Friday, March 27, 2015

Aggregate Demand and All sorts of Math -- maybe

Aggregate Demand

Please watch this and the additional videos:

Aggregate demand: Understanding how aggregate demand is different from demand for a specific good or service. Justifications for the aggregate demand curve being downward sloping

Light Stuff

So we are going to be studying about the black market.  It is serious stuff, but before we get to that I'd like you to take a look at some videos that are entertaining and will give you some ideas of what to do to save money and some jobs to avoid, since they no longer exist!

Math -- maybe

Mathematics (numbers) and Economics go hand in hand.  I liked how the one Economist said that math is the language economists use to communicate specifically.  Understanding formulas and how to interpret data is important in various careers and in your own life.

Here's a link to GeoFRED which is Geographical Economic Data.  As you have worked on your Game of Life and various other assignments you've had to deal with data.  Please take some time to explore GeoFRED.  Parents may be interested in specific lesson plans available through the website.

We'll examine data further in class and through some assignments.


1) Make sure you are familiar with Hayek and Keynes  and figure out WHO they influenced (presidents, etc) and WHO influenced them.  Try out these links to help you:
Those are just some of the links that may help -- the Web is HUGE!  Be careful out there and don't just stick with wikipedia.  It is a good starting point, but make sure you are exploring quality sites.  

2) Sutter's Mill (GOLD Fever)  Check out his life looking at land rights and mineral rights.  
3) Define Piracy within your decade.  How does it differ from historical pirates of the Golden Age of Piracy?  Any similarities?  How does piracy play out (what does it look like; is it respected; is it regulated; etc)

4) Compare and Contrast the economies of North and South Korea.  

5) Keep thinking about Robin Hood and our class discussion on class (HA!)  Are there any other legendary figures that we could examine in a similar way?  Try to come up with a few!

Don't forget we won't have coop next week, so this blog is either really packed or just right!  

Thursday, March 19, 2015

Economic Thought

We're going to have to rewind a little bit and go over some basics.

Please check out Khan Academy's Videos on Micro and Macroeconomics.  Watching those videos will give you the background lecture to help make sense of the economic concepts covered in the avg High School Econ class.  We are touching on these topics by using a global approach.

Class Discussion this week centered on different Economic philosophies and thought.  Here are some timelines that cover the development of Economic Thought.

Timeline of Economic Thought

Indepth Timeline of Economic Thought

Economic Philosophy and Philosophers are essential to understanding today's view of Economics.  These videos can help you understand some of the main philosophies,

When you watch this video listen for:

  • Laws
  • Laissez faire
  • Malthus
  • Wealth and Wealth Gap
  • Class
  • Competition (Family Business)
  • Reforms and Regulations

These next two videos may have some elements of excess that can be offensive, but it is used in a way to explain the danger.  It is not glorified.  Check out the names of the bartenders.  Who do you know with those first names that were in the Fed around the time of the most recent recession?

Check out the names on the robes of those helping the fighters.  Make sure to look for a cameo.

I mentioned a NPR news blurb.  It fits well with what we are learning now.  Here's the link.  It is about the next move of the Fed on Quantitative Easing.

This video is a brief history of Economics.

Book Review of The Grand Pursuit by Sylvia Nasar

And here is an article from Freakonomics on how Malthus' theory is still with us.

I mentioned the books:
The Hamblen County Library has all of them available for check-out.  As I mentioned some of the content in these books may not be palatable to everyone (I did not like all of the concepts, but do like the challenge of thought).  It is an interesting look at the Dismal Science and it does peak my desire to understand Economics.  In the next few weeks we are going to explore black-markets, corruption/cheating, and regulation.  Watch these short videos about some interesting areas of cheating: 

Please read this article about the growth of shadow economies from Forbes.  It introduces regulation.  We'll continue to explore thoughts on what you think about free markets and regulation.


  • Figure out your budget for a wedding.  Check out Cost of a for a breakdown of wedding costs.  Specifics for Hamblen County are also available.  How could overspending impact a marriage years from the wedding?  
  • Explore the cost of a child's first year of life. has a Baby Cost Calculator.  Are there things not listed on the calculator you think should be included?  List some cultural expectations Americans have about babies and their needs.  
  • How much do you cost?  I know you are all PRICELESS (I am not being sarcastic here -- you are all extremely valuable!)  Try to figure out your spending and the spending your parents do for you.  If you have a job or help around the house, list ways you off-set some of the cost? Check out this link to the USDA Expenditures on Children.  How do you hope to choose to spend on your children?  We discussed some choices parents make and the importance of being compatible with your spouse on these choices.  
  • Make sure to review your decade report and explore how Economic Philosophers and Theories impacted that decade?
  • Also, please figure out a black-market (shadow economy) product(s) from your decade (list is fine here).
  • Explore your own thoughts -- who do you side with (Keynes or Hayek)?  Why?

Friday, March 6, 2015

Investments and Wealth

Wealth --

What Causes Wealth? FEE Article

Defining Wealth:

Net Worth (Calculator)
Accumulation of Resources
The Rich List and Wealth Distribution
Assets vs. Debt (Household)

Austrian Economics: 


Decade Report

We will be doing these in class this Wednesday.

Game of Life

  1. Figure out what events impacted your life from what we did on Wednesday.  It is up to you to figure out how you want to interpret the results.  It will take some understanding of what the categories are, but I have faith that you can do it!
  2. Marriage -- Ladies -- you need to decide what job you would like your imaginary husband to have (President is not an option unless you TRULY have visions of that); Men -- you need to decide if your wife will be staying home with your children or working (working from home is an option, but you may need to factor in childcare).
  3. Children -- Group 1 has two children; Group 2 has four children; Use these numbers to figure out childcare costs, food, etc.  Make sure to think about schooling, activities and other costs that may get overlooked.  
  4. Investments -- Please figure out three investments.  Make sure to investigate different types (Retirement, Real Estate, Stocks, etc).  Please choose one stock to study over the next three weeks.  
We will go over the Game of Life, so if you have questions please bring them in next week.  I will bring a chart in to record your card/die results, your choices and your interpretations.  We will be looking at how the deck of cards and die rolls have impacted your choices.