David Director Friedman (12 February 1945) is an American economist, physicist, legal scholar, and libertarian theorist. He is known for his textbook writings on microeconomics and the libertarian theory of anarcho-capitalism, which is the subject of his most popular book, The Machinery of Freedom.
In his book The Machinery of Freedom (1973), Friedman sketched a form of anarcho-capitalism where all goods and services including law itself can be produced by the free market. Friedman advocates an incrementalist approach to achieve anarcho-capitalism by gradual privatization of areas that government is involved in, ultimately privatizing the law itself. In the book, he states his opposition to violent anarcho-capitalist revolution.
He advocates a consequentialist version of anarcho-capitalism, arguing for anarchism on a cost-benefit analysis of state versus no state. It is contrasted with the natural-rights approach as propounded most notably by economist and libertarian theorist Murray Rothbard.
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