Reliable sources inform me that the NYT's absurd disclosure form for freelancers no longer applies to the Book Review or magazine.
I have no problem with editors asking lots of questions about possible conflicts as, indeed, the Book Review editors do. But most conflicts won't be caught by a one-time form, because they're either unanticipated or new. And expecting a freelancer to disclose every connection under the sun just to do a single article is ridiculous. (Is it relevant to a book review on development economics that I once gave a speech at Target? It is relevant, of course, if the author of the book is a close friend, but the form doesn't ask you to list everyone you know.) The whole venture strikes me as a way for editors to cover themselves--"Well, he didn't mention it on his disclosure form"--when scandal erupts.
I'm off to Paris, to speak at the design school Créapole and give my mom a Parisian visit for her 70th birthday. In a bon voyage email, a friend sent us this link to a great panoramic view of the city.
Science magazine has a mini-profile of Sally Satel, with news of how her experience seeking a kidney transplant "awakened her to the 'horribly broken' state of organ transplantation rules in the United States."
Sally is planning a mini-conference at the American Enterprise Institute, focusing on solutions to the organ shortage. "We will not debate whether there should be market mechanisms," she explains. "We are stipulating that they are in order. We will go from there to discuss ways to design them and overcome barriers." The conference is scheduled for June 12 at AEI and will be open to the public. I'll be participating, along with people who are actually experts on the subject. Here's the lineup:
Buy Or Die: Market Mechanisms to Remedy the Organ Shortage
Lloyd Cohen, George Mason University School of Law
Mark Cherry, St. Edward's University, Department of Philosophy, author of Kidney for Sale by Owner: Human Organs, Transplantation and The Market (Georgetown U Press)
Newt Gingrich, AEI
Michele Goodwin, De Paul University College of Law, author of Black Markets: The Supply and Demand of Body Parts (Cambridge University Press)
Benjamin Hippen, nephrologist and UNOS advisory committee member
Virginia Postrel, The Atlantic, author, The Future and Its Enemies
Sally Satel, AEI