Claude-Frédéric Bastiat was a french economist and writer. One of his most famous works, "What is Seen and What is Unseen", introduced the idea of opportunity cost, although it wouldn't get that name for more than sixty years.
Hurricane Irene is likely to cost billions of dollars. The storm did damage but not as much as some had feared. Will the sales of batteries and flashlights – and then repair costs – give the economy a needed boost?