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.

  • Unless We Look More Closely at Women in the Global Labor Force, We See Only the Tip of the Iceberg.

    Leaving the Euro

    Nov 5, 11 • 304 Views • No Comments

    Would you like to win 250,000 British pounds? Predicting that a nation’s euro zone exit would be catastrophic unless properly managed, a UK businessman has sponsored a contest. To win the prize money, you just need to submit the best departure plan. The...  [read more]

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    Are You A Good Investor?

    Nov 3, 11 • 301 Views • No Comments

    Good investing takes us to our emotions. But not quite how you might expect. Our brains don’t like random events. Instead, we prefer patterns, especially pleasing patterns. For basketball, that means streaks. According to one statistical study of the...  [read more]

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    Deficit Deal Primer

    Nov 1, 11 • 285 Views • No Comments

    In 1934, after meeting with John Maynard Keynes, FDR said that he “liked him immensely” but groaned that he talked like a “mathematician.” Keynes’s advice to FDR? Described by Sylvia Nasar in Grand Pursuit, increase deficit...  [read more]

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    Does Luck Matter?

    Oct 31, 11 • 271 Views • No Comments

    In Las Vegas, the 2010 World Series of Poker was composed of 32,000 players and 57 separate tournaments. For the final event, $9 million was at stake. Freakonomics economist Steve Levitt and U. of Chicago law professor Thomas Miles studied the poker world...  [read more]

  • Inequality Questions

    Oct 30, 11 • 334 Views • No Comments

    Astoundingly, the country in which we are born determines 60% of our income. And then, the next 20% relates to our parents’ affluence. Here are some answers to other interesting questions we never knew we wanted to ask. All are from The Haves and the...  [read more]