Comments on: The economics and politics of valuing life A slice of lime in the soda Sun, 26 Oct 2014 19:05:02 +0000 hourly 1 By: BarryKelly Thu, 17 Feb 2011 21:09:34 +0000 9/11 is only costing trillions because the US wants to spend trillions on its reaction. It’s doing that because the US had grown accustomed to having an unwarranted sense of invincibility.

A sense of invincibility, once lost, is virtually impossible to regain, so there’s virtually no natural limit on spending trying to get it back; and there’s lots of clamour for more spending, especially on the side of security suppliers selling snake-oil of all kinds.

By: Bfuruta Thu, 17 Feb 2011 19:50:50 +0000 No html tags?
Here is the address: m_li.html

By: Bfuruta Thu, 17 Feb 2011 19:48:37 +0000 “Dying of cancer is a particularly gruesome — and expensive — way to go”

Felix, check out this very interesting TED talk by Dr. William Li. It is consistent with The China Study. In both cases, they could control cancer—repeatedly turn it on and turn it off.

By: Dancanete Thu, 17 Feb 2011 18:09:42 +0000 The value of life definitely increases in the last few days when it spends 27% of our health care dollars. We can decrease that burden by being smarter. 41% of the US population had Living Wills in 2007. The problem is that document is nowhere to be found when the medical response team needs them. So, using the KISS principle, let’s go after this group that has already made their choice known and make that choice clear by putting it somewhere in their person. On a drivers license? Or an implanted computer chip? Or a database we can download from a cloud. I’m sure there can be an i-Phone app made for it. We will help save those precious Medicare dollars if we did this.

By: bidrec Thu, 17 Feb 2011 16:52:19 +0000 The Navy Bureau of Personnel has figures on the cost to recruit–basically replacement cost of a human–and has them further broken down by the cost to recruit and train a boatswain versus the cost to recruit and train a nuclear engineer. This is true for the other services as well.

If someone joins to be a boatswain but tests well enough to be a nuclear engineer he can switch. If they join to be a nuclear engineer and want to switch to a boatswain they cannot because it is uneconomical.

There is an additional cost for a security clearance which one can only get by living a specific sort of life.

These figures would probably point to a life worth less than five million dollars.

I think one reason for the number of suicides among the military is the fact that life is so cheap outside of the US. “Yea, your mate’s dead. Get over it and go back and fight.” Nothing here prepares them for that.

By: y2kurtus Thu, 17 Feb 2011 15:49:34 +0000 The problem with the goverment human life value numbers are that they are stupidly wildly foolishly high.

Very few Americans make the life choices that reflect that they value their lives at a $5,000,000 price point.

Heck… if you assume a $50,000 annual earnings and a 40 year worklife that represents the total value of all productive labor to society and gets you to 2 million.

This is why an Indian can buy new basic transport for 3,000usd and an American street legal equilivant sells for 10,000usd.

I’m all for reasonable safety features and polution controls but when you get to 3x the bear bones cost at some point you’ve got a bunch of people who would like to be driving a car taking the bus.

That might make the Sierra club happy. It might make Felix happy since he prefers to bike… and it might make me happy since it means fewer cars on my interstate and a faster drive into the office… but still… we aspire to be a free country don’t we? How many people would vote to make the Tata peoples car legal in the U.S. if it were put on a national ballot? I think it would pass by a very wide measure.

By: RobSterling Thu, 17 Feb 2011 14:13:44 +0000 My great-grandfather’s cousin Floyd was killed in the Malbone Street BRT wreck in 1918. The family received a settlement of something in the neighborhood of $200,000, if I recall correctly. According to two CPI calculators I checked, that works out to about $3,000,000 in today’s dollars. FYI.

By: cassidy Thu, 17 Feb 2011 14:12:31 +0000 About the lumberjacks: The risk of death needs to be expressed per unit time, since the cost is expressed per unit time ($1000 per year). Risk tables by profession are usually expressed as risk per worker per year. If the 1 in 1000 risk were per year, Appelbaum’s math would be correct. But as worded in Appelbaum’s article, it’s not clear and Salmon’s correct if the risk is expressed per worker career.

By: guanix Thu, 17 Feb 2011 13:52:26 +0000 Risk aversion.