The following article is based on my recent lecture at the Mises Institute in Auburn, Alabama, entitled: “Henry Hazlitt’s Long-Term Economic Thinking: Foundation of Entrepreneurial Excellence.” Here I will explore morality as Hazlitt’s foundational theme in economics.
Henry Hazlitt is considered to be one of the best financial journalists of the 20th century.“He was a giant in financial journalism,” as Jim Grant pointed out in his 2014 Mises Institute lecture entitled “Hazlitt, My Hero.”
Aside from his journalism, Hazlitt was a prolific writer who summed-up economics in “one lesson” in 1946.
Economics in One Lesson was based, in part, on Frederic Bastiat’s essay, What Is Seen and What Is Not Seen, and delves into the importance of aspects of the economy that are never spoken about, because they never happen. Hazlitt goes one step further, summing up economics not simply as a series of transactions with hidden implications, but in terms of long-term effects outliving the short-term effects of every economic principle or policy.
Economics in One Lesso…
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Hazlitt wrote more than twenty books and was the principal editorial writer on finance and economics for the New York Times for twelve years and was a columnist for Newsweek for twenty years. His writing was thoughtful, incisive, and influential. And he played a significant role in supporting, introducing, and explaining the ideas of Ludwig von Mises and Friedrich Hayek.
Though incisive, Hazlitt’s opinions were still subject to criticism. He opposed many popular government initiatives in his day: The New Deal, the Bretton Woods Agreement, and the Marshall Plan. This opposition…