Market failure in everything

by on March 23, 2011 at 7:59 pm in Economics | Permalink

From Stuttgart:

Paid to do it, but fails to make his friend’s wife pregnant after 72 attempts.”

The subsequent unraveling of the mystery revealed that the hired friend was sterile and in fact not the biological father of his two children.

For the pointer I thank A.L.

1 adam March 23, 2011 at 8:40 pm

This is why paternity tests should be mandatory at birth. It would save a lot of heartbreak later.

2 Rahul March 24, 2011 at 1:07 am

PCR was invented in 1983. Not sure if you could do a paternity test in 1978.

3 Bob Knaus March 23, 2011 at 8:48 pm

That has been circulating the Internet for years. Let me Snopes it right now.

4 dirk March 23, 2011 at 8:54 pm

yeah, my bullshit detector went off when i read this, but i don’t see it on snopes. this story has too many perfect elements to be true.

5 dirk March 23, 2011 at 8:56 pm

If O’Henry wrote porn it would read about like this.

6 Andrew March 23, 2011 at 9:08 pm

Talk about a case for ‘pay-for-outcomes.’

7 Bob Knaus March 23, 2011 at 9:11 pm
8 Bill March 23, 2011 at 11:29 pm

Good law school exam question.

Mutual mistake, failure of consideration, attempt, breach of contract, restitution and equitable remedies.

And, law of unintended consequences.

9 Rahul March 24, 2011 at 1:04 am

Can’t believe the guy wanted to be paid. She was an ex-beauty queen after all.

10 Scott March 24, 2011 at 2:41 am

“Ex” being the operative syllable, perhaps.

11 doctorpat March 24, 2011 at 4:02 am

Sex with beauty queen + money > sex with beauty queen
What’s to wonder?

On the gripping hand, it would probably be easier to convince your own wife you weren’t enjoying it if you had to be paid to do it.

12 Andrew March 24, 2011 at 5:32 am

Could only be more perfect if the two kids were from the paying friend. O’Henry where art thou?!

13 Rahul March 24, 2011 at 8:42 am

We need an annual MR short story contest.

14 idiot March 24, 2011 at 12:38 pm

I think the article is a hoax. All searches of Demetrius Soupolos turn onto this story, and more importantly, I could not find the VERDICT of the case, which I feel is the most important thing here.

15 idiot March 24, 2011 at 12:41 pm

And more importantly, I found no German news articles on Demetrius…all the news articles I could find are second-hand. It appeared we are dealing with a real problem here.

16 Rahul March 24, 2011 at 1:00 pm

Nor any German beauty queen called Traute.

17 Josh M March 24, 2011 at 3:08 pm

While we’re off having a laugh, Saturday Morning Breakfast Cereal (a webcomic at the nexus of science, skepticism, and funny) poses an amusing quandary regarding economist pick-up lines:

18 Dr. Goose March 25, 2011 at 1:47 am

Said a husband: “The Lord will not bless me,
Dear wife, with descendants, unless we
Make a deal with a neighbor
The fruit of his labor
To compensate with a success fee.”

Many offers came in by the bunch,
And a contract was drawn up at once,
But later said Eve:
“I cannot conceive
Why it hasn’t worked out in six months.”

So the laws of supply & demand
May not always function as planned,
For sometimes you need,
For a deal to succeed,
More than just the Invisible Hand.

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