Front Page Titles (by Subject) Introduction - The A B C of Finance
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Introduction - Simon Newcomb, The A B C of Finance 
The ABC of Finance: or, the Money and Labor Questions Familiarly Explained to Common People in Short and Easy Lessons (New York: Harper and Bros. 1877).
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No doubt the reader thinks he knows nothing about the money and labor questions, and that they are quite beyond his understanding. If he has ever tried to learn anything, he has been so bewildered by opposing theories and opposing assertion as to feel that he knew less than he did before. He is, therefore, quite ready to leave these questions to the politicians, and to vote on them as they think best.
This ought not to be. Of course there are many profound financial principles which cannot be fully seen through without careful study, but in the issues now before the people only the A B C of the subject is involved. To understand them one only needs arithmetic enough to keep an account of the money he receives and spends, and common-sense enough not to buy a lottery ticket because just the very pair of trotting horses he wants are to be drawn in the lottery. The difficulty has been that writers and speakers dive so deeply into the principles of constitutional law and the functions of government that plain people cannot clearly follow them; and thus the said people are in the best state of mind to become the dupes of wild theorists and scheming politicians. It is the duty of every man to study subjects in which his own interests and those of the community are so deeply involved with all possible calmness, and without prejudice, that he may be able to give some good reason for the faith that is in him. The writer proposes, in this little book, not to write a treatise on the subject, but only to suggest some thoughts which may be partly new to the reader, and which, if he turns them carefully over in his mind, will enable him to form an intelligent judgment upon the issues now presented to him.