The Power of the Market: Part 1

Maybe the market is more powerful than the Congress. First, some history… Hoping that farmers would earn a living wage, in 1933, the U.S. government decided to subsidize crop prices. The goal was “parity,” a level of purchasing power that…

The Right Stuff

Giving a grade of “One Pinocchio,” the Washington Post assessed the accuracy of President Obama’s February 7, 2011 speech to the U.S. Chamber of Commerce. Most interesting, though, were the topics on which he focused. Yes, President Obama said the…

Kidney Markets?

What should we be able to buy and sell? Alcohol? Land? People? Body Parts? In a Teaching Company lecture on organ transplants, Wake Forest economist Robert Whaples says that the answers depend on the market’s boundaries. And, he soon adds,…

Everyone Rations

I am concerned that the word “ration” has a bad reputation. In a recent CBS story about a new Medicare/Medicaid head, and throughout the healthcare reform debate, stories about reputed “rationing” kept popping up. There was no need, though, to search…

Appreciating the Market

In a recent WSJ interview, Nobel laureate Gary Becker tells us that, “Markets are tough to appreciate.” The reason, he says, is people feel government can better care for them than a profit seeking individual. Calling markets counterintuitive, Becker sees why people…

Is the Market Ethical?

Some people believe that government should control areas that we consider most valuable while others say precisely the opposite. The “war” between government believers and market believers was evident in Saturday’s Wall Street Journal. Wherever kidneys are paid for through…