Life in Pieces — The Sleepover

Sam is ready for her sleepover, but didn’t pack a toothbrush. She’s already realized that when her teeth fall out, she gets money from the Tooth Fairy. She’s connected the dots and realized that by not brushing she could get the income sooner. Her parents aren’t amused.

This scene was brought to my attention by a regular #TeachEcon contributor, Courtney Conrad.

Thanks to James Tierney for actually posting the video on Critical Commons.

A Beautiful Mind: Ignoring the Blonde

The classic scene from A Beautiful Mind when Nash (Russell Crowe) and his friends are discussing governing dynamics. Nash’s realization is not that of a Nash Equilibrium, but rather the classic view of Adam Smith (everyone doing what’s best for themselves) is harmful compared to if they just work together for the common good. It can be a bit confusing since the Nash Equilibrium is not that people should work together for the great good, but this is still a good introduction to a lesson game theory because it helps introduce why it might be harmful for everyone to only do what’s in their own best interest.

Ted: Jonas Eliasson: How to solve traffic jams

Traffic jams are often provided as an example of a market failure. Drivers are focused on their own driving and don’t consider how it may impact others. As a result, too many people use road systems and congestion occurs. This Ted Talk highlights how Pigouvian taxes could be used to correct the market failure by instituting congestion taxes. While it’s not presented by an economist, he uses a lot of economics concepts throughout the talk.

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