascist efforts it will be in the form of wider implementation of the “Senate Nuclear Option”.

            I see rampant tribalism developing with a near complete loss of respect for each other.

          6. Steven Kopits

            You are correct about the conservative v liberal thing. I’ll fix it. I was trying to keep the piece as short as possible, but I think that needs to be clarified.

            Historically, ‘liberal’ means ‘pertaining to the perspective and rights of the individual’ If you use your name, then you’re acting as a liberal. Your personal preferences are paramount. So, if you went to a restaurant and you like lobster, you might order lobster.

            “Conservative”, as I have defined it, means ‘pertaining to the group and the rights and obligations of the group with respect to the individual’. If you’re using your title, say, CEO, you are being a conservative. That is, you are making decisions in the best interests of the group, not necessarily in the best interests of any given member of the group. Your decisions may not reflect your personal preferences, but rather the actions in the best interests of the organization as a whole. If you had a business dinner, and you prefer lobster, but important business partners at the dinner prefer steak, you may well eat steak, to use a hypothetical example. That may not be your personal preference, but the action you may judge as being in the best interest of the organization. Work is a conservative activity, as such. You are acting as agent, not as principal.

            I am using the terms as one might in an economics course, not as you would read in a newspaper.

          7. Steven Kopits

            As for the border: Legalization secures the border. For example, marijuana smuggling, historically 99.5%+ of total drugs smuggled into the US by weight outside official crossing points, has fallen by an astounding 84% since 2009.

            Why? Because marijuana has been increasingly legalized in the US in recent years.

            Thus, we are materially closing the border to marijuana smuggling. It will be completely closed when Texas legalizes pot, which it will when it realizes its citizens are providing $200 million annually to the governments of Colorado and California in sales, excise and other taxes.

            Similarly, if we legalize migrant labor with a ‘managed float’ — which implies enough visas to cover the market, on-demand entry, and a visa fee set at the market rate — then illegal migration across the border will effectively cease, and in a very short period of time.

            See more here: https://www.princetonpolicy.com/ppa-blog/2018/5/15/we-are-winning-the-war-on-mexican-drug-smuggling

        1. CoRev

          Steven, I found a definition of economic liberalism:
          “Economic liberalism definition
          Economic liberalism is the ideological belief in organizing the economy on individualist and voluntarist lines, meaning that the greatest possible number of economic decisions are made by individuals and not by collective institutions or organizations.”

          Economic conservatism not so readily available.

          It is this specialized definition you’re using along with your political solution to immigration that is confusing. My education and experience are in the government operational side. From that my interests have evolved to politics, and I naturally migrate to those meanings.

          I repeat my concern with your solution opens the immigration gates indefinitely in both time and numbers. We can’t afford either, let alone both. There needs to be some limits or limiting devices to control the entry numbers and growth by continued purchase of the visa/work permit/permission what ever we end up calling. I doubt we need much if any law changes, if we just enforced or created the enforcement tools for what we already have.

          Otherwise I actually do not have any concerns over your core concept. Buy your way in, work, make money, pay taxes, but go home, and that actually is the core of the past Immigration Reform efforts. What we’re seeing in the latest version is a reaction to the Obama cram it down Congressional throats, “Obama: I will use my pen and phone to take on Congress”

          1. Steven Kopits

            You are correct on how I define economic liberalism. If you take the individual as the unit of analysis, then you pretty much arrive at neo-classical liberalism by implication. If the individual is the unit of interest, then economics will optimize the utility of the individual by implication.

            The term ‘liberal’ used to mean classical liberal, or fiscal conservative in today’s terms. In a three ideology model, the classical liberals are always in the middle. The egalitarians are on the left, the conservatives are on the right. Prior to WWI in the UK, the liberals were traditionally the party of the left, cohabiting with some egalitarians. After the Bolsheviks came to power in 1917, the liberals split from the left and joined the Tories. David Lloyd George (1916-1922) was the last Liberal Prime Minister of Great Britain. The label ‘liberal’, however, remained on the left and assumed the connotation of egalitarianism.

            The same process occurred in the US in 1929 with the election of Roosevelt. Again, the liberals migrated to the right and became conservatives, in this case, fiscal conservatives, a kind of bastard description. Those who remained faithful to classical liberalism, like the Cato Institute, adopted the rather awkward term ‘libertarian’, although the term ‘liberal’ in economics retained its original meaning. Thus, when we speak of ‘liberal economic policies’, we are speaking of free market economics, not socialist economics.

            In 1989, with the collapse of the Soviet Union and communism as a valid school of thought, the classical liberals returned to the left. Bill Clinton, I think, is best described as a classical liberal, and indeed, he reduced government spending and balanced the budget. He was really the best fiscal conservative the US had seen since perhaps Eisenhower, or maybe Coolidge. Same for Tony Blair. With the loss of the fiscal conservatives, the Republican Party once again became a socially conservative party, and remains that to this day. Ditto for the Tory Party.

            The China Depression (let us call the Great Recession that, for it was a depression, not a recession) had the predictable effect of eviscerating the center, just as the Great Depression did in the 1930s. Thus, political power has recently flowed conservative-to-fascist in the Republican Party and progressive-to-socialist on the left, with the center in the wilderness.

            The moderate suburban voter — largely fiscally conservative in nature — has been left up for grabs. The Democrats have successfully capitalized on the situation so far. The Democratic Party is positioning itself as more moderate and allowing the Republicans to position themselves as an extremist party, which the GOP have been doing quite well.

            The question is what follows after this. Keep in mind, the Great Depression and WWII were followed by the greatest flowering of democracy the world has ever seen. Thus, a projection of continued social strife may be misplaced. On the other hand, we do not know if democracy will survive the demographic changes to come. Further, we can see an oil shock on the horizon, and this again will weigh on the advanced economies indefinitely. The ship may right itself, or it may not.

