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Knowledge and Power: The Information Theory of Capitalism and How it is Revolutionizing our World Hardcover – June 10, 2013
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About the Author
Top Customer Reviews
Classical economics, whether in the Keynesian variety or the supply-side variety, builds models of economic systems from a mechanistic point of view. That is, it tries to build systems that interact with humans, but for which the human is not an integral part of the system. Economics before Knowledge and Power had the equivalent of a Newtonian perspective: it was believed possible to construct a closed-system model that could predict behavior of humans interacting with the system and responding to incentives. Past economic models have treated capitalism as an incentive system, but in reality capitalism is an information system. An economy is a vast information system in which knowledge is distributed among its human actors. In capitalist systems, knowledge and power are together in the individual; in socialist systems knowledge still resides in individuals, but power is vested a hierarchy with no access to the knowledge. Knowledge and Power shows that information and the human, and specifically the entrepreneur, are central to any economic model.Read more ›
Gilder has integrated free markets and limited government under an information theory umbrella that credibly shows both theoretically and anecdotally how entrepreneurs drive economic and social progress. This is huge. He showed how more parts of the political-economic world fit together that I had formerly thought disparate.
Besides the length, a flaw of the book is that much of it is a series of extended book reviews. In many cases, I failed to see a compelling link to his information theory of political economy. Another flaw is the intellectual fights he picks with some unlikely targets. One of these fights is an attempt to resurrect "supply side" as a useful term. I agree with him on the substance, but see this as a re-branding loser.
A notable fight is with Nicholas Taleb, author of "Black Swan" and more recently "Anti-Fragile". Gilder doesn't acknowledge until the last two pages of the Taleb chapter (#18) that Taleb is on his side. Taleb has railed for years against over-dependence on Gaussian dogma, which is perfectly consistent with the acknowledgement of "surprises" that entrepreneurs produce.Read more ›
My only reservation in a "like" versus "love" on the Amazon five star rating is George's mastery of the English language outpaces mine, so I have to keep a dictionary close by. Several other http://www.gildertech.com board subscribers also cited this to be the case.
With a unique forward by Andy Kessler (George's long time friend and colleague), over 30 pages of end notes, a "tendentious glossary" (which Gilder shared with his online http://www.gildertech.com board subscribers in April), an extensive index and highly relevant content germane to current global dynamics, I highly recommend this book for everyone's library who cares about the universe and how we fit into this amazing information model.
Spencerport, NY USA
Most Recent Customer Reviews
Gilder's premise is that what really moves the economy is the work of entrepreneurs. He puts together evidence to support this view, and points out that when government policies... Read morePublished 3 days ago by Camerons
As mentioned in one of the other reviews, the useful portions of this book could be written as a brief magazine article. Read morePublished 2 months ago by Justin
After reading a multitude of books on economic theory over the last 30 years, including those assigned for both undergrad and graduate level economics and finance courses, I must... Read morePublished 4 months ago by Steven
This is another in a long line of Gilder's take on economics. He does well writing about technology but economics is NOT his forte. Read morePublished 5 months ago by michael f nicosia
A major work. Gilder, I think makes one mistake; he doesn't understand the Causality Principle of Special Relativity. There is a boundary to everything.Published 6 months ago by Amazon Customer
I've read shannon and Adam Smith and was hoping for a better treatment. This guy can't put an argument together except to slant it to his right wing bs. Read morePublished 7 months ago by Jeff Land
An interesting take on creativity and entrepreneurship. Opens the mind to the possibilities that creativity and information require a stable environment (undisturbed by frequent... Read morePublished 7 months ago by Ellis Traub
This is a great attempt to push economics in a better direction. Gilder introduces the reader to information theory and applies that to the economic world to show the vital role... Read morePublished 9 months ago by Douglas Eifert
George Gilder, with his understanding of Economics and his passion for Capitalism with integrity, should be directing the activities of the United States Congress in all matters... Read morePublished 11 months ago by Richard L. Cox