The excellent Carpe Diem blog has two adjacent posts on "greed," the first containing this sadly cogent cartoon:
Mind you, the idea that one ought to do something for one's country is repulsive to me. Observe the rule of law, and otherwise do as you please.
The second post, shows Milton Friedman supposedly at his prime, according to the meritorious Mark Perry, with whom I disagree on this particular question. That is, I do not think that Friedman is doing a good job at all.
It is true, Friedman does make a number of good points in his admiringly controlled way, but his good points come only wrapped inside one of the most aspersive and stupid statements ever made about the system that he tries to defend: capitalism.
Capitalism is not run on greed, instead it is run on proper constraint and mutual respect, being the economic result of the rule of law. To the extent that you exercise greed in a capitalist society, i.e. a society under the rule of law, it will not hurt anyone in a systematically anti-social way. For the rule of law ensures that everyone is independent of arbitrary transgression by anyone else, and no one is allowed to arbitrarily transgress into the protected private domain of his fellow.
It is our anti-capitalist political system of self-legalising corruption that runs on greed, in a big way, indeed - a fact captured in the above cartoon.