            In any event, your confusion is understandable, and is the result of historical anomalies.

          2. Steven Kopits

            Conservative economics is a new concept and stems from me.

            If liberal economics is driven by the assumption of the primacy of the individual, conservative economics is built on the assumption of the primacy of the group. This is a very handy tool, much as liberal economics is handy in understanding the world from the individual’s perspective.

          3. Steven Kopits

            “I repeat my concern with your solution opens the immigration gates indefinitely in both time and numbers. We can’t afford either, let alone both. There needs to be some limits or limiting devices to control the entry numbers and growth by continued purchase of the visa/work permit/permission what ever we end up calling. I doubt we need much if any law changes, if we just enforced or created the enforcement tools for what we already have.”

            We are simply substituting a price-constrained system for a volume-constrained system. Year round migrant resident numbers should decline, and would decline more than by any other approach.

            In principle, visas would be an unlimited market like, say, gasoline. You could buy millions of gallons of gasoline today, causing a shortage. Of course, you won’t because the price insures that. The price mediates supply and demand, and we face neither chronic surpluses or shortages at the retail level.

            A market-based visa system is analogous, with the difference that the volume is set to the minimum level which prevents the re-emergence of the black market (actually, the volume will be somewhat higher than that). If the price is set by the market for such a volume, then visas can be available in unlimited quantities 24/7, just as gasoline is. As long as the value of a US work visa is greater than zero — and I think we can assume it is — then all visas will be sold and virtually all migrants working in the US will have a visa. In this world, there is little point in coming across the border illegally, because 1) you can buy a visa and come over anytime, 2) employers will require proper documentation if it is readily available, and 3) legal migrants — that is, just about all of them — will require their co-workers to have visas. See more on compliance and enforcement here: https://www.princetonpolicy.com/ppa-blog/2018/3/8/enforcement-in-a-market-based-visa-system

            We know that the visa price will be set by approximately the 86th percentile of Mexicans (for Mexican visas) who want to work in the US. Thus, the visa cost should be pretty high. I have calculated the value at around $2.50 / working hour, or about $5,000 / year. Thus, working in the US will be no different than you choosing to, say, spend the weekend in Miami. You will look at the cost of airfare, lodging, transport, food and whatever program you wish to undertake. If it makes economic sense, you go. If not, you don’t.

            It will be the same for migrants. It will be easy and convenient to work in the US, but not cheap.

          4. CoRev

            Steven, got it. I can see some minor issues associated with chain migration and bad actors like MS13 or other criminal factions. Otherwise I agree that the system should work as you anticipate. Now to allow the existing illegal migrants to get their own visas over the weekend or week’s visit home, and we have legalized all that want to be.

          5. Steven Kopits

            Good! I’m glad it makes sense.

            You are correct that the visa program does not integrate true criminals. The point is to separate and isolate them from ordinary migrants who just want to work in the US. So we take the 97% of migrants who are essentially harmless hotel maids, berry pickers and other legitimate occupations, and put them through a commercial system. Everything here is handled as a simple matter of money.

            The remaining 3% or so criminal element draws the full attention of the authorities. So, take the 55,000 acre ranch of Jim Chilton, a rancher on the border. He has dozens of illegals cross his property every day. He leaves water out for them, because he doesn’t want anyone to die. Now, if that, say 20 / day were reduced to 3 / week with a high degree of confidence that they are hardened criminals, then Jim’s attitude would be different. Those aren’t berry pickers. Those are guys you presume would kill you. Enforcement will be heightened accordingly.

            Anyone who wants to know about how illegal immigration looks from the front lines should watch Jim’s video: https://vimeo.com/223835255

            Market-based visas are exactly geared to meet Jim’s needs.

          6. PeakTrader

            CoRev, I’ve explained to Steven Kopits before why his system won’t work.

            If the marginal market price of visas is too high with an open border, it will be easy for poor immigrants to flood into the U.S.. Not all are driven by American jobs, although many will work under-the-table. Moreover, many relatives and children will live in the U.S., who want a much better life than the countries they escaped from. Furthermore, an open border will make it much easier for criminals and drugs to enter the country. And, the assumption is employers will follow the law, which many don’t now. Many employers want cheap labor, which they need to survive, and depress wages for domestic workers and undermine the migrants, who paid a lot of money for visas.

            Controlling immigration requires strong border enforcement and severe consequences for entering the U.S. illegally. A quota can be established, although there are way too many low-skilled laborers now.

          7. PeakTrader

            When I lived near the Embarcadero in Oakland, there were three big and old houses converted into rooms. A family – husband, wife, and three kids – who seemed to be illegal immigrants lived in a large corner room on the first floor. The husband worked all day. The wife was basically running a day care center, since Hispanic women (perhaps, legal immigrants) would drop off their kids with the wife in the morning and pick them up much later. The kids would either be in the room or outside playing on the grass all day. I guess, when there’s a large Hispanic community, there are plenty of under-the-table jobs. One of the wife’s kids was old enough to go to school, which she did, and healthcare was available to them, along with education. Perhaps, it was a much better and safer life than staying in their country, particularly with so much support from a very large Hispanic community.

          8. CoRev

            Peak, I understand your concern over enforcement, but Steven’s approach relies upon informal and formal enforcement. My own thought were that a very active counterfeiting industry would evolve around the visas stymieing enforcement. I agree with the chain migration issue.

