One of the best perks of being a faculty member in the department of economics at the University of Chicago is getting to have lunch with Gary Becker. Gary, who just celebrated his 80th birthday, is arguably the most creative and influential economist of the last 50 years. He has applied economics to topics as wide-ranging as discrimination, marriage, addiction, and crime. More than any other economist, he has been my inspiration and role model. If the Nobel committee were ever to give two Nobel prizes to a single economist, there is little question that Becker would be the multiple recipient.
In the upcoming weeks, as part of a charity event sponsored by an intriguing new company called Expert Insight, Becker is going to spend 30 minutes video-chatting with Stephen Dubner. Not that Dubner is ever at a loss for questions to ask (when he first came to interview me for the New York Times, he questioned me for 36 hours over three days, and he seemed to have at least another 36 more hours worth of questions in reserve when I finally told him he had to leave), but we figured our blog readers might have some particularly interesting questions for Becker.
So, fire away with your best questions in the comments section below and with any luck, you’ll get to see how the world’s greatest living economist answers you.