Neoliberalism is a kind of statecraft. It means organizing state policies by making them appear as if they are the consequences of depoliticized financial markets. It involves moving power from public institutions to private institutions, and allowing governance to happen through concentrated financial power. Actual open markets for goods and services tend to disappear in neoliberal societies. Financial markets flourish, real markets morph into mass distribution middlemen like Walmart or Amazon.
[…] [Greta Krippner’s] thesis is that the liberal democratic system was dismantled because it was too explicit about who was making choices. People would get mad at politicians when they didn't have, say, mortgage credit, or when the price of milk went up too high. The answer came to be neoliberalism, or creating a veil of financial markets to make all those decisions seem apolitical. […]
Neoliberalism is not faith in free markets. Neoliberalism is not free market capitalism. Neoliberalism is a specific form of statecraft that uses financial markets as a veil to disguise governing policies.
Matt Stoller trying to define the word everyone tends to project their hate onto.