A break from all the Economic Mishigas

With all the economic mishigas dominating news cycle, I thought it was worth sharing a couple of articles that I have recently come across on the topic.

I found myself enjoying Donald Boudreaux’s Op-Ed in the Pittsburgh Tribune-Review. His tongue-in-cheek response to a reader’s email argues that capitalism is alive and well despite the headlines. I have included an excerpt below.

In the morning, my correspondent likely drinks coffee brewed from beans grown in Colombia or Ethiopia. For lunch, he eats a chicken sandwich or a quinoa-and-beet salad. Each of these foods is made available to him only through the efforts of countless strangers — producers such as chicken farmers, beet growers, truck drivers, insurance-company actuaries — spread across the globe and connected to him by a thick web of consensual capitalist acts of commerce.

Mike Munger’s American Institute for Economic Research article makes a rational appeal for capitalism. The entire article is worth the read, but I have included the crux of his argument below.

There are three elements to the argument for capitalism, and while they connect in crucial ways they can be separately defined. Those three elements are (a) division of labor; (b) impersonal exchange based on prices; and (3) economies of scale based on knowledge.