Archive for Austrian economics explained

My Book on the Austrian School of Economics

781955734I’ve just published a short book, Advanced Introduction to the Austrian School of Economics, which is designed to give people with some knowledge of economics an explanation of what ideas distinguish the Austrian school from mainstream economic thought. The paperback is relatively affordable ($22.36 if ordered on-line). The book is much slimmer in person (144 pages) than it appears in the graphic on the web site.

The book is written for readers who have some knowledge of economics, but are curious about the ideas that distinguish the Austrian school from mainstream economics.  It is not an introduction to economics from the point of view of the Austrian school.

The publisher is hoping that the book will be used as a textbook for courses in Austrian economics.  I don’t think there are many.  If you are at a university that subscribes to Elgaronline, you should be able to read the e-version of the book for free.

Readers on this website are probably already familiar with the ideas of the Austrian school, but it may be handy to see them presented as an overview this way, and also may be a way to introduce your acquaintances to the school’s ideas.  Should they ask you, “What are the distinguishing ideas of the Austrian school?” this book is intended to answer that question.

Audio: Walter Block Explains Austrian Economics

This interview with Walter Block is a little old (May 2013), but we haven’t linked to it before.

Some highlights of the interview include:

  • Block contrasts Austrian economists as philosophers compared to “normative” economists which he characterizes as ethicists and empiricists.
  • He highlights praxeology, the study of human interactions, as a central tenet of the Austrian school.
  • He emphasizes that there are areas where libertarians and Austrian economists do not have overlapping thinking.
  • Block says there is inflation at present, just not in what the official statistics are measuring.  He mentions several classes of assets that have experienced (are experiencing) inflation.
  • In an extended discussion about unions, Block said there are justifiable activities for unions.  But he feels many unions (and specifically public sector unions) are “legal and ethical monstrosities“.  He suggests they are “vicious, depraved and immoral” and “deny the right of free association“.

(Radio Interview, approx. 35 minutes)