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Lecture 10

PHIL 110B Lecture 10: Economics – Sagoff

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Patricia Marino

Economics – Sagoff  Challenge to Economic Approach o You don’t always have the goals of saving/spending money o Willingness to pay – how are we going to satisfy the most of people’s preferences using money as a stand in o The more you don’t want something the more you are willing to pay to not get it o The more you want something the more you are willing to pay to get it o Consumers – economic approach treats us all like shoppers o Citizens – different interests, the townspeople do not want it no matter how much they get paid because they feel it is wrong o To the economic approach, refusing an offer to get paid to deal with something negative is irrational, because it is financially worth more o Willingness to pay is the amount someone is willing to sacrifice in order to avoid something undersirable  Consumers vs Citizens o Willingness to pay incorrectly treats values as mere preferences o Making the most amount of money possible o Commodifying yourself, turning yourself into a kind of consumer o Preferences as consumer are not consistent with values as a citizen o Driving while supporting gas taxing to incentivize public transit o As a citizen, we think of the values that would be important for the community as a whole, not personal values o As a citizen, the society needs to think about the environment and public transit, better use of public money o But as a consumer, I love to drive o Conumer – what’s best for me, what’s most convenient to m
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