The Importance Of Government Regulation On Individual Freedom

706 Words3 Pages
Milton Freidman and Rose Freidman were two economists who met in Chicago, were married in 1938, and continued their careers together as economists. The two of them firmly held the belief that any government regulation was an infringement on individual freedom. Freidman and Freidman's minor thesis is that the government in a free society should be entirely limited to the following areas: enforcing law and order, preventing coercion of one individual by another, enforcing legally binding contracts and rights of private property owners, and providing resources for the defense and the monetary system. They construct their assertion of government regulation being an infringement on individual rights by generously providing a multitude of arguments in favor of their political view. They commence by first stating that economic freedom, the freedom consumers possess to buy and sell whatever they so choose, is a "component of freedom properly understood," (p. 220) and therefore to alter it is to place a curb on freedom. For example, if the government comes to a decision to pass a law placing a quota on a manufactured good that consumers would have the aspiration to purchase but are incapable of procuring enough money to purchase said product because its price has been altered to become prohibitive, the freedom of the individual is henceforth imposed upon. Similarly, if the government forces people to use the government-provided postal service, then my freedom to set up a competitive business in competition with the government service is curtailed. I only partially agree with this political view. The government should actively attempt to interfere as little as possible, but not to the extent Freidman and Freidman argue. Countries should have a free market but also set price caps to forestall price gouging like during Hurricane Irma. In order to protect the people, the people themselves have to sacrifice a certain amount of freedom. It is up to the people to decide how much. For example, if we gave up every shred up freedom to the government and the government protected us by never allowing us the privilege of exiting our homes, a dramatic reduction in murders and robberies would take place, but we would not
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