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Policy of Liberty is your source for books/papers on free market economics and pro-life policy as well as quotes and links to economic related issues

The following are textbooks written by Dr. John Cobin and are currently available:

A Primer on Modeern Themes in Free Market Economics and Policy cover

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A Primer on Modern Themes in Free Market Economics and Policy (2009)



ISBN and edition

Publisher and Year



A Primer on Modern Themes in Free Market Economics and Policy



Second Edition

Universal Publishers 2009



PDF E-Book


Second Edition

Alertness Books 2009



Politícas Públicas: Tópicos Modernos de la Economía de Mercado para el Bienestar Social

PDF E-Book


Second Revised Edition

Alertness Books 2009



Politicas Publicas: Topicos Modernos de la Economía de Mercado para Bienestar Social

Paperback/Tapa Blanda


Second Edition

Universidad Nacional 2009



Ensayos Sobre Temas Modernos de la Economía de Mercado



First Edition

Universidad Finis Terrae 1999





First Edition

Universidad Finis Terrae 1999



Click here to BUY the newest PDF E-BOOK versions (English and Spanish) direct from Alertness Books ($9.95).


A Primer on Modern Themes in Free Market Economics and Policy provides an overview of the major themes of market economics and public policy that are making inroads into the mainstream of today's thinking.

Free market economics has made many advances during the past twenty years. These advances are due to the maturing of public choice theory and empirical studies, along with a resurgence of interest in Austrian economic themes like free banking, market process entrepreneurship, and the critique of socialism and interventionism. In addition, new avenues have opened in law and economics and regulatory studies which favor free market ideas.

The purpose of this book is to introduce and summarize some of the important advances in contemporary free market economics and policy. Many free market thinkers have been cited which will help acquaint the reader with many key contributors and their contributions.

The book is designed for a variety of uses:

  • as a textbook in an economics elective course,
  • as a textbook in an economics-based social science elective for advanced undergraduates in political science, public administration, legal studies, or public policy,
  • for academics, free market advocates, policy analysts, or serious intellectual readers (with some knowledge of economics or political science) who want to gain a broad understanding of free market motifs,
  • as a textbook to facilitate discussion in an MBA or law school elective course in regulation, and
  • in some cases, the text could be the basis for an upper-division required trampoline course in economics or business programs, especially in universities which offer advanced electives in public choice, Austrian economics, law and economics, regulation, and public policy.

In the latter case, a course following this book would serve as a springboard to more in-depth studies, especially when the general focus is on regulation and policy. The book is purposefully eclectic, in that it does not favor any single branch of free market theory. There are five public choice chapters (1, 2, 3, 4 and 6), five Austrian economics chapters (7, 8, 9, 10, and 11), three chapters on public policy themes (5, 12, and 15), and two chapters on law and economics (13 and 14).

There are many long quotations in some parts of the book so that students (or even a casual reader) may have some direct exposure to the theorists behind the ideas. This format should prove to be a effective teaching device, and hopefully encourage classroom discussion of the statements by the various free market theorists. Indeed, the quotations should be exploited for their full pedagogical value given that they will likely represent the lion’s share of many students’ direct exposure to key free market theorists. As an additional exercise, I typically require students to memorize the definitions of rent seeking, free banking, public goods, and the Coase Theorem because I think they will be useful during other courses and their academic and professional careers.

The weights for each area of analysis in the book are (roughly):

  • Public choice 34%
  • Austrian economics 29%
  • Law and economics 18%
  • Public policy 19%

However, there is always considerable overlap between the topics and students will usually spend more time studying outside class for the relatively copious law and economics and public policy portions.

Professional praise for the book

“This is the best textbook I have seen on market economics, and I would recommend it to anyone whose main task is to teach economics or to those who want to understand how the economy works.”

— Dr. Alejandro A. Chafuen, President & CEO, Atlas Economic Research Foundation, Fairfax, Virginia, USA.

I had the chance to read John Cobin's book....I believe it is an excellent work covering certain areas largely unattended by economic textbooks. His treatment of the contributions to economic science by the "Public Choice", "Austrian" and "Law & Economics" schools give readers the fundamental elements for a right understanding of the functioning of a market economy. The book, besides, successfully fulfills the goal of bringing to the Spanish reader the main concepts of these schools, which are not easy to access in that language. Finally, I must say I plan to use the book for my own classes.

