37 minutes | Oct 14th 2020

Teaching economics as political and ethical choices

We welcome back Lev Moscow of the Beacon School to discuss his approach to teaching political economy, which actually applies to any social science. It’s not primarily about the numbers but about the human choices behind them. How do we determine who gets paid what and who gets to spend 80,000 hours in a lifetime engaged in meaningful work? Also, how our mantra of continuous economic growth will end life as we know it. 

Overview

00:00-00:39 Intros

00:39-02:25 Why teach economics

02:25-08:55 “What Money Can’t Buy”: When are markets corrupted; ethics of markets

08:55-12:34 “Political economy” as distinguished from “economics”

12:34-18:09 Consequences of using increasing growth as metric of healthy economy

18:09-22:43 Ethical questions of teaching from textbooks that don’t correspond to how things work

22:43-26:20 Education for democracy vs education for workforce preparation

26:20-30:36 “80,000 Hours”: Encouraging students to think of maximizing the potential usefulness of their work lives

30:36-32:43 Grades as part of the economic system

32:43-35:37 Supporting young women to become economists

35:37-37:00 Outro

Transcript

Click here to see the full transcription of this episode. 

References

Soundtrack by Podington Bear

Photo by Thomas De Luze