18 ethics - Chapter 18 Economics, Ethics, and Public Policy...

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Economics, Ethics, and Public Policy Chapter 18
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“Just between you and me, shouldn’t the World Bank be encouraging more migration of the dirty industries to the LDCs [Less Developed Countries]?. ..” Economics, Ethics and Public Policy Larry Summers Former Chief Economist of the World Bank
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“The measurements of the costs of health impairing pollution depends on the foregone earnings from increased morbidity and mortality.” From this point of view a given amount of health impairing pollution should be done in the country with the lowest cost, which would be the country with the lowest wages. I think the economic logic behind dumping a load of toxic waste in the lowest wage country is impeccable and we should face up to that.” Economics, Ethics and Public Policy Larry Summers Former Chief Economist of the World Bank
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If the economic logic behind dumping a load of toxic waste in the lowest wage country is impeccable, is there something wrong with economics?
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Gary Becker is in favor of legalizing the trade in human kidneys. About 70% of economists agree. Is there something wrong with economists?
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Normative and Positive Economics Normative Economics What should be Requires value judgments Positive Economics What is, or will happen Can be empirically checked
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Can Positive Economics inform our Normative Judgments? 75,000 Americans are currently waiting for kidney transplants. Would legalizing the kidney trade help them? Who would it harm? Terri Hertz died waiting for a kidney. At least she didn’t buy one.
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“The case for exporting pollution and importing kidneys is actually a familiar one: Trade makes people better off. One person wants the kidney more than the money; the other wants the money more than the kidney. Both people can be made better off by trade.”
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The arguments against trade The problem of exploitation Meddlesome preferences Fair and equal treatment Cultural goods and paternalism Poverty, inequality, and the distribution of income Who counts? Should some count for more?
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Francis Delmonico is chief of transplant services at Massachusetts General Hospital and medical director of the New England Organ Bank. “Payments eventually
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This note was uploaded on 11/07/2010 for the course ECH 434 taught by Professor Dfs during the Spring '10 term at Binghamton University.

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18 ethics - Chapter 18 Economics, Ethics, and Public Policy...

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