Friday, June 26, 2009

Go Buy It - Filthy Lucre

Well, I confess I did not buy it, I took it out from the library.
But people should buy it.
Joseph Heath's 'Filthy Lucre' is a wonderful primer on economics, largely because it is written by a professional philosopher, and one who can write, with clarity and great humor.
I had been pointed to it by two posts from the excellent bloggers who run the blog Worthwhile Canadian Initiative.
My favorite bits? Hard to say - it is truly a fine piece of work. There is a great section on international trade. But all the sections are excellent.
He also puts some specific effort into some Naomi Kleinism, in this her rather silly 'The Take'. As Heath points out witheringly, workers' cooperatives are no new idea, and Klein and her hubby treat them with a superficiality one would expect from them; no literature review, etc.
He also spends some effort analyzing 'The Corporation', another silly Canadian 'documentary', which Heath clearly shows contained zero intelligence, just attitude. My fear though is that many do not recognize the demolition he is doing.
He also has a lovely section explaining quite correctly why he is overpaid. (I am happy he is as it extends to my family too.)
If it were only for those chapters, the book would be a delight. But it is so much more. Get it, read it, enjoy it, try to understand it.
Thanks, Joseph Heath!


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