            With an easy/easier to identify immigrant system, then their access to extended benefits can be enforced. However, there will be no change in access to medical, education, and other normal/basic assistance especially for families. At least they are paying taxes for them. If we have similar pay-to-come for family members with prices also based upon closeness to the original visa holder, then some of the chain migration can be incentivized by visa price. Proving and investigating this family closeness can be problematical.

            Another concern is the penchant for liberals to pay those extended benefits which results in a disincentive their return home extending those extended benefits.

            Remember, the costs for those work visas would go up with reduced supply of the available jobs. Visa costs and available jobs are the major incentives to immigrate. Ideally, a pay-to-work/live visa program would create a portable work force moving between home and the US according to jobs availability. Extended stays back home with their families becomes an incentive to move back and forth between work and family.

          9. Steven Kopits

            Let’s take them in turn:

            “If the marginal market price of visas is too high with an open border, it will be easy for poor immigrants to flood into the U.S..”

            Again, some basic economics. If the volume is set at the market clearing level and the price is set by the market, then everyone will have a visa, as long as the value of a visa is a positive number. QED.

            “Not all are driven by American jobs, although many will work under-the-table. Moreover, many relatives and children will live in the U.S., who want a much better life than the countries they escaped from.”

            During the Bracero era, per-1965, Mexicans could freely come and work in the US, and they did not settle here. They settled after the 1965 laws restricted their free movement, and in vast numbers after Reagan’s Immigration Reform and Control Act of 1986, which enhanced border control. The conditions on a market-based visa can prevent the large scale migration of children. If a visa is easy to get, then it is painful to lose — very similar to a driver’s license. See my analysis here: https://www.princetonpolicy.com/ppa-blog/2018/3/8/enforcement-in-a-market-based-visa-system

            “Furthermore, an open border will make it much easier for criminals and drugs to enter the country.”

            Quite the opposite. On an average day, we have 2900 migrants looking to jump the border, of which about 100 may be true bad guys. Border Patrol has to chase all 2900. In a market-based system, they only have to chase 100, that is, they can increase enforcement on criminals by 30x. For getting the bad guys, market-based visas are not a better system, they are almost two orders of magnitude better.

            “And, the assumption is employers will follow the law, which many don’t now.”

            History has shown that employers will hire legal labor first, and then round out their numbers from the black market. Does FedEx hire drivers without licenses, even though we are about 100k drivers short in the country? No, they don’t. Why not? Because a license correlates to capability, on the one, hand, and because they fear liability and accidents on the other. Employers will tend to want to be legal if they can. Again, read the analysis: https://www.princetonpolicy.com/ppa-blog/2018/3/8/enforcement-in-a-market-based-visa-system

            “Many employers want cheap labor, which they need to survive, and depress wages for domestic workers and undermine the migrants, who paid a lot of money for visas.”

            So, the number one way the market balances is through wage theft. A visa fee effectively pre-empts this wage theft and protects the wages of all those industries using migrant labor, including those employing legal immigrants and US citizens. Keep in mind the visa fee is set by the market, so it is the residual between the wage rate and the Relocation Wage (allowing for a consumer surplus), the wage migrants need to make it worth their while to come to the US. Do the math, and the visa fee comes out about $2.50 / hour.

            “Controlling immigration requires strong border enforcement and severe consequences for entering the U.S. illegally. A quota can be established, although there are way too many low-skilled laborers now.”

            Marijuana shows this is factually untrue. Marijuana smuggling is down 84% since 2009 without material change in border enforcement (indeed, hard drug smuggling is flat to up a bit). That’s entirely due to partial US legalization of pot. Same would happen with migrants.

            H-2A’s are effectively unlimited now, if I understand correctly.

            Quotas represent a volume-constrained approach. Compared to a price-constrained approach, a volume-based approach will almost always produce inferior results.

            As for unskilled labor, it seems to be in considerable shortage throughout much of the US, Here in central Jersey, we have ‘help wanted’ signs in virtually every retail establishment.

            I strongly recommend you read “A Conservative Hierarchy”. Right now, you are well on the fascist side of the dividing line. All of us prefer to be with people like ourselves. But in the US, 100 million people are not like ‘us’. That’s an underlying reality, and it’s not going away. So let’s focus on incorporating ‘them’ into a well-functioning society rather than feeding on hatred and anger. There is a better tomorrow out there, and it can be achieved without conflict and suffering.

            https://www.princetonpolicy.com/ppa-blog/2018/5/21/a-conservative-hierarchy-of-needs

          10. PeakTrader

            Steven Kopits, people, who cannot afford expensive visas will find it easy to enter the U.S. with much less border enforcement and work under-the-table or be employed like the many millions of illegal immigrants.

          11. PeakTrader

            Continued…Those Mexicans you cited don’t want to go back. That’s why there are so many in the U.S., and why many come back after being deported. Open or weak borders will not reduce illegal immigration. The War on Drugs is to prevent and reduce U.S. drug consumption, which has been very successful. You want the opposite. And, your marijuana smuggling statistics seems very optimistic:

            https://www.google.com/amp/s/amp.businessinsider.com/how-much-drugs-are-seized-at-the-us-mexico-border-2016-10

          12. Steven Kopits

            “Steven Kopits, people, who cannot afford expensive visas will find it easy to enter the U.S. with much less border enforcement and work under-the-table or be employed like the many millions of illegal immigrants.”

            If the volume of visas is set at the market clearing value — for the record, that’s about 6 million working, undocumented Hispanics on a total undocumented Hispanic population of 8 million — and the value of the visa is set in the marketplace, then everyone will have a visa because employers will require it and every migrant will consider it a worthwhile investment — by definition! The price is literally set by the marginal entrant, that is, then by definition the marginal entrant will have a visa. Every other migrant will enjoy a consumer surplus. This is not an assertion, it is a mathematical proof.

