One of the things that I did in November 2008 was to begin writing a novel. If I had to describe it in one sentence: Frances Mayes meets Ayn Rand.
It’s the story of a young man in the early 1970s who wants nothing more than to make great wine. So, not unlike the prospectors who travelled west a century before him, he went to California to find bottled gold. He succeeds. But that is when his troubles start. Success breeds envy and contempt from others and he finds himself engaged in political battles to try and maintain what he has built. That is when his political outlook begins to change. Oh, and I should mention that the protagonist is gay.
I’m only about half done. Life has a way of getting in the way. Plus, I’ve never written one of these novel thingies, so it’s entirely new to me.
One of the things I’ve done to help me research (beside the couple trips to California to meet with some legendary winemakers from that era) is to read more political philosophy. It helps me to understand my message better so that I can then distill it into ideas that I can put into the novel.
I say all this to say that Alert Reader Snorri Godhi commented on a recent post that she thought that in light of this week’s events that it might be a good idea for people to re-read a little Hayek. Snorri’s comment has inspired me to start this post.
What books can help people, first, to understand our current political/social/economic environment, and then, second, to help them to refute contrary arguments and win over undecideds?
Below is my first stab at a reading list that I pulled from my Kindle. What would you suggest to add/delete?
Bastiat, Frederic. Economic Sophisms
Bastiat, Frederic. Essays on Political Economy
Bastiat, Frederic. The Law
Friedman, Milton. Capitalism and Freedom
Goldberg, Jonah. Liberal Fascism: The Secret History of the American Left
Hamilton, Alexander, et al. The Federalist Papers
Hayek, F.A. The Road to Serfdom
Hobbes, Thomas. Leviathon
Mackay, Charles. Memoirs of Extraordinary Popular Delusions and the Madness of Crowds (first three chapters)
Mill, John Stuart. On Liberty
von Mises, Ludwig. The Theory of Money and Credit
Okrent, Daniel. Last Call: the Rise and Fall of Prohibition
O’Rourke, P.J. On the Wealth of Nations
O’Rourke, P.J. Parliament of Whores
Payne, Thomas. Common Sense
Shlaes, Amity. The Forgotten Man
de Tocquevill, Alexis. Democracy in America
Wolfe, Thomas. The Bonfire of the Vanities