L’effet de Klein

18 March 2009 at 2:19 pm 13 comments

| Peter Klein |

FRANCE JOB PROTESTS  TOPIXIn 2006 I spent two weeks in Paris to visit colleagues and give a series of seminars. My first seminar was scheduled for a Tuesday in March. That day students decided to go on strike to protest a proposed labor law, the host university was closed, and my seminar was canceled. The next seminar was scheduled for the following Tuesday. Sure enough, that was the next day of protests, and that talk was canceled as well.

Now I am in France again to give some lectures at the University of Angers and ESC Rouen. Tomorrow I was planning to go by train from Angers to Rouen for an afternoon seminar. So, guess what’s planned for tomorrow? You guessed it: general strike. Trains are shut down, so no Rouen seminar for me.

Sooner or later someone in France is going to run some Granger causality tests and I will be banned from the country forever.

Update (Thursday): Here are some photos I took of this morning’s activity in Angers. For those who can’t read French, the signs say “Klein Go Home” and “French Lectures for French Professors.”

Entry filed under: - Klein -, Ephemera.

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13 Comments Add your own

  • 1. Per Bylund  |  18 March 2009 at 2:26 pm

    Actually, French politics is all about strikes. I remember the fishermen’s strike a few years ago when they totally destroyed fish factories and the police was there – but not to protect property, only to make sure nobody interfered with the “striking” workers!

    So my guess is if anyone finds there is a causal relationship between the presence of the Great Honorable Doctor Klein and strikes, it is more likely to warrant a medal of honor from the President than being banned from the country… ;-)

  • 2. Jk  |  18 March 2009 at 2:46 pm

    I encourage everyone to read Lasse Lien’s post on 21 Economic Models Explained before traveling abroad.

  • 3. Stéphane Saussier  |  18 March 2009 at 4:00 pm

    Just for fun – I invited Peter three years ago and I had problems with my University because all his seminars were cancelled. This year I decided not to invite him again and shift for Brian Silverman to experiment with somebody else. His seminar was scheduled next thursday – and because of the strike I had to cancel it. BUT, it is reported next tuesday and I still believe (hope) it will be possible for him to give his seminar… :-) If I am right, we will then talk about the French or Sarkozy effect, not about the Klein effect!

    Information is here: http://www.webssa.net/brian-silverman-liae

  • 4. Rafe Champion  |  18 March 2009 at 4:01 pm

    Were you over there in 1968 as well?

  • 5. Peter Klein  |  18 March 2009 at 4:09 pm

    Per, as you may know, our esteemed colleague Dr. Westgren is already a French Knight, being a Chevalier of the Ordre des Palmes Académiques. (You can look it up.)

    Stéphane, have you considered that it’s some kind of indirect Williamson effect or transaction cost economist effect?

    Rafe, you should ask about my whereabouts in July 1789.

  • 6. dgerard  |  18 March 2009 at 6:34 pm

    “Sooner or later someone in France is going to run some Granger causality tests and I will be banned from the country forever.”

    My guess is that it would go in the other direction — you’ll get an endowed chair at Sorbonne

  • 7. REW  |  18 March 2009 at 8:31 pm

    I’m just a dilettante. Is the Klein effect some form of performativity?

  • 8. spostrel  |  18 March 2009 at 9:13 pm

    More like the Gore Effect–his shaman-like ability to trigger coldsnaps and snowstorms whenever he shows up to talk about global warming.

  • 9. Warren Miller  |  18 March 2009 at 10:15 pm

    Besides the Klein Effect and the Gore Effect, there is also the Germans Effect. That is the one that explains why there are trees on both sides of the Champs Elysees: so the Germans can always march in the shade.

    Peter, going forward, anytime you’re going to speak in France, be sure to buy some “lecture insurance” that pays off if, for whatever reason, you’re not allowed to speak. I’ll bet those AIG derivatives geniuses in London can help you with that contract. No counterparty risk at all – it’s a sure thing.

  • 10. dgerard  |  19 March 2009 at 8:37 am

    “you should ask about my whereabouts in July 1789.”

    I take it that you aren’t a man of wealth and taste.

  • 11. Stéphane Saussier  |  28 March 2009 at 3:33 pm

    I confirm – Brian made his seminar without any problem last tuesday (at the exception that the strike was reconducted this precise day and nobody was there!) – No Klein Effect.

  • 12. Peter Klein  |  31 March 2009 at 10:14 am

    It could have been worse — Brian and I could have been held hostage!

    http://www.nytimes.com/2009/04/01/business/global/01caterpillar.html

  • 13. ProfDC  |  11 October 2010 at 7:00 pm

    @dgerard — Some sympathy, please. (And he needs no introduction.)

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