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Paperback SuperFreakonomics : Global Cooling, Patriotic Prostitutes, and Why Suicide Bombers Should Buy Life Insurance Book

ISBN: 0060889586

ISBN13: 9780060889586

SuperFreakonomics : Global Cooling, Patriotic Prostitutes, and Why Suicide Bombers Should Buy Life Insurance

(Part of the Freakonomics Series)

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Book Overview

Freakonomics lived on the New York Times bestseller list for an astonishing two years. Now authors Steven D. Levitt and Stephen J. Dubner return with more iconoclastic insights and observations in SuperFreakonomics the long awaited follow-up to their New York Times Notable blockbuster. Based on revolutionary research and original studies SuperFreakonomics promises to once again challenge our view of the way the world really works. "

Customer Reviews

4 ratings

Economics can be Fun

I thoroughly enjoyed this book. It sheds light on why I bothered studying for a degree in economics at university. Yes, economics can be fun. It's a pity it gets such a bum rap. Why should it be called the "dismal science"? Steven Levitt and Stephen Dubner have written an amusing and readable book. It's full of anecdotes and whimsical stories without ever seriously veering from the science of microeconomics which is its basis. The two Steves have researched an array of topics from street prostitution, to hospital deaths in the 19the century before opining upon global warming and how it might be resolved if, indeed, it is a problem. It's this final point that I particularly loved. Global warming has become a modern religion. It has its own dogmas and turns a blind eye to anyone who questions the "rules". I am quite confident that, in due course, global warming will be solved but it won't be by the naïve and cack handed solutions that greens put forward. It will be economics that comes to the rescue. This has always been the history of the world and I see no reason why this should change now. Perhaps the most pleasant feature of "SuperFreakonomics" (and its predecessor "Freakonomics") is that it brings economics away from the realm of stuffy ivory towered professors and their arcane theories and formulas. Instead, economics is presented as something to enjoy. This is the book's real strength. I can only hope that this technique has introduced economics to a wider audience. However, before finishing up, I find myself wondering which of the "case studies" amused me the most. I think it was the story about travel in New York City and how horses caused more deaths per capita than cars. It's ironic then that the car is seen as the work of the devil by some when, in fact, it has been a great liberator of the human race. Yes, "SuperFreakonomics" is a great read. Read it and enjoy.

The idea is to make you THINK!

I had to laugh as I read some of the negative reviews. Listen people, it's not intended to be a TEXTBOOK, nor is it written like one, thankfully. I've read both books. Super Freakonomics is a good exercise in critical thinking (something that is becoming sorely lacking in the age of American Idol, thanks to our putrid public schools and Playstation parenting); it makes you think about a lot of "truths" that we take for granted. For example, this book actually made me change some of my thinking about global warming. The book is super-interesting, and full of information that you'd be hard-pressed to find in your typical daily reading; and, it "sexes-up" the fields of microeconomics and behavioral economics. One of the points (relentlessly made) is how we (especially our governments) seem to prefer complex, costly solutions to problems, when cheaper, simpler solutions often exist, and the book does a great job of providing many examples of this. Is it a definitive tome on the many topics it covers? No - again, it's not a textbook, but it was definitely worth the time I spent reading it - I hated putting it down.

An entertaining read

I really enjoyed reading this book. It was a quick and interesting read. I enjoyed the diverse topics, walking drunk, global warming/cooling, externalities, etc. Reading the negative comments I admit I don't find them baseless. However, I don't take the book as the concrete authority on all things. I feel the books main purpose is to open the mind and allow a different perspective to swirl around for a while; which it does.

Similar to the first

This book is similar to Freakonomics - investigations into how economists use incentives and statistics to tease out counter-intuitive real world facts. They tackle fields not usually considered the domain of economists (pimps, global warming, drunk driving...) in their persuit of the counter-intuitive. If you liked Freakonomics, you should like Superfreakonomics too. If you didn't, you won't like this for the same reason. Perhaps the one downside is this book isn't as innovative as the original. The first paved new ground in pop-Economics. This just took the same roads a few more miles.
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