A long time ago (like, before the Great Depression), a bunch of guys predicted the Great Depression and the current economic crisis. They were part of a shadowy cadre known as the Austrian School (neither shadowy nor a cadre, but appearing that way to the establishment) who believed economic growth and stability are best achieved through a free market and without government intervention, and that this model was best for everyone involved.
The great Henry Hazlitt is largely responsible for popularizing those views, in great part through the publication of his brilliant book Economics in One Lesson. H.L. Mencken said Hazlitt was the only economist who could write. He was also one of the only economists who had the sense to take geniuses like Ludwig von Mises and F.A. Hayek seriously.
Turns out, though, Hazlitt ain't the only economist who can write. Thomas Woods, Jr. is no slouch in the writing department, either, and as luck would have it he also understands the Austrian School theories. Which makes Meltdown an incredibly important book at this particular juncture of American economic history.
This is basically a presentation and defense of libertarian free market economics for the layman with particular reference to the current situation, a clear demonstration of why Obama's policies are doomed to failure, and an explanation of the absolute failure of Keynesian economists to figure out what was going on beforehand (or now in the midst of the problem, for that matter).
Some readers might finish the last page and think, "That was okay, but in ten years it'll be dated." Not so. Contemporary readers need to take heed; but in ten, fifty, a hundred years, students of the economy should still be reading this book as a reminder and a warning of the impotence of government to solve our issues for us, and the prosperity and productivity only a free market economy can yield. A must-read for every adult American (or baby genius).
Review by C. Hollis Crossman
C. Hollis Crossman used to be a child. Now he's a husband and father who loves church, good food, and weird stuff. He might be a mythical creature, but he's definitely not a centaur. Read more of his reviews here
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