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Donald Boudreaux


 received a PhD in economics from Auburn University in 1986 with a thesis on “Contracting, Organization, and Monetary Instability: Studies in the Theory of the Firm.” He received a law degree from the University of Virginia School of Law in 1992.[2]

Boudreaux was an Assistant Professor of Economics at George Mason University from 1985 to 1989. He was an Associate Professor of Legal Studies and Economics at Clemson University from 1992 to 1997, and President of the Foundation for Economic Education from 1997 to 2001. He is now Professor of Economics at George Mason University, where he served as chairman of the Economic Department from 2001 to 2009.

During the Spring 1996 semester he was an Olin Visiting Fellow in Law and Economics at the Cornell Law School.[2] Boudreaux is now an adjunct scholar at the Cato Institute, a Washington think tank.[3]

He is the author of the 2007 book Globalization (Greenwood Guides to Business and Economics) and 2012 book Hypocrites and Half-Wits.[4]

He contributes a column twice a month to the Pittsburgh Tribune-Review[5] and blogs at the Cafe Hayek website under the name Don Boudreaux.

No Longer An Excuse Not to Start Your Own Monopsony-Power-Exploiting Company

Posted: 04 Feb 2016 07:51 AM PST

(Don Boudreaux)

In my selfless efforts to help believers in the reality of monopsony power do well while doing good, I not only remind them yet again of Mike Long’s generous offer of free-of-charge business advice, I myself now offer (also free of charge) a sure-fire idea for a profitable business that uses as its key input the talents of most of these monopsony-power believers: Put yourself in business, as a consultant, offering to identify those locales and industries where monopsony is real.  You yourself don’t have to open and dirty your hands by operating the likes of restaurants, lawn-care companies, or junk-removal services.  Instead, set up shop as “XYZ, Consultant, LLC.”  Advertise your professional skill at identifying places in the economy where existing firms are currently earning excess profits off of workers who are underpaid.  You would, in this way, do little more than what you currently do – namely, insist, based upon your theory-informed reading of the data, that monopsony power is real and relevant throughout the economy.

To make money, you’d charge entrepreneurs and companies – big, small, and middlin’ – a fee.  Various models for such fees are possible.  I don’t know which specific model would work best for you, or which one would eventually be discovered by the competitive market process to be the fee model that is optimal.  The simplest model is to charge by the hour.  You should not think this model to be far-fetched because you already obviously believe that other people – especially legislators, voters, pundits, and your students and readers – should believe your claims about monopsony power.  If these other people should believe your claims upon encountering the brilliance of your argument and the compelling nature of the data that you show to them, then there is every reason to suppose that executives at McDonald’s, Wal-Mart, and Padre Julio’s Lawn & Garden Service will believe your claims.  These business people have positive powerful incentives to pay careful attention to you and to reward you monetarily for helping them in their incessant quests to greedily earn more and more profits.

But, as I say, fee models other than by-the-hour are possible.  It will pay you to hire a business consultant who is expert in advising on such matters.

Now go forth!  You have no excuse.  If you are correct, the billionaire class and other capitalist exploiters will beat a path to your office door and shower you with big bucks for informing them of profit opportunities that they have yet to notice with sufficient clarity or certainty.  (Indeed, you don’t even need an actual business office.  You can dispense your lucrative consulting advice from your university office, your favorite coffee shop, or that bean-bag chair in your basement.)

There is now, truly, no – none, nada, nul’, zero, zilch – reason for you not to take this step that, by your own premises, will generate profits for those who exploit existing monopsony power.  Do it!  Make yourself rich and, in the process, make low-skilled workers better off.  The world awaits your action!