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“One of the most powerful laws in the universe is the law of unintended consequences” (Levitt, S. 2009) This is one of the primarily premises that the book establishes, with an extraordinary sense of humor and interesting data, Steven and Stephen set us in the real economics world, in which the common factors that all the teachers show to their students are applied in such a way that the real job is getting done.
The way the authors write all the interesting facts of today? modern life, including correct and simple explanations, so that anyone can understand all the topics without having doubts of the concepts and of the more difficult topics of economy.
The examples they give provide us a fun way of learning, and of expanding our thoughts far beyond the theory of economics. Throughout the book, we are exposed to historical, political and sociocultural aspects of the example given, not only to give the reader a complete background, but also to make the reader get involved into the facts that are exposed.
This book also give us a chance to be reflexive about almost every aspect that we normally do not bother to think of, for instance, the ordinary task of donate money, rather than be a real help to others, people use donations to make them feel more comfortable with themselves, for recognition from the local newspaper or from that cute girl that asked us a coin for any purpose.
Superfreakonomics stands for the unusual way of making money and manage all the different aspects of all the topics that can be directed to produce money.
As the authors said, in the book there are discussed awkward subjects, and not afraid to be revealing, the whole book is specially designed to generate discussion among the economics academics, without being partisan about it.
Applying statistical data, the authors give substantial information that supports their theories by applying economic principles, this is sometimes disturbing, and in some cases the theories that they provide can be tested, as for example, their theory in the previous book Freakonomics, about that a decrease of crime-rate in the 1990’s is according to the lifting of restrictions on abortion in the US in the 1970’s, this is because the unwanted children from lower socioeconomic levels tended to be criminals, despite the traditional policing methods had indeed little or no effect at all on crime levels.
The book provides a radical point of view of understanding the economic principles, although, as any economist would say, this is not error-proved, because this principles stands that certain steps need to be taken in order to establish an economic pattern in a topic, therefore, for a new pattern or situation trending to be a new economic model it has to accomplish certain aspects that are applicable to any situations and results in the same goals.
Also, the book proposes a way to modify the behavior of common aspects in order to seek new trends and goals for the market to expand, although those trends are in some cases matter of ethical discussions, for example the authors note that prostitutes are paid well because of the illegality of their actions.
This book is an effective exercise on daily life by demonstrating the economic principles approach of relying data rather than intuition, also there is the possibility of, by the studying of microeconomics and relying on data and common sense, discover a key element in the behavior or failure of certain laws and social conducts, for example the corruption of police officers in the drug war trough “free samples” of drugs in order to police decline.
The economy studies the desires and the incentives of people, and how they obtain what they need. Incentives are the key in the economics and sometimes the expected reaction won’t appear. In fact there are many examples, which prove how people can act in response of certain incentives, it doesn’t really matter if they are positive incentives as a marshmallow or a fee in a kindergarten. The last one is a good example of the incentives and consequences that happens to people.
This proves how, regardless of the extra payment the kindergarten imposed to parents, they will keep arriving late for children and, against all odds, greater will be the number of parents that will not arrive in time. Society directly depends on media and on how it manages the information to satisfy its needs, but not only media does this dirty work. Almost all people make up stories and alter data with the only purpose of gaining whatever they wish to achieve. Examples as the Listerine advertisement, the story of people without roofs, raped women statistic, etc are some clear cases of information distortion.
The motives for this distortion might not be essentially for the well-being of one person, but it also can affect positively on a group, or a community, as in the case of the crack dealers, in which the student tried to join their group in order to know more about their daily routine. The way people manage his money is way often ruled by daily decisions, rather than theory read and study in books, therefore, the real economics are usually seen even at the prostitute’s corner, where a whole economic system is taking ahead.
We get used to study and understand the business world by laws of supply and demand, the market needs, and money-value-exchange, but sometimes we may never realized quite how much underground and commonly tasks are profitable, even for the typical prostitute in Chicago, or drug dealers offering substantial economic benefits for a modest fee, the world of basic money transactions goes way ahead of books.
The way of managing money, according data showed in the book, explains how easily people can do several things in order to satisfy their basic needs, other than food, dress and shelter, the patterns that rules peoples life is that one capable of fulfill this basic needs, in a personal thought, I guess the reason for every single person in the world gets in trouble with the bank, or involves with a religious group, is that we all want to be recognized, even for our economic status, our house, cars, or our actions, the things we have done, the real matter in this life is to be recognized for anybody other than ourselves.
Everybody is guided by a pattern that commands his acts, the way he spends his time and even the way he lives, the society patterns that are common in a daily tasks governs almost all the aspects in our decisions, therefore this should be easy to prevent and manage, but the real problem comes with the several factors that can change within a second, this fact is not considered in the book, that establishes that every instant in someone? s life affect in a direct way to the people that interact with him/her.
The way people react to some situations in life, such as natural disasters, can change the decisions and the determination to do a certain task. All of the personal factors affect the economy. Personal point of view. The book provides a great opportunity to question almost every aspect in ordinary life and in the way that can be described as in economics subject, this is because almost every action we take in ordinary life is guided by money decisions and patterns fluctuation among the daily bases in which society takes ahead, this is in order to set the common goals of manage money, time and expenditures to fulfill certain needs.
Also the book takes in consideration several topics that, do not know if in a deliberated way, generate a lot of discussion and are subject to different perspectives, going from the way people use the subway, the microeconomics taking ahead in a small business up to the market opportunities in fighting global warming, this last has a specially discussed part, because there are several campaigns taking ahead in order to fight this scenario, as Al Gore’s campaign about his versus different technologies available to make this issue a business opportunity.
By the end of the book, I got the feeling that Levitt and Dubner are stumbling towards a conclusion that are not for sure the more adequate to explain the mayor problems taking ahead in the actual business field, this is that they assure that the fix of the problems is in, it is cheap and simple, making simple thing can be greater in satisfaction of goals than big and expensive projects, especially on government area.
This feeling I got is because, although the simple things can achieve greater benefits, there has to be a major policy or statement that procures every aspect of this fields in order to accommodate the different aspects of every little goal or project and direct them to a bigger goal, without a global, or mayor, dictamination in the field, the simple things can make big differences, but not achieve a common and sustainable goal. This book is useful for every person that is interested in global warming or mathematics or even it is designed for people that are only interested on their children or their dog.
It has been written to cover all-important areas of sciences, and entertainment, of modern problems, such as terrorism and common issues as raising children. It helps the reader understand the world we live in, because the outlook it gives can help you understand the mayor problems in your country, as wall as the way of thinking back in the past centuries and the reactions of people in New York. Is every decision a person takes fundamental for the growth or decaying of a nation?
Are the common and traditional ways of researching and developing ideas mandatory to every investigation or does it depend on the region and, most important of the people that takes part in the investigation? Are the conventional processes free from mistake or there can be new, revolutionary ways of achieving whatever every human being wants and desires? This book can open your mind if it was too short-term accustomed, and it can help you to build more ideas into your mind, in order to consequently achieve every goal.
Information is power; information is a gold mine ready to be conquered. Nowadays, this world can destroy the brightest idea if it wasn’t planned correctly, o it can persuade other people to love something that is not ethically correct, but either way it will work, for the planning and the way of getting through people was perfectly plotted. it all depends on the needs and energy of people to perform certain task.
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