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TANSTAAFL (There Ain't No Such Thing As A Free Lunch) - A Libertarian Perspective on Environmental Policy Paperback


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TANSTAAFL (There Ain't No Such Thing As A Free Lunch) - A Libertarian Perspective on Environmental Policy + Environmental Economics: An Introduction (The Mcgraw-Hill)
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Product Details

  • Paperback: 240 pages
  • Publisher: Searching Finance Ltd (September 15, 2011)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 190772026X
  • ISBN-13: 978-1907720260
  • Product Dimensions: 0.6 x 5.4 x 8.4 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 12.8 ounces (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 4.8 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (6 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #685,597 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Customer Reviews

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Being an ardent fan of Robert Heinlein, the title of this book intrigued me immediately.
Glen
It seems like Democrats and Republicans should be able to agree on the principles of economics and the environment presented in this short but excellent book.
Bruce S
It's important to note that the book is written in clear prose, with no equations and only a few simple tables and figures.
David Zetland

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

Format: Kindle Edition Verified Purchase
Many of the solutions to environmental problems take money from polluters and give it to the government; while Dolan recognises these schemes are those most likely to get broad acceptance, he also makes the point that the true Libertarian approach is that pollution is an infringement issue, and can be handled through tort law -- yes, the polluters must pay, but they should pay to those affected by the pollution (not the government).

Many conservatives oppose action on climate change as it goes against the status quo, and unfortunately some of that attitude can be seen in areas of Libertarian thought; this book is good because it does not debate science (leave that to the scientists), but focusses on the various policy alternatives and approaches that fit the Libertarian philosophy.
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5 of 7 people found the following review helpful By David Zetland on December 8, 2011
Format: Paperback
It's generally true that writing gets better with each draft, but at some point a writer must stop, as his cost of re-drafting exceeds his benefit (the benefit to readers is a different story).

But sometimes we get the chance to re-write an earlier work, not just to finesse the original perspective but to add wisdom and highlight important points.

Edwin G. Dolan has taken this second path with his "Version 40.0" 2011 update of his 1971 book, TANSTAAFL (There Ain't No Such Thing As A Free Lunch) - A Libertarian Perspective on Environmental Policy.*

Now some readers may be tempted to stop reading this review, since they are not interested in a "libertarian" book on environmental policy. Don't libertarians, after all, think that money should determine who gets what, in some kind of Darwinist struggle to allocate rainforest to the richest?

Not really, and definitely not in this book.

That said, Dolan doesn't shy away from highlighting the dangers of government failure and command and control myopia. In fact, he does an excellent job of exploring the tradeoffs between individual liberty and government guidance when it comes to managing our environment -- saying things I've said in the past, but adding more discussion that I wish I had and explaining more clearly than I ever did.

In other words, I like this book. I like it in the same way as I like "Economics in One Lesson: 50th Anniversary Edition", which I assigned to my Environmental Economics and Policy class at UC Berkeley, and I'd definitely assign this book to ANY class with "environment" in the title.
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Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
It seems like Democrats and Republicans should be able to agree on the principles of economics and the environment presented in this short but excellent book. For a specific vision on what the U.S. can do in this area, I highly recommend the book "Reinventing Fire" by Amory Lovins and the Rocky Mountain Institute.
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