My son Maxim has a piece on Gary Becker at Fox News
Gary Becker, an influential economist who pioneered the use of economics in fields as diverse as crime, marriage, and education, died Saturday at the age of 83 following complications from a surgery.
Using economics to uncover lessons about everyday life is now common. But before Becker, economists limited their research almost exclusively to matters of finance and money.
Becker won a Nobel prize in 1992 for having “extended the domain” of economics, and is remembered by many.
“If there’s one central figure in the revolution that broke apart the fetters around economics, it was Gary,” said Edward Glaeser, a professor of economics at Harvard who learned economics from Becker.
Becker’s thinking revolutionized many areas. One was crime.
“In the 1950s and 1960s intellectual discussions of crime were dominated by the opinion that criminal behavior was caused by mental illness and social oppression, and that criminals were helpless ‘victims,’” Gary Becker said in his Nobel Prize acceptance speech in 1992.
“Such attitudes began to exert a major influence on social policy, [reduced] the apprehension and conviction of criminals, and provided less protection to the law-abiding population.”
Becker argued, that, contrary to prevailing wisdom, criminals are often more rational than people give them credit for. . . .
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