150 Paper Q2


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SAMIR PATEL, YVONNE THAI, QUESTION #2 Just what, exactly, are commodities ? In simple terms, commodities are the raw materials humans use to create a livable world. Thus, modern life depends on these raw materials which are products that keep humans and businesses going. In the second chapter Carruthers and Babbs explain how the modern world is filled with commodities as a “typical supermarket chain offers about 75,000 items in a single store, and even a small neighborhood hardware store contains approximately 40,000 different items (Babbs 16). Prices of commodities are often based on supply and demand. Today, with the demand of marijuana ever increasing especially for medicinal use, the plant is now considered a commodity like any other (Marijuana Inc). While it may not be traded on Wall Street any time soon, marijuana has become a booming cash crop. In comparison, Greg realizes that school is a good place to make money. One day in April Greg started looking around the cafeteria, and everywhere he looked, he saw quarters. He witnessed students trading quarters for ice-cream sandwiches, cupcakes and cookies. Greg also discovered kids over at the school store trading quarters for neon pens and fancy pencils all of which can be referred to as commodities (Clements 16) Markets involve a form of social activity that is often possible only under certain specific circumstances described by Carruthers and Babbs in chapter one. They mention that markets don’t appear out of thin air but generally depend on an institutional foundation . This foundation consists of four key elements: property, buyers and sellers, money and reliable information (Babbs 5). The four key elements mentioned can be spotted as we refer back to the story Lunch Money. The two sellers in the story were Greg and Maura who were trying to sell their products
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This note was uploaded on 08/07/2011 for the course SOC 50 taught by Professor Schmitt during the Fall '10 term at UC Riverside.

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