Economics is the science of outlining the consequences of some anticipated or existing policy not only on some exclusive interest in the short term but the overall interest in the long- term. Economics in one lesson is an overture to the economics of free markets. It was written by Henry Hazlitt. He was an American economist, theorist, literary opponent and journalist. Economics in one lesson was printed in the year 1946. This book is an evaluation of prevalent economic fallacies that have nearly become a new convention.
According to this book, economics is troubled by more erroneous beliefs than any other study in man. In this book, Henry puts his opinions forward and those of the Austrian School to the outlook of America. He strongly advocates that every American should gain knowledge on economics, fiscal policy and the connection of politics with the economy. He adds that there is no need for formal classroom attendance to gain this knowledge. Only reading and learning is sufficient.
Economics in one lesson explains the most regular financial fallacies in a manner that is easily comprehended by all. The lesson is acknowledged in part one of this book. The lesson is that the skill of economics comprises of looking not only at the instantaneous but the long- term consequences of any deed or policy.
It comprises of tracking the effects of that policy. This is not just for one individual but for all individuals. Part two of this book consists of twenty four sections, each illustrating the lesson by outlining the consequences of one common financial belief. It demonstrates common economic idea as a fallacy.
The policy recommendations of this book include the support of free trade, resistance to any and all price regulations, opposition to price increases and resistance to simulative public expenses. The book states that men today are considered as gifted economists. They protest against saving and suggest squandering on a nation- wide scale as the way of saving the economy.
In 1961, a new section was added to this book. This is the section of rent control. This chapter is regarded in the first edition as part of government price fixing. The last chapter of this book is “The Lesson after Thirty Years”. Present economic analysts across the political continuum have credited Hazlitt for predicting the collapse of the international economy.
Hazlitt centers on non governmental solutions, He emphasizes on free markets, economic freedom of individuals and the dangers associated with government involvement. This makes each and every section of this book relevant and influential today as it has been since the book’s publication.
Hazlitt in his book is quite convincing. His depiction of the price system is truly classic, enduring, right and painlessly instructive. Hazlitt is a leader especially in this era of expansive tussle in favor of liberty and the social structure in which people live like free people. He has determinedly fought against the gradual advances of the powers destroying everything created by human civilization. He is the economic principle of all nations. He uses sound reasoning to illustrate his case.
Economics in one lesson: Favorite Chapter
My favorite chapter in this book is chapter VII “The curse of Machinery”. This fallacy is still the foundation of several labor union activities. Hazzlit in this chapter states that among the most practical of all economic illusions is the belief that machines lead to unemployment. He explains that machines are only to be blamed when there is long and persistent mass joblessness and redundancy.
He adds that the idea that machines are a causative agent in unemployment has led to absurd and unbelievable conclusions. The part I like most in this chapter is where Hazzlit acknowledges that the use of machinery has saved man from unnecessary struggles. He says that machines and other technological advancements do not throw men out of work.
He says that if it were true that machinery is a cause of unemployment, then the drawn logical conclusions would be radical in the concept of societal civilization. In conclusion, Hazzlit states that machinery helps in reducing production efforts and increasing benefits in a more economic and sufficient manner. He does not believe that machinery is a curse.
Economics in one lesson: Less Favorite Chapter
The less favorite chapter according to my opinion is chapter XVII. The title of the chapter is Government Price Fixing. This chapter says that the price of any commodity is brought below its market level through two methods. One is increasing demand for that commodity by lowering its price.
The second method involves decreasing the supply of the good. Hazzlit should have made a better opinion rather than reduction of supply and price. This is because this method discourages production. Profit margins decrease or wipe out. Marginal manufacturers are sent away from doing business. It can even make the most sufficient producers trade their goods at a loss. It is, therefore, evident that supply and price reduction have negative impacts. Hazzlit should have made better and beneficial arguments in this chapter.
Economics in One Lesson and Recent Economic Debates in the US
Economies in one lesson may be related to the present economic debates in the United States. The policies evaluated in all the chapters are far more profoundly established and extensive in the United States than they were before the publication of the book. For instance, the policy of inflation in the United States stands out today as a sign of government intervention.
The government of the United States has been taxing individual earnings from work to a level of 83 % and that from investment up to a level of 98%. This has led to economic debates in the state since it has dejected work and investment. It has also intensely discouraged employment and production.
Employees in this state are penalized and harassed. Wages are low due to destruction of incentives. This has become the policy of the United States. By going through all sections of this book, we realize that there is no kind of government intervention denounced in the first edition that is not up to date used in the United States. The US government is inflicting more and more taxes. It still advocates for credit expansion.
Full employment is the overriding objective in the US. They are still imposing protective duties and import quotas. The US government has enacted several laws on the basis of inflation policy. Debates have arisen as a result of these measures ignoring some needy groups while at the same time, showering different variety of advantages upon other groups.
The increase of commodity prices in the US by inflating its currency is an area of vital concern. Price ceilings on oil and natural gas are imposed to put off new explorations. They still persist in rent control, yet this has caused devastations in the state (Hazzlit 105).
Hazzlit, Henry. Economics in One Lesson. Princeton: Van Nostrand, 1946. Print