Greg Mankiw shares this sentiment from Friedman:
I do not believe that the solution to our problem is simply to elect the right people. The important thing is to establish a political climate of opinion which will make it politically profitable for the wrong people to do the right thing. Unless it is politically profitable for the wrong people to do the right thing, the right people will not do the right thing either, or if they try, they will shortly be out of office.
This is exactly the kind of doggedly pragmatic idealism that causes my spirit to resonate in sympathy. The stubborn refusal to give up on striving for a better world while keeping a pretty cynical view of human nature is–for me at least–one of the really deep, definitional aspects of the right wing of American politics. We’re not Utopians, but that’s not because we don’t care.