Top 27 Milton Friedman Quotes

A society that puts equality before freedom will get neither. A society that puts freedom before equality will get a high degree of both.


There is no alternative way, so far discovered, of improving the lot of the ordinary people that can hold a candle to the productive activities that are unleashed by a free enterprise system…


Given greater freedom about where to send their children, parents of a kind would flock together and so prevent a healthy intermingling of children from decidedly different backgrounds.


I think that the Internet is going to be one of the major forces for reducing the role of government.


I am a libertarian with a small ‘l’ and a Republican with a capital ‘R’. And I am a Republican with a capital ‘R’ on grounds of expediency, not on principle.


There is only one social responsibility of business – to use its resources and engage in activities designed to increase its profits without deception or fraud.


What kind of society isn’t structured on greed? The problem of social organization is how to set up an arrangement under which greed will do the least harm capitalism is that kind of a system.


Inflation is one form of taxation that can be imposed without legislation.


We have a system that increasingly taxes work and subsidizes nonwork.


The greatest advances of civilization, whether in architecture or painting, in science and literature, in industry or agriculture, have never come from centralized government.


History suggests that capitalism is a necessary condition for political freedom. Clearly it is not a sufficient condition.


Concentrated power is not rendered harmless by the good intentions of those who create it.


Universities exist to transmit knowledge and understanding of ideas and values to students not to provide entertainment for spectators or employment for athletes.


The only relevant test of the validity of a hypothesis is comparison of prediction with experience.


I am favor of cutting taxes under any circumstances and for any excuse, for any reason, whenever it’s possible.


The Great Depression, like most other periods of severe unemployment, was produced by government mismanagement rather than by any inherent instability of the private economy.


If you put the federal government in charge of the Sahara Desert, in 5 years there’d be a shortage of sand.


Only government can take perfectly good paper, cover it with perfectly good ink and make the combination worthless.


The government solution to a problem is usually as bad as the problem.


Nothing is so permanent as a temporary government program.


Many people want the government to protect the consumer. A much more urgent problem is to protect the consumer from the government.


The black market was a way of getting around government controls. It was a way of enabling the free market to work. It was a way of opening up, enabling people.


Most of the energy of political work is devoted to correcting the effects of mismanagement of government.


The most important ways in which I think the Internet will affect the big issue is that it will make it more difficult for government to collect taxes.


Well first of all, tell me, is there some society you know of that doesn’t run on greed? You think Russia doesn’t run on greed? You think China doesn’t run on greed? What is greed?


Underlying most arguments against the free market is a lack of belief in freedom itself.


The only way that has ever been discovered to have a lot of people cooperate together voluntarily is through the free market. And that’s why it’s so essential to preserving individual freedom.



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