Friday, July 13, 2007

The half-life of bad ideas.

In "Too much information," the Economist's Buttonwood remarks on how market participants cope (or do not cope) with ever more and ever cheaper information. So far, I would say, we are doing quite well. And remind me not to make buy/sell decisions based on anonymous chat room tips.

I like my soybeans and firmly believe that they are good for me. But in a weak moment I turned to talk-radio this morning, only to hear an author being interviewed about "soy making kids 'gay'". Well pop epidemiology can launch a thousand websites. The two words brought up 55,700 when "feminization" and "soy" are entered.

What if Richard Florida is right? What if gays are more creative and what if creative people revitalize cities? Soy products might have policy significance.

But (alas) a small sampling of the sites that Google brought up revealed an almost equal bunch of "pro" an "con" arguments and studies about the soy-feminization link.

It's a Wikipedia world. The half-life of bad ideas gets shorter and shorter.