Reply To: Economics: Scarcity and the Law of Association


I think you need to make a distinction between what economics means by scarcity and the common definition of scarcity. When economics talks about scarcity, it is not necessarily talking about something that there is a small amount of (the standard definition of scarce). In economics, scarcity refers to something that is not a general condition of human existence. Something that cannot be infinitely replicated. Something that, when you want it, it doesnt fall into your lap. Some things that, practically, come close to that are also not considered scarce: like air. And, of course, these would be things that you want as opposed to things you do not.

But lets take, for instance, as you suggested, something where “there are more resources than people and thus every person has the ability to be an individual producer of some specialized labor for the goal of a certain (or possibly many) products,” Lets say that the only means of production of this item (something that is to be consumer as opposed to research to develop new knowledge) is some non scarce resource and human labor. Even when this is produced, the product is still scarce because it requires something scarce (human labor) as a means of production. Labor must be economized and therefore all goods that are produced using human labor are scarce and must be economized.

Of course this is all not talking about the development of “recipes” which is the plan or method by which something is produced. A recipe is never consumed, never worn out and is used every time something is produced

I dont remember where I read this example but it fits here. I mentioned that air is not considered scarce, it is taken as a general condition of human existence on earth, But air conditioned air (heated or cooled depending on the season) is scarce as it requires other means that are scarce in order to produce it.