The Instant Economist

  • by Timothy Taylor
  • Narrated by Don Hagen
  • 9 hrs and 35 mins
  • Unabridged Audiobook

Publisher's Summary

The only economics book you will ever need.
Economics isn't just about numbers: It's about politics, psychology, history, and so much more. We are all economists - when we work, save for the future, invest, pay taxes, and buy our groceries. Yet many of us feel lost when the subject arises. Award-winning professor Timothy Taylor tackles all the key questions and hot topics of both microeconomics and macroeconomics, including:

Why do budget deficits matter?
What exactly does the Federal Reserve do?
Does globalization take jobs away from American workers?
Why is health insurance so costly?
The Instant Economist offers the knowledge and sophistication to understand the issues - so you can understand and discuss economics on a personal, national, and global level.


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Customer Reviews

Most Helpful

Timothy Taylor is the best

This was an excellent survey of the basics. Taylor establishes where economists agree, and highlights where they don't (mostly macroeconomics). He really knows how to explain economic thinking. He focuses on the intuitions at the heart of economics. Trade-offs are everywhere and we need to understand what these trade-offs are. He rids the listener of zero-sum thinking, as I think many people who don't understand economics succumb to. Any good citizen should be familiar with the basics of economics and this book is a superb deliverer of those basics. Graphs and complex mathematics are unnecessary for the most part. Taylor's Great Courses lectures on economics are also fantastic. I highly recommend them for anyone seeking to understand the world.
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- Jake

Reasonable Review of Key Concepts

This is not your typical airport economics book where an author applies economics to a few selected issues, but a textbook in audible form. My recollection is that the first 18 chapters were micro and the second half of the book covered macro, trade, etc. Most of the chapters were not particularly long, and there were no obvious cases where I felt the material was wrong, and a few situations where the examples might have been better chosen. For a book of this length, that is probably a pretty good record. In addition, one of the biggest challenges in producing a textbook in audible form is that you can't use graphs or charts to support the explanation. Surprisingly, that was not much of a problem in this text, as most of the explanations of concepts were pretty clear in audible form. I will say that any explanation of supply and demand curves, with movement along the curves vs. shifts in the curves is going to be difficult without seeing a few examples, but I am not sure that is the fault of the author or narrator.

As to the narrator, the pacing was pretty good and the reader did not get in the way of the material. In summary, about as good as a textbook can get in audible form; I find it hard to call it 'a great read'.
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- Loren

Book Details

  • Release Date: 01-31-2012
  • Publisher: Gildan Media, LLC