Hidden Order: The Economics of Everyday Life

Hidden Order: The Economics of Everyday Life

by David Friedman
     
 
A respected professor and son of Nobel Laureate Milton Friedman provides a fun and easy way for curious readers to understand basic economic ideas.

Though we may not know it, we make economic decisions every day when we recycle, drive through rush hour, go on a date, play softball or bargain with our children. In Hidden Order, David Friedman, a prominent

Overview

A respected professor and son of Nobel Laureate Milton Friedman provides a fun and easy way for curious readers to understand basic economic ideas.

Though we may not know it, we make economic decisions every day when we recycle, drive through rush hour, go on a date, play softball or bargain with our children. In Hidden Order, David Friedman, a prominent economics scholar, shows us how to use economics to understand war, marriage, kids, crime and practically everything else (along with profits, prices, and all that stuff).

Making economics accessible to everyone, this witty presentation is a perfect reference for the amateur economist.

Editorial Reviews

Journal of Economic Literature
Informed by solid and sophisticated economic theory, including many of the intricacies of modern welfare economics, even if these are carefully disguised to avoid scaring off the customers.
Publishers Weekly - Publisher's Weekly
Friedman puts the passion back into economics with this unconventional, demanding primer. A professor at Santa Clara University (and son of Nobel laureate economist Milton Friedman), he insists that economics is not primarily about money, but rather about needs, wants, choices, valuesan imperfect science predicated on the assumption that people tend to rationally choose the best way to achieve their objectives. Using scores of everyday examples to steer the reader through complex concepts, he discusses consumer preferences, street crime, lotteries, plea bargains in trials, sharecropping, financial speculation, political campaign spending and much else. He demystifies international trade (e.g., there's nothing inherently bad about a trade deficit) and deconstructs the economy as an interacting system all of whose elements are interdependent. A rewarding text for serious readers. Translation and U.K. rights: Writer's Representatives. (Aug.)
Library Journal
Friedman (economics, Santa Clara Univ.) has written what he terms an unconventional presentation of the principles of economics. Using generally lively language, although there are also some dreary stretches of technical jargon, he tries to show how these principles determine the basic elements of the economy, such as prices and values, and how they are involved in explaining spending, saving, and investment behavior. Friedman is a strong supporter of the free-market system as the one that makes the economy work best. The framework of his analysis (not too clearly laid out in the text) is essentially that of the classical economists starting with Adam Smith (1776) as expanded and elaborated by his followers in the 19th and 20th centuries. Modern economic theories, particularly those of John Maynard Keynes, so influential in the post-World War II years, are given short shrift. An optional purchase for public libraries.Harry Frumerman, formerly with Hunter Coll., New York
David Rouse
This is not your father's textbook nor is it even Friedman's. Son of economics Nobel laureate Milton Friedman, David uses everyday life to illustrate economic principles. In so doing he demonstrates his primary premise that behavior is determined by rationally made economic choices. He argues that economics is based on the "false" but "useful assumption" that "people have reasonably simple objectives and choose the correct means to achieve them." He says it does not matter that, individually, this is not always the case; collectively, the effects of random irrational behavior average out. His use of commonplace occurrences such as choosing a line at the supermarket checkout or agreeing to do the dishes helps make ideas such as price theory and exchange rates more understandable. Though Friedman's montage of examples sometimes overwhelms, both his pedigree and his spirited style will attract interest.

Product Details

ISBN-13:
9780887307508
Publisher:
HarperCollins Publishers
Publication date:
06/01/1996
Pages:
340
Product dimensions:
6.51(w) x 9.59(h) x 1.17(d)

What People are saying about this

Deborah Stead
"A lively look at how a free-marketer thinks. The author is a talented teacher, and he moves effortlessly from the traffic jams and grocery stores to the efficient-market hypothesis, price theory, and backward bending labor curves."
Jerry Pournelle
"If you have any interest in economics at all, you'll find this book both readable and fascinating; and I guarantee you'll learn something from it."

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