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« Has Economic Research Reached Diminishing Returns? | Main | The Principles of Professional Advancement as an Economist »


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So Armen Alchain has done 28 Amazon reviews for 183 helpful votes and a ranking of 16,003. You could say this is a pretty feeble effort for a 94 year old, because one of your much younger colleagues has done 55 reviews for 494 votes and a ranking of 4499!

So eat your heart out Armen, but keep those reviews coming, if your friends sign up and add some votes you can really go up the ratings!

And while you guys are at it, how about some helpful votes for your young colleague?

They are wonderful reviews, apparently from a truly wonderful elderly economist. They may bear checking out, though... Are they really from Professor Alchian, and why was the author originally listed as located in San Jose?


'Peter Boettke’s Why Perestroika Failed, which he deems a “brilliant read.” '

Yes, but that book sells at Amazon for $80 a copy! This sort of publishing is no help to the author's reputation, nor to potential readers. "Open Access" publishing could do a lot to expand access to these ideas.


IF it is true that Skarbek posted those reviews using Alchian's name, then I must ask: Did Skarbek think this would help his future job prospects? Did he think at all when he used Alchian's name?

Many thanks for the link to the PDF of "Why Perestroika Failed"! I'd like to think that I would have easily located it if I had not started from the linked review on This IS exactly how "open access" should work: books for sale (often printed on demand) plus downloadable bits for wide study. Again, many thanks.

"Alchian's" review of The Joy of Freedom has this line while discussing the fall of the Berlin Wall:

"This is quite revealing of the significance of the event for someone like myself who does not remember it."

That would be a hell of a thing for Alchian to admit.

I for one am horrified that this whippersnapper Skarbek stole my name. This nasal buffoon is unfit to polish my boots!

P.S. PJB is awesome.


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