Free Market Quotes

Quotes tagged as "free-market" Showing 1-30 of 128
Milton Friedman
“Underlying most arguments against the free market is a lack of belief in freedom itself.”
Milton Friedman

Milton Friedman
“When unions get higher wages for their members by restricting entry into an occupation, those higher wages are at the expense of other workers who find their opportunities reduced. When government pays its employees higher wages, those higher wages are at the expense of the taxpayer. But when workers get higher wages and better working conditions through the free market, when they get raises by firm competing with one another for the best workers, by workers competing with one another for the best jobs, those higher wages are at nobody's expense. They can only come from higher productivity, greater capital investment, more widely diffused skills. The whole pie is bigger - there's more for the worker, but there's also more for the employer, the investor, the consumer, and even the tax collector.

That's the way the free market system distributes the fruits of economic progress among all people. That's the secret of the enormous improvements in the conditions of the working person over the past two centuries.”
Milton Friedman, Free to Choose: A Personal Statement

Lysander Spooner
“And yet we have what purports, or professes, or is claimed, to be a contract—the Constitution—made eighty years ago, by men who are now all dead, and who never had any power to bind us, but which (it is claimed) has nevertheless bound three generations of men, consisting of many millions, and which (it is claimed) will be binding upon all the millions that are to come; but which nobody ever signed, sealed, delivered, witnessed, or acknowledged; and which few persons, compared with the whole number that are claimed to be bound by it, have ever read, or even seen, or ever will read, or see.”
Lysander Spooner, No Treason: The Constitution of No Authority

Friedrich A. Hayek
“Our faith in freedom does not rest on the foreseeable results in particular circumstances but on the belief that it will, on balance, release more forces for the good than for the bad.”
Friedrich A. Hayek

Eric Hobsbawm
“The test of a progressive policy is not private but public, not just rising income and consumption for individuals, but widening the opportunities and what Amartya Sen calls the 'capabilities' of all through collective action. But that means, it must mean, public non-profit initiative, even if only in redistributing private accumulation. Public decisions aimed at collective social improvement from which all human lives should gain. That is the basis of progressive policy—not maximising economic growth and personal incomes. Nowhere will this be more important than in tackling the greatest problem facing us this century, the environmental crisis. Whatever ideological logo we choose for it, it will mean a major shift away from the free market and towards public action, a bigger shift than the British government has yet envisaged. And, given the acuteness of the economic crisis, probably a fairly rapid shift. Time is not on our side.”
Eric Hobsbawm

David Graeber
“Political economy tends to see work in capitalist societies as divided between two spheres: wage labor, for which the paradigm is always factories, and domestic labor – housework, childcare – relegated mainly to women. The first is seen primarily as a matter of creating and maintaining physical objects. The second is probably best seen as a matter of creating and maintaining people and social relations.
[...] This makes it easier to see the two as fundamentally different sorts of activity, making it hard for us to recognize interpretive labor, for example, or most of what we usually think of as women’s work, as labor at all. To my mind it would probably be better to recognize it as the primary form of labor. Insofar as a clear distinction can be made here, it’s the care, energy, and labor directed at human beings that should be considered fundamental. The things we care most about – our loves, passions, rivalries, obsessions – are always other people; and in most societies that are not capitalist, it’s taken for granted that the manufacture of material goods is a subordinate moment in a larger process of fashioning people. In fact, I would argue that one of the most alienating aspects of capitalism is the fact that it forces us to pretend that it is the other way around, and that societies exist primarily to increase their output of things.”
David Graeber, Revolutions in Reverse: Essays on Politics, Violence, Art, and Imagination

Larken Rose
“Give a man a fish, and you feed him for a day.

Teach a man to fish, and you feed him for a lifetime.

Steal a fish from one guy and give it to another--and keep doing that on a daily basis--and you'll make the first guy pissed off, but you'll make the second guy lazy and dependent on you. Then you can tell the second guy that the first guy is greedy for wanting to keep the fish he caught. Then the second guy will cheer for you to steal more fish. Then you can prohibit anyone from fishing without getting permission from you. Then you can expand the racket, stealing fish from more people and buying the loyalty of others. Then you can get the recipients of the stolen fish to act as your hired thugs. Then you can ... well, you know the rest.”
Larken Rose

Ha-Joon Chang
“If the world were full of the self-seeking individuals found in economics textbooks, it would grind to a halt because we would be spending most of our time cheating, trying to catch the cheaters, and punishing the caught. The world works as it does only because people are not the totally self seeking agents that free-market economics believes them to be. We need to design an economic system that, while acknowledging that people are often selfish, exploits other human motives to the full and gets the best out of people. The likelihood is that, if we assume the worst about people, we will get the worst out of them.”
Ha-Joon Chang, 23 Things They Don't Tell You about Capitalism

Noam Chomsky
“The times are too difficult and the crisis too severe to indulge in schadenfreude. Looking at it in perspective, the fact that there would be a financial crisis was perfectly predictable: its general nature, if not its magnitude. Markets are always inefficient.”
Noam Chomsky

