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Dr. Sowell presents economics in such clear and concise terms. Concepts, truths and fallacies all made crystal clear by detailed examples from economic history. Economics comes alive in this presentation.
The narration was so superb, He could make tax code interesting!
24 of 25 people found this review helpful
Sowell covers so many economic fallacies (fallacies we have heard propagated daily in the news, for all of our lives), and explains why they are wrong. He uses inventive illustrative scenarios to make clear difficult concepts. He takes you well-past a limited concept or idea, to the full consequences of that idea, and makes the case using real-world historical examples from around the world. This will inoculate you against future fraud for the rest of your life. My only critique: the reader, while clear and understandable, is a bit dry and devoid of expression. Still worth it though. I have "re-read" many chapters since I bought it.
19 of 20 people found this review helpful
I have to say that it's been a long time since a book influenced me enough to prompt me to actually write a review of it. I write this review in some sense due to a feeling of outrage that it stands unchallenged and might be taken as an authority on the subject for us lesser mortals, for whom Mr Sowells contempt is barely guarded.
"Basic Economics for the uncouth, undeserving and otherwise retarded public" might have been a more appropriate title given the overall flavour of this sweet and sour alphabet soup that Mr Sowell has vomited upon us. Make no doubt about it, as the author has no such second thought: the peoples and governments of the world are dense to the point of disbelieving mathematics in favour of the Marxist dogma that is presumably peddled as democracy in our society.
The author hammers home a belief system with trite examples that oversimplify most of the subjects, condemning any other belief than his own to cheap ridicule. The degree of simplification that he uses in his black and white interpretation of the world is almost childish, to the point of ruining even his most well made arguments. It is this constant contempt in which he treats his reader that most of all spoils what could have been a great book.
But it is still a compelling read (listen?) and I have spent more time with this audiobook than I have any other in the past year. As long as you aren't as stupid as he assumes you are, you should be able to get the best bits out of this book, and if nothing else it will be a sound introduction to economics, even with it's right wing barb.
A must-read for anyone interested in how money and economics works, and a good introduction, if somewhat biased.
10 of 11 people found this review helpful
I would disagree with some of the other reviews, i feel the book is quite balanced and generally portrays economic principles as economic principles and attempts to stray away from political views accept to highlight an economic point or use political mistakes of the past to deepen understanding of how an economically driven outcome would have been better than the politically driven policy.
My main gripe with this book however and why it may feel to some as though the author has an underlying agenda, is that it repeats itself a number of times and the examples used do not often move away from the political arena. A much better grounding in economics would start with the areas of economics that individuals can understand, like their own day to day dealings and gradually build to more in depth examples.
Due to the feeling of the book repeating itself it is also far to long for the content it covers, and is also very light on some behavioural economics and in explaining different approaches to standard issues in economics. All in all this makes the book very ominous and repetitive and unfortunately in my opinion is not a complete introduction. However there are not many books that attempt to provide a complete overview of economics or the economy without using maths and this is probably the best of those.
2 of 2 people found this review helpful