This exchange actually occurred recently during a Cato Institute-hosted forum on the great Frederick Hayek. Yes, that's “Soros” as in “George Soros,” he of every conservative activist's nightmares:
“Soros: Maybe we can find common ground. I think that we would all agree that government regulation is a necessary evil. I don’t know if we could agree with that –
“Epstein: Well, but the necessary evil means you set the presumption against it….
“Soros: Look, I happen to agree with you, because while I argue that markets are unstable and this instability has been artificially expurgated from current economic dogma, I also agree that regulations are inherently imperfect. In fact, in my writings I have said that they are more imperfect than markets. Why? Because they are bureaucratic, they are subject to financial interests and very much influenced by political — So if you can avoid regulations you should. So we have actually found common ground.”
The exchange occurred during a panel that included, according to Cato's David Boaz, “Hayek’s intellectual biographer and editor of The Collected Works of F. A. Hayek, Bruce Caldwell; the brilliant legal scholar Richard Epstein, and the hedge-fund billionaire and Open Society Foundations founder George Soros.”
Yes, you definitely want to go here and watch the entire discussion, or you can click on the embed below.
In case you wonder about all the folks using fans, Cato is in the midst of a massive building addition and as luck would have it, the A/C was out during the Hayek forum. As you will see in watching the proceedings, the natural heat detracted not a wit from the intellectual warmth of the discussion.