It seems the government gave an economics test to high school students:
Mr. Damasio cited a question that asked students to identify the most likely effect of an increase in the hourly wage of babysitters. Eighty percent of students answered correctly that the time spent by teenagers on babysitting would likely go up while the time they spent on other activities would decrease, he said.
If you want evidence that I'm not a real liberal, look no further than the fact that I would have said the reverse -- raise wages for babysitters and parents will purchase fewer person-hours of babysitting and more Baby Einstein DVDs. Teenagers, meanwhile, will spend more time in the Taco Bell parking lot wishing they had fake IDs.
UPDATE: The more I think about it, the more ridiculous this becomes. How do we know teenagers won't cut down on babysitting because of the income effect? I feel like it's plausible that teenagers are lazy and just want to earn a certain baseline income and then will want to spend more time in the Taco Bell parking lot wishing they had fake IDs (this is my impression of suburban adolescence, we didn't have Taco Bell parking lots in Manhattan). They've gone and asked a complicated question that should be researched properly.
We want to hear what you think about this article. Submit a letter to the editor or write to firstname.lastname@example.org.