It is insightful, disarmingly simple and yet sophisticated and, at the same time, provocative, passionate, and witty. Were I to detail the many things I like about it and why, I would write much too long a review. You might prefer living in San Francisco to living in Lincoln, Neb. When would the movement stop?
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It is insightful, disarmingly simple and yet sophisticated and, at the same time, provocative, passionate, and witty. Were I to detail the many things I like about it and why, I would write much too long a review. You might prefer living in San Francisco to living in Lincoln, Neb. When would the movement stop? When the higher demand for housing in San Francisco has raised housing prices there and the lower demand in Lincoln has dropped prices there—to the point where the two places are equally attractive.
In short, unusual preferences pay off. Dennis, who opposes the drug war. Dennis has many such arguments and Landsburg does a good job of taking them apart.
Unfortunately, Landsburg adds his own bad argument: he incorrectly evaluates the benefit of lower drug prices that would result from legalizing currently illegal drugs. Landsburg believes there would be no net benefit from lower prices on the amount of drugs that people are already using.
He analogizes lower drug prices to a lowering of the price of pizza and concludes that the amount consumers gain from the lower price on the number of pizzas they would have bought at the high price is just offset by the amount that pizza producers would lose.
But that ignores why legalization of drugs would cause their prices to fall. So the gain to consumers of a lower price has no offsetting loss to producers and is a pure gain to society.
Virtually all economists are in favor of free trade. One of the main reasons is that it allows people to buy things of a given quality at a lower price.
Landsburg makes this point well with a true story. When George H. Bush relaxed import restrictions on Japanese trucks, Bill Clinton complained that the United States got nothing in return. Bush answered that what he had gotten was the Japanese government to open its market to U. One of the areas where unusual preferences pays off big is online dating or maybe dating more generally.
He notes that most of us are unusual in many ways. Good point. The vast majority will be supramarginal or submarginal, but not marginal. Fortunately, the point remains even if the wording is strange. Tom DeMeo, Clearly, the people thrown in prison are worse off. Professor Landsburg and I are making a long-run point comparing two long-run equilibria.
GHWB was not an idiot; he was a politician. He said the politically-acceptable thing about opening Japanese markets to the US, but there is no reason to infer that he failed to grasp the core benefit of free trade. Now this, endorsed by DRH too, is cute, clever, and makes the point. After all you can buy a Chevy truck. Abtter way to put it is the benefit is the choice to buy the Japanese truck. Ken B, Good point but the statement is literally true.
The truck is the gain. The point in the baseline case where all drug dealers are identical is that no drug dealer is harmed ex ante ; that is, the risk of being arrested is fully compensated by the increase in profit. Henderson on Landsburg's "Armchair Economist" Finally, some humor about how the benefits of free trade are hidden in plain sight: Virtually all economists are in favor of free trade.
Ted Levy Oct 7 at pm. Tom DeMeo Oct 7 at pm. David R. Henderson Oct 7 at pm. Why do columnists insist on this cutesy type of gotcha? Ken B Oct 8 at pm. Henderson Oct 8 at pm. Ken B Oct 10 at am. Steven E Landsburg Oct 10 at pm. Comments are closed.
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What I enjoyed most about this book was that the examples were so clear that I felt like I actually understood some of the basic principles of economy - and some of the things Mr. Landsburg said were An economics professor's sometimes charming, sometimes glib, always counterintuitive guide to evaluating the small anomalies of daily life in a free-market society. In a series of interchangeable Steven E. Seat belts cause accidents because well-protected drivers take more risks.
Armchair Economist : Economics & Everyday Life -- Paperback / softback (Reissue) [Paperback]
The Armchair Economist is a wonderful little book, written by someone for whom English is a first and beloved language, and it contains not a single graph or equation Landsburg presents fascinating concepts in a form easily accessible to noneconomists. Landsburg has done something extraordinary: He has expounded basic economic principles with wit and verve. Goodreads helps you keep track of books you want to read. Want to Read saving….
Armchair Economist: Economics & Everyday Life