            Now, is it possible for Enrique, working for his Uncle Tio cutting lawns, to defer obtaining a visa for a while? Sure. (This depends heavily on 1) the nature of background checks, and 2) payment terms for the visa.) But if we reduce the number of illegals from 8 million to, say, 2 million, that’s still vastly better than anything else on offer.

          13. Steven Kopits

            “Those Mexicans you cited don’t want to go back. That’s why there are so many in the U.S., and why many come back after being deported.”

            Border enforcement will create a permanent resident class by creating a barrier to exit. This is true. However, many seasonal workers in NJ, for example, really have little work in the winter, and yet are suffering the higher costs of living in NJ. If they knew they could come back on demand — and this is the key condition, which is why we are using a price- and not volume-constrained system — then many of them would leave in the off-season. They would be back in the summer, though, and indeed — as I have stated elsewhere — because a price-limited system is volume-responsive. So if the price goes up, more visas are issued. If the price goes down, fewer visas are issued. Therefore, the peaks could be higher (and probably will be), and the valleys will be lower.

          14. Steven Kopits

            “Open or weak borders will not reduce illegal immigration.”

            Market-based visas will cut it to effectively zero; just as it was in the Bracero days when the border was open.

            “The War on Drugs is to prevent and reduce U.S. drug consumption, which has been very successful. You want the opposite. And, your marijuana smuggling statistics seems very optimistic.”

            https://www.google.com/amp/s/amp.businessinsider.com/how-much-drugs-are-seized-at-the-us-mexico-border-2016-10

            Let me quote from the article you cite:

            The falling amount of marijuana intercepted at US borders “is most likely because of the legalization of marijuana for recreational or medicinal use in a growing number of American states – so Americans are buying more cannabis grown in the United States,” Ioan Grillo, a journalist in Mexico who has covered the drug war extensively, wrote in The New York Times after the debate.

            “Two or three years ago, a kilogram [2.2 pounds] of marijuana was worth $60 to $90,” Nabor, a 24-year-old pot grower in the northwestern Mexican state of Sinaloa, told NPR at the end of 2014. “But now they’re paying us $30 to $40 a kilo. It’s a big difference. If the U.S. continues to legalize pot, they’ll run us into the ground.”

            So the article is saying the same thing I am. The difference is that their numbers start in 2011 and end in 2015. My numbers start in FY 2009 and end in FY 2018, based on the first five months pro rated for the whole year 2018. Indeed, my awareness of the issue was driven by my 2018 Expected number. I was trying to determine the number of residual crossers to expect after the implementation of a market-based visa system. Drug smuggling would be expected to be the primary residual activity over the border, so I was trying to make a estimate of related volumes (crossings).

            To my surprise, the 2018 number came in really low, despite a surge in illegal crossings overall in 2018 v 2017 (which we had also forecast). So if you put 2018 E over 2009 Actual, then you see an 84% decline — which is incredible, considering how sporadic marijuana legalization remains. With pending implementation of legalization in Massachusetts, and likely legalization in NJ and other states, smuggling pot over the Mexican border is rapidly become both impractical and uneconomic. It’s a lot easier to smuggle pot from Colorado or California in an SUV to Texas or Indiana than it is to bring it eight days by foot through the Sonoran desert in 40 lb backpacks from Mexico. And that’s what’s happening: https://www.usatoday.com/story/news/2016/05/13/when-smuggling-colo-pot-not-even-skys-limit/83623226/

            This is part of the reason why Representative Martha McSally, a Republican congresswoman from Tucson, Ariz., called for building a border wall between Arizona and California. That’s of course part fantasy and part joke. Can’t be done. And therefore, if pot is legalized even a bit more widely, the holdout states will find their position untenable. Texas folds before 2025, I think, and once Texas fold, marijuana smuggling across the border will fall to zero.

            https://www.sfgate.com/bayarea/article/Arizona-mcsally-border-wall-sanctuary-california-12770538.php

          15. Steven Kopits

            CoRev –

            Let me take a few of your concerns:

            “Peak, I understand your concern over enforcement, but Steven’s approach relies upon informal and formal enforcement. My own thought were that a very active counterfeiting industry would evolve around the visas stymieing enforcement. I agree with the chain migration issue.”

            We are using biometrics and an e-commerce platform for id and services like health insurance. To fake the ID, you have to crack the DHS systems. The whole point is to make a flexible system that allows real-time identification of migrants by anyone with an i-Phone and appropriate authorization (ie, employer, police, school, hospital, border patrol). Chain migration is related to those already granted green cards, and falls outside a work visa system by definition.

            “With an easy/easier to identify immigrant system, then their access to extended benefits can be enforced. However, there will be no change in access to medical, education, and other normal/basic assistance especially for families. At least they are paying taxes for them.”

            Correct. MBVs are not ideal for handling long-term undocumented migrants, but they can be used as a viable approach. They won’t, however, turn US citizen children of illegal immigrants into Mexican citizens. The water under that bridge is long gone.

            “Another concern is the penchant for liberals to pay those extended benefits which results in a disincentive their return home extending those extended benefits.”

            If the visa includes any benefits, the value of those benefits will show up in the visa price. Believe me, both Democrats and Republicans will have a strong incentive not to include any benefits. For example, the certainty that a MBV holder would receive citizenship in 15 years is worth something like $5 / hour — on wages of $10 / hour. Linking MBVs to any kind of permanent residency would have the effect of driving migrants into penury, ie, they would be sending most of their income buying future citizenship rather than food and housing today. We don’t want that.

            “Remember, the costs for those work visas would go up with reduced supply of the available jobs.”

