EconTalk: Conversations for the Curious is an award-winning weekly podcast hosted by Russ Roberts of Shalem College in Jerusalem. The eclectic guest list includes authors, doctors, psychologists, historians, philosophers, economists, and more. Learn how the health care system really works, the serenity that comes from humility, the challenge of interpreting data, how potato chips are made, what it's like to run an upscale Manhattan restaurant, what caused the 2008 financial crisis, the nature of consciousness, and more. EconTalk has been taking the Monday out of Mondays since 2006. All 750+ episodes are available in the archive. Go to EconTalk.org for transcripts, related resources, and comments.
Bruce Yandle explains why politics makes such strange bedfellows and the often peculiar alliance of self-interested special interests with more altruistic motives. He uses his insights to explain some of the seemingly perverse but politically understandable effects of the Clean Air Act, the tobacco settlement and other regulation.
Mike Munger recounts the harrowing (and fascinating) experience of being in the path of a hurricane and the economic forces that were set in motion as a result. One of the most important is the import of urgent supplies when thousands of people are without electricity. Should prices be allowed to rise freely or should the government restrict prices?
Pete Boettke talks about the role of government and voluntary efforts in relieving suffering during and after a crisis such as Katrina. Drawing on field research he is directing into the aftermath of Katrina, Boettke highlights the informal, voluntary associations we make as individuals with each other to create community.
Don Boudreaux talks about economics, civilization, spontaneous order, and law. Drawing on Hayek's classic, Law, Legislation and Liberty, he discusses law vs. legislation, the role of judges, and how fulfilling our expectations allows us to pursue our goals and dreams.
Bryan Caplan and Russ Roberts discuss the economics of discrimination and government's regulation of labor markets in this wide-ranging conversation. When does government regulation reduce or enforce discrimination? What's happened in European labor markets?
Stanley Engerman talks about slavery throughout world history, its role in the Civil War and the incentives facing slaves and slave owners. This is a wide-ranging conversation with the co-author of the classic Time on the Cross (co-authored with Robert Fogel) and the forthcoming Slavery, Emancipation, and Freedom (LSU Press, 2007).
Virginia Postrel talks about how business competes for customers using style and beauty, going beyond price and the standard measures of quality. She looks at the role of appearance in our daily lives and the change from earlier times. She also talks about her donation of a kidney to a friend.