Friday, December 17, 2010
Nation Braces for Productivity Boom from Randian Economists
Since the election of President Obama, Americans have lived with the fear that libertarian economists across the country would no longer have the same incentives to write, consult, or otherwise contribute to the economy. The president's promise to end the Bush-era tax cuts for the wealthy, along with the expiration of restrictions on the estate tax, had raised concerns that these uber-productive members of society would take their talents and withdraw from society. However, with both Houses passing the $850 billion "stimulating taxes" bill and President Obama expected to sign it into law, economists are now looking forward to a boom in their own productivity.
"Certainly, we can now expect more movies, novels, concerts, and even orthodontia," predicted one Randian economist, who asked not to be named because he was embarrassed not to be working that very moment. "But we can expect the highest productivity jump from economists. We are the most sensitive to the slightest change in incentives, so from now on it's Katy bar the door!"
It was unclear what immediate effects the change in productivity will have on such economic markers as GDP, the trade deficit, or the unemployment rate. But the nation's mood is expected to brighten as this talented group of thinkers begins to participate in the labor market to their fullest economic ability.
"The possibilities are endless," said the economist. "It could be giving a talk, writing an article, editing a journal, and so on. These contributions will have a huge impact on the economy. We may even write original op-ed pieces."
One group, however, had mixed feelings about the passage of the tax compromise. Although children of Randian economists can now look forward to a larger inheritance, they no longer expect to spend more time playing with their parents. "My father said he was going to build a tree fort with us after Obama was elected," said one child who asked for anonymity, in fear of getting a time-out if named. "But just yesterday, he said his incentives had changed. At least the taxes he takes out of my allowance won't go up, either."
TrackBack URL for this entry:
Listed below are links to weblogs that reference Nation Braces for Productivity Boom from Randian Economists:
This is great, Matt. Well done.
Posted by: Anon | Dec 17, 2010 2:12:58 PM
Your title should be "Nation Braces for Productivity Boom from Greg Mankiw". Unless, of course, there are other economists you're referring to as well...
Posted by: Houstonian | Dec 17, 2010 4:20:02 PM
Posted by: Jen Kreder | Dec 19, 2010 12:46:57 AM
Posted by: Joseph Slater | Dec 19, 2010 2:39:08 PM
What's a "Randian economist"? That's just an ill-formed slur you made up, right?
Are you disputing that the idea of a labor/leisure trade-off, as is presented in all microeconomics textbooks, and arguing that it is a mistaken notion? Are you sure you are qualified to do that? If so, a thougth experiment: how much would you work for your employer if income was taxed 100%? How much would you work if income was taxed at some percentage less than 100%? Would the answer be a matter of degree - and if not - do you think that no humans make decisions at the margin or is that just an idiosyncratic approach that you prefer to take?
Posted by: Matt | Dec 20, 2010 6:53:25 PM
Matt(s), the larry david oped in the nyt is somewhat apt also:
Blueberries in every rich man's pot!
Posted by: Dan Markel | Dec 21, 2010 11:05:50 PM
The comments to this entry are closed.