Michael Shermer
“People have a hard time accepting free-market economics for the same reason they have a hard time accepting evolution: it is counterintuitive. Life looks intelligently designed, so our natural inclination is to infer that there must be an intelligent designer--a God. Similarly, the economy looks designed, so our natural inclination is to infer that we need a designer--a government. In fact, emergence and complexity theory explains how the principles of self-organization and emergence cause complex systems to arise from simple systems without a top-down designer.”
Michael Shermer

Marc Maron
“If you can't afford the good food or if you can't afford health care or if you don't have a job or if your car is dangerous because you can't get it fixed and you DIE, you just lost the game-bzzzzz-thanks for playing extreme capitalism.”
Marc Maron, Attempting Normal

David Brin
“If there are still honest-smart men and women within those old and noble traditions, they should think carefully, observe and diagnose the illness. They should face the contradiction. Discuss the conflation. And then do as Warren Buffett and Bill Gates and many others have done. Choose the miracle of creative competition over an idolatry of cash.

They should stand up..”
David Brin

Ha-Joon Chang
“The top 10 per cent of the US population appropriated 91 per cent of income growth between 1989 and 2006, while the top 1 per cent took 59 per cent.”
Ha-Joon Chang, 23 Things They Don't Tell You about Capitalism

Charles Wheelan
“A market economy is to economics what democracy is to government: a decent, if flawed, choice among many bad alternatives.”
Charles Wheelan, Naked Economics: Undressing the Dismal Science

Larken Rose
“Property taxes' rank right up there with 'income taxes' in terms of immorality and destructiveness. Where 'income taxes' are simply slavery using different words, 'property taxes' are just a Mafia turf racket using different words. For the former, if you earn a living on the gang's turf, they extort you. For the latter, if you own property in their territory, they extort you. The fact that most people still imagine both to be legitimate and acceptable shows just how powerful authoritarian indoctrination is. Meanwhile, even a brief objective examination of the concepts should make anyone see the lunacy of it. 'Wait, so every time I produce anything or trade with anyone, I have to give a cut to the local crime lord??' 'Wait, so I have to keep paying every year, for the privilege of keeping the property I already finished paying for??' And not only do most people not make such obvious observations, but if they hear someone else pointing out such things, the well-trained Stockholm Syndrome slaves usually make arguments condoning their own victimization. Thus is the power of the mind control that comes from repeated exposure to BS political mythology and propaganda.”
Larken Rose

Jonathan Sacks
“Those who believe that liberal democracy and the free market can be defended by the force of law and regulation alone, without an internalised sense of duty and morality, are tragically mistaken.”
Jonathan Sacks

Kevin D. Williamson
“Health care and education are too important NOT to be left to the free market.”
Kevin D. Williamson, The Dependency Agenda

Walter Block
“Even though men have very little interest in wearing women’s clothes, this has not prevented a gigantic industry from arising, dedicated to satisfying women’s desires in fashion. Industries which provide makeup, hair styling, nail polish, hair removal, and weight loss services are similarly “biased” in the direction of females: they disproportionately serve women. These phenomena would be very difficult to understand on the feminist model that female wants are ignored or deprecated in the male’s favor.”
Walter Block, The Case for Discrimination

Stefan Molyneux
“Countries adopting free-market capitalism have increased output 70-fold, halved work days and doubled lifespans.”
Stefan Molyneux

Gideon Haigh
“The IPL, involving the socialist principle of a salary cap and the protectionist mechanism of quotas, is not perhaps the best example of a market left flourishingly to its own devices and dynamics.”
Gideon Haigh

“The earliest use of writing was strictly commercial and economic, not political or bureaucratic. It was trade, entrepreneurship, and stewardship of private property, not politics, "public education" or the creation of national mythology that allowed humankind to transition from prehistory to history. Just as trade, entrepreneurship, and stewardship of private property have always been on the forefront of civilization's advancement, so were they also the driving force behind civilization's emergence.”
Jakub Bożydar Wiśniewski

Eva Feder Kittay
“The disparity, however, between the rewards offered in the labor market and the vital interest to have good dependency care makes it clear that market forces have not been relied upon to supply adequate dependency work. Indeed, a clear-eyed look at the nearly universal twin features of female caregiving and female subordination indicates: 1) that a certain class of persons has been subjected to and socialized to develop the character traits and the volitional structure needed for dependency work; 2) that certain sexual behaviors commensurate with forming attachments, being submissive to another's will, and so forth have been made compulsory for women; and 3) that poor women and women of color have been forced into paid employment as dependency workers by the scanty financial resources and limited employment opportunities available to them, and middle-class women have been forced out of paid employment not commensurate with their (largely unpaid) duties as dependency workers. It has not merely “happened” that women have consistently “chosen” to make dependency relations and dependency work central to their vision of the good life, while men have chosen a wider variety of options.”
Eva Feder Kittay, Love's Labor: Essays on Women, Equality and Dependency

