What explains the rise of statism in America, a nation founded on laissez-faire capitalist principles? Leonard Peikoff takes up this question in this 1980 lecture to a group of businessmen. After considering popular yet insufficient explanations, Peikoff identifies the ideas dominating Western philosophy as the crucial determinant.

NOTE: The tape on which this was recording had to be flipped midlecture. Approximately 30 seconds of audio was lost at 29:36 after Peikoff says: “. . . even science is materialistic. It’s far too physical.” The recording resumes with: “They give it all kinds of names.”