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Milton Friedman on Foreign Policy

Libertarian Economist


1975: Persuaded Pinochet's Chile to adopt market capitalism

In March 1975, economist Milton Friedman accepted an invitation to Chile to meet with Augusto Pinochet, who some 18 months before had toppled the democratically elected government of Salvador Allende. Friedman was criticized in the American press for making the trip, but there is no reason to suppose he approved of Pinochet. Friedman went to Chile to urge Pinochet's junta to adopt free-market capitalism--to trim the business regulations and welfare state that had grown under Chile's many years of democratic government and to open itself to trade and investment with the rest of the world. In a series of lectures he delivered in Chile, Friedman reiterated his long-held belief that free markets were a necessary precondition to political freedom and sustainable democracy. Pinochet took Friedman's free-market advice, but Pinochet's brutal dictatorship lasted another 15 years.
Source: Supercapitalism, by Robert Reich, p. 3 , Sep 9, 2008

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Page last updated: Oct 10, 2013