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on June 5, 2015
good read. Helpful towards a thorough understanding of the subject.
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on April 17, 2015
The content is great. I can understand this book easily. Recommended.
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on April 9, 2015
There was writing and highlighting in the book from the previous owner. It was a mild annoyance, but didn't affect the quality of the read. The book itself is a real eye opener in terms of explaining what should be obvious, but has become muddled in a sea is disinformation.
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on January 28, 2015
Hands down the best book on economics. It was life changing for me. Easy to read, easy to understand, no math or statistics, just logic. My only complaint would be that chapter 1, on the broken window fallacy is a bit brief, and he should probably spell out for the reader that many of the other chapters are just different manifestations of the broken window fallacy. Overall though, I have bought many copies of this to lend out, it's my go-to book to recommend to others interested in Economics, political or otherwise.
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on February 24, 2013
A concise summary of how legislation and the outcome of ithe legislation sometimes differ in practise from the intended purpose.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
This book is a fantastic introduction to economics. The language is in plain spoken terms. The issues covered by Hazlitt are everyday events, that anyone can relate too. In fact, it is hard to believe, the book was first written in 1946.

As the reader proceeds through the book, a reoccurring theme presents itself. Hazlitt starts off by explaining, how and why an interested party will try to alter an economic policy. One example was in regards to rent controls. Obviously there are a large group of renters, that are interested in limiting the cost of rental properties. Hazlitt lays out the political process, that is taking place in the case of rent controls. Then he takes things a step further. He outlines how this effects other groups, within a society. He also examines the big picture, and sums up the total effect on all of the population. This is Hazlitt over all theme; to explain events in terms of the effects on the entire population.

Hazlitt analyzes all sorts of various economic issues. Most of these will be very familiar to the reader. Some examples include; tariffs, minimum wage laws, savings versus spending, company profits, public work projects, and government price fixing. All of these issues, will be evaluated in a straight forward format. In fact Hazlitt himself states, "the conclusions we arrive at usually correspond with those of unsophisticated common sense". Economic common sense, may perhaps be the best description of this book.

I highly recommend this book, to anyone looking to achieve a basic understanding of many economic issues.
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on June 7, 2011
I have no background in economics, so this book was very helpful. I feel as though I gained a grounding in the area and a much better understanding of the world!

Recommend to anyone :)
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5 of 5 people found the following review helpful
TOP 500 REVIEWERon February 16, 2011
Henry Hazlitt has done the layman a huge favour in writing this book. Unfortunately, it is not only the layman who desperately needs this book. It is the world's politicians, the presidents of central banks, and those who control monetary policy who have severed their moorings with common sense and are now afloat on a raging sea of market fall-out and who don't understand how they got there who need to read this book, like, yesterday.

A proponent of Austrian Economics (the free market, self-governed through the law of supply and demand, with minimal gov't intervention), Hazlitt puts forth an irrefutable case against the foggy-headed reigning economic model of the day - Keynesianism. He does this by effectively exposing and refuting the many fallacies which Keynesians embrace as orthodoxy. Where Keynes is complex and convoluted, Hazlitt is simple and straightforward. And unlike Keynes, whose work wreaks of ivory-tower arrogance and elitist snobbery, Hazlitt writes with everyday wisdom and appeals to the common sense of the average person who knows instinctively that you can't improve your financial standing by plunging into debt in order to spend your way to affluence. If only our governments understood this.

At the heart of Hazlitt's book is the principle that true economics must consider the general effect over the long term of any policy it enacts. It is from the solid foundation of this principle that Hazlitt attacks all modern economic fallacies which, he argues, all have at their heart the problem of looking only at the effects of a policy on one special group in the short term. And Hazlitt reminds us that what would be foolish for household finances is all the more foolish for a nation since it the same foolishness magnified a million times over. Along with his use of common sense and plain logic, Hazlitt effectively uses statistics to prove his points (mercifully he limits his use of statistics, unlike many modern writers who use almost nothing but).

If Keynes is the alchemist wizard who has masterfully entranced his economist minions through a combination of academic sophistry and elitist intimidation, Hazlitt is the plain speaking sage who breaks the spell by speaking words that ring true with every person's experience of the real world and the economic forces at work within. This is not only a great place to begin one's study of economics but it is something that politicians and voters alike should have to re-read every election year before they cast their ballots. If we had been doing that up until now, we would not be in the economic disaster we currently are.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
This is a simple, but amazingly profound, mind blowing introduction to some basic economic principles. The principles outlined here are quite simple, and yet it seems so many people today can not grasp these basic truths.

Granted this book is a bit dated, but most of it is still useful and much of it seems as if it were written today.

I sincerely wish more politicians and voters today would read this book, it would go a long way toward restoring some knowledge of basic economics and some common sense to the decisions that get made on the political sphere.

There are many economics books that are so dense that I would take no delight in reading nor would I feel comfortable recommending to someone who is not already an economics wonk. However, with this title, I have no such reservations. I can wholeheartedly recommend this to anyone. I guarantee it will be enlightening in at least one or two areas!
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2 of 4 people found the following review helpful
on July 17, 2004
Henry Hazlitt's book starts with a single lesson-that economics means looking beyond the immediate effects of any act or policy to the consequences of it for everyone. The rest of the book is a series of short chapters giving examples of the application of this lesson.
Hazlitt's lesson in itself is great. I wish it were better known. His examples vary in quality. Some are a bit dated; natural for a book which mostly dates to 1946. The chapter on rent control is as relevant today as ever. The discussion of the cost of war and other types of destructive activities punctures a misconception that is still common. In his discussion of unemployment, however, he fails to mention immigration and population growth as part of the cause.
The section on tariffs is good as far as it goes. The problem with his analysis is that transportation today is in effect heavily subsidized. Oil companies and the like don't have to pay for the air pollution and climate change caused by their products, or for roads, or for the armies protecting the oil flow. Subsidized transportation costs make nonsense of the idea that local and imported goods are really on the same footing. Free trade with countries having non-existent environmental laws simply sets up a race to the bottom, with responsible companies heading for bankruptcy and irresponsible companies destroying the economic foundations of their own countries.
Hazlitt swallows whole the idea that growth in GNP is always good and can continue indefinitely. Given that GNP doesn't include the costs of pollution, resource depletion, the effects of population growth, or quality of life, this is very questionable. Hazlitt needs to apply his own "one lesson" here.
Hazlitt states in his first sentence that economics is haunted by more fallacies than any other study known to man. I tend to agree. Hazlitt points out some of them and does it in a very readable way. Hazlitt fails with some of the other fallacies. Read the book, but read it with a grain of salt.
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