By Henry Hazlitt
History of Economics 360-001
March 8, 2005
Economics in One Lesson
By Henry Hazlitt
Henry Hazlitt's book, Economics in one lesson, brings to perspective numerous topics that are mainstream issues in the economy today. His book breaks down in detail specific concepts that have their effects on the economy. Hazlitt explains topics such as war and the expenses, the tariff system, and productivity and the minimum wage laws.
One concept Hazlitt emphasized on was how economics was viewed for temporary needs, versus more permanently viewed.
"In addition to theses endless pleading of self-interest, there is a second main factor that spawns new economic fallacies every day. This is the persistent tendency of men to see only the immediate effects of a given policy, or its effects only on a special group and to neglect to inquire what the long-run effects of that policy will be not only on that special group but on all groups. It is the fallacy of overlooking secondary consequences" (Hazlitt p15-16).
This simple fact that Hazlitt brought up is the dominating factor that separates good and bad economics. A good economist will look at the effects a certain policy will have on all groups, while a bad economist will only see the effects that a policy will have on a particular group. This ties in with the long-run effects because if a group is only looking at how a policy will affect itself then in the future another group that was affected could lose their business because of the way the first group viewed a policy. For example if a clothing company decides to increase revenues by selling more products at a lower price, it will cause the company that has to supply the materials for the shirt to have to increase the amount of materials they need to use in order to keep up with the sales the clothing company makes. If the shirt company acted in the best interest of all the groups they would...