Debunking Myths

Does “Trophy Hunting” Reduce Wildlife Populations?

The hunting death of a lion sparked me to do some research on the economics of trophy hunting. You can still morally oppose trophy hunting (that’s your opinion), but there are objective economics of it. If the ultimate goal of conservation is to increase wildlife populations, then the trends of populations before and after trophy hunting are worth considering. My findings coincide with the economics of any valuable resource: for-profit privatization affects supply via a market price. (more…)

Occupy Wall Street is Wrong about Capitalism

MISLEADING CLAIM: Capitalism is bad because all of these people die every year from poverty, vacant homes go unfilled while homeless are on the street, people starve while food is stockpiled, and households are submerged in debt.

REALITY: This bit of propaganda was posted by Occupy Wall St. As you can see, they’ve attributed annual deaths-by-capitalism to THREE TIMES the number of Jewish people killed in the Holocaust. All of these “statistics” are sourced according to the original post. Of course, their claims are “accurate” to the degree that they’re reported, but it’s easy to see how they’re misleading if you care to double check. Let’s take a closer look. (more…)

Here’s Why Salads Cost More Than Burgers

Misleading Claim: “An unhealthy hamburger costs $1, but a healthy salad costs $5. Greedy capitalists are making our kids fat!”

Reality: Producers do not sell goods at arbitrary prices based on profitability or the desire to make people fat. In fact, prices are carefully calculated by consumer value/demand and external factors, such as subsidies. We can debunk this claim with thought experiments and an analysis of the U.S. farm price support programs. (more…)