The Joy of Freedom: An Economist's Odyssey

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9780130621122: The Joy of Freedom: An Economist's Odyssey

The Joy of Freedom: An Economist's Odyssey isn't a dry tome about free market economics: it brings the idea of freedom to life through stories of people who have discovered it in their own lives. David Henderson brings together these stories as never before, celebrating those in American society -- and around the world -- who are fighting to get the government off their backs. The cause of freedom led David Henderson to join the Reagan administration as a senior economist with the Council of Economic Advisers, to become the economics editor for the National Review, and to make the case for freedom in dozens of articles in Fortune, the Wall Street Journal, and Red Herring. In this book, written as an intellectual sequel to Milton Friedman's legendary Free to Choose, Henderson tells the stories of freedom with extraordinary power, illustrating the centrality of freedom to a well-run economy and a good society. Henderson's stories may be a revelation; for example, he shows how property rights have been used to protect wildlife, from elephants to hawks.

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From the Back Cover:

Freedom. Freedom from government meddling and taxation. Freedom of association. These freedoms are inseparable, and they are the engines of human progress. A simple idea? Perhaps. Yet this simple idea has been responsible for more human happiness than any other.

In The Joy of Freedom, David R. Henderson shines a light on freedom at work in every corner of human life, making the most powerful case for free markets since Milton and Rose Friedman's Free to Choose. Along the way, he demolishes the conventional "wisdom" that has justified government's role in environmental regulation, education, social security, and healthcare; and shows once and for all why government programs perpetuate poverty instead of eliminating it.

Forget the "dismal science": Economist Henderson writes with passion about the joyous science. You will always know where he stands: with freedom, and against tyranny-in any guise.

Free and healthy, at half the cost How deregulation and the Internet can make healthcare more competitive-and less expensive Nature's best friend: property rights How property rights are protecting wildlife, from elephants to hawks Interviewing Ralph Nader Nader defends regulations that kill thousands of people every year Governments promote racism and free markets combat it Some fascinating stories on South Africa, the United States, and Schindler's List Beyond public schools: education in a free society The 10 most important things you've learned Free markets: empowering the poor, worldwide Property ownership: the best solution for abolishing hunger and poverty

The world's most powerful idea: for real joy, you need real freedom.

  • The strongest arguments for free markets since Milton Friedman's Free to Choose
  • A personal manifesto from one of the world's leading economists
  • How freedom unleashes extraordinary improvements in every area of human society

The Joy of Freedom: An Economist's Odyssey brings free market economics to life through stories of those who have discovered it in their own lives. David R. Henderson, one of the world's most vigorous advocates of free markets, celebrates those in American society-and around the world-who are fighting to get the government off their backs.

No writer has more masterfully illustrated the centrality of freedom and enlightened self-interest to a well-run economy—and a good society. Henderson demonstrates the power—and the potential—of free markets to improve the environment, education, health, community, culture, and every other aspect of life that matters. This plain-speaking book crystallizes the inherent contradictions between government and freedom, showing why even the most well-intentioned governments can deliver nothing but disaster.

For those who already believe in free markets, this book offers powerful ammunition; for those who are skeptical, it will be a revelation.

"The Joy of Freedom is a quasi-autobiographical clarion call for a free society. It is passionate and eloquent, yet at the same time, thoughtful, informed, and profound. A splendid statement of the moral case for a free society, at the same time it is an informed and comprehensive survey of its practical virtues and of the harm done by widespread government intervention. "—Milton Friedman
Senior Research Fellow, Hoover Institution, and Nobel Laureate

"Economics, like politics, has its 'great communicators.' David R. Henderson is one of them. A superb lesson from one of the more masterly of our economic teachers." —Amity Shlaes,
Columnist on Political Economy, The Financial Times

"A dazzling intellectual memoir, a high-level lesson in market economics, a terrific read. "—Dan Seligman,
Forbes magazine

"A can't-put-it-down read that engages you in story and events.... Here economic principles are not dry theories; they are events in Henderson's life. And we come to root for him as he struggles to see through one economic commonplace after another."—Shelby Steele,
author of A Dream Deferred: The Second Betrayal of Black Freedom in America

About the Author:

DR. DAVID R. HENDERSON is a research fellow with the Hoover Institution, and Associate Professor of Economics at the Naval Postgraduate School in Monterey, California. He is editor of The Fortune Encyclopedia of Economics and writes frequently for The Wall Street Journal and Fortune. In 1984, he won the Mencken award for investigative journalism for his first Fortune article, "The Myth of MITI." Formerly a monthly columnist for Red Herring, Henderson has appeared on C-SPAN, CNN, and The Newshour with Jim Lehrer. Henderson was previously senior economist for health and energy with President Reagan's Council of Economic Advisers. He has testified against the draft before the Senate Armed Services Committee, on taxes before the House Ways and Means Committee, and on health policy before the Senate Committee on Labor and Human Resources. In the late 1970s, Henderson spoke on college campuses and on television against a renewal of military conscription. Born and raised in Canada, Henderson earned his Bachelor of Science degree in Mathematics from the University of Winnipeg in 1970 and his Ph.D. in economics from the University of California at Los Angeles in 1976.

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