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Why Adam Smith wasn’t a heartless neoliberal

The Scottish economist thought purely free markets were a myth and warned of crony capitalism

By Bill Emmott   August 2018
Visible hands: a statue of Adam Smith in Edinburgh © Wikmedia commons

Visible hands: a statue of Adam Smith in Edinburgh © Wikmedia commons

The greatest issue of our time in political economy is how to reconcile societies to the process we now call globalisation, with all the inequality and insecurity that have come with it. We only need to mention Brexit, Trump and the Five-Star League government in Italy to explain why this matters. But all too often, any use of the phrase “Adam Smith” produces strong negative reactions: you…

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