Nineteenth-century America was the closest thing to pure free-market capitalism that has ever existed. There was no welfare state, no central bank, no deficit spending to speak of, no fiat money, and no income tax for most of the century, and no antitrust laws or federal regulatory agencies until the end of the century. During the 20th century, by contrast, American liberty declined as the size, scope, and power of government exploded. Federal spending, taxes, deficits, and debt have spiraled out of control.
"US political/economic evolution explained"
Socialism, Fascism, and the Tyranny of Big Government surveys the main statist politico-economic systems. And it concludes with a brilliant analysis of the nature and causes of tyranny.
Before we can fix our economic problems, we must first diagnose what is causing them. Many of our political and intellectual leaders call for more government intervention to fix the economy. They tell us that it creates jobs, corrects "market failures", and boosts economic growth. And they insist that we need such intervention to help the poor, to coddle the consumer, and to protect the worker. But they're dead wrong. Government intervention is not the solution to our economic problems; it's the cause.