Alex C

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Covid 9/17: Done Biden His Time

The problem with the principle is there are often pre-commitments to not make the sensible rules, so they have to find workarounds.

Insights from Modern Principles of Economics

I am forced to wonder why no generous individual has thought to go down to the hardware store, buy maybe $200 worth of materials, and build those guys a better bigger (crude) shelter and some crude furniture. I suppose the police would come along and knock it all down and arrest the person who did so.

Insights from Modern Principles of Economics

When there is a shortage of shovels, we should employ rationing, which is a valid alternative to price gouging that many people seem to forget about. Yes, maybe one family would like to buy 20 shovels if they are $10 each. Tough. They get one, just like every other family. This especially applies if it is a short-term shortage which the market wouldn't be able to re-equilibrate before the shortage was solved another way (by the storm going away and the roads getting fixed).

Unless absolutely ludicrous prices are charged for the shovels, the utility for each family having one snow shovel is much greater than the utility for half the families having no shovels and the other half having two.

The major shortage we have in many cities today is housing. Some cities pass laws saying nobody may charge more than $XXX/month in rent, and that doesn't work. But smarter cities pass laws saying nobody may raise rent more than $XX/month/year, nobody may evict a tenant just to get higher rent, and for new buildings people can charge as much rent as they like. Then there is no supply disincentive!

Insights from Modern Principles of Economics

If that's the case, I believe it illustrates a failing of economics. If there are enough resources available in the country for every child to go to school and their families to still eat, but only the top (say) 20% of children can go to school, and the bottom 80% must work in order to economically justify their families receiving food, then everyone loses in the long run. Yet, the people who make the food have no individual incentive to give it to the families of the children, unless they work...

The Effectiveness Of Masks is Limited

Over here in Germany, average people are wearing N95/KN95/FFP2's and I know a few people who somehow got their hands on some N99/FFP3's. If cloth masks and surgical masks are not good enough, we should acknowledge that and get better ones. Many people would try to claim that as proof that masking doesn't work and shouldn't be done.