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Should economics issues be more prevalent

Cowboy0108
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5/14/2015 2:40:42 PM
Posted: 1 year ago
I constantly hear people complaining about social issues: abortion, gay marriage, guns, etc. However, it is rare that I hear the economic issues being talked about.
Should economics (real economics, not the pop econ crap) be more talked about in politics.
ford_prefect
Posts: 4,138
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5/14/2015 3:39:49 PM
Posted: 1 year ago
At 5/14/2015 2:40:42 PM, Cowboy0108 wrote:
I constantly hear people complaining about social issues: abortion, gay marriage, guns, etc. However, it is rare that I hear the economic issues being talked about.
Should economics (real economics, not the pop econ crap) be more talked about in politics.

A thousand times yes.
ResponsiblyIrresponsible
Posts: 12,398
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5/14/2015 3:53:50 PM
Posted: 1 year ago
Ideally, yes. So far as I'm concerned, almost every single issue boils down in some way to economics. But the problem is that politicians and the general public are so utterly misinformed about economics, and non-truisms have long masqueraded as truisms, that I don't think there would actually be an intelligent discourse. Important economic issues would boil down to "how people feel" about policy actions.

A great issue is the Fed; dumb people who don't understand monetary policy (you'll note that I'm speaking out of frustration; this isn't to say that people ignorant of monetary policy are dumb, in the same way that I'm not dumb for not knowing anything about chemical engineering) will scream that the Fed is "printing money!" and that will lead to inflation. That isn't the case - at least not now, though there are obviously a lot of nuances and qualifiers to that (credibility, money multiplier, velocity, lambda coefficient of MP curve, degree to which it follows the Taylor Principle, Phillips curve coefficient, supply-side considerations, etc.) - that most people simply wouldn't understand. Another could even be "trickle down." Anyone who's ever read Paul Krugman knows the degree to which he strawmans people who actually want some semblance of tax reform that doesn't involve a giant top marginal tax rate - it's all about catering to those hedge funds, right, Paul?

So, I guess my answer to your question is yes and no. Yes, because these issues are important, and no because I'll rip my hair out at the sheer ignorance and stupidity of the *vast majority* of the population when it comes to economics. Hell, if more DDO people opined on economics I'd probably lose my mind.
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Cowboy0108
Posts: 420
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5/14/2015 8:20:45 PM
Posted: 1 year ago
At 5/14/2015 3:53:50 PM, ResponsiblyIrresponsible wrote:
Ideally, yes. So far as I'm concerned, almost every single issue boils down in some way to economics. But the problem is that politicians and the general public are so utterly misinformed about economics, and non-truisms have long masqueraded as truisms, that I don't think there would actually be an intelligent discourse. Important economic issues would boil down to "how people feel" about policy actions.
That's how I feel about proponents of the minimum wage!
A great issue is the Fed; dumb people who don't understand monetary policy (you'll note that I'm speaking out of frustration; this isn't to say that people ignorant of monetary policy are dumb, in the same way that I'm not dumb for not knowing anything about chemical engineering) will scream that the Fed is "printing money!" and that will lead to inflation. That isn't the case - at least not now, though there are obviously a lot of nuances and qualifiers to that (credibility, money multiplier, velocity, lambda coefficient of MP curve, degree to which it follows the Taylor Principle, Phillips curve coefficient, supply-side considerations, etc.) - that most people simply wouldn't understand. Another could even be "trickle down." Anyone who's ever read Paul Krugman knows the degree to which he strawmans people who actually want some semblance of tax reform that doesn't involve a giant top marginal tax rate - it's all about catering to those hedge funds, right, Paul?

