1.4.05

THERE ARE TOPICS MORE CHALLENGING THAN CONCENTRATION AND MONOPOLY. The students in the public policy class are coming to grips with the full implications of "it depends," most recently on whether a particular industry structure is more or less conducive to the exercise of market power; and many of them are (understandably) anxious about an upcoming exam.

Difficult as those ideas may be, they pale compared to some recent problems in medical ethics, or is it family law? Eugene Volokh has some pertinent thoughts about whether or not one ought get involved in a debate outside one's area of expertise; see in particular points 4, 5, and 6.

That is not to say the Terri Schiavo litigation is not of interest to economists. Eclectic Econoclast offers some Coasian musings, focusing on the assignment of guardianship rights; Tyler at Marginal Revolution evaluates the tradeoffs involved in keeping the current assignments, or modifying them. Both link to Steven Landsburg's Slate column.

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