This chapter summarizes the findings of this volume. The idea of free market economists is that the free exchange of transactions liberates the individual from arbitrary assignments of resources and income based on gender, race, or legal status. The individual is in high regard, concentration of power is disliked, and equality of opportunity is important. These traits are also found in the public’s preferences and policies. Less attention is given to the fact that a policy of providing equal opportunities to everyone can lead to a concentration of power and wealth.
The German ordoliberals have an eye for the consequences of the market process. For them the market is a legal order that should prevent the concentration of power with the government or large private companies. In this way, the well-being of all individuals should be enhanced. Consequently, the German public and politicians are often concerned with the consequences of policies in the long term.
For the French economic engineers, the market is a theoretical construct that helps them to advise the political elite, which also has a great influence in the private sector. The population relatively easily accepts the resulting concentration of power and wealth as long as this serves them.