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June 15, 2024 

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PERFECT COMPETITION: An ideal market structure characterized by a large number of small firms, identical products sold by all firms, freedom of entry into and exit out of the industry, and perfect knowledge of prices and technology. This is one of four basic market structures. The other three are monopoly, oligopoly, and monopolistic competition. Perfect competition is an idealized market structure that's not observed in the real world. While unrealistic, it does provide an excellent benchmark that can be used to analyze real world market structures. In particular, perfect competition efficiently allocates resources.

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RATIONAL IGNORANCE

The decision NOT to become informed about a topic (such as what a political candidate wants to do) because the cost of acquiring the information is more than the expected benefit. The rational decision to remain ignorant about a subject is a straightforward application of utility maximization and along with the related notion of rational abstention, is a source of voter apathy and government inefficiency.

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"Be kind and merciful. Let no one ever come to you without coming away better and happier."

-- Mother Teresa of Calcutta, humanitarian

Fact 6: Our Unknown Economy

Dr. Nova Cain, DDS, has her office in the mini-mall just north of city hall. You know the sort of mini-mall. It has a branch of Interstate OmniBank, Smilin' Ted's All-Comers Insurance Agency, an auto parts store, a branch of the public library, and four chiropractors.

Dr. Cain's location near the Shady Valley City Hall is most fortunate. One of my back molars is beginning to shoot sharp pains through my eyeball, into my brain, and out the back of my head. I've been meaning to stop by for a cleaning and check up, but, well, the thought of sharp needles and high-speed drills grinding away large portions of my teeth convinced me that other activities were more important.

Now, however, just as we're trying to trek through the complexities of the economy, that back molar has decided to throb incessantly. It's best if I stop in and let the kind and (hopefully) gentle Dr. Cain check it out.

Guess what? ROOT CANAL!
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Today, you are likely to spend a great deal of time strolling through a department store trying to buy either an AC adapter that works with your MPG player or rechargeable batteries. Be on the lookout for letters from the Internal Revenue Service.
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A lump of pure gold the size of a matchbox can be flattened into a sheet the size of a tennis court!
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