Thursday, January 08, 2015

Lion Dog, Panda Dog

Back in 2013, a Chinese zoo tried to pass off a dog as a lion:

Screen Shot 2013-08-16 at 10.39.59 AM

Most observers laughed, but not Scott Sumner! To Scott, the Lion Dog was a signal of good days ahead for the Chinese economy:
I’m disgusted with the Western media, the way they keep picking on China.  Henan is a poor, heavily polluted inland province of 90 million people.  So what if the lion at their zoo looks a bit dog-like... 
That shows why the China bears are oh so wrong.  No country with that level of creativity, that enthusiasm to “git er done” will ever get stuck in a middle income trap.
Convincing, no?

Now, it's worth asking whether Sumner is also bullish on Italy, in the light of the following news:
An Italian circus is facing possible criminal charges for allegedly trying to deceive the audience with two chow chows painted to resemble pandas. 
Police in the city of Brescia confiscated the white chow chows on Dec. 19 from the Orfei Circus and accused the staff of painting black patches on them in hopes the customers would believe the pups were actually pandas.
Here is Panda Dog:



Obvious, this shows that, just like China, Italy has "that creativity, that enthusiasm to 'git er done'," and we can expect the Italy Bears to be proven wrong...right? Obviously, Italy's rising unemployment and stagnant growth is only a brief pause on that country's upward, march, right?

Good thing development forecasting is so easy, right?

24 comments:

  1. I don't think I understand the point of this post - is it that you shouldn't make economic development forecasts based on a univariate model that consists solely of regional zoo-based data or is it that you think Scott Sumner is an idiot?

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  2. Anonymous5:31 PM

    Sounds like amateur (macro)economics: you know, take some bizarre or fictitious independent variable and assume it drives everything else in your model...Also sounds like some of Noah's attempts at analyzing politics.

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  3. Anonymous5:47 PM

    I find this absolutely hilarious! Thanks for the laugh.

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  4. Anonymous6:06 PM

    The internet desperately needs some kind of sarcasm/humor signally mechanism.

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  5. The best and worst thing about Italy is that Italians don't follow rules. Bad if you want them to pay taxes, not so bad if the government orders them to round up Jews (I simplify a bit tastelessly, sorry).

    But Italians dodging rules should be seen as a problem like Americans having guns.

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  6. The "The Money Illusion" link seems to utilize the lion dog as a joke. It's not a particularly subtle joke, but unless Noah Smith is playing a more subtle prank with this article, it seems to have flown over his head.

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    Replies
    1. SUMNER DOES NOT JOKE.

      GLOBAL ECONOMY TOO SERIOUS TO JOKE.

      Delete
    2. Anonymous3:36 AM

      I think this Smith/Sumner feud is getting out of hand.

      Delete
  7. The point is that Italy has to reach the middle income range in order to have a go at escaping from the middle income trap. They are making quite good progress in reaching this first goal.

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    Replies
    1. :-) Took me a few seconds to get it.

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  8. for years, the left has predicting a China economic crisis to no avail. The landing was softer than anyone ever anticipated

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    Replies
    1. Anonymous9:32 PM

      When self-disgust causes one to feel the need to constantly lash out with stupid, the smart choice is to stop being disgusting instead of doubling-down.

      Delete
  9. It's funny because Noah's post follows the same just-kidding-not-really, let's-use-a-fallacious-example-to-prove-something-I-believe-to-be-true format as Scott. Scott uses a silly example to "prove" that China won't fall into a middle income trap (which Scott thinks is true, regardless of the lion-dog), and Noah uses a silly example to prove that Scott is a racist (which Noah thinks is true, regardless of the panda-dog). Not sure if this is what Noah was going for.

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  10. Anonymous9:37 AM

    Sorry Noah - China's already been here.. http://www.upi.com/Odd_News/2014/05/14/Panda-dogs-are-all-the-rage-in-China/8181400097634/?st_rec=7081419343667

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  11. Scam Chowda for sure!

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  12. Totes adorbs.

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  13. As a frequent reader of Moneyillusion and somebody who likes Scott's work and who even agrees to an extent with his opinion of China - I have to say it. This one was good. His argument deserved it :)

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  14. Noah, you know full well Scott believes China will catch up in GDP per capita (PPP) to the level of Italy and Japan and grow at the rate of the rest of the first world from then on. This just adds further evidence to his argument.

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  15. This post serves as public notice as I will continue to object to the use of "that" in situations that refer to a person.

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