Who was Milton Friedman and what can we learn from him?


Milton Friedman was the most prominent advocate of free markets during the twentieth century. Milton Friedman was born in 1912 to Jewish immigrants in New York City. He attended Rutgers University, where he earned his B.A. at the age of twenty. Shortly thereafter, he went on to earn his M.A. from the University of Chicago in 1933 and his Ph.D. from Columbia University in 1946.

In 1951 Friedman received the John Bates Clark Medal honoring economists under age forty for outstanding achievement. In 1976 he was awarded the Nobel Prize in economics for his achievements in the field of consumption analysis, monetary history and theory, and for his demonstration of the complexity of stabilization policy. Before that time he had served as an adviser to President Richard Nixon and was president of the American Economic Association in 1967.

Once Friedman retired from the University of Chicago in 1977, he became a senior research fellow at the Hoover Institution at Stanford University.

Friedman established himself in 1945 with Income from Independent Professional Practice, coauthored with Simon Kuznets. In it he argued that state licensing procedures limited entry into the medical profession, thereby allowing doctors to charge higher fees than they would be able to do if competition were more open.

Milton Friedman authors one of his first books Independent Professional Practice with his co-author Simon Kuznets in 1945. In this volume he argued that state licensing procedures limited entry into the medical profession, thereby allowing doctors to charge higher fees than they would be able to do if competition were more open.
In his landmark 1957 work, A Theory of the Consumption Function, Friedman took on the Keynesian view that individuals and households adjust their expenditures on consumption to reflect their current income. Friedman showed that, instead, peoples annual consumption is a function of their permanent income, a term he introduced as a measure of the average income people expect over a few years.

(Note: Keynesian economics is a theory of state capitalism or socialist economics)

In another book Friedman authored Capitalism and Freedom, Friedman wrote arguably the most important economics book of the 1960s, making a case for relatively free markets to a general audience.

He argued for, among other things, a volunteer army, freely floating exchange rates, abolition of licensing of doctors, a negative income tax, and education vouchers. (Friedman was a passionate foe of the military draft: he once stated that the abolition of the draft was almost the only issue on which he had personally lobbied Congress.) Many of the young people who read it were encouraged to study economics themselves. His ideas spread worldwide with Free to Choose (coauthored with his wife, Rose Friedman), the best-selling nonfiction book of 1980, written to accompany a TV series on the Public Broadcasting System. This book made Milton Friedman a household name.

Friedman is best known in economic circles for his theory on monetarism. Defying Keynes and most of the academic establishment of the time, Friedman presented evidence to resurrect the quantity theory of money. This entails the idea that the price level depends on the money supply. In Studies in the Quantity Theory of Money, published in 1956, Friedman stated that in the long run, increased monetary growth increases prices but has little or no effect on output. In the short run, he argued, increases in money supply growth cause employment and output to increase, and decreases in money supply growth have the opposite effect.

Friedmans solution to the problems of inflation and short-run fluctuations in employment and real GNP was a so-called money-supply rule.

If the Federal Reserve Board were required to increase the money supply at the same rate as real GNP increased, he argued, inflation would disappear.

Friedmans monetarism came to the forefront when, in 1963, he and Anna Schwartz coauthored Monetary History of the United States, 18671960, which contends that the great depression was the result of the Federal Reserves ill-conceived monetary policies. Upon receipt of the unpublished manuscript submitted by the authors, the Federal Reserve Board responded internally with a lengthy critical review. Such was their agitation that the Fed governors discontinued their policy of releasing minutes from the boards meetings to the public. Additionally, they commissioned a counter history to be written (by Elmus R. Wicker) in the hope of detracting from Monetary History.

In one of Friedmans quotes, he believes, as do I, that the great depression was produced by government (Note: and also the federal reserve bank caused the great depression of the 1930s).

The Great Depression, like most other periods of severe unemployment, was produced by government mismanagement rather than by any inherent instability of the private economy.
― Milton Friedman

We should take the time to learn about free market economics. Many people here in the USA do not understand the freedoms that they currently have. There is a deliberate plan to dumb down the population in the USA and to have them think that government is the answer to everything when it is not; Absolutely not.

Why Soaking The Rich will not work

Milton Friedman – Greed

Milton Friedman – Socialism is Force

Milton Friedman – Redistribution of Wealth

God Bless you all and God Bless America


  • Milton Friedman has helped me better understand how great capitalism is.

  • Yes Lewis, despite capitalisms imperfections; it is this unique system that gives us our quality of life.

  • Stop The Left™

    Interesting article on Milton Friedman. I actually never knew he was against the military draft. Learned something new, thanks.