An American author and political activist, he is known for his 1965 work, Reclaiming the American Dream, which argues that social problems can and should be solved by engaged volunteers rather than by bureaucracy. His other works include De-Managing America and Healing America.
He graduated with honors from Occidental College and went on to study economics at New York University. He later became the editorial director of the Princeton Panel, an organization that studies the effects of capitalism in America.
With the aim of helping the poor, he founded several non-profit organizations.
He grew up in Elwood, Indiana. He was married twice-- to Sydney Walton and Elizabeth Fonseca-- and had three children.
He was involved in a protracted intellectual feud with renowned author and philosopher Ayn Rand.