            The price of the visas will be roughly constant (maybe). Or at least seasonal. More demand leads to higher visa price leads to more visas issued to bring the price back into the target range. The opposite happens with less demand for migrant labor. You could run this with a simple revenue optimization model along the lines of, say, Southwest’s reservation system. You’ll end up with effectively a monopoly price, which is probably higher than we’d like.

            “Visa costs and available jobs are the major incentives to immigrate.”

            Immigration is different than migration. MBVs are not an immigration program.

            “Ideally, a pay-to-work/live visa program would create a portable work force moving between home and the US according to jobs availability. Extended stays back home with their families becomes an incentive to move back and forth between work and family.”

            Exactly. This, plus the visa cost, is a key driver of reduced dependent numbers.

          16. PeakTrader

            Steven Kopits, you’re making all kinds of unproven assertions.

            Basically, you want to sell a limited amount of visas to illegal immigrants, while many will not find them worth the cost and open the border for many more illegal immigrants, while vastly promoting U.S. drug use.

            Your goal is to increase government revenue from immigration and drug use, although the social costs will far exceed government revenue.

          17. Steven Kopits

            “Steven Kopits, you’re making all kinds of unproven assertions.”

            I can reply to any specific claim you may have.

            “Basically, you want to sell a limited amount of visas to illegal immigrants…”

            Yes.

            “…while many will not find them worth the cost…”

            No. If the price is set by the market, then literally the migrants themselves are setting the price. If the US sets the quantity, and the price is set by the market, then by definition the migrants set the price. As long as the value of a visa is greater than zero, all of them will be purchased if the volumes are set to the market clearing level.

            You are arguing that there is latent demand beyond current levels, ie, the border is effective. If that’s the case, then the realized market wage should be above the Relocation Wage. Right now, it appears they are about the same.

            But even so, in an MBV system, if you are caught coming over the border without a visa, you’ll be disqualified from the MBV program. That’s brutal if everyone else has a visa and there are a million guys in Mexico waiting to take your job legally. It’s like losing your driver’s license. You can’t go to FedEx and say, “Well, you know, I am an experienced driver but I lost my license, so please still hire me.” They won’t do that. It’s not that hard to get a driver’s license, but it is brutal to lose it.

            “….and open the border for many more illegal immigrants….”

            Right now, we have about 600,000 illegal immigrants entering the US this year. The border is effectively open. If it is easy to get a visa and everyone has one, then it’s harder to find work. If I’m an employer and I can hire legal labor on demand, why would I hire illegal labor? This is a next-man-up system. That’s exactly what Menzie dislikes about it!

            “…while vastly promoting U.S. drug use. Your goal is to increase government revenue from immigration and drug use, although the social costs will far exceed government revenue.”

            I am not promoting drug use. Far from it. I am, however, saying that a closer examination of the costs of black markets indicates that such costs are about 30x greater than commonly appreciated. So we need to be very, very careful about prohibitions.

            I am, however, stating that the costs of marijuana liberalization do not appear to be too severe so far (although supply adjustment process is truly chaotic).

            I am also saying that four backpacks of fentanyl are enough to kill 26 million people, and that fentanyl is about 1,000 times more profitable than heroin. There is no way to stop the smuggling on the supply side.

            https://www.washingtonpost.com/news/to-your-health/wp/2018/05/25/inside-a-semi-truck-in-nebraska-troopers-found-enough-fentanyl-to-kill-26-million-people/?noredirect=on&utm_term=.2724f214f147

            So, you are left with principally demand-side interventions. You can

            1) Do nothing, and count perhaps 600,000 dead in the next decade. Overdoses are already reducing US life expectancy, now for the third year
            2) Legalize and manage, as they do in the Netherlands. You could probably reduce the death rate by 90%+, at the cost of lots of addict management and probably a higher addict rate than otherwise, or
            3) You can put the addicts into cold turkey treatment as they did in Japan and Singapore. By reflex, I am inclined to favor this solution, but I don’t know if it is legally or politically viable in the US.

            So, my goals, (if we are to include drug policy in it) in order are
            1. Reduce the number of deaths, for addicts, migrants and consequent victims
            2. Create order in markets and society
            3. Reduce the crime rate (related to order)
            4. Reduce the addiction rate
            5. Manage migrant numbers to be consistent with economic realities and the tolerance levels of US stakeholder groups.

            I think you have reducing the addiction rate higher in your order. For me, it’s reducing death and crime first.

          18. PeakTrader

            Steven Kopits, again, you’re making unproven assertions. For example:

            “According to statistics compiled by the European Monitoring Centre for Drugs and Drug Addiction (EMCDDA) between 2001-07, after decriminalisation [in Portugal] more people took cannabis, cocaine, amphetamines, ecstasy, and LSD – but decreased in neighbouring Spain between 2003-2008.”

            https://m.huffingtonpost.co.uk/2012/12/10/portugal-decriminalisation-drugs-britain_n_2270789.html?guccounter=1

          19. PeakTrader

            Steven Kopits, apparently, Portugal has a system of rehabilitation, somewhat similar to the Japanese:

            “The possession of small quantities of those drugs was shifted to a public-health – rather than criminal – issue. And rather than getting arrested for a small amount, you get sent to a “dissuasion commission,” where a doctor, lawyer, and social worker prescribe treatment or give you a fine…The number of people in drug-treatment increased 60% from 1998 to 2011 from 23,600 to 38,000.”

            https://www.google.com/amp/s/amp.businessinsider.com/what-happened-when-portugal-decriminalized-all-drugs-2016-3

          20. PeakTrader

            By the way, your responses don’t dispute the article based on 2003-08 data.

            And, obviously, there are other important factors.

  2. Thomas

    Can you control for prevalence somehow?

    I think it’s interesting, but it would be more robust if you could rule out the correlation between general popularity of a weapon and frequency of injuries.

