So, what I want to argue here is that, among other things, the economic chaos that we’re seeing right now on Wall Street and on Main Street and in Washington stems from many factors, of course, but among them are the ideas of Milton Friedman and many of his colleagues and students from this school. Ideas have consequences. More than that, what we are seeing with the crash on Wall Street, I believe, should be for Friedmanism what the fall of the Berlin Wall was for authoritarian communism: an indictment of ideology.
Naomi goes on to ask that if ideas have consequences, and the consequences of Friedmanism have been disastrous, what will the Friedmanite think tanks, like Cato and Heritage, do now? Will they solicit fresh funds from their contributors to rebrand the failed ideology? Or, will the fall of the markets make their fund-raising more difficult? I still believe that Think Tanks offer Fat Cats the best return on their philanthropic dollar: Privatize Social Security and bring Lehman and Merrill back to manage it all!
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