Human Rights and Human Liberties: A Radical Reconsideration of the American Political Tradition

By Tibor R. Machan | Go to book overview
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Notes to Chapter 8
1. Those listed are educators at such institutions as the University of Chicago, University of Virginia, University of California at Los Angeles, and so forth, usually associated with the "Chicago School" of economics and its offshoots throughout the academic community. Many of them are classical liberals in their political preferences but deny that this preference has objective justification beyond the empirical work they provide.
2. Many Eastern European (Soviet Bloc) countries have seen the emergence of economic thinking that is closer to neo-classical economics than even some Western economists accept. Since the famous Lieberman program in the Soviet Union, so-called liberalization in the direction of a less centralized economy has been a repeated political issue.
3. For more concentrated discussions of these matters see my "The Moral Imperative of the Free Market," New Guard ( April 1974) pp. 17-20, and "Liberty: Economic versus Moral Defense," The Occasional Review, Fall 1974, pp. 63-82.
4. Ludwig von Mises, Human Action ( New Haven, Conn.: Yale University Press, 1949); Murray N. Rothbard, Man, Economy and State ( Los Angeles, Calif.: Nash Publishing Co., 1971). Rothbard defends Mises' method without, however, accepting the latter's implied subjectivism in ethics.
5. For a detailed analysis along these lines see David Friedman, The Machinery of Freedom ( New York: Harper and Row, 1973). A criticism of Friedman's value-free defense of the free market can be found in Eric Mack review of this work in Reason ( March 1974) pp. 12- 19.
6. Frederic Bastiat, Selected Essays on Political Economy ( Princeton, N. J.: Van Nostrand, 1964), p. 2.
7. Lewis F. Powell Jr., "Confidential Memorandum; Attack on American Free Enterprise System," U. S. Chamber of Commerce, Education Committee.
8. Ibid.
9. Ibid.
10. Ibid.
11. In this connection see Joseph Schumpeter, Capitalism, Socialism and Democracy ( New York: Harper and Row, 1942). Schumpeter defended capitalism's merits as an economic system, especially on grounds of its aid to "the masses." He also predicted its fall on grounds that businessmen would undermine it by their shortsightedness and because intellectuals would attack it constantly. I can only concur with Benjamin A. Rogge when he answers this prediction by the modest commitment: "I know only what I try to do about it, and that is to talk, and talk, and talk -- and that isn't much." Well, perhaps it is. (See Rogge, "Will Capitalism Survive?" Imprimis [ May 1974 ] p. 6)

In support of Schumpeter's defense of the record of capitalism see F. A. Hayek(ed.), Capitalism and the Historians ( Chicago: University of Chicago Press, 1954). For additional discussions of the overall benefits wrought from the existence of a relatively free economy in America's early history, see John Hospers, Libertarianism ( Santa Barbara, Calif.: Reason Press, 1971). For essays touching on various ethical and political issues connected with the free economic system see Ayn Rand, Capitalism: The Unknown Ideal ( New York: New American Library, 1966).


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