The economist Milton Friedman, best known as the leading American proponent of laissez faire economics, has been a central figure in the recent upsurge of conservative thought. I propose here to criticize the political theory he sets forth in his most widely read book, Capitalism and Freedom, and will seek:
(1) to establish how improbable is the realization of his wish to end interest-group politics, while explaining why his ideal political economy is most unlikely in any advanced industrial state—which makes him, in the undesirable sense, a utopian theorist; (2) to show that his ideal political economy and many of his policy prescriptions would either centralize power or atomize the public, th...
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