Filthy Lucre

Filthy Lucre

Economics for People Who Hate Capitalism

Book - 2009
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A dozen times every day, individuals and organizations use economic claims to support social and political points of view. Those on the left tend to distrust economists, seeing them as friends of the right. There is something to this skepticism, since professional economists are almost all keen supporters of the free market. Yet while factions on the right naturally embrace economists, they also tend to overestimate the effect of their support on free-market policies. The result is widespread confusion. In fact, virtually all commonly held beliefs about economics--whether espoused by political activists, politicians, journalists or taxpayers--are just plain wrong. 

Joseph Heath, co-author of the international bestseller The Rebel Sell, wants to improve our economic literacy and empower us with new ideas. In Filthy Lucre, he draws on everyday examples to skewer the six favourite economic fallacies of the right, before impaling the six favourite fallacies of the left. Heath leaves no sacred cows untipped as he breaks down complex arguments and shows how the monetary world really works. The popularity of such books as Freakonomics and Predictably Irrational demonstrates that people want a better understanding of the financial forces that affect them. Highly readable, flawlessly argued and certain to raise ire along all points of the socio-political spectrum, Filthy Lucre is a must-read for anyone wanting to engage in clear debate on social and political issues.

Publisher: Toronto : HarperCollins, c2009
ISBN: 9781554683956
Branch Call Number: 330.1 Hea 3558ad 1
Characteristics: 338 p. :,ill


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May 15, 2010

This is not only a great book to read for someone wanting to learn a little bit about the basics of economic theory, but a trenchant critique of modern-day policymaking and the fallacies riddling our political debate.

Heath devotes the two halves of the book to the most commonly-heard economic arguments on the right and left, and picks them apart to equal devastating effect. Being sympathetic to the left, his basic goal is to deepen the policy-making debate by showing why economists' arguments aren't all they're made out to be, and why the arguments advanced on the left are often completely off-target.

Lucidly-written and funny throughout, Joseph Heath shows why we need people like him to study critical thinking and philosophy in university. Read this book.

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