Se mercados livres são tão bons, por que não existem na prática?

Excelente pergunta. Eis a tentativa de resposta.

If a Pure Market Economy Is So Good, Why Doesn’t It Exist? The Importance of Changing Preferences Versus Incentives in Social Change

Abstract Many economists argue that a pure market economy cannot come about because people will always have incentives to use coercion (Cowen and Sutter, 2005; Holcombe, 2004). We maintain that these economists leave out an important factor in social change. Change can come about by altering incentives or preferences, but since most economists ignore changing preferences, they too quickly conclude that change is impossible. History shows that social change based on changes in preferences is common. By recognizing that preferences need not be constant, political economists can say much more about changing the world.

Será que a resposta satisfaz? Vamos ler…vamos ler…


Incentivos importam

Tyler and Alex have new textbooks on micro and macro. Both begin with the same anecdote.

In 1787, the British government had hired sea captains to ship convicted felons to Australia…On one voyage, more than a third of the males died and the rest arrived beaten, starved, and sick…

Instead of paying the captains for each prisoner placed on board ship in Great Britain, the economist suggested paying for each prisoner that walked off the ship in Australia. In 1793, the new system was implemented and immediately the survival rate shot up to 99 percent.

That is economics on one foot–incentives matter.

Direto do Arnold Kling.


Antropometria importa?

How useful is anthropometric history? Some reflections on Paul Hohenberg’s recent presidential address to the American Economic History Association

John Komlos
Department of Economics, University of Munich

Abstract: In his recent presidential address to the American Economic History Association, Paul Hohenberg argued that anthropometric history does not meet his criteria for useful research in the field of economic history. He considers research useful if (a) it “helps shape one of our underlying disciplines”; b) it contributes “to clear—even fresh—thinking about current, policy-related issues or on-going scholarly debates about the historical past”; and c) it “penetrates the fuzzy realm of identity-shaping popular discourse”. I argue briefly that only a superficial reading of the literature would lead to the conclusion that anthropometric history has not been useful.