The Real — Thanksgiving Tap Out

Guest co-host, Ashanti, mentions that expensive flights during Thanksgiving should be “tapped out” because a lot of people need to be with their families during Thanksgiving. This relates to the concept of demand and supply because the airlines know that when it is close to Thanksgiving, the demand for flights increases, and since most people are eager to be with their families, they are rather inelastic to the price change, so the firms take advantage of this and raise the price of the tickets drastically in order to increase their total revenue.

Thanks for the clip and summary Tammy Georgewill!

Marketplace — The Problem with NAFTA

A brief background of NAFTA and the problems of exiting NAFTA. A good discussion within the video covers the parties that gain and the parties that loses from NAFTA. A good note in the video is that the jobs that are lost are different from the jobs that were gained.

Reservoir Dogs — Why tip?

Mr. Pink (Steve Buscemi) describes why he doesn’t tip waitresses. His associates try to convince him along an equity argument by saying it’s the right thing to do and how they are exploited because their tips are taxed. Mr. Pink argues from an efficiency standpoint that if the waitresses aren’t happy with their pay then they need to relocate. He eventually concedes to tip $1 when he’s reminded that he didn’t pay for his food.

Film: Reservoir Dogs

Wolf of Wall Street — Nobody Knows

The efficient market hypothesis states that any available information about a market is already captured in the market price. Matthew McConaughey, in The Wolf of Wall Street, notes that the first rule of the market is that no one knows what is going to happen, especially stock brokers.

Thailand’s Mae Klong Train Market

The local train comes through the market a few times each day, but that doesn’t stop local shops from selling their produce. The resources are used so efficiently in this village that the train runs right through the middle of the market and then the market re-establishes itself after the train passes.

The Pursuit of Happyness — Cold Calling

In The Pursuit of Happyness, Chris (played by Will Smith) is cold calling potential clients in order to increase sales for his company. The salesman who creates the most new clients will be hired on, but because of his personal life he isn’t able to put in the same amount of time as his competitors. Chris discusses a variety of ways he saves time, including not hanging up the phone and not drinking water, each of which would cost him valuable time.

John Stossel — Price Gouging

Is price gouging evil or is it the sensible economic decision when shortages arise? In this series, John Stossel explores price gouging around natural disasters. This topic is really good for discussing the tradeoff between equity and efficiency.

Lots of Econ in This is The End (NSFW)

This is a little NSFW and has some mild language, but it illustrates tradeoffs really well. This is the End is a movie about actors playing fictionalized versions of themselves in an apocalypse. In this season, the actors are trying to decide how to divide their stockpile.

Friends — Efficiency vs. Equity of Splitting Meals

This great clip from Friends shows the equity/efficiency tradeoff nicely. It’s also a nice opportunity to bring up the idea of fairness. While splitting a check into equal parts is easier, it’s not always appropriate for people who don’t eat much.

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