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Free To Choose: 40 Years On

Milton Friedman’s remarkable PBS series, Free To Choose, produced by Bob Chitester, debuted 40 years ago this month.

I remember it well. January 1980 was the first month of my final semester as an undergraduate. (By then I was hopeful of being accepted into NYU’s PhD program – which I soon thereafter was, and which I entered that September.) I had by the middle of my senior year of college – and largely due to my great mentors at Nicholls State University, Bill Field and Michele Francois – already studied, and been greatly influenced by, many of the works of Friedman, Hayek, Mises, Buchanan, Bastiat, Schumpeter, W.H. Hutt, Ludwig Lachmann, Israel Kirzner, and Armen Alchian. The science of economics was exciting (as it remains for me in 2020), and my commitment to libertarian principles – largely because of what economics taught me – was already quite powerful.

Friedman’s show was a watershed event.

I’m pleased to learn that the Free To Choose Network started in 2017 to collect short two-minute clips from this great program. Here’s the first one.