More Thanksgiving Economics

Our annual Thanksgiving post: In 1623, 2 years after the first Thanksgiving, Governor William Bradford was worried about Plymouth’s food supply. The problem, he concluded, was that people shared whatever they produced. Because they expected “able and fit” young men…

A Plymouth Plantation Reprise

Perhaps even more relevant today, this was our blog for last Thanksgiving: In 1623, two years after the first Thanksgiving, Governor William Bradford was worried about Plymouth’s food supply. The problem, he concluded, was that people shared whatever they produced.…

An Economic Story From Plymouth Plantation

In 1623, two years after the first Thanksgiving, Governor William Bradford was worried about Plymouth’s food supply. The problem, he concluded, was that people shared whatever they produced. Because “able and fit” young men were expected to work harder and…

When a Buffet Problem Becomes a Tragedy

I just heard a perfect example of “the tragedy of the commons.” (defined yesterday) In a recent “Curb Your Enthusiasm”, during a dinner party, Larry David observed a friend depleting the caviar on a buffet table. Predictably, he complained to…

French Bicycles, Plymouth Plantation, and the Commons

According to a recent NY Times article (10.31.09), the Parisian bicycle sharing program has experienced considerable vandalism. Although the article attributed the damage to gangs of unhappy immigrant youths, I wondered whether the tragedy of the commons was relevant. More…