Wednesday, April 25, 2007

Your Behaviour is based on Economics

My curiosity for Economics continues. I discovered this amazing 10 part series by Walter Williams and I promise that once you go through the pages, you'll find Economics real fun.

In part 3, for example, he describes three aspects of economic behaviour ( production, consumption and exchange) and touches on "exploitation". The excerpts:

Say you offer me a wage of $2 an hour. I’m free to either accept or reject
your offer. So what can be concluded if I’m seen working for you at $2 an hour?
One clear conclusion is that I must have seen myself as being better off taking
your offer than my next best alternative. All other alternatives were less
valuable, or else why would I have accepted the $2 offer? How appropriate is it
to say that you’re exploiting me when you’ve given me my best offer? Rather than
using the term “exploitation,” you might say you wish I had more desirable
alternatives.

By no means do I suggest that you purge your vocabulary of the term
“exploitation.” It’s an emotionally valuable term to use to trick others, but in
the process of tricking others, one need not trick himself. I’m reminded of
charges of exploitation Mrs. Williams used to make early on in our 44-year
marriage. She’d charge, “Walter, you’re using me!” I’d respond by saying,
“Honey, sure, I’m using you. If I had no use for you, I wouldn’t have married
you in the first place.” How many of us would marry a person for whom we had no
use? As a matter of fact, the problem of the lonely hearts among us is that they
can’t find someone to use them.



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