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Author Archives: mcoats

We have discussed agricultural price supports in class.  Here is a similar program set up by the state of California to monopolize the sales of raisins and keep prices up.  When crops are bountiful, the state of California takes a part of each farmer’s crop and holds onto it and sells it to school lunch […]

I thought I should reintroduce the economist, Norbert Michel, to readers here.  Back in January of 2006, Norbert Michel, Gokhan Karahan and I, three economists here at Nicholls, started Bastiat’s Bastions.  Since then, other economists, Chad Turner and Shane Sanders added their talents, both as professors here at Nicholls and as contributors to Bastiat’s Bastions. […]

In risk and insurance and economics, there is a problem known as “adverse selection.”  The conservative newspaper, The Washington Times, claims that adverse selection, also known as the Death Spiral, is already occurring with the health insurance plans called “ObamaCare,”  (read the article), that  the policies enacted under the Affordable Care Act are leading to […]

Note–I originally posted this in May of 2011, but somehow I must have deleted it by mistake (you know that sort of thing never happens); but I did find it in my files and am reposting it here. Those famous lines from Coleridge’s “The Rime of the Ancient Mariner,” come to mind when we consider […]

About 20 years ago I went to Seattle to present a paper at the Western Economic Association.  One of the things I loved about that trip was the food in the restaurants there.  From some of the best Asian cuisine in the US outside of San Francisco to wonderful fresh northern Pacific fish and crabs, […]

I have never condoned the recreational use of drugs other than alcohol. In of my classes recently, I discussed how the war on drugs has led to an increase in crime.  Here, Texas Tech Professor and Independent Institute Senior Fellow Ben Powell discusses the economics of the war on drugs. One point that he makes […]

The gross-receipts tax, as proposed by Nevada Governor Brian Sandoval (R), is much like an ordinary sales tax, taxing firms’ sales by taking a certain percent of sales in taxes.  Since the tax will be a somewhat a percent of sales, or purchases, it is sure to be as regressive as any sales tax. However, a […]

Sometimes in your life, you meet people who alter your life’s course, who shape your life, or change your course in some way.  Certainly, your parents do alot to set the general direction, or more importantly, teach you how to sail in the first place, how to manage rough and calm seas alike.  I came […]

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