Lots of Free Books & Resources on Free Market Economics


  • Lots of Free Books & Resources on Free Market Economics

     Ben Crist updated 1 year, 6 months ago 2 Members · 9 Posts
  • Thomas Purifoy, Jr.

    August 16, 2021 at 4:59 pm

    There are some great online resources of ebooks and PDFs on free market economics. This is an ongoing list of recommended books to expand your study. (The photo is of Ludwig von Mises, perhaps the greatest free market economist of the 20th century.)

  • Thomas Purifoy, Jr.

    August 16, 2021 at 5:01 pm

    Let’s start with von Mises’ most famous work: Human Action. Here’s a link from Mises.org with PDF, epub, HTML, and audiobook – all free. https://mises.org/library/human-action-0

    “The masterpiece first appeared in German in 1940 and then disappeared, only to reappear in English in 1949. It was a sensation, the largest and most scientific defense of human freedom ever published.

    “As is well known, Mises’s book is the best defense of capitalism ever written. It covers basic economics through the most advanced material. Reading this book is the best way you could ever dream up to learn economics. Every attempt to study economics should include a thorough examination of this book.

    “Robert Murphy’s study guide for Human Action is available here.

  • Thomas Purifoy, Jr.

    August 16, 2021 at 5:02 pm

    Economist Bob Murphy’s “Lessons for the Young Economist” is an easier start for a student than Mises himself: https://mises.org/library/lessons-young-economist

    Lessons for the Young Economist is easily the best introduction to economics for the young reader—because it covers both pure economic theory and also how markets work (the domain of most introductory books).

    “Robert Murphy has the right frame of mind and mastery of the subject matter to provide the best possible pedagogy. The logic is super clear. The organization is impeccable. It achieves a great balance between “plain old” economics and that aspect of economic thought that is considered particularly Austrian. Therefore, it prepares the student for both conventional economic studies in the future and provides the logical rigor and policy clarity that only the Austrian School perspective can offer.

    “Most of the attempts at such texts falter because they are either too dry and technical for the young reader or they are littered with attempts to keep the student entertained with references to pop culture or cheesy passages that attempt to “speak the child’s language” but only end up sounding patronizing.

    “Dr. Murphy’s text has none of this. The prose has relentless fire without needless fireworks. What drives it forward is intellectual passion born of his love of the topic. What’s also nice is that he is nowhere self-consciously trying to sound like someone he is not. It is his real voice, explaining everything point by point. For this reason, the text is warm and engaging.”

  • Thomas Purifoy, Jr.

    August 16, 2021 at 5:10 pm

    Larry Reed is one of the great American free market economics, leading the Foundation for Economic Education (fee.org) for many years. Here is his blog: https://www.lawrencewreed.com/

    His books are all excellent, so I’ll link a number of them here. Let’s start with “Great Myths of the Great Depression”: https://fee.org/resources/great-myths-of-the-great-depression/

    Many volumes have been written about the Great Depression and its impact on the lives of millions of Americans. Historians, economists, and politicians have all combed the wreckage searching for the “black box” that will reveal the cause of this legendary tragedy. Sadly, all too many of them decide to abandon their search, finding it easier perhaps to circulate a host of false and harmful conclusions about the events that caused the Great Depression seven decades ago.”

  • Thomas Purifoy, Jr.

    August 16, 2021 at 5:12 pm

    Another from Larry Reed: “The XYZ’s of Socialism” – https://fee.org/resources/the-xyz-s-of-socialism/

    When a socialist says he wants to give you “the ABC’s of socialism,” you can be sure that’s as far into the alphabet as he’ll want to go. Happy talk, vague promises, political programs, perhaps an angry, envy-soaked tirade or two against the rich—but not much at all about where all that leads. That part always gets a little embarrassing.

    “Hence this anthology. The essays herein take you beyond the surface appeal of socialism’s message so you can understand both its underlying motivations and its practical results. After all, no system of political, economic, or social organization should be judged by simply what its advocates say it’ll do. That’s pretty shallow thinking, not much deeper than slogans and bumper stickers. It’s far more instructive to judge a system by the premises on which it’s based and the outcomes it actually produces.”

  • Thomas Purifoy, Jr.

    August 16, 2021 at 5:14 pm

    One more by Larry Reed: “Are We Good Enough for Liberty?” – https://fee.org/resources/are-we-good-enough-for-liberty/

    This small book conveys a very big message: character makes all the difference in the world. You are personally in charge of your own character and are in a position to have a considerable influence on the character of others by your example. If you have a conscience, this should matter a great deal to you. If you value liberty, you must understand that character is an indispensable ingredient—a necessary pre-condition—for a free society.

    “I’ll venture one step further and offer this thought, upon which I have elaborated in other places and publications: no people who lost their character kept their liberties. That may be the most important lesson from the last five thousand years of human history.

    “In my visits to communist countries before the collapse of the Soviet Union, I witnessed the power of character as it eroded an evil system. In Poland in 1986 I met secretly with a very brave couple, Zbigniew and Sofia Romaszewski. They had only lately been released from prison for running an illegal underground radio station that broadcasted a message of liberty for Poland.”

  • Thomas Purifoy, Jr.

    August 16, 2021 at 5:15 pm

    A great book on the dangers of inflation from Larry Reed: “When Good Money Goes Bad” – https://fee.org/resources/when-money-goes-bad/

    Inflation—the systematic expansion of the money supply followed by the depreciation of money’s value—takes something good and valuable and turns it bad. When inflation becomes hyperinflation, just about everything goes bad. A healthy economy devours itself and standards of living plummet. Why on earth would any government ever embark upon such destruction?

    “Governments inflate because their appetite for revenue exceeds their willingness to tax or their ability to borrow. At first, it may seem to be a relatively painless way to fund a deficit, please the mob, wage a war, or pay its debts. But inflation is a form of dishonesty, of cheating, of stealing. It never ends well.”

  • Thomas Purifoy, Jr.

    August 16, 2021 at 5:17 pm

    This is a must-read for our day and age, when Jesus Himself is being portrayed as a socialist: “Rendering Unto Caesar: Was Jesus a Socialist?” – https://fee.org/resources/rendering-unto-caesar-was-jesus-a-socialist/

    “On June 16, 1992, London’s Daily Telegraph reported this astonishingly bold remark by former Soviet leader Mikhail Gorbachev: “Jesus was the first socialist, the first to seek a better life for mankind.”1

    “Perhaps we should cut Gorbachev some slack here. A man who climbed his way to the top of a stridently atheist empire with a sorry track record on human rights was probably not a Bible scholar. But surely he knew that if socialism is nothing more than the seeking of “a better life for mankind,” then Jesus could hardly have been its first advocate; he would, in fact, be just one of several billion of them.

    “You don’t have to be a Christian to appreciate the errors in the Gorbachev canard. You can be a person of any faith or no faith at all. You just have to appreciate facts, history, and logic. You can even be a socialist — but one with open eyes — and realize that Jesus wasn’t in your camp.”

  • Ben Crist

    November 8, 2021 at 10:22 am

    An excellent, readable, and free ebook version of Adam Smith’s The Wealth of Nations was just released on Standard Ebooks. The organization has released many public domain volumes that are proofread and typeset for maximum readability. Check it out!

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