Economics in One Lesson

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Hazlitt, Henry. 1946. Economics in One Lesson. Three Rivers Press.


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(1946) Henry Hazlitt's Austrian-style anti-progressivism reactionary rant. Peddled as an introduction to economics, because anyone with some knowledge of economics would laugh at it. 65 year old "the world is coming to an end tomorrow" doomsaying. And I'll never understand how he makes out 175+ pages in 24 chapters as "one lesson". Read the rebuttal, Economics in Two Lessons: Why Markets Work So Well, and Why They Can Fail So Badly.


Capsule summary of Economics in One Lesson [More...]
"Hazlitt's "Economics in One Lesson," has almost nothing to do with economics, the study of how to efficiently allocate scarce resources. It's basically a kid's book for indoctrination into libertaryanism."
Economics in Two Lessons [More...]
John Quiggans' draft response (in progress) to Henry Hazlitt's 'Economics in One Lesson'. The second lesson is: Market prices don’t reflect all the opportunity costs we face as a society.
Economics in Two Lessons: Why Markets Work So Well, and Why They Can Fail So Badly (book)
An excellent academic (but readable) rebuttal to the propaganda in Economics in One Lesson, the fallacies of Economics 101, some Chicago Economics and some Austrian Economics. Very simply, markets do not take into account ALL opportunity costs.
Predistribution: wages and unions (extract from Economics in Two Lessons) [More...]
"The wages that emerge from labor markets are the products of a complex process of implicit and explicit bargaining between workers, employers and (where they exist) unions. The outcomes of those bargains depend on the relative power of the parties and that in turn depends on the rules set out by society."


This is why books entitled Economics in One Lesson must evoke from us the advice: 'Go back for the second lesson.'
Paul Samuelson, "A Modern Post-Mortem on Bohm's Capital Theory", Journal of the History of Economic Thought. V. 23, N. 3. 2001.
The more fundamental change that is needed is a revision of assumptions that are taken for granted, throughout the political process, that corporations are a natural feature of market economies, while unions are an alien intrusion[...] corporations, like unions, are social constructions, which could not exist except as a result of conscious policy decisions to change the rules of a market economy.
John Quiggin, "Predistribution: wages and unions (extract from Economics in Two Lessons)"