PBS Newshour investigates the economics around the first Thanksgiving, including the differences between Europe’s cash economy and the indigenous barter system as well as common resources and property rights.
The clip shows a good example of the double coincidence of wants and how a barter system is difficult to maintain. The seller of bread needs somebody to take care of his kids and the guy who can take care of his kids wants extra bread. They need what the other has and have what the other wants. The trouble is determining how much work is appropriate to get a loaf of bread and then managing the system to make sure everyone gets paid.
Thanks to Mathew Abraham for the suggestion
Tim doesn’t like green beans, but his baby brother sure loves them. Whenever the parents leave the kitchen, the boys realize there’s an opportunity for trade. The Boss Baby knows he needs a favor in exchange for eating his brother’s beans because he isn’t just giving away his services for free.
Thanks to Catherine Madrid for the reference!
Frank convinces an art gallery director to come to the bar in order to try and convince her to buy their bad art. After looking around and watching a homemade video, she describes how art is worth what the buyer is willing to pay and that everyone has different preferences and values items differently. She also discusses the double coincidence of wants and how she no longer wants to buy back Frank’s painting.
Thank you to Ian Pearson for the clip reference!
Turtle and Drama search for a new apartment, but Johnny isn’t a very good negotiator. The real estate agent doesn’t seem interested in budging and pushes Drama above his original budget.
Louis, played by Dan Aykroyd in Trading Places, is trying to earn some cash by selling is premium Swiss sports watch, but the Philadelphia owner isn’t seeing its value. Louis reluctantly agrees to sell for well below the original price.
You don’t like pickles, but your friend does? That works out well for these two as Buckwheat buys Porky’s pickle from him for 2 cents. What a quick example for a mutually beneficial transactions.
Jason Bourne, played by Matt Damon, asks a cash-strapped young woman (Franka Potente) for a lift while Conklin (Chris Cooper) musters all of his forces to find him. Both parties have something that the other one needs, so a mutually beneficial trade occurs. This clip really highlights the concept of double coincidence of wants.