“Leeson puts together an amazing set of papers studying order in the most unlikely places. It will take decades for the main thesis of this books to really sink in, but when it does, it will radically change the foundational assumptions in the social sciences. Contra Hobbes and nearly every economist and political theorist since, Leeson shows that absent a coercive monopoly (a state), humans can, have, and still do cooperate peacefully and efficiently given the constraints they face. Leeson shows how complex institutions emerge to handle conflicts and bring about order, and how these institutions are often robust, nuanced, firm, flexible, and adaptive to the changing needs of the communities in which they emerge.
When it comes to comparative political economy and the much needed application of rational choice theory to historical and sociological studies, Leeson is the best in the business. It will take a little time after you read it for the implications of these simple yet radical discoveries to sink in.”
You can also listen to my podcast interview with Pete about this book and other ideas.