— Dr. Martín Krause, Escuela Superior de Economía y Administración de Empresas (ESEADE), Buenos Aires, Argentina.

“It is very stimulating to read an updated book that incorporates most of the recent contributions to economics.”

— Dr. Alberto Benegas Lynch, Jr., Rector, Escuela Superior de Economía y Administración de Empresas (ESEADE), President of the Economic Science Section, National Academy of Sciences, Buenos Aires, Argentina.

“I would not be able to hold any class on Economics without having read this book.”

— Mario Jaramillo, Lawyer and Economist in Madrid, Spain. Winner of the Ludwig von Mises International Essay Prize in 1991 and 1992, Scholar and former Dean of Economics at Sergio Arboleda University in Bogotá, Colombia.

“Nowadays it is very difficult to recommend a textbook to undergraduate students about political economy since, strangely, many economists who produce written material for economics classes are hostile to the market economy. John Cobin’s work accomplishes the huge task of providing fresh minds with a book that has a genuine understanding of the principles of free market economics and of the way(s) these principles function (with a special focus on public policy).”

— Atilla Yayla, Professor of Politics and Political Economy, Hacettepe University, Ankara, Turkey; President of the Association for Liberal Thinking, Ankara, Turkey

"John Cobin has provided us with a great service, given that the literature available in Spanish on these themes is scarce — especially at the university level. Moreover, his treatment of the topics is exhaustive and teaching-oriented (a rare combination), on account of which I predict that it will be of great use to both students and professors. 100 points!”

— Julio H. Cole, Professor of Economics, Universidad Francisco Marroquín (Guatemala).

“This is a book about new ideas, or the revitalization of older ideas to which modern experience has given new force. If, as it has been often said, nothing is stronger than a timely new idea, here we find given another gigantic step in the classically liberal revolution, opening unexpected perspectives and possibilities to advance individual economic liberty, to increase productive efficiency, and to bolster individual creativity in post-modern society.”

— Hermógenes Pérez de Arce, editorialist for El Mercurio in Santiago, Chile.

"Cobin's Primer is a wonderful addition to the corpus of economic and public policy texts. Cobin's new text provides a useful survey and explication of free market themes and their application to public policy. Moreover, the Primer has an enormous advantage over most other economic texts: it is based on sound economics and an appreciation of the signal importance of property rights. The text is permeated with insights from Ludwig von Mises, the most important thinker of the 20th Century, and the Austrian School of Economics to which Mises belonged. In addition to critiquing socialist and Keynesian economic nostrums, Cobin does not shrink from subjecting even other "free-market" economic schools, such as Chicago, to criticism as it strays from the individualist and subjectivist anchors of Austrian economics.

Consistent with the Austrian economic view pervading the book, Cobin quite properly focuses on the crucial importance of property rights. He provides a fascinating introduction to his own—admirably absolutist—theory of private property ownership, which he calls allodialism. The Primer also introduces the reader to the revolutionary and astounding Austrian-Misesian critique of socialism. This is a great textbook on market economics without the socialist, Keynesian, and relativist flaws that permeate most other, mainstream texts. It is sure to contribute to enhanced understanding of both economics and public policy.

Of particular interest for attorneys and law professors, the Primer also analyzes the proper role of law and politics in economics, and of the role of economic theory in shaping law. Cobin shows how economic analysis should be used in both the study and development of law. He discusses the importance of legal certainty, the dangers of legislated law, the advantages of decentralized legal systems such as the common law, and the appropriate role of judges in the formation of law. The Primer would make an excellent teaching aid in law school classes focusing on law and economics or public policy.

With its incorporation of woefully neglected but cutting-edge economic theory, the Primer is a perfect free market text for the new millennium. Cobin has produced a work of great merit and value."

— N. Stephan Kinsella, Attorney and Adjunct Law Professor at South Texas College of Law in Houston, Texas; co-author, Protecting Foreign Investment Under International Law: Legal Aspects of Political Risk (Oceana Publications, 1997) , co-editor, Digest of Commercial Laws of the World (Oceana Publications 1998-present). LL.M., University of London; J.D., M.S., B.S., Louisiana State University.