So, I guess my answer to your question is yes and no. Yes, because these issues are important, and no because I'll rip my hair out at the sheer ignorance and stupidity of the *vast majority* of the population when it comes to economics. Hell, if more DDO people opined on economics I'd probably lose my mind.
Very true. I hate that people often do not get any more economics than what they learn in high school. I know from experience that high school econ is a joke. So maybe the trick to making the economic issues more prevalent is to worry less about popular opinion and more on congressmen making the right decision. I mean, that is why we elect representatives. As a society, we need to figure out a way to increase the importance of a candidate's economic expertise. If only there was a way to do this...
ResponsiblyIrresponsible
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5/14/2015 8:38:53 PM
Posted: 1 year ago
At 5/14/2015 8:20:45 PM, Cowboy0108 wrote:
That's how I feel about proponents of the minimum wage!

I think they're well-intentioned, but the issue is far more complex than "it reduces inequality and probably boosts consumption, so therefore it's ipso facto optimal." As we know, economics is all about trade-offs, so I wish they would more thoughtfully weigh the risks.

Very true. I hate that people often do not get any more economics than what they learn in high school. I know from experience that high school econ is a joke. So maybe the trick to making the economic issues more prevalent is to worry less about popular opinion and more on congressmen making the right decision. I mean, that is why we elect representatives. As a society, we need to figure out a way to increase the importance of a candidate's economic expertise. If only there was a way to do this...

This I agree with, though I honestly don't want congressmen to have virtually any sway over the economy, anyway, lol - and I surely don't want FOMC members chosen by popular election.
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Cowboy0108
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5/14/2015 9:23:49 PM
Posted: 1 year ago
This I agree with, though I honestly don't want congressmen to have virtually any sway over the economy, anyway, lol - and I surely don't want FOMC members chosen by popular election.

But do we want them chosen by an incompetent president?
Cowboy0108
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5/14/2015 9:25:27 PM
Posted: 1 year ago
This I agree with, though I honestly don't want congressmen to have virtually any sway over the economy, anyway, lol - and I surely don't want FOMC members chosen by popular election.

But do we want them chosen by an incompetent president? We need to elect more Ph.D. or M.S in business related fields, economics, or finance presidents. The law school presidents just don't do it for me.
Chang29
Posts: 732
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5/14/2015 10:17:06 PM
Posted: 1 year ago
At 5/14/2015 2:40:42 PM, Cowboy0108 wrote:
I constantly hear people complaining about social issues: abortion, gay marriage, guns, etc. However, it is rare that I hear the economic issues being talked about.
Should economics (real economics, not the pop econ crap) be more talked about in politics.

Economics is highly talked about political issue, but as a weapon to be used against those they oppose. Politicians agree that economic policies should be used to financially reward constituencies. Taxation, fiscal and monetary policies all are weapons to be used against some for the benefit of others.
A free market anti-capitalist

If it can be de-centralized, it will be de-centralized.
Cowboy0108
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5/14/2015 10:20:02 PM
Posted: 1 year ago
Economics is highly talked about political issue, but as a weapon to be used against those they oppose. Politicians agree that economic policies should be used to financially reward constituencies. Taxation, fiscal and monetary policies all are weapons to be used against some for the benefit of others.

The problem with modern economics is that each party uses the term economics to gain supporters. This is regardless of whether or not the economics are genuine. Too often, pop econ is based more on what sounds right than what is right. THAT is wrong.
Chang29
Posts: 732
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5/14/2015 10:31:53 PM
Posted: 1 year ago
At 5/14/2015 10:20:02 PM, Cowboy0108 wrote:
Economics is highly talked about political issue, but as a weapon to be used against those they oppose. Politicians agree that economic policies should be used to financially reward constituencies. Taxation, fiscal and monetary policies all are weapons to be used against some for the benefit of others.

The problem with modern economics is that each party uses the term economics to gain supporters. This is regardless of whether or not the economics are genuine. Too often, pop econ is based more on what sounds right than what is right. THAT is wrong.

Great reasons to take economic powers away from politicians and central planners.
A free market anti-capitalist

If it can be de-centralized, it will be de-centralized.
Cowboy0108
Posts: 420
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5/14/2015 10:33:50 PM
Posted: 1 year ago
Great reasons to take economic powers away from politicians and central planners.

And give the power to whom?
Chang29
Posts: 732
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5/14/2015 11:06:01 PM
Posted: 1 year ago
At 5/14/2015 10:33:50 PM, Cowboy0108 wrote:
Great reasons to take economic powers away from politicians and central planners.

