Gridlock Economy

I recently recieved a copy of Gridlock Economy by Michael Heller. The premise of the book is that too much ownership hurts more than it helps. The core example given in the book is that of a possible cure for cancer or Alzheimers.

A drug company wants to make and test a drug, but the owners of the 50 components of the drug want insane amounts of money to allow the research to continue. The drug, if successful, would naturally be a tremendous public good and earn the drug company and the patent holders piles of cash.

Heller calls instances such as this “big inches” – named after a Quaker Oats promotion that granted 21 million deeds of one square inch of land in the Yukon to many, many boys, girls, and anyone else who bought a box of their cereal.

When I started reading it, I expected a very “dry” reading, “just the facts.” But Heller’s writing style was more fluid, I loved his anecdotes use of concepts everyone can relate to (such as airline delays).

He goes on to give examples of how some of the gridlock can be unlocked. I do not want to go too much into the brunt of the subject matter, but this book is excellent and you will learn something without realizing it.

I fully recommend this book even if you’re not into economics.


One Response to “Gridlock Economy”

  1. Have you read Economics in One Lesson by Hazlitt? It’s extremely good – even for people who aren’t interested in Economics.

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