What Do "We" Think About The Economy

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What do we think of the current economy?

A discussion about how to think about the difficult economic problems facing us today. Originally given to the Greek Men's Club 10272009.

The author is available to speak to your group at the contact information on the last slide.

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What Do "We" Think About The Economy

  1. 1. What do “we” think about the economy?<br />Dr. Steven Myers<br />Associate Professor of Economics<br />The University of Akron<br />Prepared for presentation on October 27, 2009 to the <br />Annunciation Greek Orthodox Men’s Club, Akron, OH<br />
  2. 2. Classroom survey research project in my Computer Skills in Economic Analysis <br />course, Oct 2009, 489 respondents.<br />
  3. 3. 25. Do you think the current price of gasoline is too high, too low, or about right?   <br />26. Which do you think is more responsible for the recent increase in gasoline prices: the normal law of supply and demand, oil companies are trying to increase profits, both, or neither.  <br />Survey of Americans and Economists, Kaiser Family Foundation, 1996<br />
  4. 4. What do others think about economists?<br />Give me only one armed economists!<br />Harry Truman<br />If you lay all of the economists in the world end to end you won’t reach a conclusion.<br />
  5. 5. How economists think<br />Incentives matter<br />Actions occur at the margin<br />Economists watch what people “do” and not what people “say.”<br />Tradeoffs always exist<br /> Opportunity costs<br />Unintended consequences<br />
  6. 6. “That which is seen, and that which is not seen” - 1850<br />Between a good and a bad economist …<br />—the one takes account of the visible effect; the other takes account both of the effects which are seen and also of those which it is necessary to foresee.<br />
  7. 7. “the whole of economics can be reduced to a single sentence.”<br />First 1946, then revised 1978<br />
  8. 8. The sentence:<br /> The art of economics consists in looking not merely at the immediate but at the longer effects of any act or policy; it consists in tracing the consequences of that policy not merely for one group but for all groups.<br />First 1946, then revised 1978<br />
  9. 9. But …<br />“… bad economists present their errors to the public better than the good economists present their truths.”<br />First 1946, then revised 1978<br />
  10. 10. Broken Window Fallacy<br />
  11. 11. Broken Window Fallacy<br />Can not create jobs or wealth <br />by destruction<br />Or force<br />Or Coercion (by Government)<br />If we could, <br />let’s break them all.<br />
  12. 12. Health Insurance Reform<br />In the first 10 years:<br />It will be deficit neutral<br />Christine Romer, Chair CEA<br />It will have a 10 year surplus of -$81 Billion.<br />CBO<br />
  13. 13. Health Insurance Reform<br />In the first 10 years:<br />It will be deficit neutral<br />Christine Romer, Chair CEA<br />It will have a 10 year surplus of -$81 Billion.<br />CBO<br />Levin Foundation<br />First 10 years<br />Deficit 89 Billion<br />Second 1o years<br />Deficit of $1,007 Billion<br />The Peterson Foundation Report.pdf<br />
  14. 14. Individual v. CollectiveFreedom v. CoercionPrivate Markets v. Government Provision<br />Is the economy “broken?”<br />
  15. 15. Has Capitalism Failed?<br />Classroom survey research project in my Computer Skills in Economic Analysis <br />course, Oct 2009, 489 respondents.<br />
  16. 16. The Forgotten Man<br />“A”<br />Progressives<br />“X”<br />The Unfortunate<br />“B”<br />Politicians<br />“C”<br />Everyone Else<br />
  17. 17.
  18. 18.
  19. 19.
  20. 20.
  21. 21. We paid off WWII$1.4 Trillion isn’t so big.<br />http://politicalmath.wordpress.com/2009/08/25/willful-omissions-from-paul-krugman/<br />
  22. 22.
  23. 23.
  24. 24. http://www.lewin.com/content/publications/The%20Peterson%20Foundation%20Report.pdf<br />
  25. 25. http://online.wsj.com/article/SB10001424052748703746604574461610985243066.html<br />
  26. 26.
  27. 27. http://perotcharts.com/2009/08/comparison-of-share-of-income-to-income-taxes-paid-in-2007/<br />
  28. 28. http://perotcharts.com/2009/07/income-taxes-paid-by-individuals-in-2007/<br />
  29. 29.
  30. 30.
  31. 31.
  32. 32. http://michaelscomments.files.wordpress.com/2009/09/augustunempdata.jpg<br />
  33. 33.
  34. 34. Dr. Steven Myers<br />myers@uakron.edu<br />http://gozips.uakron.edu/~myers<br />

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