Thursday, June 04, 2009

Economics of Comics

Ecocomics is a new blog that focuses on the Economics of the comic book world. Here are some experts from my favorites:

On how the construction industry must be booming:

In order to recover from such devastating blows, the comic book world must have an array of daring contractors and craftsman, willing to jump into the fray at a moment's notice. They are the truly amazing people in the comics universe. Somehow they are capable of repairing the Chrysler building overnight after Thor has been punched through it, only for the Green Goblin to the blow the top off of it the next day. And they do this consistently. For this to work, the public works department of Marvel's New York must be 1 billion workers strong.

Batman should spend less on customizing weapons and more on installing:

more motion detectors and reinforced doors in Arkham Asylum

One on the relationship between money and crazy:

In the world of comic books any individual who has more than 5 million dollars in saving or assets immediately becomes bat-shit insane. It's a strange rule, but it seems that every independently wealthy individual in superhero comics decides that fighting/committing crime is the best way to spend their free time. They ignore possible hobbies like golfing, yachting, and collecting antique cars and go straight into wearing a mask and creating a global organization designed to save/destroy/conquer the world.

The economic advantage of mutants:

Each mutant possesses a special skill which has its own inherent value. Because of this, a mutant can be viewed as a craftsman or a skilled laborer. Mutants with enhanced strength can work in construction, demolition, or even transportation. Storm could irrigate the crops of all the suffering farmers in the Midwest and California when the droughts of summer are destroying their crops. Quicksilver could sort the daily mail output of the United States in 3 hours. And the extraordinary power of these abilities would only make the economic effect of using mutant powers that much more extraordinary itself. Time, labor, and machinery costs would all be cut dramatically.

How labor market benefits are short lived but technology last forever:

I feel that these mutants may ultimately prove unable to increase long-run living standards. Any effect that Magneto may have on productivity will only temporarily move the economy to a higher steady-state output per person (y/n). With his death the economy will move back to where it was (and probably experience some unpleasant distortions during the transition).


Being mere humans in a giant multiverse of galactic powers, it’s a fair assumption that earth is an LDP (less developed planet) with a comparatively small capital stock. According to the Solow model, alien entrepreneurs should be jumping at the opportunity to invest in Earth. Add a growing stock of technology from metahumans and falling debris and you can get productivity and standards of living rising indefinitely.

Now if I can just can an Econprov blog.

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