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Tragedy of the Oreos

Most mornings I am confronted with a choice of what to eat for breakfast. As a semi-rational individual, one would assume I would seek to maximise my benefits while minimising opportunity costs when making this choice.

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To be economically free, or not to be? That is the question.

Based in Canada, the Fraser Institute is often referred to as a “think tank”, and follows the motto “if it matters, measure it”. Initial efforts towards the Economic Freedom of the World (EFW) project began in 1989, with a meeting between Milton and Rose Friedman, and Michael Walker (founder of The Fraser Institute). The project is aimed at “clearly defining and measuring the consistency of institutions and policies with economic freedom for a large set of countries and territories”.

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Real Estate

The secret pact forged in Xiaogang

Prior to 1978 in China, communal farmland was assigned to individuals to work for the government. Farmers gave anything that they produced from their land to the government, which then distributed the crops out to the people. Agricultural land was less productive in 1978 than it had been in 1949, when the communists took over. This was because the farmers did not have any incentive to produce more than the minimum; any extra work would result in the same food rations from the government.

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