Milton Friedman (1912-2006) was an American economist who taught at the University of Chicago (and was the leader of the "Chicago school"); he received the Nobel Prize in Economics in 1976, and wrote/cowrote books such as A Monetary History of the United States, 1867-1960, Money Mischief: Episodes in Monetary History, Free to Choose, Bright Promises, Dismal Performance: An Economist's Protest, Capitalism & Freedom: A Leading Economist's View of the Proper Role of Competitive Capitalism, etc. This 1978 book contains a number of essays/lectures previously published by Friedman.
He asks, "will we keep trying to continue on this path until we have lost our freedom and turned our lives over to an all-powerful government in Washington, or will we stop?" (Pg. 2)
Asking rhetorically whether it matters if cars are made by General Motors, or by the government, says, "It does make all the difference in the world... The one has to satisfy its customers and the other does not." (Pg. 9)
He admits that, unlike "every intellectual" who is "in favor of freedom for himself and against freedom for anybody else," "Businessmen are in favor of freedom for everybody else but not for themselves," since they want to have tariffs, special provisions in the tax code, etc. (Pg. 12)
He states that he would far rather have a lower federal budget with deficit spending than a significantly larger one with a balanced budget. "The thing we must keep our eye on is what government spends." He adds, "That's why I am in favor of cutting taxes under any circumstances, for whatever excuse, for whatever reason." (Pg. 19)
He criticizes progressive economist John Kenneth Galbraith because he "speaks in broad general terms: he makes assertions about the world at large. But they are very seldom put in a form in which they yield testable hypotheses." (Pg. 59-60)
He explains the "phenomenon of simultaneous higher unemployment benefit and lower employment" because "we have increased the demand for unemployment, and the supply of unemployed has risen to meet that demand." (Pg. 74)
These essays will be of interest to anyone interested in Friedman's ideas.