By John Mueller

I assumed this was once one other ebook alongside the strains of "Freakonomics," "Naked Economics," or "Predictably Irrational," the place the target was once to show off a slew of counter-intuitive insights from economics and psychology -- the "Economics might be enjoyable" style, should you will.

Not so. even though I obtained much out of this e-book, and components of it made me imagine, in most cases i'd signify it as stuffy and uncomfortably theoretical.

It's philosophy, rather. it truly is rather a survey of the way principles -- capitalism and democracy -- were seen through the years. It examines the ways that, to paraphrase the 1st line of the ebook, capitalism has gotten a worse rap than it merits, whereas democracy has gotten a greater one than it merits. (At the fingers of poets, historians, novelists, politicians, etc.) it is nearly literary history.

So a lukewarm advice for this one. there have been components that made me imagine, yet now that i feel approximately it, even these elements have been particularly the author's quoting an individual else's rules (quite loads of this here), than arising with whatever unique. almost always, i would say it is a lot much less enjoyable than the groovy conceal and loony name appear to promise.

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Additional info for Capitalism, democracy, and Ralph's Pretty Good Grocery

Example text

This may well be true for acting, but not for real life: most people cannot consistently and routinely fake sincerity. And using not much more than commonsense, people very often can, at least on substantial exposure, spot pretenders. Indeed, part of the growing-up process involves the development of social skills for sizing up others for the purposes of forming, or avoiding, relationships. ”38 Therefore, the penalties for an act—or even to a vague suspicion— 39 CHAPTER 2 of phoniness can be severe and immediate: customers stop coming back and bad-mouth the business to friends, fellow dealmakers fail to return telephone calls, employees become resentful and less productive.

Thus, businesspeople who acquire the reputation of being sharp operators—those who take “unfair” advantage of a situation when the opportunity presents itself—will be approached with a wariness that is not beneficial to them from an economic standpoint. In general, they will become less rich—find it more difficult to make deals—than those who have been able to create a reputation for fairness and for fair dealing. Hence, it is to one’s long-term economic advantage that the other party walk away from the deal feeling that the agreement has been fair even though this might mean cutting a deal that is somewhat less favorable or immediately profitable.

44 CAPITALISM’S IMAGE He is one of the most decent and honest people I have ever met: if he found an unsealed envelope with five thousand dollars in cash in it and the owner’s address on the outside, I fully expect he would deliver it to its owner immediately—in fact, he would probably stuff a few more bills into the envelope out of sympathy. However, when he was told he could be paid for his work on the project in cash, he seemed to be uncommonly delighted. It is possible, of course, that when he got back to Copenhagen he went directly to the revenuers’ office to declare his take and to let them hack out their generous slice, but somehow I doubt it.

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Capitalism, democracy, and Ralph's Pretty Good Grocery by John Mueller
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