Logic is a harsh mistress: welfare economics for economists
Peter Leeson ()
Journal of Institutional Economics, 2020, vol. 16, issue 2, 145-150
Every economic explanation assumes maximization. How strange, then, that few economists accept one of maximization's most straightforward implications: every observed institution is efficient. My aim is to persuade economists of this fact and thus to dissuade them from making illogical claims about social welfare. To frame my argument, I consider the â€œproperty rights approachâ€ to institutions developed by Yoram Barzel. I speculate that economists resist what maximization implies about institutional efficiency because they think that efficiency-always precludes them from improving the world, and hope of improving the world is what attracted them to economics in the first place. But, besides being inconsistent, resistance is unnecessary: efficiency-always does not preclude economists, or anyone else, from improving the world.
References: Add references at CitEc
Citations: Track citations by RSS feed
Downloads: (external link)
https://www.cambridge.org/core/product/identifier/ ... type/journal_article link to article abstract page (text/html)
This item may be available elsewhere in EconPapers: Search for items with the same title.
Export reference: BibTeX
RIS (EndNote, ProCite, RefMan)
Persistent link: https://EconPapers.repec.org/RePEc:cup:jinsec:v:16:y:2020:i:2:p:145-150_3
Access Statistics for this article
More articles in Journal of Institutional Economics from Cambridge University Press Cambridge University Press, UPH, Shaftesbury Road, Cambridge CB2 8BS UK.
Bibliographic data for series maintained by Keith Waters ().