“The bad economist sees only what immediately strikes the eye; the good economist also looks beyond. The bad economist sees only the direct consequences of a proposed course; the good economist looks also at the longer and indirect consequences. The bad economist sees only what the effect of a given policy has been or will be on one particular group; the good economist inquires also what the effect of the policy will be on all groups.”
These few lines, taught me more about the “good economist” that any other article, blog post or book ever has and Henry Hazlitt does have a way of simplifying the most complicated things.
Abbreviated review: Please stop reading my book review, and go read “Economics in One Lesson” instead.
I have read a number of books on Economics but nothing compares to Henry Hazlitt’s “Economics in One Lesson: The Shortest & Surest Way to Understand Basic Economics” and the title of this book is anything but misleading.
Now, I will not lie to you and say that Economics is an easy subject. It’s not. But I have never found Economics easier than I now do. Hard facts, solid research, multiple viewpoints and well-written examples combined with Hazlitt’s way of simplifying the most complicated Economic theories, makes this book a tour de force.
“Economics is haunted by more fallacies than any other study known to man”, said Hazlitt and I couldn’t agree more. In his book, he takes up one fallacy after the other and annihilates the hollow foundation on which it rests. He does this, not with the help of elaborate examples or complicated theories but through the use of sheer logic. His witty remarks can make one “laugh out loud”. Literally.
For a book that was written in 1946, it is astonishingly relevant in today’s world. Without giving much away, I’d highly recommend this book to anyone who is interested in knowing more about the subject and if you are an Economics student and plan on reading just one book this year, make sure it’s this one.
Disclaimer: The picture used is not mine and the credit goes to the respective owner.