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FEATURED ARTICLES

The "Trade Deficit": Defective Language, Deficient Thinking

Daniel B. Klein and Donald J. Boudreaux
June 5, 2017

A trade deficit is bad, right? Not so fast. Economists have long known that it's not bad. But the language of "deficit" leads people to think that it is. The authors of this month's Featured Article, economists Daniel Klein and Donald J. Boudreaux, point out that we could just easily regard a trade deficit as a "surplus of stuff." Neither way of thinking, they argue, is informative. Instead, they conclude, "economists ought to speak in a way that ascribes a presumptive mutual gainfulness and rightness to whatever voluntary decisions people make regarding all that is their own." Economists should throw out the "deficit"/"surplus" talk.
MORE ARTICLES BY Daniel B. Klein
MORE ARTICLES BY Donald J. Boudreaux

Arnold Kling

The Social Learning Animal

Arnold Kling
June 5, 2017
Why does only one species on earth develop a cumulative culture? Arnold Kling delves into evolutionary neuroscience and reviews Kevin Laland's new book, Darwin's Unfinished Symphony. Distinct from other animals, humans generate and sustain common thought patterns and behavior over time. Not only are Laland's insights fascinating, but also his book also offers methodological suggestions to economists for their own research.
MORE ARTICLES BY ARNOLD KLING

FEATURED COLUMNS

THINKING STRAIGHT

Once a commonplace characteristic of globalization, immigration has become a heated topic, especially in the United States and Europe. This month, Anthony de Jasay explores possible alternatives for the "economic refugees" being met with such hostility in the developed world today, and finds them wanting.
MORE ARTICLES BY ANTHONY DE JASAY

AN ECONOMIST LOOKS AT EUROPE

Pedro Schartz

Thoughts for Tigers

Pedro Schwartz
May 1, 2017
In his address to the recent Mont Pelerin Society meeting in Seoul, South Korea, Pedro Schwartz proffered some advice for escaping Asia's recent economic doldrums. Far from blindly mimicking the policies of the developed world, Schwartz asks the former "tigers" to turn their eyes to macroeconomic stabilization and market liberalization.
MORE ARTICLES BY PEDRO SCHWARTZ