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Eat the Rich: A Treatise on Economics Kindle Edition
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Top Customer Reviews
Despite his politics, he is a very human writer. Right wingers are frequently prone to righteous puritanicalism, O'Rourke, however, enjoys drugs, sex and rock and roll as much as the next person, and more than many.
In 'Eat The Rich', he tries to do what many have tried before: make sense of economics. And he almost manages. I now understand derivatives, know the difference between a stock and a bond (you can be tied to one by the other, and then pilloried for making such poor puns). But, ultimately, PJ gives up the ghost deciding that sense cannot be made of something so abstract, obtuse and plain nonsensical as Economics.
To his credit, PJ never allows the subject matter to deter him from his primary aim, to write an urbane, amusing and witty book. Very, very, very funny. Eat The Rich has a large marginal propensity to make me laugh. You should subscribe to the law of supply and demand a copy now.
Looking at Russia, he shows how not to reform an economy (if there is one!). He points out that Communism has 'beaten out enterprise' from the people, whose mindset is not to take control of their lives.
His conclusion is that both systems are messy and far from ideal. But at least under capitalism the supermarket is full of food, and your not shot if you dont buy from the approved supplier.
So now I understand, it is all so simple, so why don't economic text books say it? It is because, as O' Rourke explains, economics is based on the undefinable: the value of things.
He shows how destructive centralised control from real-world examples not just in communism but also in democracies finishing with the astonishing case of Hong Kong that has, virtually zero government interference (and no natural resources either apart from the Chinese mindset).
The book is written, unselfconsciously, as a "travel guide" with easy humour.
If you want to know what "the money multiplier is" then don't buy this book, get a text book. If you want a laugh and are interested in how the world really works then buy this book.
This book is funny, insightful, charming and entertaining. It is also a remarkably consise and sharply observed idiot's guide to economics, but that it is not to say that it is written by an idiot or is intended for idiots.
PJ seems genuinely to put his libertarian prejudices aside and then examines economic theories, their foundations and effects in a sharp and jargon free style, featuring what seems to be absolute honesty and a complete lack of vanity, exposing the fact that economics is merely a means of measuring human nature, and neatly and logically arriving back at a position of profound libertarianism.
Although this is only my second PJ book, I have never read a word of his that I've thought was ill placed, ill judged or wrong. I only wish he had run for mayor of London instead of New York.
Most Recent Customer Reviews
OK so this is a funny book - but what pissed me off is finding out it was about his travels in 1997. Yes. 1997. Read morePublished 3 months ago by J. Morgan
Hilariously funny, like all P.J.O'Rourke's writings, this is also an extremely insightful book. O'Rourke studies economics by doing what he's best at - travelling to a number of... Read morePublished 10 months ago by RB
A fantastic collection of P.J's thought provoking (but very funny) essays on the general theme of economics. Read morePublished on 11 Jan. 2013 by Bob
While I share his intellectual predilections, I object to all the obscenity and blasphemy. OK he's only a hack, but he has a good case to make. I want to like him. Read morePublished on 23 May 2012 by Richard Ashton
Not suprisingly, PJ O'Rourke has done his homework once again. Facts and figures are crammed into virtually every page, telling us... nothing at all. Read morePublished on 26 Jun. 2000
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