The only negative thing one could say about this book is that it doesn't also focus on the issues of when our markets or policies are allowed to run wild without the intervention of basic human ethics (as opposed to government enforced moralizing or special interests) and we are made to suffer the unnecessary pains of a strictly avaricious, rather than a truly prosperity driven, economy. However, the concise focus and pure distillation of Sowell's writing is part of what makes this book so great.
What stood out to me most was how precisely Sowell identifies the problems and the fundamental errors in judgement that allow people to live out an endless quest for cosmic justice that not only fails overwhelmingly often, but isn't concerned with prosperity, equality, freedom, happiness, or any other commonly professed goal--the quest for cosmic justice is solely concerned with the endless self-perpetuation of the quest itself and the drug-like passions and illusions it creates in intellectuals and law makers. The quest gives people with no skin in the game a sense of moral superiority without any requirement that they actually solve any problems or help those they intended to help. There is a rhetoric of empathy and compassion that breeds arrogance and authoritarianism. Sowell shows how all of this isn't just a factual failure to achieve stated goals, but a pernicious cancer that is eating away at the most fundamental principles of American society and the rule of law all in the name of disastrous utopian rhetoric which not only fails to produce results, but cripples or prevents our best efforts to make genuine progress.
- Paperback: 224 pages
- Publisher: Free Pr; Reprint edition (25 February 2002)
- Language: English
- ISBN-10: 0684864630
- ISBN-13: 978-0684864631
- Product Dimensions: 14 x 1.8 x 21.4 cm
- Boxed-product Weight: 181 g
- Average Customer Review: Be the first to review this item
- Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 62,258 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)