Parts of this "mid-century" (1940's) book may send shivers up your spine since they seem like "today's news" (circa 2011). Hayek's writing is incisive and insightful, if at times a bit "dense" due to high expectations of the vocabulary and language skills of his readers. One example is the occasional use of short quotes in French and German with no translations supplied. Bill Hughes is a master narrator, and his skills are tested in this book with its extensive citations and quotes having parenthetical attributions.
I appreciated this book for a historical context on the pendulum swings between planning and the free market. No matter which side you are rooting for, you will experience both thrills and slumps, because in the intervening 50+ years since this books original publication, some things are recurring and others are not [yet?].
Another reason to like this book is the logical/philosophical approach. While the title hints at a provocative rhetoric, the text itself is quite level-headed.
I love classic fiction, Austrian economics, enlightenment through history, libertarian politics and humorous stories (both fiction and non).
Not only does F.A. Hayek address and debunk every facet of the appeal for socialism, he does it in a manner of respect and understanding. What is lost in current political debates is the ability to stick to facts, history and logic; instead, on both sides, we see the attacking of character before the arguing of specific points.
What was most amazing and impressive about The Road to Serfdom was the fact that it wasn't written one year ago. Among my contemporaries (20-somethings), there is the tendency to write off classical liberalism as something that is outdated and no longer relevant or practical for the world we live in. However, Hayek shows that the problems that were present 50 years ago are the problems that are still with us today.
Einstein says that the definition of insanity is
I would give the narrator's performance a 4.3. I didn't love his voice, but it was just my particular taste. He was, however, very easy to listen to and follow along with.
Socialism: the invisible Road to Serfdom!
Faced with mindless duty, when an audio book player slips into a rear pocket and mini buds pop into ears, old is made new again.
It seems common that authors of popular, sometimes classic, books are often interpreted by people who have not read them. Authors like Harriet Beecher Stowe, Richard Wright, Ayn Rand, Vladimir Nabokov, and Friedrich Hayek are frequently commented on but when one reads what they wrote, content often becomes a surprise.
Conservatives that rant against government regulation based on Hayek’s “Road to Serfdom” are as incorrect as liberals that argue Hayek wrote against social government programs for the poor, disabled, and unemployed. Both myopic views reveal the likelihood that “Road to Serfdom” has not been read by either party.
Listen to what Hayek really wrote rather than what politicians of the right and left say he wrote. William Hughes does a nice job of revealing the truth in a narration of Hayek's "The Road to Serfdom".
The layman can grasp this book. This book will give you much to consider about yourself and your country (any country). I have just finished this work but I will be replaying this audiobook this week so as to absorb the content much better. If you have stumbled across this book, for whatever reason, you are really supposed to get it so go ahead and dig in. The author has references of other works related to the subject matter that you can look up and buy as well to add to your stock of knowledge on this subject.
Should be required reading for every college student. Deep and insightful while at the same time still frank and to the point. Hayek lays down some key ideas, not to be taken lightly by those who would seek to govern. The irony is that his writing has somehow become more relevamt today than it once was long ago. Especially for Americans.
It is scary how prescient Hayek appears. Except for the Germany references this could be current.
interesting to hear this perspective today. some something .2 still valid today and the liberal fable things to me backwards today
There are some powerful and applicable ideas and thoughts in this work, however they are muffled by excruciatingly dense prose. So unnecessarily thick it could be rewritten to one-tenth of its volume and more aptly convey the ideas and thoughts intended to be conveyed. Nine of every ten words are superfluous and contort every sentence into an unnecessarily long paragraph. Though the orator does his best to elucidate the many commas and nuances of each sentence, the ideas are still lost in the thicket. Needs to be rewritten in modern concise language and this older version thrown to the dustbin of years past when one might spend an hour considering each intricately woven sentence in a sort of game to discern its meaning. This should never have been produced as an unabridged audiobook.
If for no other reason to understand criticisms of modern "progressive"politics.
It was a very informative listen.