'Free to lose' isn't good philosophy for the right wing
If Milton Friedman had to die, then a week after the defeat of a Republican Congress that had apparently forgotten every lesson Friedman taught in Free To Choose is eerily apt timing. As it happens, had ill health not intervened, Professor Friedman would have been disembarking round about now from a National Review post-election cruise with yours truly and various other pundits and commentators.
Instead, we were obliged to sail without him, and in the days that followed I found myself wondering what the great man would have made of the most salient feature of our deliberations: On the one hand, there are those conservatives for whom the war trumps everything and peripheral piffle like "No Child Left Behind" can be argued over when the jihad's been seen off. On the other, there are those conservatives for whom the war is peripheral and, insofar as it exists, it doesn't begin to mitigate the abandonment of Friedmanite principles on public spending, education and much else.
A Charismatic Economist Who Loved to Argue by Austan Goolsbee, economics professor, University of Chicago Graduate School of Business
One of Mr. Friedman’s major impacts on economics was in establishing a basic worldview. Economics is not a game or an academic exercise, in that view. Economics is a powerful tool to understand how the world works. He used straightforward theory. He gathered data from anywhere he could get it. He wanted to see how well economics fitted the world. That view now holds sway throughout much of the profession.
from critics, liberals and alike...
The Great Liberator by Lawrence H. Summers, economics professor, Harvard, Treasury Secretary Clinton administration.
This all would be enough to mark Milton Friedman as a great man. But beyond Milton Friedman the economist, there was Milton Friedman the public philosopher. Ask reformers in any one of the countries behind what we used to call the Iron Curtain where they learned to contemplate alternatives to communism during the closed era before the Berlin Wall fell and they will often tell you about reading Milton Friedman and realizing how different their world could be.
Reluctantly from The Economist with unnecessary negative tones...
One of the most influential economists of the 20th century
It is another mark of his greatness that so many of the ideas that seemed crazy when he came up with them—from blaming the Depression on bad central-bank policy, to school vouchers and the volunteer army—have gained mainstream acceptance. But Mr Friedman always recognised that his success was fragile; free markets and stable money have lots of enemies, particularly among politicians. He has left us a staggering legacy of economic theory and public-policy prescriptions—but is that inheritance growing or shrinking?