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Economics in One Lesson: The Shortest and Surest Way to Understand Basic Economics

Economics in One Lesson: The Shortest and Surest Way to Understand Basic Economics [Kindle Edition]

Henry Hazlitt
4.7 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (36 customer reviews)

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Product Description

Product Description

A million copy seller, Henry Hazlitt’s Economics in One Lesson is a classic economic primer. But it is also much more, having become a fundamental influence on modern “libertarian” economics of the type espoused by Ron Paul and others.

Considered among the leading economic thinkers of the “Austrian School,” which includes Carl Menger, Ludwig von Mises, Friedrich (F.A.) Hayek, and others, Henry Hazlitt (1894-1993), was a libertarian philosopher, an economist, and a journalist. He was the founding vice-president of the Foundation for Economic Education and an early editor of The Freeman magazine, an influential libertarian publication.  Hazlitt wrote Economics in One Lesson, his seminal work, in 1946. Concise and instructive, it is also deceptively prescient and far-reaching in its efforts to dissemble economic fallacies that are so prevalent they have almost become a new orthodoxy.

Many current economic commentators across the political spectrum have credited Hazlitt with foreseeing the collapse of the global economy which occurred more than 50 years after the initial publication of Economics in One Lesson. Hazlitt’s focus on non-governmental solutions, strong — and strongly reasoned — anti-deficit position, and general emphasis on free markets, economic liberty of individuals, and the dangers of government intervention make Economics in One Lesson, every bit as relevant and valuable today as it has been since publication.

From the Trade Paperback edition.

Product details

  • Format: Kindle Edition
  • File Size: 1174 KB
  • Print Length: 220 pages
  • Page Numbers Source ISBN: 0517548232
  • Publisher: Crown Business (11 Aug 2010)
  • Sold by: Amazon Media EU S.à r.l.
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0517548232
  • ISBN-13: 978-0517548233
  • ASIN: B003XT60KO
  • Text-to-Speech: Enabled
  • X-Ray:
  • Average Customer Review: 4.7 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (36 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: #101,748 Paid in Kindle Store (See Top 100 Paid in Kindle Store)
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Customer Reviews

Most Helpful Customer Reviews
60 of 61 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Simple, elegant, persuasive 7 Jun 2006
This writing in this book is straightforward yet beautifully elegant. The author examines over twenty commonly held economic assumptions. In doing so, he exposes what he considers to be faulty thinking and widely assumed fallacies.

This book is written from a classical liberal standpoint. Each `fallacy' is considered in a discrete chapter. Each chapter is in itself a separate little essay. Each little essay builds upon the previous one in explaining a little more of the theories that underpin economic thoughts.

More than anything else, this book attempts to demonstrate that the art of economics is considering not just what is seen in any transaction, but also what is unseen. Often, it explains that a policy designed to achieve a desirable X will have the unintended consequence of creating an undesirable Y which is worse than the original problem that was to be solved.

For instance, if a shop window is broken it must be replaced. It will create employment for the glazier. Many will think this makes the economy richer. However, the shopkeeper may have been planning a different purchase, such as a car or a computer. The shopkeeper will have to purchase a new window. He may no longer be able to afford the computer. So at the end, the shopkeeper is poorer than before - he has only one window whereas he would have had one window and one computer.

This analysis is then applied to the state as a whole. Hazlitt points out what are the immediately visible results of any action. He then attempts to demonstrate what are the invisible consequences. His conclusion is that too often, we do not see the invisible consequences of our or our government's actions.

This is a very accessible work.
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7 of 7 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars One simple lesson 15 Nov 2009
The authors who understand the subject really well are able to explain it in simple and easy to understand language. This is what I feel that this book is all about. The author explains the economy in one lesson: policies should take into consideration the long-term consequences as well as short-term, and they should consider the effects on all groups, not just few. Wow, so simple, but unfortunately this is not how our policy makers think.

I think that high school students should read this book before they enroll in economic courses that bore them to death with all the graphs and mathematical calculations. I really appreciate that this book is simple but to the point - even junior high school students would understand it. I highly recommend it.

- Mariusz Skonieczny, author of Why Are We So Clueless about the Stock Market? Learn how to invest your money, how to pick stocks, and how to make money in the stock market
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18 of 20 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Ecomomics for the Everyman 24 Mar 2009
Format:Paperback|Verified Purchase
For most of my life I have paid little attention to theoretical economics and I suspect this is true for most people. However the current disastrous financial dilemmas awoke my interest. I quickly came across the Austrian school of economists and Hazlitt can be classed with them. The writing here is succinct and non technical and full of common sense, a quality missing from almost all economists and politicians.

