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Help Add Some Cogs to The Machinery of Freedom

June 7, 2010

David Friedman is close to putting together a 3.0 version of his classic tome. And if you have any ideas as to what he should include or subtract, he’d like to hear them:

The following is my tentative list of chapters for the new Part V; I am interested in suggestions both with regard to what is there that shouldn’t be and what is not there that should.

  • A positive account of Property Rights
  • A World of Strong Privacy
  • Problems with Ayn Rand
  • National Defense: Further Thoughts on a Hard Problem
  • Market Failure, Considered as an Argument For and Against Government
  • Lessons from Other Legal Systems
  • Capitalist Trucks
  • The Economics of Virtue and Vice
  • The Weak Case for Public Schooling
  • Welfare and Immigration
  • Anarchy and Efficient Law

Yogi said predictions about the future are hard, but I’d like to see Friedman play with a crystal ball, offering thoughts about what technologies might help us get from here to there. Or, horror, the reverse and worse. (His Future Imperfect touches on these issues.) In fact, I’d love to see an update for the section, “How to Get There From Here,” because in the old editions he said the way was education, education, education. In other words, folk activism.  Now that we know the grain in the crooked timber of humanity a little better, its biases and irrationalities, I wonder if he might change his tune? Education helps of course–something paved the way for the neo-liberal revolution and the original edition was published when there was still a draft. In retrospect, it’s easy to take that for granted. But still.


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