Maybe Capitalism ain't all that bad

Donald Boudreaux’s article takes advantage of the 2018 Nobel Prize winning economist William Nordhaus’s recent notoriety to highlight one of the Nobel Laureate’s older works that attempts to measure the economic impact of technological innovation. The most interesting finding from the paper is that from the period 1948-2001 producers only captured 2.2% of the economic benefits while consumers received the lion’s share of 97.8%. Professor Boudreaux asserts that capitalism, rather than the innovator’s benevolence, is responsible for the split.

I’d be willing to bet the next time you read an article that highlights Jeff Bezo’s $147 billion net worth, it will fail to mention the $6.5 trillion of consumer value created.

Lagniappe: For those who want to read more of Donald Boudreaux’s work, check out his blog Cafe Hayek.

The Intelligent Economist: Top Econ blogs list

The Intelligent Investor's Prateek Agarwal compiles his list of top 100 Economics Blogs on his recent blog post.  There are several interesting blogs that I am looking forward to exploring their content. I have included my top 4 below. Please use the comments section to share your thoughts on other blogs on the list or to recommend any omissions.

  1. Marginal Revolution
  2. Cafe Hayek
  3. Grumpy Economist
  4. Conversable Economist

Lagniappe: Grumpy Economist post on California Solar Panel Mandate

Protectionism in the News

One of the advantages of having an unpopular president is that his bad ideas get the criticism that they deserve.  Listening to the mainstream media call tariffs a tax on the American consumer was music to my ears.  Not sure where these critics were when Trump imposed tariffs on solar panels and washing machines in January. With multinational corportations that source materials and manufacture goods all over the globe, it is impossible to impose restrictions in trade without creating some unintended consequenses. 

Below I have included some articles that I particularly enjoyed reading that are critical of recent tariffs and protectionism in general. Please use the comments to share any other articles that you have come across and feel are worth sharing.

  1. Trade Wars are Easy to Win 
  2. Some Questions for Protectionists 
  3. Trump's Tariff Folly