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February 19, 2018 

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BENEFIT PRINCIPLE: A principle of taxation in which taxes are based on the benefits received by people using the good financed with the tax. The benefit principle is often difficult to implement because by their very nature, many government produced goods (public goods) do not have easily measured benefits. But in those cases where benefits are identifiable, government is not shy about establishing taxes, fees, or charges in accordance with the benefit principle. Public college tuition, national park admission fees, and gasoline excise taxes are three common examples. The beneficiaries of education, a wilderness experience, and highway use are asked (required) to pay accordingly.

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ASYMMETRIC INFORMATION

Information is not equally available to everyone. Asymmetric information results because efficient information search inevitably stops short of compete information. Some people obtain more benefits from information than others, are willing to incur higher search costs, and thus end up knowing more. Or they incur lower information search costs and have easier access to the information. In a market, sellers tend to have more information about the good than buyers. Asymmetric information gives rise to adverse selection, moral hazard, and the principal-agent problem. These problems can be lessened through signalling and screening.

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A Brief Introduction To Get You Started

Through undaunted determination, sheer luck, or a missed turnpike exit, you have happened upon A Pedestrian's Guide to the Economy. You'll find hours of reading pleasure contained within this site, with more entertainment value per calorie than most office memos. A Pedestrian's Guide to the Economy, however, is more than a recreational web site. As a handy reference source, it provides answers to many of the most asked, a few of the least asked, and some of the never asked questions about the economy.
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PURPLE SMARPHIN
[What's This?]

Today, you are likely to spend a great deal of time strolling around a discount warehouse buying club wanting to buy either blue cotton balls or a genuine down-filled pillow. Be on the lookout for slightly overweight pizza delivery guys.
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This isn't me! What am I?

Francis Bacon (1561-1626), a champion of the scientific method, died when he caught a severe cold while attempting to preserve a chicken by filling it with snow.
"There are only two ways to live your life. One is as though nothing is a miracle. The other is as though everything is a miracle."

-- Albert Einstein

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