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Economic Freedom and Interventionism (Lib Works Ludwig Von Mises) (Lib Works Ludwig Von Mises PB)
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Economic education is a recurring theme of this book. Mises was not clear as to how the economic literacy of the public might improve. But he did appear to think that America was setting an important example. The retention of a relatively high degree of private enterprise made the superiority of capitalism more apparent.
As such, this is easy reading, compared to other books by Mises. Part I is a defense of capitalism. Here we can see the basic reasons why private capital matters, and how socialism fails. The second part examines intervention and the business cycle. The third part contains various critiques of the writings of other economists and of specific policies by Mises. The final part is on assorted topics, including a very interesting essay on small and big business.
The editor of this anthology did us all a great service with this book. Too few people of the twentieth century learned the lessons of this book. Hopefully people of the twenty first century will take better advantage of these ideas.
He observes, "Men are unequal and the inherent inferiority of the many manifests itself also in the manner in which they enjoy the affluence capitalism bestows upon them. It would be a boon for mankind, say many authors, if the common man would spend less time and money for the satisfaction of vulgar appetites and more for higher and nobler gratifications. But should not distinguished critics rather blame themselves than the masses? Why did they... not better succeed in persuading the masses of inferior people to drop their vulgar tastes and habits?" (Pg. 25)
He says about his The Theory of Money and Credit (Lib Works Ludwig Von Mises PB) [Paperback] that "I tried to construct a theory based entirely upon the modern subjectivist methods of dealing with economic issues, the marginal utility concept... I pointed out that the phenomenon of interest, i.e., the higher valuation of present goods as against future goods, is an ineluctable category of human conduct....Read more ›