Ludwig von Mises
“How little one is justified in speaking in this connection of "optimism" and "pessimism" and how much the characterization of liberalism as "optimistic" aims at surrounding it with an unfavorable aura by bringing in extrascientific, emotional considerations is best shown by the fact that one can, with as much justice, call those people "optimists" who are convinced that the construction of a socialist or of an interventionist commonwealth would be practicable. Most of the writers who concern themselves with economic questions never miss an opportunity to heap senseless and childish abuse on the capitalist system and to praise in enthusiastic terms either socialism or inter ventionism, or even agrarian socialism and syndicalism, as excellent institutions.”
Ludwig von Mises, Liberalism: The Classical Tradition

Noam Chomsky
“Well, it depends which planned economies you mean. There are lots of planned economies―the United States is a planned economy, for example. I mean, we talk about ourselves as a "free market," but that's baloney. The only parts of the U.S. economy that are internationally competitive are the planned parts, the state-subsidized parts―like capital-intensive agriculture (which has a state-guaranteed market as a cushion in case there are excesses); or high-technology industry (which is dependent on the Pentagon system); or pharmaceuticals (which is massively subsidized by publicly-funded research). Those are the parts of the U.S. economy that are functioning well.

And if you go to the East Asian countries that are supposed to be the big economic successes―you know, what everybody talks about as a triumph of free-market democracy—they don't even have the most remote relation to free-market democracy: formally speaking they're fascist, they're state-organized economies run in cooperation with big conglomerates. That's precisely fascism, it's not the free market.

Now, that kind of planned economy "works," in a way―it produces at least. Other kinds of command economies don't work, or work differently: for example, the Eastern European planned economies in the Soviet era were highly centralized, over-bureaucratized, and they worked very inefficiently, although they did provide a kind of minimal safety-net for people. But all of these systems have been very anti-democratic―like, in the Soviet Union, there were virtually no peasants or workers involved in any decision-making process.”
Noam Chomsky, Understanding Power: The Indispensable Chomsky

Erich Fromm
“The field of human relations in Freud’s sense is similar to the market—it is an exchange of satisfaction of biologically given needs, in which the relationship to the other individual is always a means to an end but never an end in itself.”
Erich Fromm, Escape from Freedom

Adam Gopnik
“One economic problem is especially acute here: Unemployment … Most of the other problems, the ones that create a sense of crisis, are anticipatory. They grow out of the fear that the right-wing government's tentative attempts at reform will eventually corral France into an 'Anglo-Saxon' economy, where an unleashed free market will make everybody do awful jobs for no money, forever. – 71”
Adam Gopnik, Paris to the Moon

Murray Bookchin
“Liberalism offered the individual a modicum of "freedom," to be sure, but one that was constructed by the "invisible hand" of the competitive marketplace, not by the capacity of free individuals to act according to ethical considerations. The "free entrepreneur" on whom liberalism modeled its image of individual autonomy was in fact completely trapped in a market collectivity, however "emancipated" he seemed from the overtly medieval world of guilds and religious obligations. He was the plaything of a "higher law" of market interactions based on competing egos, each of whom canceled out his egoistic interests in the formation of a general social interest.”
Murray Bookchin, Remaking Society

Aleksandr Solzhenitsyn
“After all, as Prokhorov said, "Money nowadays comes in two stories." What Westerners could comprehend "two-story money"? A lathe operator during the war received, after deductions, eight hundred rubles a month, and bread cost 140 rubles on the open market. And that meant that in the course of one month he did not earn enough for even six kilos of bread, over and above his ration. In other words, he could not bring home even seven ounces a day for his whole family! But at the same time he did… live. With frank and open impudence they paid the workers an unreal wage, and let them go and seek "the second story." And the person who paid our plasterer [at the Kaluga Gates prison camp] insane money [200 rubles] for his evening's work also got to the "second story" on his own in some particular way. Thus it was that the socialist system triumphed, but only on paper. The old ways—tenacious, flexible—never died out, as a result of either curses or persecution by the prosecutors.”
Aleksandr Solzhenitsyn, The Gulag Archipelago, 1918-1956: An Experiment in Literary Investigation, Books III-IV

Adam Tooze
“It is a deep irony that the era in which America is commonly thought of as leading the world in a market revolution saw its housing market become dependent on a government-sponsored mortgage machine descended from the New Deal.”
Adam Tooze, Crashed: How a Decade of Financial Crises Changed the World

Arundhati Roy
“Peace, Inc., is sometimes as worrying and War, Inc. It's a way of managing public anger. We're all being managed, and we don't even know it. The IMF and the World Bank, the most opaque and secretive entities, put millions into NGOs who fight against "corruption" and for "transparency." They want the Rule of Law--as long as they make the laws. They want transparency in order to standardise a situation, so that global capital can flow without any impediment. Cage the People, Free the Money. The only thing that is allowed to move freely--unimpeded--around the world today is money, capital.”
Arundhati Roy, Things that Can and Cannot Be Said: Essays and Conversations

« previous 1 3 4 5