Monday , May 16 2022
Home / Tag Archives: prices

Tag Archives: prices

Who’s Really Gouging Consumers?

Here’s a letter to the editor of The Hill: Editor: Nancy Pelosi complains about rising gasoline prices and, to solve the problem, calls on government to cap such price hikes (“Pelosi hammers gas companies for consumer ‘exploitation,’” May 12). Ms. Pelosi’s screeching is as preposterous as would be that of an obdurate alcoholic who complains about his hangover and, to solve the problem, calls for his bartender to pour him more stiff drinks. Progressives incessantly threaten to tax and...

Read More »

Some Non-Covid Links

My intrepid Mercatus Center colleague Veronique de Rugy decries Janet Yellen’s effort to create a global tax-collection cartel. A slice: Under this cartel of countries, with foreign governments committed to refusing to compete for capital by cutting tax rates, the incentives for U.S. companies to avoid high U.S. taxes are seriously reduced. So are the incentives for governments to keep their own tax systems modest. Inspired by a new collection of original papers from AEI, Richard Reinsch...

Read More »

People Don’t Understand Prices

Washington University economist Ian Fillmore sent to me the following insightful e-mail about public attitudes toward so-called “price gouging.” I share it here, in full, with Ian’s kind permission. Hi Don, I just saw this NBER working paper that surveyed people’s attitudes and beliefs about price increases. I wonder if there might be some insights here for those of us who oppose price gouging laws (and other forms of price controls) regarding which types of arguments are likely to be...

Read More »

Quotation of the Day…

… is from page 190 of my colleague Peter Boettke’s September 2013 speech given at a conference, in honor of James Buchanan, at George Mason University, “What Should Classical Liberal Political Economists Do?”, as this speech is reprinted in Pete’s 2021 book, The Struggle for a Better World: Absent the three Ps of property, prices, and profit and loss, individuals will be devoid of the incentives and information required to continually innovate and coordinate their plans to realize the...

Read More »

Market Prices are Objective Reports

Here’s a letter to the New York Post: Editor: You report that critics of Uber call that company’s rising fares “downright unethical” (“Uber ‘taking advantage’ of unsafe NYC with astronomical fares: outraged riders,” April 15). Prices reflect underlying realities of demand and supply. In NYC, rising crime (thanks Bill de Blasio!) simultaneously raises the demand for Uber rides as it lowers the supply of such rides. These realities cannot help but push fares upward. The supply of rides is...

Read More »

Some Non-Covid Links

George Will decries the attitudes and reckless ‘reasoning’ that have resulted in $1.6 trillion of student debt in the United States. Two slices: The Constitution, which modern presidents treat as a tissue of suggestions to be complied with when doing so is not inconvenient, says: “No Money shall be drawn from the Treasury, but in Consequence of Appropriations made by Law.” The Committee for a Responsible Federal Budget (if the committee has 20 members or so, it has about half of the...

Read More »

Gasoline Prices and the Primitive Man (and Woman)

In order to determine if something adds up, one must know basic arithmetic. In social matters, one must know some elementary economics. Wondering why gasoline prices haven’t decreased as fast as crude oil prices in the last few days, Rep. Diana DeGette (D., Colo.) declared: Something just doesn’t add up. The Wall Street Journal of yesterday had a good story on this (Collin Eaton, “Why Is Gasoline Still So Expensive if Oil Prices Have Dropped?,” Wall Street Journal,...

Read More »

Some Non-Covid Links

GMU Econ alum Alexander William Salter likes Matthew Hennessey’s new book, The Visible Hand. A slice: Chapter one dispels the fog of obscurantism that surrounds economics. Hennessey is surely correct that economists make economics too complicated. At its core, it’s all about tradeoffs. “You can’t have everything you want. That’s the heart of economics.” Understanding tradeoffs is crucial to appreciating Adam Smith’s “invisible hand” metaphor. Under capitalism, man’s struggle against...

Read More »

Some Non-Covid Links

My intrepid Mercatus Center colleague Veronique de Rugy warns of the dangers of price controls. A slice: To believe that inflation is the product of corporate greed requires even more obliviousness to reality. Inflation is truly a general and ongoing increase of all prices, including wages (which are the price of our labor). This reality means that all companies would have to be getting greedier simultaneously, and that all workers are, at the same time, overcome with similar avarice....

Read More »

The Perniciousness of Price Controls

Here’s a letter to the Wall Street Journal: Editor: Andy Kessler rightly warns of the destructiveness of price controls (“Here Come the Price Controls,” April 4). And he’s correct that support for such controls expressed by the likes of Pres. Biden and Sens. Bernie Sanders and Elizabeth Warren reflects these politicians’ economic ignorance. But perhaps this support for price controls reflects also many politicians’ innate instinct for seizing all opportunities to expand their power. The...

Read More »