Free Market

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Free Market

A system of economics that minimizes government intervention and maximizes the role of the market. According to the theory of the free market, rational economic actors acting in their own self interest deal with information and price goods and services the most efficiently. Government regulations, trade barriers, and labor laws are generally thought to distort the market. Proponents of the free market argue that it provides the most opportunities for both consumers and producers by creating more jobs and allowing competition to decide what businesses are successful. Critics maintain that an unfettered free market concentrates wealth in the hands of a few, which is unsustainable in the long term. In practice, no country or jurisdiction has a completely free market. See also: Deregulation, Classical economics, Keynesian economics, Marxism, Monetarism, Chicago School, Austrian School.
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References in periodicals archive ?
Are the supporters of the Tea Party thoroughly consistent with the political and economic philosophy of free-market conservatism and libertarianism?
By 1987, the Group of Seven leading economic nations had undergone startling political realignments that fostered aggressive free-market conservatism. The policy changes that ensued - ranging from tax reductions to financial deregulation, regulatory permissiveness, strict treatment of labor, and glorification of the rich - proved to be the elixir for global stock markets, property values, and business opportunities.
As American politics and media have been engulfed the last two decades by a right-wing, free-market conservatism, the real Europe emerges more and more as the most viable countervailing force--a mainstay of social democracy, government regulation, political and media pluralism, and proportional representation.
In the 1970s and 1980s, academic economists provided great support for free-market conservatism. Milton Friedman, one of the most influential and decorated economists of all time, laid out a libertarian philosophy in his book Free to Choose: A Personal Statement (co-authored with Rose Friedman); the book was made into a PBS TV series.
"I've set out where I think we should be going: popular free-market conservatism, lowering taxes, building more homes, boosting education.