“MANY THINGS THAT ARE DESIRABLE ARE NOT FEASIBLE.” The first two items on Professor Sargent’s list are:
“1. Many things that are desirable are not feasible.
2. Individuals and communities face trade-offs.”
For me, these are the fundamental insights of economics. I posted here about my first class in economics, in which Meyer Burstein said that we would be studying the allocation of scarce resources among competing wants. I said in that post: “Economists see the world in terms of limitations. They are trained to resist Utopian thinking.”