- Publisher: Ludwig von Mises Institute (March 10,2009) (1602)
- ASIN: B015X4NRTI
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- Average Customer Review: 65 customer reviews
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Man, Economy, and State: With Power and Market - Scholar's Edition by Murray N. Rothbard (March 10,2009) Hardcover – 1602
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Mises only said what he believed. What a compliment to Rothbard!
Introduction - '' Rothbard never conceded the mainstream of economic science to the disciples of mathematical modeling and the positivist method, whom he regarded as an irrationalist cult that had hijacked economics and whose silly doctrines would sooner or later wind up in the dustbin of intellectual history.''
Really? What is the evidence?
''Rothbard has been proven correct. Mathematical modeling has revealed itself to be a vain and formalistic exercise incapable of explaining the international currency crises, stock-market and real-estate bubbles, and the global financial crises that have wracked our world in the past two decades.''
''It is increasingly evident even to professional economists that the tortuous positivist detour has led to an intellectual dead end.' '' (713)
Where did this distrust of precise, logical, rigorous use of reason arise?
''However, as Rothbard points out, it was precisely “Marshall's distrust of ‘long chains of deduction,’” in addition to “the whole Cambridge impetus toward” making short-cut assumptions designed to make their theory more testable was one of the factors that led to the gradual breakdown of the praxeological [logical] method and its replacement by positivism.'' (602)
What! Distrust 'of long chains of deduction'? How else should scholars earn their paycheck? 'Short-cut assumptions'! Wow. No wonder their advice failed.
Nevertheless, is Rothbard's work just personal, narrow-minded, pre-conceived dogma?
''Rothbard's quest to recover and reconstruct the edifice of sound economic theory drove him to scour the contemporary literature for new ideas and insights as carefully as he had scrutinized the writings of his predecessors in the causal-realist tradition. Rothbard's treatise contains citations from over 150 books, journal articles, conference proceedings, government documents, dissertations, and policy and research institute monographs.'' (638)
My kindle edition contains a detailed table of contents. Can serve to quickly find (with link), the specific theme one has in mind. Well done.
Includes two different indexes. One, index of names. Two, index of subjects. Both have working links to the text. Great!
This edition includes ''Power and Market''. This is less economic theory and closer to political impact on economics.
Last page - ''The point is that the free-market economy forms a kind of natural order, so that any interventionary disruption creates not only disorder but the necessity for repeal or for cumulative disorder in attempting to combat it.''
What? Order from freedom?
''In short, Proudhon wrote wisely when he called “Liberty the Mother, not the Daughter, of Order.” Hegemonic intervention substitutes chaos for that order. Such are the laws that praxeology presents to the human race.''
Authorities commandingly produce - chaos!
''They are a binary set of consequences: the workings of the market principle and of the hegemonic principle. The former breeds harmony, freedom, prosperity, and order; the latter produces conflict, coercion, poverty, and chaos. Such are the consequences between which mankind must choose.''
''In effect, it must choose between the “society of contract” and the “society of status.” At this point, the praxeologist as such retires from the scene; the citizen—the ethicist—must now choose according to the set of values or ethical principles he holds dear.''
My only regret is that I bought it for my Kindle. I think this is one of those books that best read in paper so you can easily flip and forth between pages and write in the margins. There's a lot of content and terminology. Since it builds chapter by chapter I found myself asking, "what does that mean again?" or flipping back because I really didn't understand a concept like I first thought.
It's a good read if you're serious about understanding an alternative economic path.
If you're a Keynesian, this book is not for you!
I really underestimated what a treasure this book would be. Rothbard assumes no prior knowledge and walks you through economic theory from isolated man, to barter, to modern monetary economics and then goes through many deeper issues in Government from minimum wage and child labor.
In all cases Rothbard doesn't get too complicated or throw equations at you and I believe anyone could easily read and understand this book, though I will tell you the truth some dedication is required. It's almost as if blinds open and you learn how to think and you see the world, and especially it's governments and their economic policies, in a different light all backed by logic and sound reasoning.
This book will be one of your greatest investments and will only leave you craving more.
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[...] is a great resource set up by Tom Woods which provides some suggestions for further reading you can get here on Amazon.