"A major source of objection to a free economy is precisely that it ... gives people what they want instead of what a particular group thinks they ought to want. Underlying most arguments against the free market is a lack of belief in freedom itself."
Milton Friedman
(1912-2006) Nobel Prize-winning economist, economic advisor to President Ronald Reagan, "ultimate guru of the free-market system"
Capitalism and Freedom (1962) Ch. 1 "The Relation Between Economic Freedom and Political Freedom", 2002 edition, page 15
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Reader comments about this quote:
This quote reminds me that when a politician proposes some hare brained bill, he usually says that "the people demand this." In most cases "the people" have never given it a second thought, much less demanded it.
 -- jim k, Austin, Tx     
    Because we do not know what we need or want according to government they come up with programs for our own good which we do not want.
     -- cal, lewisville, tx     
    Using Social Security as his prime example, Milton Friedman explores the idea that the major expansions in government resulted from popular demand. In a speech delivered more than 30 years ago, he directly relates this dynamic to today's health care debate. http://www.youtube.com/watch?feature=player_embedded&v=rCdgv7n9xCY
     -- Mary MI, Lake Orion, MI     
    As just another example: the government has perceptually usurped all rights, claiming the religious ordinance of marriage to be illegal, uniquely offering a granted privilege (license) to perform such illegal ordinance. The rabble aught to want their god masters (government) to give them privileges, wanting to be married in a free society just doesn't work.
     -- Mike, Norwalk     
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