Inflation…unemployment….economic inequality…these and other topics are of great economic concern to people everywhere. We want our family to live a save, happy, and reasonably prosperous life and we try our best to economize our daily routine. But some aspects of the economy are beyond our control and most of the public lacks a basic understanding of this important topic. One audio lesson that can make a difference is Modern Economic Issues, an education lesson from the Teaching Company and its Great Courses series. Professor Robert Whaples from Wake Forest University guides the listener through 36 lessons, approximately 30 minutes each in length, and discusses some of the pressing economic issues of the day.
What Makes the Economy Tick?
Economics and the intricacies that cause chain reactions are not well understood by most members of the public. How many people understand the role of inflation in a competitive economy? How many are aware of marginal costs and benefits and how they affect our daily lives? These and other questions are answered in Modern Economic Issues and listeners will be surprised at how much they didn’t know or thought they knew, only to discover that their understanding wasn’t quite right.
Fact vs Fallacy
Economic fallacies are widespread. The public is often deliberately misled by politicians, business leaders, and others who have a specific agenda to push. One common myth is the controversy of trade deficits. They certainly sound bad, but they are not as negative as people are led to believe. Dr. Whaples does a good job explaining these and other economic phenomenon and pointing out why they are such common tools of deception. Once you listen to some of these lectures, you will have no problem identifying moments in the past when someone deliberately misled you and others on economic matters. I can think of endless examples when politicians twisted the economic truth to push their own personal or political agenda. This lesson helps the listener understand the economy better and keep his/her guard up at all times.
Economize Your Life
Modern Economic Issues is a very good lesson from the Teaching Company and one that can benefit anyone who listens. Economics is often referred to as the “dismal science” but the economy and its workings are actually quite interesting when explained by the right professor. Dr. Whaples is quite effective in speaking about the economy in laymen’s terms. He completely avoids the complex terminology common to an upper level economics university classroom. He discusses economics in ways that anyone can understand and his style, while it does sound a little rehearsed, is easy to follow. Listeners will come away from the lesson with a newfound understanding of important economic topics such as wages, labor unions, the Wal- Mart effect, health care economics and insurance, poverty alleviation, and more.
Economics can be a very interesting topic when presented the right way. Modern Economic Issues from the Teaching Company is a very good lesson for those who would like to sharpen their economic knowledge and gain a better understanding of the economy and what makes it tick. We all economize to some degree every day as we work, manage our households, plan family events, etc. Modern Economic Issues helps make a little more sense out of the complex world economy in which we function each day and it’s a lesson I recommend to all.
Copyright 2014, Bryan Carey