And give the power to whom?

Power to individuals. Economic growth will occur without any central planner deciding groups to help or harm. Government should treat every citizen equally, not providing benefits to some at the expense of others.
A free market anti-capitalist

If it can be de-centralized, it will be de-centralized.
ben2974
Posts: 767
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5/14/2015 11:07:11 PM
Posted: 1 year ago
At 5/14/2015 3:53:50 PM, ResponsiblyIrresponsible wrote:
Ideally, yes. So far as I'm concerned, almost every single issue boils down in some way to economics. But the problem is that politicians and the general public are so utterly misinformed about economics, and non-truisms have long masqueraded as truisms, that I don't think there would actually be an intelligent discourse. Important economic issues would boil down to "how people feel" about policy actions.

A great issue is the Fed; dumb people who don't understand monetary policy (you'll note that I'm speaking out of frustration; this isn't to say that people ignorant of monetary policy are dumb, in the same way that I'm not dumb for not knowing anything about chemical engineering) will scream that the Fed is "printing money!" and that will lead to inflation. That isn't the case - at least not now, though there are obviously a lot of nuances and qualifiers to that (credibility, money multiplier, velocity, lambda coefficient of MP curve, degree to which it follows the Taylor Principle, Phillips curve coefficient, supply-side considerations, etc.) - that most people simply wouldn't understand. Another could even be "trickle down." Anyone who's ever read Paul Krugman knows the degree to which he strawmans people who actually want some semblance of tax reform that doesn't involve a giant top marginal tax rate - it's all about catering to those hedge funds, right, Paul?

So, I guess my answer to your question is yes and no. Yes, because these issues are important, and no because I'll rip my hair out at the sheer ignorance and stupidity of the *vast majority* of the population when it comes to economics. Hell, if more DDO people opined on economics I'd probably lose my mind.

OH god. I graduated undergrad fall 2014 with a B.A (Bull Sh!t - as my fellow economist classmates declared as B.S candidates) in economics and pretty much all the concepts you named I either don't remember learning or are already a distant memory.
(Slight exaggeration, but still.)
Cowboy0108
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5/14/2015 11:11:05 PM
Posted: 1 year ago
OH god. I graduated undergrad fall 2014 with a B.A (Bull Sh!t - as my fellow economist classmates declared as B.S candidates) in economics and pretty much all the concepts you named I either don't remember learning or are already a distant memory.
(Slight exaggeration, but still.)

So you are not happy with your econ degree? I am planning on becoming an econ major (b.s.).
ResponsiblyIrresponsible
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5/15/2015 5:24:20 AM
Posted: 1 year ago
At 5/14/2015 9:23:49 PM, Cowboy0108 wrote:
This I agree with, though I honestly don't want congressmen to have virtually any sway over the economy, anyway, lol - and I surely don't want FOMC members chosen by popular election.

But do we want them chosen by an incompetent president?

Good point, lol. I tend to think, though, that his right-hand men are making the decision - in Obama's case, that was Summers and Geithner.

On another note, Summers would've been an exceptional Fed chair.
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ResponsiblyIrresponsible
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5/15/2015 5:24:38 AM
Posted: 1 year ago
At 5/14/2015 9:25:27 PM, Cowboy0108 wrote:
This I agree with, though I honestly don't want congressmen to have virtually any sway over the economy, anyway, lol - and I surely don't want FOMC members chosen by popular election.

But do we want them chosen by an incompetent president? We need to elect more Ph.D. or M.S in business related fields, economics, or finance presidents. The law school presidents just don't do it for me.

That I agree with.
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1harderthanyouthink
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5/15/2015 6:55:29 AM
Posted: 1 year ago
At 5/14/2015 3:53:50 PM, ResponsiblyIrresponsible wrote:
So, I guess my answer to your question is yes and no. Yes, because these issues are important, and no because I'll rip my hair out at the sheer ignorance and stupidity of the *vast majority* of the population when it comes to economics. Hell, if more DDO people opined on economics I'd probably lose my mind.

