When We Don’t Need Traffic Lights

Having recently driven in Manhattan (NYC) and now on Nantucket (an island located 30 miles from the coast of Massachusetts), I’ve been pondering the difference a traffic light can make. In NYC, the traffic lights are constant signals from government.…

Why Did the Pedestrian Cross the Road?

In NYC and in Nantucket, Massachusetts, drivers respond to different incentives because Manhattan has traffic lights while Nantucket does not.

A 2019 Update: The World’s Top and Bottom Laissez-Faire Countries

The Index of Economic Freedom is a handy source of data for judging whether or not a government has a laissez-faire philosophy.

How Traffic Lights Relate to Adam Smith

When no traffic lights on the island of Nantucket has created good will among strangers, it also might show the limits of Adam Smith’s laissez-faire.

A 2018 Update: The World’s Top and Bottom Laissez-Faire Countries

The Index of Economic Freedom is a handy source of data for judging whether or not a government has a laissez-faire philosophy.

Using Adam Smith to Cross the Road

Wondering why cars happily stop to let pedestrians cross the road on an island without traffic lights, we can find an answer from Adam Smith.

The Decline of Laissez-Faire

Perhaps it all began when President Lyndon Johnson called Wilbur Mills, chairman of the House Ways and Means Committee. “Wilbur, I’ve just been looking through the polls here, and I’ve only got a few weaknesses, and the worst of them…

Amazon’s Government Connection

No longer laissez-faire, government creates a mixed economy when it responds to Amazon’s lobbying and other firms’ influence.

Has the Invisible Hand Given You a Nudge Recently?

Encouraging businesses and consumers to interact productively as they pursue their self-interest, Adam Smith’s invisible hand moves a market’s participants.

Our Weekly Roundup: From Traffic Lights to Sneakers, Everyday Economics Explained by 5 Great Economists

Our Econlife roundup for the week 7.14.14 An island without traffic lights displays the benefits of Adam Smith’s laissez-faire…more   7.15.14 Why David Ricardo would approve of where your sneakers were made…more   7.16.14 John Maynard Keynes could say why you’ll get less Social…