    Ie, there are two related questions: a) what causes harm, and, b) what disproportionately causes harm? Both are interesting for slightly different reasons. Answer might be the same, might not, no idea.

    Maybe sales data from the last few years as a denominator, not sure if that’s available. Wouldn’t be perfect, but a start.

  3. Jeffrey J. Brown

    In regard to the focus on the AR-15 style rifles, note that the Virginia Tech shooter, with a pair of semi-automatic handguns, killed almost twice as many people as the Parkland shooter, who used an AR-15:

    https://www.cnn.com/2013/10/31/us/virginia-tech-shootings-fast-facts/index.html

    In any case, many of these mass shooting events are basically murder/suicide events, and I can’t help but wonder if increasing tech/social media addiction among young people is contributing to an increase in mass shootings.

    Some articles:

    More Kids Are Attempting and Thinking About Suicide, According to a New Study (May, 2018)
    http://time.com/5279029/suicide-rates-rising-study/

    Some stats from the Time Magazine article:

    Between 2010 and 2016, the number of adolescents who experienced at least one major depressive episode leapt by 60%, according to a nationwide survey conducted by the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services.

    Among kids who used electronic devices five or more hours a day, 48% had at least one suicide-related outcome.

    We Need to Talk About Kids and Smartphones
    http://time.com/4974863/kids-smartphones-depression/

    Colleen Nisbet has been a high school guidance counselor for more than two decades. One of her duties at Connecticut’s Granby Memorial High School is to monitor students during their lunch periods. “Lunch was always a very social time when students were interacting and letting out some energy,” she says. “Now they sit with their phones out and barely talk to each other.”

    This scene—of kids collecting in parks or at one another’s houses only to sit silently and stare at screens—comes up over and over again when talking with parents and kids. “When you’re with people you don’t know well or there’s nothing to talk about, phones are out more because it’s awkward,” says Shannon Ohannessian, a 17-year-old senior at Farmington High School in Connecticut.

    That avoidance of face-to-face interaction worries Brian Primack, director of the University of Pittsburgh’s Center for Research on Media, Technology, and Health. “Human beings are social animals,” he says. “We evolved over millions of years to respond to eye contact and touch and shared laughter and real things right in front of us.” There’s strong research linking isolation to depression, and time spent socializing with improved mood and well-being. If smartphones are getting between an adolescent and her ability to engage in and enjoy face-to-face interaction—and some studies suggest that’s happening—that’s a big deal, Primack says.

    Have Smartphones Destroyed a Generation? (September, 2017)
    More comfortable online than out partying, post-Millennials are safer, physically, than adolescents have ever been. But they’re on the brink of a mental-health crisis.

    https://www.theatlantic.com/magazine/archive/2017/09/has-the-smartphone-destroyed-a-generation/534198/

    Social-networking sites like Facebook promise to connect us to friends. But the portrait of iGen teens emerging from the data is one of a lonely, dislocated generation. Teens who visit social-networking sites every day but see their friends in person less frequently are the most likely to agree with the statements “A lot of times I feel lonely,” “I often feel left out of things,” and “I often wish I had more good friends.” Teens’ feelings of loneliness spiked in 2013 and have remained high since.

    This doesn’t always mean that, on an individual level, kids who spend more time online are lonelier than kids who spend less time online. Teens who spend more time on social media also spend more time with their friends in person, on average—highly social teens are more social in both venues, and less social teens are less so. But at the generational level, when teens spend more time on smartphones and less time on in-person social interactions, loneliness is more common.

    So is depression. Once again, the effect of screen activities is unmistakable: The more time teens spend looking at screens, the more likely they are to report symptoms of depression. Eighth-graders who are heavy users of social media increase their risk of depression by 27 percent, while those who play sports, go to religious services, or even do homework more than the average teen cut their risk significantly.

    Teens who spend three hours a day or more on electronic devices are 35 percent more likely to have a risk factor for suicide, such as making a suicide plan. (That’s much more than the risk related to, say, watching TV.) One piece of data that indirectly but stunningly captures kids’ growing isolation, for good and for bad: Since 2007, the homicide rate among teens has declined, but the suicide rate has increased. As teens have started spending less time together, they have become less likely to kill one another, and more likely to kill themselves. In 2011, for the first time in 24 years, the teen suicide rate was higher than the teen homicide rate.

    ‘Our minds can be hijacked’: the tech insiders who fear a smartphone dystopia
    Google, Twitter and Facebook workers who helped make technology so addictive are disconnecting themselves from the internet.
    Paul Lewis reports on the Silicon Valley refuseniks alarmed by a race for human attention

    https://www.theguardian.com/technology/2017/oct/05/smartphone-addiction-silicon-valley-dystopia

    Justin Rosenstein had tweaked his laptop’s operating system to block Reddit, banned himself from Snapchat, which he compares to heroin, and imposed limits on his use of Facebook. But even that wasn’t enough. In August, the 34-year-old tech executive took a more radical step to restrict his use of social media and other addictive technologies.

    Rosenstein purchased a new iPhone and instructed his assistant to set up a parental-control feature to prevent him from downloading any apps.

    He was particularly aware of the allure of Facebook “likes”, which he describes as “bright dings of pseudo-pleasure” that can be as hollow as they are seductive. And Rosenstein should know: he was the Facebook engineer who created the “like” button in the first place.

    A decade after he stayed up all night coding a prototype of what was then called an “awesome” button, Rosenstein belongs to a small but growing band of Silicon Valley heretics who complain about the rise of the so-called “attention economy”: an internet shaped around the demands of an advertising economy.

