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Jeffrey Tucker has an excellent article on the huge differences between work and school on FEE.org. His fundamental argument is that the school teaches many bad habits that people carry to work. That’s true. Work is a lot better than school in many ways. Jeffrey doesn’t entirely disagree with this, but isn’t it true there is a lot of bad behavior at work which is aligned by the cognitive biases and political nature of human beings?
 
In a company I once worked, a copy editor smarty built a coalition and isolated everybody who was not part of her coalition. Everybody who was isolated/snubbed/bullied left the firm soon. Then this girl and her friends made sure the manager didn’t perform, and got him fired. That cost the company a lot. Her boyfriend was set to join a few months later, as the new manager. Then everybody in that coalition started working hard, to make sure that her boyfriend performs. There was certainly a violation of contract/rights but it was mostly implicit, informal contracts they violated. It’s too costly for a company to punish such people, especially when they have numbers on their side. Companies are more likely to let the victims go. Especially when such behavior is common. This led to some unfair redistribution of resources—and I’d say, theft. Eventually her boyfriend was fired. But the harm was done.

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scep1_corporatetower_1Read my article “The Human Cost Of Zoning” on FEE.org. I hope zoning in the third-world gets more attention with essays like this. I am glad that Financial Times, Bryan CaplanTyler Cowen, Alex Tabarrok, ACI Scholarly Blog IndexOrange County Register, FreakonometricsUrbanomics and economist Ajay Shah blogged about this article. Government Of South AustraliaQuartz shared it, and NYU Stern School Of Business’ Urbanization Project, Marron Institute,  and Brandon Fuller tweeted it.  Continue Reading