The economic theory advanced here is illustrative of a persuasive broader philosophy which argues against the interference of the state in our daily lives. I suggest that if this book is to your taste you explore his other works which (in the absence of availability on Amazon) can be obtained at the Ludwig Von Mises Institute in America with the other Austrian school writers.
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10 of 11 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Says all that needs to be said 1 Nov 2009
This book is a great introduction to economics. Hazlitt's writing is concise and devoid of academic jargon. Although much of this book was written sixty years ago - though he did add some new stuff in the late seventies - his lesson is still very relevant. Sadly, governments seem incapable of heeding this advice.

Opportunity cost is perhaps the central theme of this book, or the fact that there's no such thing as a free lunch. Every benefit governments choose to dole out on our behalf has a cost and needs to be paid for out of the proceeds of production. If more people took account of these hidden costs and long-term consequences we'd live in a better world.
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6 of 7 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars The Greatest One Lesson You'll Ever Have 24 Dec 2009
Format:Audio CD
I studied economics for two years at A level, but my economics education really started when I discovered this book.

Economics in One Lesson is based on That Which Is Seen and That Which Is Not Seen, and in particular, a specific famous insight in Bastiat's essay, known as "The Broken Window Fallacy". This is the idea that a breaker of a window (or any other economic resource) should be praised because his destruction has actually spurred increased economic activity (for the glazier, his baker, butcher etc.). This is false because it ignores the other side of the "transaction". If the citizen whose window was broken wasn't broken, they would have spent the money elsewhere, and the exact same amount of economic activity would have occurred, albeit in slightly different spheres -- to boot, of course, society would be one window richer. Thus the destruction actually destroys economic wealth.

Hazlitt applies this to various socialist/interventionist policies (or proposed policies) of his day, and shows how these all actually reduce society's total wealth. Although this book wasn't written contemporaneously, all Hazlitt's analysis is extremely relevant today.

In short, I think everyone should read this book.

Other similar recommended books:

Economics for Real People: An Introduction to the Austrian School
The Politically Incorrect Guide to Capitalism (Politically Incorrect Guides)
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Most Recent Customer Reviews
3.0 out of 5 stars Biased.
and although im on the same page with him, in his views; this is not "economics in one lesson". Read more
Published 1 month ago by Mr. I. Erem
5.0 out of 5 stars Simple and well explained economic problems
Very good book with the most basic economic problems well explained in very simple words. I highly recommend this for both beginners in the field as well as those who searches for... Read more
Published 1 month ago by moretoonice
5.0 out of 5 stars Every Politician should read this book
Really enjoyed this book, easy to read as you don't need to have studied economics to fully understand his 'lesson'. Read more
Published 2 months ago by pippin 53
4.0 out of 5 stars Good intro to the world of Hazlitt
Simple, powerful, statements of the obvious.
Published 2 months ago by stephen harker
5.0 out of 5 stars AN EXCELLENT READ
This book is so so so brilliant - Only God knows why I hadn't read it earlier. Have even ordered copies for friends! An excellent book.
Published 2 months ago by Marricke Gane
5.0 out of 5 stars Really good, straightforward book on economics.
I liked this book a lot. It's very straight forward, well explained, and makes a great book on economics. The chapters are each an area of different discussion, ie. Read more
Published 4 months ago by Feneris
5.0 out of 5 stars fascinating and informative
Although this book was first published many decades ago, its message is just as applicable today, as we don't seem to be learning the lessons of the past. Read more
Published 4 months ago by Mr. M. V. Meyerstein
5.0 out of 5 stars Read this book.
Probably, one of the best economics books I have ever read. Definitely, the best economics book I have ever read.
Published 5 months ago by Anas
5.0 out of 5 stars If you are interested in economy then this is a book for you.
I would recommend this book for everyone who is really interested in economy.
I choose this rating because it explains the idea of `free market` which is in this case an... Read more
Published 8 months ago by pawelgonzalez
5.0 out of 5 stars Could not make it clearer
Despite gross simplifications, makes the essence of economic policy making crystal clear. Direct, amusing style. Read more
Published 10 months ago by Eugene Belin
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