As my brother said today on his show, today would have been Milton Friedman’s 100th birthday. He passed away in 2006. He won the Nobel Prize in economics for 1976, 200 years after our country began. He believed firmly in the economic principles of our founding.
I could no more do justice to his economic brilliance than I could explaining the fundamental principles of nuclear fusion. So, please read the entire article.
But, I will give you some excerpts.
In discussing the principles of Keynesianism…i.e. if the government spends $1 that dollar becomes something more than $1 to the economy (the “multiplier effect”),
[i]n the 1960s, Friedman famously explained that “there’s no such thing as a free lunch.” If the government spends a dollar, that dollar has to come from producers and workers in the private economy. There is no magical “multiplier effect” by taking from productive Peter and giving to unproductive Paul. As obvious as that insight seems, it keeps being put to the test.
While he questioned almost every statist orthodoxy, he fearlessly gored sacred cows of both political parties. He was the first scholar to sound the alarm on the rotten deal of Social Security for young workers—forced to pay into a system that will never give back as much as they could have accumulated on their own.
But, this is one of my favorites.
He loved turning the intellectual tables on liberals by making the case that regulation often does more harm than good. His favorite example was the Food and Drug Administration, whose regulations routinely delay the introduction of lifesaving drugs. ‘When the FDA boasts a new drug will save 10,000 lives a year,’ he would ask, ‘how many lives were lost because it didn’t let the drug on the market last year?’
Please read the entire article, and, yes, the above link will let you do so. It explains so much about Dr. Friedman and what we call the Chicago school of economics, as compared to the Keynesian school of economics that has permeated this administration.
But, let me leave you with this,
[w]ell over 200 million were liberated from poverty thanks to the rediscovery of the free market. And now as the world teeters close to another recession, leaders need to urgently rediscover Friedman’s ideas.