Quotation of the Day…

by Don Boudreaux on May 19, 2013

in Complexity & Emergence, Innovation, Myths and Fallacies

… is from pages 224-225 of Milton Friedman’s and Daniel Boorstin’s 1951 or 1952 essay, “How to plan and pay for the safe and adequate highways we need” – an essay that was lost for decades until one of these authors, in 1988, found the original; it wasn’t published until it appeared as the Epilogue in Gabriel Roth’s 1996 book, Roads in a Market Economy:

The accepted approach to this problem [of highway provision] is an illustration of the way in which the proponents of our free enterprise system accept the role which is given them by their opponents – a role as fighters of a rear-guard action against socialism.  While they devote their energies to preventing further encroachment by government, they take for granted that those areas in which government is at any moment operating must be so operated.  Those of us who believe in free enterprise should show as much imagination, intellectual daring, and willingness to experiment in extending the scope of free enterprise as the opponents of free enterprise have shown in seeking to extend the power of the state.  If we do, we shall find that much now being done by the state could better be done by free enterprise.

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