At last, Leonard Read, economist and social philosopher, gets his due in this outstanding commentary on and compilation of his writings by Professor Gary Galles. This book is an attempt to assemble a collection of some of Leonard Read's best, most powerful sustained arguments on behalf of liberty from his many books, edited for brevity, with brief introductory remarks and commentary connecting them to current issues. The ones chosen cover a wide gamut of subjects, from the rhetorical and logical abuses that are used to misrepresent liberty to the meaning of "good government," the central importance of integrity (which Read viewed as the foremost virtue), the necessity to recognize what is not known and the importance of markets in revealing information that is otherwise unknowable in a complex world, the differences between wants and rights and between justice and "social justice," whether immoral means can achieve moral ends, how the redistributive state harms every participant, and much more. Read's depth of wisdom consists in his capacity to write about what is essential in economic, social, and political affairs. It is to his credit that his work seems like "common sense." That is by design. He had an uncanny knack for finding and bringing to the fore that insight that is missing in discussion of these topics, and presenting it in a fresh and highly communicative way. His goal was to reach people with a radical message, especially given the times, but present it in a way that taps into our everyday intuitions.. His one message: social and economic progress is only possible through freedom; all attempts to force change or progress through government are immoral and destined to fail. He was truly an apostle of peace in times of war against property, freedom of association, and interventionism.
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