David Friedman

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David Friedman discusses his forthcoming publication Future Imperfect at the Foresight Vision conference, November 3, 2007.

David Director Friedman (born February 2, 1945) is a writer who became a leading figure in the anarcho-capitalist community with the publication of his book The Machinery of Freedom (1973, revised 1989). He has also authored the books Price Theory: An Intermediate Text (1986), Law's Order (2000) and Hidden Order: The Economics of Everyday Life (1996).

The Machinery of Freedom

  • I predict that, if anarcho-capitalist institutions appeared in this country tomorrow, heroin would be legal in New York and illegal in most other places.
  • An ideal objectivist society with a limited government is superior to an anarcho-capitalist society in precisely the same way that an ideal socialist society is superior to a capitalist society. Socialism does better with perfect people than anarcho-capitalism with imperfect. And it is better to wear a bikini with the sun shining than a raincoat when it is raining. That is no argument against carrying an umbrella.
  • In the ideal socialist state, power will not attract power freaks. People who make decision will show no slightest bias towards their own interests. There will be no way for a clever man to bend the institutions to serve his own ends. And the rivers will run uphill.
  • If we want to be honest, we can ship the Statue of Liberty back to France or replace the outdated verse with new lines, "America the closed preserve/ That dirty foreigners don't deserve".

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