Nuestra facultad se siente orgullo patrocinar un libro como este del Dr. John Cobin. Nos provee en América Latina un recurso escaso ya que la vasta mayoría de los textos básicos en economía trata con los principios de economía hasta el nivel intermedio y no con tópicos más adelantados e impactados para el bienestar social y la políticas públicas, como la búsqueda de rentas, los incentivos perversos, el problema de conocimiento, los derechos de propiedad alodiales y la banca libre, entre otros. Nos agradecemos ser parte de este proyecto importante en el desarrollo intelectual de Chile y otros países de habla hispana.

— Francisco Labbé Opazo, Decano de la Facultad de Economía y Negocios, Universidad Nacional, Santiago de Chile


  1. Ideas and interest groups in economics and public policy
  2. Capture theory and antitrust
  3. Rent seeking
  4. The calculus of consent, vote-seeking, and Virginia vs. Chicago political economy
  5. Public policy and public choice
  6. Public choice issues for regulation
  7. Ludwig von Mises: a compendium of his classically liberal thought
  8. Austrian methodology and the knowledge problem
  9. Entrepreneurship: an Austrian perspective
  10. Interventionism: an Austrian critique
  11. The Austrian business cycle and free banking
  12. Market failure fiction
  13. The economic analysis of law
  14. Cases and criticisms in law and economics with a focus on property rights
  15. Allodialism as economic policy


Cover photos (from top left across to bottom right) from the first edition

(1) Vladimir Ilyich (aka Nicolai) Lenin (1870-1924) and Josef (Vissarionvitch Dshugashvili) Stalin (1879-1953), (2) Richmond, Virginia Custom House (left) and Confederate Capitol (center) with rubble in the street April 1865 (compiled by Hirst D. Milhollen and Donald H. Mugridge, Washington, D.C.: Library of Congress, 1977, No. 0506), (3) Westchester County, New York Executive Andrew P. O'Rourke and New York Governor Mario Cuomo at the Opening of WestHELP, 1989 (Affiliated Photographic Services, Inc., no. PCP-239), (4) The Senate as a court of impeachment for the trial of President Andrew Johnson / sketched by Theodore R. Davis 1868 (Illustrated in Harper's weekly, April 11, 1868, pp. 232-233), (5) United Nations Headquarters in New York, flagraising for sixteen new member states, September 30, 1960 (67728 UN/DPI/M, Bordy), (6) Pay Director Edwin Stewart, Bureau of Supplies and Accounts, probably taken in 1901 (Detroit Publishing Co., no. 021473, gift from the State Historical Society of Colorado, 1949, to the Library of Congress), (7) U.S. Mint, Philadelphia, Pennsylvania c. 1905 (Detroit Publishing Co., no. 018509, gift from the State Historical Society of Colorado, 1949, to the Library of Congress), (8) Rally in Barcelona just after the Revolution (1936) (the Spanish Civil War, 1936-1939), (9) President Warren G. Harding with pet dog Laddie, being photographed in front of the White House on June 13, 1922 (National Photo Co.), (10) U.S. Supreme Court Justice Earl Warren (1891-1974), (11) Chilean President Salvador Allende Gossens (1908-1973), (12) a crowd of 100,000 swarms over the Washington Monument lawns in a 1973 anti-Vietnam War demonstration during President Nixon’s second inauguration, and (13) Ludwig von Mises (1881-1973).  Each of the photos have relevance to themes covered in the text.

Policy of Liberty is your source for books/papers on free market economics and pro-life policy as well as quotes and links to economic related issues
Policy of Liberty is your source for books/papers on free market economics and pro-life policy as well as quotes and links to economic related issuesPolicy of Liberty is your source for books/papers on free market economics and pro-life policy as well as quotes and links to economic related issuesPolicy of Liberty is your source for books/papers on free market economics and pro-life policy as well as quotes and links to economic related issuesPolicy of Liberty en Espanol
Policy of Liberty is your source for books/papers on free market economics and pro-life policy as well as quotes and links to economic related issues
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