Discussion questions on Backhouse, Chapters 2 and 3 for Thursday 1/26

1. Backhouse discusses three applications of economics in chapters 2 and 3. To what extent were these applications of economic theory?

2. Presumably the government should not set up a market in tradeable rights to rob, rape or murder. Why not? Why don’t the same reasons apply to a market in tradeable rights to pollute the air?

3. Should government encourage competition among cell phone providers? Why?

4. What does one learn about economics from these case studies?