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# ans Nexon

```well, Bob said it concisely, but here is a longer version of the same

"The question I have is this: logically, an opportunity cost to an
opportunity cost is *also* an opportunity cost to the initial plan.
Therefore, any anticounterplan (following this theory) worth its salt
should be a reason to reject the plan. Why is this *not* the case?"

because opportunity cost is not transitive.  it doesn't work like
"Mike is taller than Dan who is taller than Jeff so Mike is taller than
Jeff".

an anti-counterplan has two requirements:
a) competes with counterplan and
b) doesn't compete with plan.

these two requirements are sufficient to establish that an
anticounterplan COULD be the opportunity cost of the counterplan but
CANNOT be an opportunity cost of the plan.

ALL of the anticounterplan example applications show this to be the
case, but one more focussed on this inquiry:

plan: Dan eats the apple.

counterplan: Dan eats the orange.

counterplan competes because if Dan eats BOTH the apple and the orange
he gets a really bad tummyache - must choose between plan and
counterplan so the counterplan COULD be the opportunity cost of the
plan.  of course, whether or not the counterplan IS the plan's
opportunity cost depends on whether or not the counterplan is the BEST
action which would have to be foregone if plan action is taken - let's
say it is.

the counterplan will have all sorts of actions which would have to be
foregone if IT were done - some of these would ALSO have to be foregone
if plan action were taken, but many would not.  so, for example,

anticounterplan: Dan eats the peach.

a) anticounterplan competes with the counterplan because if Dan ate both
the orange and the peach he would get a really bad tummyache - must
choose between counterplan and anticounterplan so the anticounterplan
COULD be the opportunity cost of the counterplan.

now, Nexon asks why isn't the anticounterplan an opportunity cost of the
plan TOO?  the answer is - it depends on whether or not the
anticounterplan COMPETES with the plan.  so ...

b) anticounterplan does NOT compete with plan because if Dan ate both
the apple and the peach, he'd be happy with no upset tummy.  apples and
peaches go well together.

i think the difficulty in seeing this is not distinguishing between
competition and preference.  it IS true that in this example that "Dan
eats the peach" might be the BEST of the three options, but because it
does NOT compete with the plan "Dan eats the apple" it CANNOT be an
opportunity cost of "Dan eats the apple" and because it DOES compete
with "Dan eats the orange" it COULD be an opportunity cost of "Dan eats
the orange".

in any case, the shorthand answer is that opportunity cost is not
transitive.