The imperfections of government are increasingly recognized across the political spectrum, but seldom are they explicitly traced to the problem of “free riders.” Yet the free-rider problem is inherent in all politically directed activity, as can be seen from a fresh look at the classic cases of public goods provided by government.

Richard L. Stroup (1943–2021) was a Research Fellow at the Independent Institute and Emeritus Professor of Economics at both Montana State University and North Carolina State University.
EconomyFree Market EconomicsPhilosophy and ReligionPublic ChoiceSocialism, Communism, and Collectivism
Other Independent Review articles by Richard L. Stroup
Summer 2014 The Economics of Climate Change: Adaptations Past and Present
Winter 2007/08 The Bottomless Well: The Twilight of Fuel, the Virtue of Waste, and Why We Will Never Run Out of Energy
Spring 2004 Out of Bounds, Out of Control: Regulatory Enforcement at the EPA
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