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Applied Economics: Thinking Beyond Stage One Hardcover – December 9, 2008


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Product Details

  • Hardcover: 352 pages
  • Publisher: Basic Books; 2nd edition (December 9, 2008)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0465003451
  • ISBN-13: 978-0465003457
  • Product Dimensions: 1.2 x 6.4 x 9.6 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 1.2 pounds (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 4.6 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (53 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #153,568 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Editorial Reviews

Review

"Thomas Sowell is one of the fine scholars of our time."

About the Author

Thomas Sowell has taught economics at Cornell, UCLA, Amherst and other academic institutions, and his Basic Economics has been translated into six languages. He is currently a scholar in residence at the Hoover Institution, Stanford University. He has published in both academic journals in such popular media as the Wall Street Journal, Forbes magazine and Fortune, and writes a syndicated column that appears in newspapers across the country.

More About the Author

Thomas Sowell has taught economics at Cornell, UCLA, Amherst and other academic institutions, and his Basic Economics has been translated into six languages. He is currently a scholar in residence at the Hoover Institution, Stanford University. He has published in both academic journals in such popular media as the Wall Street Journal, Forbes magazine and Fortune, and writes a syndicated column that appears in newspapers across the country.

Customer Reviews

Very good book, well written and informative.
C. Wilburn
Once again, Sowell clearly explains everyday economic concepts with a series of interesting real-life examples from around the world and throughout history.
K. Hammond
I suppose it is too much to hope that a significant number of political types will read this book and start "Thinking Beyond Stage One."
Donald N. Anderson

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

70 of 71 people found the following review helpful By K. Hammond on April 20, 2009
Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
Once again, Sowell clearly explains everyday economic concepts with a series of interesting real-life examples from around the world and throughout history. The focus of the book is not only to explain sound economic concepts but also to explain why it is often in the personal interest of the political class to act contrary to these principles. The negative effects of their actions are often not felt until they are long out of office and few are likely to trace these effects back to their original cause. In the short term, doing the wrong thing gets them elected or re-elected.

Every voter should read this to inoculate themselves from the lies of our politicians. The book is non-partisan, exposing the political thinking of both US parties, as well as many others in other countries.

If you don't think you are interested in economics, you should be, because it affects the life of every man, woman and child on the planet. This book makes what can be a dry subject interesting. It's hard to put down!
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35 of 36 people found the following review helpful By John P. Kennedy on March 8, 2009
Format: Hardcover
This book explains the world of economics better than any other I have ever read. Dr. Sowell demonstrates why he has been so successful in the academic world by reducing a boring, complex subject to that which is easy to read and understand.

I highly recommend this book to the reader who wants fact, not fiction. It will be a hard read for many liberals but a necessary one if they ever hope to understand the world as it really is!
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23 of 23 people found the following review helpful By C. Wilburn on March 3, 2009
Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
Very good book, well written and informative. Provides an in depth view of current economic problems and why they exist. This author also explains why politicians make decisions that are a "quick fix" for current economic problems to get them re-elected but the decisions they make are often harmful to the economy in the long run.
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18 of 19 people found the following review helpful By Dr. Bojan Tunguz HALL OF FAMETOP 50 REVIEWER on December 27, 2009
Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
Many political considerations have the underlying economic dimensions. In fact, probably every political decision has major economic ramifications. Unfortunately, it is not always easy to discern all of those ramifications and the consequences of those decisions that come up further down the road sometimes take time to manifest themselves. This book provides the reader with some basic tools of analysis in order to fully appreciate some of the major political issues of today. The main focus is on the US politics, but the issues discussed have cropped up under different guises around the world and the book could certainly be read by international audience.

Thomas Sowell is one of the most respected political columnists of today, and his popularity and influence are in large measure due to the fact that he is exceptionally skillful at writing at the level that can be readily appreciated by the general readership. He's particularly adroit at breaking down complex issues and presenting them in terms of their most salient components. It is exactly this style that he brings to this book. The book is not a highbrow academic treatise, nor even a real textbook. Its aim is to promote economic literacy on the part of general public, and in that respect it does an admirable job. The title of the book suggests that this is a sequel to Sowell's "Basic Economics," but this is a largely self-contained work and can be read independently of the earlier book. In fact, each one of the chapters can be read in its own right. The only thing that links them in a single volume is the general theme of considering economic consequences "beyond stage on," i.e. beyond the immediate impact that various political decisions have.

This is one of those books that everyone should read. If everyone did, it is very likely that we wouldn't be straddled with the consequences of unfortunate political decisions for decades at a time.
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13 of 14 people found the following review helpful By Donald N. Anderson on June 9, 2009
Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
I've lost track of the number of Dr. Sowell's books I have read. He always provides straightforward explanations of each topic in language that is simple for the layman but respects basic economic principles.

This book is no exception, in Thomas Sowell's hands the "dismal science" brightens up a bit and shows its importance in explaining human affairs. I suppose it is too much to hope that a significant number of political types will read this book and start "Thinking Beyond Stage One." The few politicians that do, must be supported by unusually intelligent constituents that look beyond claimed legislative goals to the real incentives presented and their effects.

Dr. Sowell clearly explains the contrasting incentives that drive most politicians and their constituents. Living in the Bay Area he has numerous examples of the extreme form of this pathology. My friends in his area who do evaluate incentives, and do the numbers, are appalled by the stage one thinking that so dominates public affairs.

The author's chapter on free labor and slavery and all the variations between is clear and informed. He has spent a lifetime studying this issue and he presents the economics in a very robust form with excellent examples from his wide studies of many human societies.

His chapters on medical care and housing should be read by everyone interested in current affairs.

His treatment of risk and insurance and the perverse effects caused by government agencies is wide ranging and clear. He also describes private individuals who make a living by promoting costly conclusions based on "Stage One" thinking.

With the inclusion of chapters on immigration, discrimination, and the economic development of nations, Dr.
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