on 13 August 2013
This book is interesting but flawed. The application of economic methods of thought to timely socio-economic issues is interesting and goes a long way to show the power of economic thought beyond conventional economic problems. The issue with the short essay / rebutal by Becker and Posner is that their views mostly consider economic decision making to address problems that are often moral. We cannot maximize our utility (in a utilitarian way) to solve moral dilemas like the death penalty. Where economic analysis alone is insufficient to make recommendations, Becker and Posner's libertarian sentiments shine through. It is a good read to have an insight in the "Chicago School" paradigm of thought. By no means this book reflect consensual economic solutions to the day's moral problem. A good counter read, written in the same lay-public-accessible style is Paul Krugman's Accidental Theorist collection of some of his New York Times columns.