Uncommon Sense: Economic Insights, from Marriage to Terrorism
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Uncommon Sense: Economic Insights, from Marriage to Terrorism

by Gary S. Becker, Richard A. Posner
     
 

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ISBN-10: 0226041018

ISBN-13: 9780226041018

Pub. Date: 11/01/2009

Publisher: University of Chicago Press

On December 5, 2004, the still-developing blogosphere took one of its biggest steps toward mainstream credibility, as Nobel Prize–winning economist Gary S. Becker and renowned jurist and legal scholar Richard A. Posner announced the formation of the Becker-Posner Blog.

In no time, the blog had established a wide readership and reputation as a reliable

Overview

On December 5, 2004, the still-developing blogosphere took one of its biggest steps toward mainstream credibility, as Nobel Prize–winning economist Gary S. Becker and renowned jurist and legal scholar Richard A. Posner announced the formation of the Becker-Posner Blog.

In no time, the blog had established a wide readership and reputation as a reliable source of lively, thought-provoking commentary on current events, its pithy and profound weekly essays highlighting the value of economic reasoning when applied to unexpected topics. Uncommon Sense gathers the most important and innovative entries from the blog, arranged by topic, along with updates and even reconsiderations when subsequent events have shed new light on a question. Whether it’s Posner making the economic case for the legalization of gay marriage, Becker arguing in favor of the sale of human organs for transplant, or even the pair of scholars vigorously disagreeing about the utility of collective punishment, with reference to Israel’s battles with Hezbollah and Hamas, the writing is always clear, the interplay energetic, and the resulting discussion deeply informed and intellectually substantial.

To have a single thinker of the stature of a Becker or Posner addressing questions of this nature would make for fascinating reading; to have both, writing and responding to each other, is an exceptionally rare treat. With Uncommon Sense, they invite the adventurous reader to join them on a whirlwind intellectual journey. All they ask is that you leave your preconceptions behind.

Product Details

ISBN-13:
9780226041018
Publisher:
University of Chicago Press
Publication date:
11/01/2009
Pages:
373
Product dimensions:
6.40(w) x 9.10(h) x 1.20(d)

Table of Contents

Introduction to the Becker-Posner Blog 1

Part I Sex and Population

1 The Sexual Revolution 11

2 Gay Marriage 17

3 Polygamy 25

4 Sex Selection 31

5 Immigration Reform 37

6 Putin's Population Plan 43

Afterthoughts to Part I 49

Part II Property Rights

7 Kelo and Eminent Domain 53

8 Pharmaceutical Patents 59

9 Grokster, File Sharing, and Contributory Infringement 65

10 Orphan Drugs, Intellectual Property, and Social Welfare 73

11 Organ Sales 79

12 Traffic Congestion 85

13 Privatizing Highways 91

Afterthoughts to Part II 97

Part III Universities

14 Plagiarism 103

15 Tenure 109

16 For-Profit Colleges 117

17 Ranking Higher Education 123

Afterthoughts to Part III 129

Part IV Incentives

18 Fat Tax 133

19 Trans Fats Ban 139

20 Libertarian Paternalism 147

21 Chicago and Big Boxes 153

Afterthoughts to Part IV 159

Part V Jobs and Employment

22 Judicial Term Limits 165

23 Economics of the Revolving Door 171

24 CEO Compensation 177

25 Income Inequality 185

26 Corporate Social Responsibility 191

Afterthoughts to Part V 197

Part VI Environment and Disasters

27 Tsunami 203

28 Major Disasters 211

29 Federalism, Economics, and Katrina 219

30 Post-Catastrophe Price Gouging 225

31 Global Warming and Discount Rates 231

32 Efficient Water Conservation 239

Afterthoughts to Part VI 245

Part VII Crime and Punishment and Terrorism

33 Capital Punishment 251

34 Doping Athletes 263

35 Drunk Driving 269

36 Internet Gambling 275

37 Preventive War 281

38 Ethnic Profiling 285

39 Privatizing Security 291

40 Antiterrorism Allocations 297

41 Collective Punishment 303

Afterthoughts to Part VII 309

Part VIII The World

42 Economic and Political Freedom 315

43 Size of Countries 321

44 Hamas, Palestine, and Democracy 327

45 Google in China 333

46 Economics of National Culture 339

47 Microfinance and Development 347

48 World Inequality 353

49 Foreign Aid 359

Afterthoughts to Part VIII 365

Index 367

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