Audit the Fed.
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And I'm much obliged to you for making it clear - that I'm not here."

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ResponsiblyIrresponsible
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5/15/2015 7:23:52 AM
Posted: 1 year ago
At 5/15/2015 6:55:29 AM, 1harderthanyouthink wrote:
At 5/14/2015 3:53:50 PM, ResponsiblyIrresponsible wrote:
So, I guess my answer to your question is yes and no. Yes, because these issues are important, and no because I'll rip my hair out at the sheer ignorance and stupidity of the *vast majority* of the population when it comes to economics. Hell, if more DDO people opined on economics I'd probably lose my mind.

Audit the Fed.

lol.
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ben2974
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5/15/2015 8:27:40 AM
Posted: 1 year ago
At 5/14/2015 11:11:05 PM, Cowboy0108 wrote:
OH god. I graduated undergrad fall 2014 with a B.A (Bull Sh!t - as my fellow economist classmates declared as B.S candidates) in economics and pretty much all the concepts you named I either don't remember learning or are already a distant memory.
(Slight exaggeration, but still.)

So you are not happy with your econ degree? I am planning on becoming an econ major (b.s.).

Pretty much. But I'd attribute my expression of economics to the school that taught me. If you're genuinely interested in econ, by all means, pursue that degree. If you're going for econ, though, I'd suggest pursuing a higher degree immediately, as a bachelors in the social science barely gets you anywhere.
Cowboy0108
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5/15/2015 9:31:22 AM
Posted: 1 year ago
At 5/15/2015 8:27:40 AM, ben2974 wrote:
At 5/14/2015 11:11:05 PM, Cowboy0108 wrote:
OH god. I graduated undergrad fall 2014 with a B.A (Bull Sh!t - as my fellow economist classmates declared as B.S candidates) in economics and pretty much all the concepts you named I either don't remember learning or are already a distant memory.
(Slight exaggeration, but still.)

So you are not happy with your econ degree? I am planning on becoming an econ major (b.s.).

Pretty much. But I'd attribute my expression of economics to the school that taught me. If you're genuinely interested in econ, by all means, pursue that degree. If you're going for econ, though, I'd suggest pursuing a higher degree immediately, as a bachelors in the social science barely gets you anywhere.

Interestingly enough, all the sources I look at says that econ is one of the highest paid non engineering majors.
thett3
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5/15/2015 10:15:46 AM
Posted: 1 year ago
I like how the big, ideology driven economic issue of our day was raising the top marginal tax rate from 35% to 39.6%. Yeah, you get them Obama! The rich should pay their fair share, and with them paying 3.6 more cents per every dollar they make over $400,000 I feel confident that the problems of inequality in our society are almost entirely resolved.
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Cowboy0108
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5/15/2015 12:34:28 PM
Posted: 1 year ago
At 5/15/2015 10:15:46 AM, thett3 wrote:
I like how the big, ideology driven economic issue of our day was raising the top marginal tax rate from 35% to 39.6%. Yeah, you get them Obama! The rich should pay their fair share, and with them paying 3.6 more cents per every dollar they make over $400,000 I feel confident that the problems of inequality in our society are almost entirely resolved.

That is part of the problem actually. People being concerned with what is fair instead of what works.
ben2974
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5/15/2015 1:05:55 PM
Posted: 1 year ago
At 5/15/2015 9:31:22 AM, Cowboy0108 wrote:
At 5/15/2015 8:27:40 AM, ben2974 wrote:
At 5/14/2015 11:11:05 PM, Cowboy0108 wrote:
OH god. I graduated undergrad fall 2014 with a B.A (Bull Sh!t - as my fellow economist classmates declared as B.S candidates) in economics and pretty much all the concepts you named I either don't remember learning or are already a distant memory.
(Slight exaggeration, but still.)

So you are not happy with your econ degree? I am planning on becoming an econ major (b.s.).

