My last post probably generated more confusion than clarity. Let me try to clarify some conceptual points that might help bring my thinking into focus. In that post, I was trying to work through the inequality/rents connection. I argued that the standard way I’ve seen it presented doesn’t make sense to me. I tried to argue that increasing rents is neither necessary, nor sufficient for increasing inequality. In the more speculative parts of the post, I suggested why I think this confusion exists.
If this post sounds confused, it is probably because it is. I’m trying to work through what people mean when they use the word “rent.” They seem to slide between rents and rent-seeking, which are connected but different things.
Yesterday’s post tried to lay out why I believe the fundamental difference between Austrians, Chicago school, and Samuelsonian economists is only one of emphasis. Thinking more about it, I was reminded about an interview with Kirzner that also bring in the use of math in economics (one of my favorite topics to get myself in trouble).
A long, long time ago, I had the bold idea to work through three textbooks in economics from three different perspectives: Murray Rothbard’s Man, Economy, and State, George Stigler’s Theory of Price, and Mas-Colell, Whiston, and Green’s _Microeconomic Theory, _or as I separate them: Austrian, Chicago, and Samuelsonian.
(Update: I passed both exams on the first attempt. Hopefully that helps readers to judge the information below.)