    These refuseniks are rarely founders or chief executives, who have little incentive to deviate from the mantra that their companies are making the world a better place. Instead, they tend to have worked a rung or two down the corporate ladder: designers, engineers and product managers who, like Rosenstein, several years ago put in place the building blocks of a digital world from which they are now trying to disentangle themselves. “It is very common,” Rosenstein says, “for humans to develop things with the best of intentions and for them to have unintended, negative consequences.”

    Rosenstein, who also helped create Gchat during a stint at Google, and now leads a San Francisco-based company that improves office productivity, appears most concerned about the psychological effects on people who, research shows, touch, swipe or tap their phone 2,617 times a day.

    There is growing concern that as well as addicting users, technology is contributing toward so-called “continuous partial attention”, severely limiting people’s ability to focus, and possibly lowering IQ. One recent study showed that the mere presence of smartphones damages cognitive capacity – even when the device is turned off. “Everyone is distracted,” Rosenstein says. “All of the time.”

    1. pgl

      “In regard to the focus on the AR-15 style rifles, note that the Virginia Tech shooter, with a pair of semi-automatic handguns, killed almost twice as many people as the Parkland shooter, who used an AR-15”.

      Sorry but this is a dumb comparison. It all depends on the situation including how close law enforcement types are. If one walked into Grand Central station with a pistol during rush idea – I’m sure one could pick off a lot of people too.

  4. JBH

    School shootings – going for the cause
    The price of liberty was and always will be paid in the currency of human blood. This stems from the very nature of humans which for individual survival’s sake operate as criminal gangs because nature’s resources are not infinite. Where there is crowding, in general there will be the most gangs. The most criminal and dangerous of all gangs is the state. The most brilliant gathering in all history – this nation’s founding fathers — were absolutely clear on what future generations must do to maintain liberty. Take away people’s ability to protect themselves against the state, and absolute irreversible tyranny will soon reign. In the final stage of takeover, magnitudes x magnitudes more blood will be spilt than the small cumulative total of all school deaths at the hands of lone shooters since records began in the 1800s. The all-time total is less than 500 — about two years of traffic deaths in LA.

    A critical analysis would find that shooters who killed the most in an incident — that is, not just one or two — were seriously mentally disturbed, on pharmaceuticals, and/or committed suicide. Quite a number pled mental confusion, heard voices, or simply had no comprehension of why they did it. I believe Cruz at Parkland was one such, though a quick search did not bring up something on this I’d read earlier. Is MKUltra involved here? I don’t know. But we do know that rogue elements of the CIA and FBI are still operating. And we know that many strange unexplained things at these shootings come to light from witnesses on the spot, only to be quickly buried by the media.

    Why then is there no comprehensive work that touches all bases of the underlying causality? Quote: Jung never tired of warning that the greatest danger that threatens humanity is the possibility that millions of us can fall into our unconscious together and reinforce each other’s blind spots, feeding a contagious collective psychosis in which we unwillingly become complicit in supporting the insanity of endless wars; this is unfortunately an exact description of what is currently happening. Here then is where research must turn if we are to gain true, lasting understanding of school shootings. Banning guns is a far sub-optimal solution. It amounts to an illusory dragging by gun control advocates of a red herring across the path of real understanding which is the only thing that will ever lead to real solutions.

    1. 2slugbaits

      JBH The price of liberty was and always will be paid in the currency of human blood.

      Very brave keyboard talk. Of course, you’re really talking about shedding someone else’s blood, not yours.

      Take away people’s ability to protect themselves against the state, and absolute irreversible tyranny will soon reign.

      Hmmm. Was “Red Dawn” playing on the CHARGE network recently?

      we do know that rogue elements of the CIA and FBI are still operating

      Uh-oh. Tin foil hat time. What’s that noise I hear? Sounds like black helicopters. Quick run to your survival shelter.

      unexplained things at these shootings come to light from witnesses on the spot, only to be quickly buried by the media.

      Ah-HAH! I knew it. Rachel Maddow is the grand puppet master behind all those school shootings. Probably had Chris Hayes working has her bag man.

      Here then is where research must turn if we are to gain true, lasting understanding of school shootings. Banning guns is a far sub-optimal solution. It amounts to an illusory dragging by gun control advocates of a red herring across the path of real understanding which is the only thing that will ever lead to real solutions.

      Yes, of course. The Stalinist solution of putting “insane” people in gulags, sanitariums and education camps is the way to go. No “undesirable” should have guns. Only GOP dues paying members of the NRA can be trusted with the absolute right to own guns.

      Thanks for the laugh. You’re more than a bit crazy, but I’m sure we all got a good chuckle out of your post. Please entertain us again.

  5. Jeffrey J. Brown

    A Washington Post article follows that reviews the details on 50 years of mass shootings in the US.

    However, for context, it should be noted that even wit a recent increase in the US murder rate, it remains well below the 1980 rate.

    And for some additional perspective, in the past 50 years about 1,100 people in the US were killed in mass shootings using the Post’s criteria (about 22 per year, although the fatalities per year are probably increasing), but according to the article below, every year about 2,000 children in the US are “believed to have been killed in their own homes by family members.”

    The terrible numbers that grow with each mass shooting
    https://www.washingtonpost.com/graphics/2018/national/mass-shootings-in-america/?utm_term=.81f47464d653

    Public mass shootings account for a tiny fraction of the country’s gun deaths, but they are uniquely terrifying because they occur without warning in the most mundane places. Most of the victims are chosen not for what they have done but simply for where they happen to be.

    There is no universally accepted definition of a public mass shooting, and this piece defines it narrowly. It looks at the 152 shootings in which four or more people were killed by a lone shooter (two shooters in a few cases). It does not include shootings tied to gang disputes or robberies that went awry, and it does not include shootings that took place exclusively in private homes. A broader definition would yield much higher numbers.

