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Economic analysis is itself value-free, but in practice it encourages a cosmopolitan interest in natural equality.
It examines how the change came about from regarding equality as necessitating differentiated treatment of different kinds of people to modern egalitarian attitudes.
There are eight chapters, of which the last is a review.
More recently, a tradition from University of Chicago economists asserts that deep down, all human beings have the same desires, even though they may face different circumstances and incentives. Mankiw is a regular contributor to this column.)Often, economists spend their energies squabbling with one another, but arguably the more important contrast is between our broadly liberal economic worldview and the various alternatives — common around the globe — that postulate natural hierarchies of religion, ethnicity, caste and gender, often enforced by law and strict custom.
Gary Becker, the Nobel laureate who is one of the founders of this approach, used the economic method to lay bare the selfish motives behind racial and ethnic discrimination. Economists too often forget that we are part of this broader battle of ideas, and that we are winning some enduring victories.
” He found that unrestricted immigration could create tens of trillions of dollars in economic value, as captured by the migrants themselves in the form of higher wages in their new countries and by those who hire the migrants or consume the products of their labor.
For a profession concerned with precision, it is remarkable how infrequently we economists talk about those rather large numbers.In 1829, all 15 economists who held seats in the British Parliament voted to allow Roman Catholics as members.In 1858, the 13 economists in Parliament voted unanimously to extend full civil rights to Jews.Truly open borders might prove unworkable, especially in countries with welfare states, and kill the goose laying the proverbial golden eggs; in this regard Mr. Still, we should be obsessing over how many of those trillions can actually be realized. Imagine that it is your professional duty to report a cost-benefit analysis of liberalizing immigration policy.You wouldn’t dream of producing a study that counted “men only” or “whites only,” at least not without specific, clearly stated reasons for dividing the data.Bentham and Mill didn’t support personal liberty in every instance — Mill was a proud imperialist when it came to India, and Bentham’s idea for a Panopticon prison was a model of state-sponsored surveillance.But they prepared the way for dissecting the prevailing defenses of hierarchy and injustice.This work uses the methods of reasoned history and comparative statistics to arrive at an assessment of egalitarianism.The book is intended for economists, economic historians, political historians, sociologists, and political philosophers. Part I, The rise of egalitarianism, provides a history of egalitarianism starting from early principles in ancient Gre ...So why report cost-benefit results only for United States citizens or residents, as is sometimes done in analyses of both international trade and migration?The nation-state is a good practical institution, but it does not provide the final moral delineation of which people count and which do not.