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That "critique" highlights some of the differences between Coase and his critics. First the author hasn't read Coase. If he had, he would know that Coase used the unrealistic case of zero transaction costs to show why property rights did matter in a the real world of positive transaction costs. Coase's primary point was always that economists should study the real world. If they actually looked carefully at the real world they would see that lighthouses did not have to be provided by the government, farmers can pay beekeepers, and Fisher Body and GM did not merge because of a hold up problem. If the "author" of the "critique" had ever glanced at the real world he might have known that his scheme to make a fortune with his roaming cattle would not work. In the real world farmers that want to keep out roaming cattle put up fences. As for the first comment, I missed where Coase said that marketing cost were somehow "outside" opportunity costs. I would appreciate it if I could be directed to where he stated that.
Pete, Where do you think your prediction went wrong? Did the Obama administration fail to do something you expected or did people respond to their actions in ways you had not expected?
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Jan 14, 2014