    The U.S. Murder Rate Is Up But Still Far Below Its 1980 Peak
    https://fivethirtyeight.com/features/the-u-s-murder-rate-is-up-but-still-far-below-its-1980-peak/

    The number of murders rose 8.6 percent nationwide in 2016, according to the FBI’s newest round of crime statistics, released Monday. There were an estimated 17,250 murders last year, up from 15,883 in 2015. The murder rate also rose for a second straight year, but it’s still roughly where it was in 2008, far below the levels of the 1980s and early 1990s. Meanwhile, the share of murders committed with a firearm rose to a record high.

    The findings are from the FBI’s 2016 Uniform Crime Reporting program, which gives the first official data on last year’s national crime trends. The UCR shows the number of murders increasing nationally for the second straight year in 2016. But the other crimes measured by UCR did not change nearly as much: The number of of violent crimes overall (which includes murders) rose 4.1 percent from 2015 to 2016, and the number of property crimes, such as burglary, fell 1.3 percent, to a low not seen in more than 40 years.

    The uptick in murders in 20164 comes on the heels of a double-digit percentage increase in 2015 that was the largest jump in a quarter-century. That said, the nation’s overall murder rate in 2016 was 5.3 per 100,000 people, 48 percent below its peak, in 1980.

    Michael Petit: Why child abuse is so acute in the US (October, 2011)
    http://www.bbc.com/news/magazine-15193530

    Over the past 10 years, more than 20,000 American children* are believed to have been killed in their own homes by family members. That is nearly four times the number of US soldiers killed in Iraq and Afghanistan.

    *Approximately 2,000 children per year, or about 38 per week

  6. pgl

    Whenever someone claims some study supports a bizarre claim – it is always wise to check who wrote that study. For example John Lott’s entire career is abuse of statistical analysis to support bizarre right wing claims. His abuse of statistical analysis is so well documented that very few people would ever cite Lott on anything. But who does PeakPathetic rely on here?

    https://www.investors.com/politics/editorials/sorry-despite-gun-control-advocates-claims-u-s-isnt-the-worst-country-for-mass-shootings/

    “a study of global mass-shooting incidents from 2009 to 2015 by the Crime Prevention Research Center, headed by economist John Lott, shows the U.S. doesn’t lead the world in mass shootings.”
    We can always count on PeakPathetic to spew the intellectual garbage from hacks like John Lott!

    1. pgl

      “”This is junk science at its worst. Paid for and financed by the National Rifle Association.” – Alan Dershowitz. Of course Alan is a lawyer and not exactly an authority on this issue.

      1. 2slugbaits

        Yep, the “study” is pretty bad. Not only does it fail to distinguish between calculated shootings by political terrorists versus mentally disturbed individuals, it also ignores one of the most obvious factors, which is population density. But the big story is that it actually undermines the NRA’s position. Look at the countries that are near the top of Lott’s list and compare them to gun ownership rates. These are the countries with the highest gun ownership rates measured as firearms per 100 population (study from 2014):

        USA: 88.8 per 100

        Switzerland: 47.5 per 100

        Finland: 45.3 per 100

        Serbia: 37.8 per 100

        Cyprus: 36.4 per 100

        Saudi Arabia: 35 per 100

        Iraq: 34.2 per 100

        Uruguay: 31.8 per 100

        Sweden: 31.6 per 100

        Norway: 31.3 per 100

        France: 31.2 per 100

        Canada: 30.8 per 100

        Austria: 30.4 per 100

        Germany: 30.3 per 100

        Iceland: 30.3 per 100

        http://www.washingtonpost.com/wp-srv/special/nation/gun-homicides-ownership/table/

        https://www.deseretnews.com/top/2519/6/Norway-15-nations-with-the-highest-gun-ownership.html

        Notice that many of the European countries shown here also appear on Lott’s list of countries with a higher frequency of mass shootings than the US. This is a case of the dog that didn’t bark. What you don’t find are cases in which countries with low gun ownership rates also appear on Lott’s list. So clearly gun ownership rates are an important factor. Reduce gun ownership rates and you will reduce the frequency of mass shootings.

        BTW, the Council of Foreign Relations has a more recent comparison of gun ownership rates and shootings:
        https://www.cfr.org/backgrounder/us-gun-policy-global-comparisons

        1. pgl

          “What you don’t find are cases in which countries with low gun ownership rates also appear on Lott’s list. So clearly gun ownership rates are an important factor.”

          Ed Leamer’s 1983 paper accused Lott of fishing for statistical results. What does this mean? Suppose he ran the regression you alluded to here and got the results you would expect. If high (low) gun ownership was positively correlated with high (low) rates of murder, Lott would bury this regression result and keep fishing for something else he could spin for the NRA.

          Lott and PeakPathetic are very much alike in this regard.

        2. PeakTrader

          2slugbaits, you haven’t proven the study is “pretty bad.” For example, can you prove the following is false?:

          “There were also 27% more casualties from 2009 to 2015 per mass shooting incident in the European Union than in the U.S..”

          Where guns are deployed is important:

          https://www.rand.org/research/gun-policy/analysis/gun-free-zones.html

          More guns and fewer gun laws can reduce mass shootings. Moreover, Latin America has much fewer guns per capita and much higher death rates by guns per capita.

          1. 2slugbaits

            PeakTrader If you can’t figure out the answer to your question, then you’re utterly hopeless. I’ll leave it as a homework assignment. Face it, you have no talent for data analysis.

          2. PeakTrader

            2slugbaits has it all figured out — ignore selective data and get the answer you want.

            If all else fails, then no guns equal no gun shootings.

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