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pexels-kulbir-11079217
pexels-kulbir-11079217
1. Recently, the Canadian government has announced it is considering enacting a
Home » Economics  »  1. Recently, the Canadian government has announced it is considering enacting a
1. Recently, the Canadian government has announced it is considering enacting a
1. Recently, the Canadian government has announced it is considering enacting a “carbon tariff” – the idea of taxing imports from countries with higher levels of per-capita carbon emissions. It is claimed that this would not only be a means of generating revenue, but also help fight climate change. However, some commentators on the idea of carbon tariffs have dismissed them as “nothing more than protectionism in a green suit”. Using your knowledge of economics, mercantilism as well as Canada’s National Policy of 1879 as a case study, discuss whether you would be for or against such a tariff. (Hint: you may wish to bring in some of our class discussions on fur, fish, and bison as well). 2. In class we discussed two monetary systems which were largely free of formal government intervention – The Potlach as a very informal institution which may have functioned as a fractional reserve system, and the more formal (but relatively unregulated) banking system which existed in Canada after Confederation. Using these two examples of privately created currencies, explain what you think are the biggest prospects, as well as biggest problems, for cryptocurrencies today. In doing so, compare and contrast how crypto works (or could work) as money relative to how “coppers” and privately issued banknotes worked in the past. 3. In his 2010 book Scroogenomics (available freely online through the Carleton Library’s website), Economist Joel Waldfogel argues that gift giving “has the potential to do a terrible job matching products with users.” As such, Waldfogel essentially argues that gift giving is a wasteful practice because we often give gifts that recipients don’t actually value as much as the price we paid (not to mention the opportunity cost of the time spent shopping). If you are to give gifts at all, you (and the recipient) would be better off just giving cash. Using your understanding of the economic concepts discussed in class (which could include, though is not limited to, transaction costs, institutions, local/ tacit knowledge) and using the Potlatch ceremony and/or gift giving ceremonies at the HBC fur trading factories as case studies, explain why Waldfogel’s assertion may be incorrect/incomplete. (Conversely, if you believe Waldfogel is essentially correct, argue in favour of his position using the concepts and case study listed above.) You must choose to write on only one of the above listed four topics.

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