Progress and Poverty

Written on February 7, 2016. Written by .

The thesis of this book is very important. It argues that poverty and much human suffering is the direct result of private ownership of land. The author attempts to prove some basic theorems of economics, but I wasn’t convinced that these proofs were rigorous. I didn’t spend too much time thinking about them though, so perhaps I just didn’t understand fully on my first read. But even if these proofs are not rigorous, the argument of the book is still quite convincing, though I had already come to the same conclusion independently before ever reading the book or hearing about the idea. The book is definitely short on details about the solution to the problem. The author also gets unnecessarily verbose in some parts. Despite these shortcomings, the core thesis is persuasively presented. Given that the topic is so little known and yet so important, I think this original presentation of it is a definitely worth reading. 

★★★★

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