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.

  • For most economists, historians, social scientists, it is tough to avoid research bias

    Fictitious Billionaires

    May 8, 11 • 384 Views • No Comments

    Having amassed her fortune as CEO of an electronics empire and through her inheritance, The Office’s Jolene “Jo” Bennett is ranked #11 on this year’s Forbes Fictional 15. You might enjoy this (fictitious) Forbes interview of Ms....  [read more]

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    Grade Redistribution

    May 7, 11 • 452 Views • No Comments

    In this video, college students approve of proposals to “tax the rich.” However, when asked if those in the top 10% of GPAs should have their grades redistributed, they emphatically say, “No.” But, is income redistribution really that...  [read more]

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    The Story of a Candle Tax

    May 6, 11 • 859 Views • No Comments

    Our story begins with one 1986 tax, an “antidumping duty,” on Chinese candles. Responding to very low Chinese candle prices, the U.S. decided to protect domestic candle producers. By 2004, the tax was huge. More than 100%.  Also, candle...  [read more]

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    34 Million Different Pizzas

    May 5, 11 • 373 Views • No Comments

    Expressing concern about a proposed FDA calorie-posting rule, Domino’s says it would have to list 34 million different kinds of pizzas. Really. This Bloomberg video explains their position. Using Domino’s “Cal-O-Meter” as a source,...  [read more]

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    Sales Tax Decisions

    May 2, 11 • 338 Views • No Comments

    A buttered bagel is a sandwich but not an unsliced bagel–unless you eat it in the store. Subject to the New York State sandwich tax, so too are burritos, wraps, BLTs and buttered rolls.  Plan to buy fudge? You will pay a sales tax in New York....  [read more]