Friday, November 17, 2006

The Death of a Champion

Yesterday afternoon, Nobel-prizing winning economist Milton Friedman passed away. Best known for creating monetarism and exposing Keynesian flaws, he was an unyielding defender of liberty.

Among the advocates for free markets, Friedman was truly a champion. He was witty, serious, insightful and comprehensive all at the same time and many economists today trace their love for the discipline to Friedman's works and words. He will be truly missed and always loved. I leave you with one of my favorite lessons of his:

I want people to take thought about their condition and to recognize that the maintenance of a free society is a very difficult and complicated thing and it requires a self-denying ordinance of the most extreme kind. It requires a willingness to put up with temporary evils on the basis of the subtle and sophisticated understanding that if you step in to do something about them you not only may make them worse, you will spread your tentacles and get bad results elsewhere.

—interview with Richard Heffner of The Open Mind, 1975

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