- Publisher: Laissez Faire Books; 4th Rev edition (January 9, 2008)
- Language: English
- ISBN-10: 0930073185
- ISBN-13: 978-0930073183
- Product Dimensions: 6.2 x 2 x 9.2 inches
- Shipping Weight: 2.6 pounds
- Average Customer Review: 168 customer reviews
- Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #2,406,451 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)
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Human Action: A Treatise on Economics 4th Rev Edition
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This is a cause for celebration!
For several years, Laissez Faire Books has been attempting to arrange for a paperback edition of Ludwig von Mises's masterpiece, Human Action. Although Human Action was first published in 1949 (a German-language edition, Nationaloekonomie, was published in 1940, then completely rewritten in English), no paperback edition has ever been permitted by its publishers. Now, after literally years of negotiations, we are proud to announce the first paperback edition, thus potentially making it available to a much wider audience.
Its place in history:
Why is Human Action so important? Why has it been revered and honored ever since it was first published? Why is it regarded both as an historic classic and a contemporary masterpiece, by virtually every friend of liberty who has read it? To answer these questions is to understand the special place in history of Ludwig von Mises, and the special place in the body of his works of this truly magnificent achievement.
Our century has properly been called the Era of Statism. In our time, every known form of statism has been tried, from Communism to Fabian Socialism to Fascism, military dictatorships, neomercantilist states, revived monarchies, theocracies, national socialism, and the welfare state-- you name it. That's because by the turn of the century, Classical Liberalism--with its advocacy of individualism, private property, laissez faire capitalism, free trade and limited government--had been soundly defeated by its numerous adversaries. By the eve of the first World War, scarcely a single intellectual figure survived to champion these splendid ideals. And no wonder, for under the constant assaults of all varieties, Classical Liberalism had been badly damaged. It needed to be reconstructed if it was to survive at all.
It was then that one young man, working virtually alone, burst on the scene with a new vision of Classical Liberalism. He had flirted with a mild version of socialism, rejected it, and gone on to reason his way to a more consistent and rigorous case for capitalism than anyone had ever before set forth. -- Roy A. Childs, Jr.
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The material is a thorough and detailed defense of libertarianism and individualism, which is sorely needed in today's world. He shows with example after example how when government gets involved in the market, even with the best of intentions, things never go as planned. He demonstrates the inevitable disastrous consequences of government bureaucrats meddling in the market. He dispels with the countless straw man arguments that interventionists mount against the free market, including the false notion that the choice is between either random chaos or planning by the government. He correctly points out the real question is who is going to make the choices? Government bureaucrats or individual consumers. He presents several detailed defenses of individualism and the importance of liberty, and the horrors that result when the opposing position of collectivism is favored.
To get into the specifics would lead to an overly long review, but if this subject is of any interest to you, this is definitely the book to read. Von Mises is probably the most respected Austrian economist and reading his life's work will be of far more benefit than reading a few other shorter works (although there are many superb shorter works available). Von Mises's brilliance shine throughout the book and he provides exactly what is needed today- an intelligent coherent defense of capitalism and individualism. His arguments are objective and reason based. The evil forces of statism described in the book are still around today and can arguably even be getting stronger. If you care about the future, learn the material presented in this book. Learn it for yourself, but as a side it will allow to answer the multitude of nonsense that you'll inevitably come across in today's world.