The House of Adam Smith

The House of Adam Smith

The House of Adam Smith

The House of Adam Smith

Excerpt

The House of Adam Smith was conceived, written and published when I was a young man. Thirty years have passed since then. It would be foolhardy to venture a reassessment of an interpretation developed so many years ago. I could not possibly reconstruct the sense of excitement that I experienced as I read The Wealth of Nations for the first time. Nor could I reconstruct the intensity of my feeling as I saw the possibility of correcting a major historic misinterpretation and revealing Adam Smith for what he was, a liberal reformer, instead of, as so many wished him to be, a rigid defender of free enterprise.

Man and time are locked in an embrace from birth to death. I wrote this book during the most devastating depression in this nation's history -- a period which revealed once and for all the inappropriateness and futility of our nation's relying exclusively on the institution of the free market to provide an adequate number of jobs for all who were able and willing to work. Although the Great Depression did not yield readily even to the massive government interference practiced under the aegis of the New Deal, the period since 1940 has dimmed almost into obscurity the havoc wrought, by that depression. No student of economics can ever isolate himself from the world in which he lives or the . . .

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