Thursday, May 13, 2010

The Overtime/Heart Disease Relationship

The BBC reports that working overtime increases the risk of heart disease. That's a shame, because all that time-and-a-half on the paychecks was doing wonders for GDP.

As a brief departure before coming back: the trouble with Galtism is that taxing higher income brackets actually increases upward mobility of the population. The reason for this is that as your income rises, so does your labor elasticity: you are free to take or leave additional work based on how much it pays. If higher taxes cut into your payment for this marginal labor, you'll be less likely to take the additional hours, leaving more work to be done by others, who will then move up the income ladder.

The overall effect is that people wind up working at higher-paying jobs for fewer hours each week, leaving you with both more leisure time and – returning now – less of a risk for heart disease. GDP suffers, but the people flourish.

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