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New Studies in Philosophy, Politics, Economics and the History of Ideas Second Printing Edition

3.5 out of 5 stars 2 customer reviews
ISBN-13: 978-0226320700
ISBN-10: 0226320707
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Product Details

  • Paperback
  • Publisher: Univ of Chicago Pr (T); Second Printing edition (July 1985)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0226320707
  • ISBN-13: 978-0226320700
  • Product Dimensions: 9.1 x 5.9 x 0.8 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 1.1 pounds
  • Average Customer Review: 3.5 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (2 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #2,734,835 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

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By D. W. MacKenzie on January 16, 2008
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
Hayek authored some great books. The Road to Serfdom, The Constitution of Liberty, and The Counter Revolution of Science are true classics. Individualism and Economic Order and Studies in Philosophy, Politics, and Economics are brilliant. New Studies has some excellent essays. Competition as a Discovery Procedure is a good chapter. Economic Freedom and Representative Government has a strong message. The New Confusion about Planning is worth reading too. There is also some good anti-Keynesian material in this book.

The weakness of this book is that there is little said in it that one cannot find in Hayek's earlier writings. Hayek clarifies and reiterates some important points. Yet The Road to Serfdom and the Counter Revolution of Science show Hayek in his prime as a social theorist. The COL and the Law, Liberty, and Legislation volumes also show how Hayek's thinking evolved and reached new heights. New Studies does little more than to reassert that which Hayek wrote in his earlier work. That being said, New Studies is still a great book by one of the greatest economists of all time.
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Format: Paperback
These characteristic comments show F. Hayek's fundamentalist beliefs, main preoccupations and `holy' issues blatantly.
Apart from more technical problems (the Ricardo effect, Carl Menger and the value of goods) and a lecture on B. Mandeville, the main items discussed here are the free market system, governmental intervention in the economy, political issues (democracy) and lifelong wrestling with J.M. Keynes.

The spontaneous order of the free market system
F. Hayek treats his real holy market system as if it is an ideal-typical model in the Weberian sense. For him, it is an efficient communication system of price signals and a self-regulating order.
But, who is the market? For all monetary matters, he IS the market who quotes 'buy 0.99/sell 1.01'; in other words all financial agents like bankers and brokers. Are those people perfect?
All other transactions are individual `contracts' between a buyer and a seller (we are indeed still in a face-to-face society). Are these people perfect and are these transactions flawless? Absolutely and fundamentally not. Already the information about the goods is biased. Normally the seller knows more about the goods than the buyer (J. Stiglitz). In fact, there is a spontaneous disorder: markets are flawed, rigged, `designed' by the market participants.
Moreover, history is a long story of monopolies granted to special interests.

Governmental intervention, trade unions
For F. Hayek, governmental intervention in the economy equals a falsification of the price signals of the market, `in the hope thereby of giving benefits to special interests (like the poor, the sick or the injured). In the name of his holy flawed market F. Hayek rules out completely `the mirage of social justice' or `the redistribution of incomes'.
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