Natural Monopolies and Cap and Trade

Note: this post is intended as discussion of economic theory. The use of certain analytical tools should not be construed as approval or said tools, nor should assertions and arguments be construed as advocacy. This is simply an exercise in economic analysis.

Taking the mainstream definition of natural monopolies, and assuming that the human-produced . . . → Read More: Natural Monopolies and Cap and Trade

Greg Mankiw: Ignoramus or Liar?

How else to explain this nonsense:

The anti-SOPA crowd argues that this is a matter of basic liberty. But it’s not. In a free society, you don’t have the freedom to steal your neighbor’s property. And that should include intellectual property. Moreover, it is the function of the state to enforce those rights. We . . . → Read More: Greg Mankiw: Ignoramus or Liar?

Accountability in education

I was shocked by Lant Pritchett’s note on the appalling performance of India’s best two states on the international PISA assessment. Actually, I was not really shocked; I didn’t expect anything else as I’ve been listening to Lant for years now. By the same token, I agree with Jishnu Das that we really don’t . . . → Read More: Accountability in education

Taxes and Fairness

John Stossel, on Atlanta’s new vendor laws:

Street vending has been a path out of poverty for Americans. And like other such paths (say, driving a taxi), this one is increasingly difficult to navigate. Why? Because entrenched interests don’t like competition. So they lobby their powerful friends to erect high hurdles to upstarts. It’s . . . → Read More: Taxes and Fairness

Is Microsoft A Monopoly?

As I mentioned before, I’m currently enrolled in a microeconomics course that makes use of Mankiw’s textbook.  I haven’t read much of the book, save for the assigned homework questions and his chapter on oligopolies.  He begins with a discussion of monopolies, and asserts that Microsoft is an example of a market monopoly.  This . . . → Read More: Is Microsoft A Monopoly?

Three Strikes: Molycorp Strikes Out in Washington

As exciting as the critical metals sector is becoming, Gold Stock Trades’ Jeb Handwerger warns that the public is being bombarded with misleading information, even at the highest levels of commerce and policy. In this exclusive article for The Critical Metals Report, Jeb gives his take on Molycorp’s recent presentation to Congress, and . . . → Read More: Three Strikes: Molycorp Strikes Out in Washington

On Patent Reform

The Smith Patent Reform Bill has become law:

President Obama today signed into law the Leahy-Smith America Invents Act (H.R. 1249) a bipartisan, bicameral bill that updates our patent system to encourage innovation, job creation and economic growth. Both Houses of Congress overwhelmingly supported the proposal, which was sponsored by House Judiciary Committee Chairman . . . → Read More: On Patent Reform

Copyright Versus Technology


Consumers are watching as many – if not more – films than ever for less money and time than ever, for a third of the cost. The money that had been spent on (now unneeded) overheads can go on other things. Be sure to avoid the broken window fallacy – the saved money . . . → Read More: Copyright Versus Technology

A Practical Reason to Abolish IP

I’ve often criticized IP from both philosophical and utilitarian grounds, but I haven’t often addressed some of the specific benefits that would come from abolishing IP. Anyhow, here’s a story that offers a glimpse of a future without IP:

As companies compete to digitize the textbook market, there is one approach that shakes the . . . → Read More: A Practical Reason to Abolish IP

Protecting Us from Ourselves

It sure is nice to see the nanny state at work:

Students who attend Chicago’s Little Village Academy public school get nothing but nutritional tough love during their lunch period each day. The students can either eat the cafeteria food–or go hungry. Only students with allergies are allowed to bring a homemade lunch to . . . → Read More: Protecting Us from Ourselves