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A history of the Corporation – Wonkish

There have always been large organizations that have done the kinds of things corporations sometimes do, but for most of human history, those organizations were were organized as religious hierarchies or governments rather than as for-profit businesses. Businesses were small

Posted in Managerial Micro

The expected value of potential lives lost during atomic testing

Rob Reid wrote a great explanation of the horrible risk taken during the Manhattan Project, when American nuclear scientists took a chance estimated at one-in-three million that the first atomic test would create a chain reaction that would ignite the

Posted in Globalization & International, Health, Managerial Micro, Violence & Peace

An airline “dent and scratch sale”

A classic story of price discrimination that textbooks tell is the appliance ‘dent and scratch’ sale in which an appliance store will deliberately create cosmetic damage on some of their washers and refrigerators so that they can sell them at

Posted in Managerial Micro

VOX messed up: Amazon.com already has enormous monopoly power

Emily Stewart at Vox.com made a mistake about monopoly power in America. She wrote that Amazon… could eventually become so big that it can control what shipping companies such as FedEx and UPS charge it, and, in areas where it becomes

Posted in Managerial Micro, Public Finance

Can stadium owners increase profits by imposing a price ceiling on their hot dog vendors?

How about these prices for food at NFL games: “$35 for a (large) cocktail? $19 for cheese curds? $18 for essentially a Doritos taco?” Although it is tempting to blame stadium owners for the high prices and bad quality, the

Posted in Managerial Micro

Democratic corporate governance

Are corporations authoritarian or democratic?  Corporations tend to be hierarchical institutions in which workers often feel like they are working within a communist dictatorship, but compared with privately-held companies, corporations are extremely democratic.  A privately-held company can be owned by

Posted in Labor, Managerial Micro, Public Finance

Progress often means cheaper, not necessarily better

The best clothing you can get is “bespoke” clothing. Bespoke clothing is sewn by hand to fit each individual and because it is custom made, it can be designed with exactly the kind of cloth, colors, and shape that you

Posted in Health, Managerial Micro, Public Finance

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