Paul Craig Roberts on Empirical Measures of Economic Freedom: A Rejoinder
International Journal of Social Economics, Vol. 33, No. 7, 2006
14 Pages Posted: 22 Jul 2011
Purpose - The purpose of this paper is to counter the misunderstanding by Paul Craig Roberts of empirical measures of economic freedom.
Design/methodology/approach - The objective is achieved by citing Roberts' criticisms of the Fraser and Cato studies of economic freedom and demonstrating the fallacies in his analysis.
Findings - The result of the present analysis is that Roberts misunderstands and misconstrues empirical measure of economic freedom. He conflates economic freedom with other desiderata, such as political freedom, personal liberties.
Research limitations/implications - To the extent the widely publicized Roberts findings are believed by scholars, there will be less research conducted in this vitally important arena. To the extent that his errors are exposed, as, for example, by the present essay, these will be more research conducted in this vitally important arena.
Practical implications - The practical implication of this research initiative is to improve economic freedom around the world. If citizens are not even aware that there is such a thing as economic freedom, this will lessen the chances of it being implemented. Roberts' creation of red herrings and muddying of the waters around this topic, thus, unintentionally, diminishes economic freedom. One of the implications of the present article is to counter Roberts' influence in this matter.
Originality/value - What is new in the paper is that the fallacies in Roberts' critiques of empirical measures of economics are dissected.
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