Principles of Political Economy

This three-part study is a survey of basic principles that will give the student a thorough grounding in fundamental economic concepts. Each part is complete in itself, and may be pursued separately — but the entire series is well worth your time, and will bring you the fullest benefits.

The basic textbooks for each course are works of the great American economist Henry George. Though his books first appeared in the late 19th century, they are highly applicable to today’s conditions, because the principles with which they deal are universal. The basic problem which George set out to solve in his book Progress and Poverty is still today’s basic problem: Why, in spite of progress, does poverty persist?

Our approach to economic study is fundamental and non-technical. Terms are defined, basic economic laws are sought and basic principles are applied. Supplemental readings are offered throughout — applying the principles to current conditions and answering frequently asked questions.

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  1. Is there an Iron Law of Wages?
  2. The Distribution of Wealth
  3. The Dog in the Manger
  4. Capital, Interest and Profits
  5. The Boom/Bust Cycle
  6. Land and Justice
  7. Applying the Remedy
  8. What We Can Expect
  9. How Modern Civilization May Decline
  10. Our “Henry George Course” in Context
Applied Economics: Globalization and Trade
  1. Protection vs. free Trade
  2. How to Encourage Industry?
  3. Trade & the Function of Money
  4. Comparative Advantage, Profits & Wages
  5. Solving the Paradox
  6. Exploring Alternatives
  7. Today’s Issues in International Trade
  8. Trade & Development
  9. Globalization & the Environment
  10. Growth & Sustainability
Economic Science
  1. The Meaning of Political Economy
  2. Methods of Political Economy
  3. The Nature of Wealth
  4. Wealth and Value
  5. Wealth, Capital and Privilege
  6. The Production of Wealth
  7. Cooperation and Exchange
  8. Distribution of Wealth
  9. Money
  10. Political Economy and Macroeconomics

Note on the Authorship of Readings in Principles of Political Economy

This is a collaborative effort. Courses based on Henry George’s works have been offered for many decades, and many aspects of the writing that appears herein have a traditional character. For example, sentences and paragraphs that appear in this three-course series can be found verbatim, or nearly so, in the Henry George Institute curricula written by Robert Clancy in the early 1970s. The current version, however, has been produced by HGI Program Director Lindy Davies, and all the unattributed writings it contains are his. Mike Curtis, Fred Foldvary and Mason Gaffney have contributed sections or been quoted in this course’s readings. Sections they contributed are designated by an introductory note, and brief quotations by footnotes.