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.

  • Decisions Have An Opportunity Cost That Require Tradeoffs

    A Conservation Dilemma

    Sep 21, 11 • 227 Views • No Comments

    Should the Dunes Sagebrush Lizard (aka the Sand Dune Lizard), a 3-inch striped reptile, be listed under the Endangered Species Act? Here is the problem. The home of the Sand Dune Lizard is also the home of the Permian Basin which, according to Forbes,...  [read more]

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    Oil Worries?

    Sep 19, 11 • 228 Views • No Comments

    Have you ever heard of Hubbert’s Peak?  No, it is not a mountain. Hubbert’s Peak refers to our oil supply. In 1956, Marion King Hubbert warned us that U.S. oil production would peak within 15 years. And, the only direction after the peak is...  [read more]

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    “Deficit Bias”

    Sep 17, 11 • 329 Views • No Comments

    If anyone asks you about the “fiscal woes” facing the U.S., Japan and the EU, just say, “deficit bias.” The 13th Geneva Report on the World Economy explains “deficit bias.” In the U.S., think about voting constituencies and...  [read more]

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    More Health Care Jobs

    Sep 16, 11 • 220 Views • No Comments

    The health care industry has added 300,000 jobs to the U.S. economy during the past 12 months. New jobs, new construction, new technology, more care. Should we be pleased? This Dr. Seuss-like animated short from marketplace.org presents the downside of health...  [read more]

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    Placing the Poverty Line

    Sep 15, 11 • 248 Views • No Comments

    Any family that earns less than 3 times the annual cost of a nutritionally adequate diet is below the poverty line. But should we agree with the placement of the line? If we say that poverty is “relative deprivation, ” then a definition could take...  [read more]