• Top 5 Economics Books for Learning Bitcoin

  • By exploring first principles of economics through the Austrian economics viewpoint, we will outline some of the best resources for learning about why failing economic practices led to the invention of bitcoin in this article.

    1. “Economics In One Lesson” – Henry Hazlitt
    2. “The Ethics Of Money Production” – Jörg Guido Hülsmann
    3. “The Origins Of Money” – Carl Menger
    4. “Anatomy Of The State” – Murray N. Rothbard
    5. “Human Action” – Ludwig von Mises

    Economics In One Lesson

    Hazlitt argues in “Economics in One Lesson” that we must consider the unintended, often unnoticed consequences of government policy and economic action. He illustrates this point with “the broken window fallacy,” in which he claims that the economy suffers when a baker must spend money to replace a broken window. Rather than investing in a new oven or painting his bakery, which would benefit him and other businesses, his funds are being diverted to replace the window, which only benefits the local glazier. Many of us assume broken windows are good for economic growth because we see how the glazier benefits from the broken window and don’t see the harm it causes to the broader economy. However, this is clearly not the case. In other words, the economy suffers whenever the government or rogue window-breaking actors divert funds from individuals.

    The Ethics Of Money Production

    According to “The Ethics Of Money Production,” money production should be privatized in the same way that most goods are. Author Hülsmann debunks common misconceptions about how the government manages money in this book. Government control leads to inflation, counterfeits, and instability rather than stability. Furthermore, a decentralized market, rather than the government, is better suited to determine the value of currency. Hülsmann also points out that when paper money was first introduced into society, it was not voluntarily accepted. People had to be coerced into using it by the government, sometimes to the point of death. People should be free to use any form of exchange they want as long as it is voluntary. Coercion to join a currency monopoly is unethical, violates freedom and property rights, and allows corrupt, monopolistic practices to flourish.

    The Origins Of Money

    Menger argues in this essay that money does not need to be created and enforced from the top down because it will naturally arise from human action. Individuals in early economies gradually progressed from bartering directly for goods and services to using various intermediaries to obtain their desired goods and services more easily. The market’s experimentation with various intermediaries will eventually settle on one or two popular mediums, which will become money. This was gold and other precious metals for most civilizations. Menger’s central thesis is that money does not have to be created by humans; rather, it will emerge as a byproduct of individuals attempting to trade as efficiently as possible.

    Anatomy Of The State

    “Anatomy Of The State” adheres to the libertarian view of government, which holds that government is a parasite that must be checked on a regular basis. It devalues productive members of society and labels those who have “too much” money or want to keep their money as greedy. According to the libertarian viewpoint, government requires propaganda to justify its existence and actions, and its primary goal is to maintain and expand its power rather than to protect or help its citizens.

    Human Action

    Ludwig von Mises’ aptly titled treatise “Human Action” distills economic growth and decline as a result of human actions. Individuals create, destroy, trade, and compete in an economy, and profits are inextricably linked to economic success and progress. Individuals who earn profits are providing a product that the market desires and are thus rewarded. Individuals who lose money are punished for wasting resources and producing a product that the market does not want. According to von Mises, the entrepreneur creating something is at the heart of all economic activity and progress/regress, and economic activity and entrepreneurship will only cease when the market reaches contentment. Because market contentment implies that people are satisfied with the products and services they have, and humans are insatiable creatures, this is unlikely to happen.

    We have even more great books on Bitcoin-related topics listed in our bookstore if you make it through all of these books, including the 881-page behemoth “Human Action.”

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