Pretty much. But I'd attribute my expression of economics to the school that taught me. If you're genuinely interested in econ, by all means, pursue that degree. If you're going for econ, though, I'd suggest pursuing a higher degree immediately, as a bachelors in the social science barely gets you anywhere.

Interestingly enough, all the sources I look at says that econ is one of the highest paid non engineering majors.

Back in freshman year my econ "101" prof said the same kind of thing. My guess is that econ majors, when you exclude those who pursue econ phds, tend to either get some other higher degree or manage to transition smoothly into some related field. Econ is such a broad topic such that you can transfer your skillset/knowledge to most business-related positions. My sister graduated undergrad with an econ degree and is now making 70k+ working in PR. She has a few years until she's 30 years old. I wonder where i'll be then...
Cowboy0108
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5/15/2015 2:18:45 PM
Posted: 1 year ago
At 5/15/2015 1:05:55 PM, ben2974 wrote:
At 5/15/2015 9:31:22 AM, Cowboy0108 wrote:
At 5/15/2015 8:27:40 AM, ben2974 wrote:
At 5/14/2015 11:11:05 PM, Cowboy0108 wrote:
OH god. I graduated undergrad fall 2014 with a B.A (Bull Sh!t - as my fellow economist classmates declared as B.S candidates) in economics and pretty much all the concepts you named I either don't remember learning or are already a distant memory.
(Slight exaggeration, but still.)

So you are not happy with your econ degree? I am planning on becoming an econ major (b.s.).

Pretty much. But I'd attribute my expression of economics to the school that taught me. If you're genuinely interested in econ, by all means, pursue that degree. If you're going for econ, though, I'd suggest pursuing a higher degree immediately, as a bachelors in the social science barely gets you anywhere.

Interestingly enough, all the sources I look at says that econ is one of the highest paid non engineering majors.

Back in freshman year my econ "101" prof said the same kind of thing. My guess is that econ majors, when you exclude those who pursue econ phds, tend to either get some other higher degree or manage to transition smoothly into some related field. Econ is such a broad topic such that you can transfer your skillset/knowledge to most business-related positions. My sister graduated undergrad with an econ degree and is now making 70k+ working in PR. She has a few years until she's 30 years old. I wonder where i'll be then...

So what did you wind up doing with your degree?
ben2974
Posts: 767
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5/15/2015 2:23:19 PM
Posted: 1 year ago
At 5/15/2015 2:18:45 PM, Cowboy0108 wrote:
At 5/15/2015 1:05:55 PM, ben2974 wrote:
At 5/15/2015 9:31:22 AM, Cowboy0108 wrote:
At 5/15/2015 8:27:40 AM, ben2974 wrote:
At 5/14/2015 11:11:05 PM, Cowboy0108 wrote:
OH god. I graduated undergrad fall 2014 with a B.A (Bull Sh!t - as my fellow economist classmates declared as B.S candidates) in economics and pretty much all the concepts you named I either don't remember learning or are already a distant memory.
(Slight exaggeration, but still.)

So you are not happy with your econ degree? I am planning on becoming an econ major (b.s.).

Pretty much. But I'd attribute my expression of economics to the school that taught me. If you're genuinely interested in econ, by all means, pursue that degree. If you're going for econ, though, I'd suggest pursuing a higher degree immediately, as a bachelors in the social science barely gets you anywhere.

Interestingly enough, all the sources I look at says that econ is one of the highest paid non engineering majors.

Back in freshman year my econ "101" prof said the same kind of thing. My guess is that econ majors, when you exclude those who pursue econ phds, tend to either get some other higher degree or manage to transition smoothly into some related field. Econ is such a broad topic such that you can transfer your skillset/knowledge to most business-related positions. My sister graduated undergrad with an econ degree and is now making 70k+ working in PR. She has a few years until she's 30 years old. I wonder where i'll be then...

So what did you wind up doing with your degree?

Nowhere in particular, yet. I graduated from college five months ago. Right now i'm holding a job as a sales auditor that pays $19/hr. It's likely that i'll apply to law school for fall 2017. In all honesty, I can't see myself going far without getting some higher degree.