Here’s the Cato Institute economic freedom ranking for the year 2008:
1. Hong Kong
3. New Zealand
5. United Kingdom
8. United States (tied)
8. Australia (tied)
The US has dropped in the rankings, from second place in 2000. “”The rule of law, government spending, and regulation are the areas where the United States saw the most troubling declines in its ratings this decade,” comments Cato scholar Ian Vasquez.
Economic freedom, as Milton Friedman notes in his book Capitalism and Freedom, is a necessary, but not sufficient, condition for political freedom. The one complements the other.