Economic Debates

Most economic decisions can be debated. We have to decide whether we want higher or lower taxes, where to cut government spending, whether the deficit matters, if a business should have more regulation, if marginal analysis should affect environmental regulation. Learning about economics involves defending policy alternatives.

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    African Developments

    Apr 8, 12 • 557 Views • No Comments

    In Malawi, when local newspapers referred to the president as “the big kahuna,” his office threatened a jail sentence if they did not stop. This threat and subsequent events take us straight to Why Nations Fail. Malawi is a small sliver shaped......  [read more]

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    Pasty Tax Issues

    Apr 3, 12 • 521 Views • No Comments

    The UK’s pasty (PASS-tee) tax battle is a good story. But, moving beyond the humor, it has considerable significance. First the story: Taxing the pasty has created a major flap in the UK. The pasty looks like meat in a pastry pouch, high in fat, maybe......  [read more]

  • The Congress and the Deficit

    A New Kind of Keynesian?

    Apr 2, 12 • 719 Views • No Comments

    Reading about John Maynard Keynes’s investing acumen in last Saturday’s Wall Street Journal, I wondered whether being a Keynesian could involve more than your attitude about the role of government. So, as a teacher, I created this “Am I a......  [read more]

  • Industries afflicted with Baumol's Disease have slower productivity growth.

    Should Supreme Court Justices Know Economics?

    Apr 1, 12 • 426 Views • No Comments

    Just some thoughts today about economics and the Supreme Court. Listening to Tuesday’s oral arguments,  I became concerned about some economic basics. Markets and insurance were key ideas. However, no one defined a market and insurance was initially......  [read more]

  • Our Transportation Infrastructure is Crumbling

    A Low (Safety) Grade For a New Jersey Roadway

    Mar 31, 12 • 604 Views • No Comments

    I have to admit that the Pulaski Skyway terrifies me. Driving across it, I always remember the Minneapolis bridge that collapsed during rush hour in 2007. The Pulaski Skyway is an 80-year-old rickety looking structure. A sister to the Minneapolis bridge, the......  [read more]