Monday 7 July 2014

Learn Liberty - Foreigners Are Our Friends!

I'm a big fan of the Learn Liberty series of videos, it's fantastic the way they take on complex economic issues and explain them in a way anyone can understand in just a few minutes. And with cartoons! So here's a few of the ones I've found most interesting recently.

Firstly a topical one on the economic and human costs of hosting the World Cup. With nineteen thousand people displaced to make way for this current tournament and a couple of thousand of Qatar's slave labourers expected to die before they host it, it kinda puts the controversy over one bloke biting another's shoulder into perspective.

The Make Work Bias – There's allot of material currently pointing to a pessimistic future where robots are going to take all our jobs. The problem is, this has already happened – over a hundred years ago that is - with the invention of the tractor. It (along with other farm industrialisation) laid off half of all agricultural workers. In this video economist Bryan Caplan why this wasn't a problem then and won't be now. We can stop worrying about innovation stealing jobs!

Foreigners Are Our Friends - This is brilliant (hence why the post is named after it). If we agree that innovation isn't stealing jobs, then Bryan Caplan has a thought experiment to demonstrate why immigration can't be either.

And Finally a short video on how law and order can (and historically has) arisen in society from the ground up, rather than being imposed from the top down. Using the Oregon trail as an example economist and cattle rancher P.J. Hill shows how groups of people would form contracts between each other to regulate disputes without the need for an overarching government. This one is worth watching for the Lego alone!


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