By Michael Munger The difference between contractors and employees is important. A “contractor,” from the Latin verb to draw together different things, is someone who brings their own tools and skills, and does a (relatively) brief stint of work in a defined task. An “employee,” from the Latin verb to be entangled, associated, or connected, is someone who predictably works … [Read more...] about You Can’t Create Jobs by Outlawing Work
By Michael Munger Economists love markets. Markets tell us what to do, in efficient, decentralized ways, through the signals conveyed by prices. Prices tell you how much someone else values the thing you are considering using, even if you don’t know who that person is. But one economist, Ronald H. Coase, had an annoying question, way back in the 1930s. His question was … [Read more...] about Why Do You Have a Boss?
By Michael Munger What limits should be placed on the ability of individuals to enter into negotiable agreements? It’s tempting to say, “none.” But there are some “agreements” — those reached under duress or in restraint of trade or other rights of third parties — that the state may decline to enforce, or outlaw completely. Presumably, if an exchange is truly voluntary, … [Read more...] about What Does “Voluntary” Actually Mean?
By Michael Munger I hear a lot of people say they don’t understand blockchain technology or that the idea of “smart” contracts doesn’t make much sense. I’ll admit that the technical aspects of blockchain apps can be bewildering, but the fact is that you have been around smart contracts all your life. The difference is that until now smart contracts have mostly been physical … [Read more...] about Smart Contracts Are All Around You