99th anniversary of Milton Friedman’s birth (Part 5)

99th anniversary of Milton Friedman’s birth (Part 5)


Milton Friedman was born on July 31, 1912 and he died November 16, 2006. I started posting tributes of him on July 31 and I hope to continue them until his 100th birthday.


Here is an essay written to honor the 99th anniversary of Milton Friedman’s birth:

An Ode to the Frie Market

By Elizabeth Ryan

Milton Friedman won a Nobel Memorial Prize in economics
But that isn’t all about this man; a lesson on him isn’t quick

Born in Brooklyn, New York in July of nineteen hundred twelve,
Milton Friedman was a brilliant economist; in this topic he deeply delved

For thirty years, teaching economic theory was his passion
At the University of Chicago he taught the youth of the nation

As “the most influential economist of the second half of the 20th century,”
His ideas spread like wildfire, to almost everyone, and were not elementary

Big government he said to shun,
Instead, free markets should have all the fun

The virtues of a free market system are so clear
Market intervention a nation should never have to bear

The government’s role in the economy should be greatly restricted.
Interference would only bring about poverty, depressions, and an economy constricted

A natural rate of unemployment he believed existed
No government could change this rate; it was healthy and should not be resisted

Though greatly opposed to the Federal Reserve,
Advice he still gives so the economy will be preserved

The advice: A small steady expansion of the money supply is the only way
If the central bank did otherwise, hyperinflation would never be kept at bay

Services offered by the government can be inefficient,
Should be performed by the private sector: that’s where they ought to be sent

One of these services is the production of money,
The private sector should produce it; and a gold base will lead to the highest stability

“Inflation is always and everywhere a monetary phenomenon,” he claimed
The relation between inflation and the money supply is close, he proclaimed

A monetarist at heart: Control of price inflation should be done with monetary deflation
In addition, price deflation is best controlled by only monetary inflation

An economic adviser to Ronald Reagan,
He predicted the policies of Keynes were bad, close to pagan

Not only would they cause high inflation
But minimal growth; later called stagflation

“Capitalism and Freedom,” a book he co-authored in nineteen sixty two
Speaks for policies like volunteer military and education vouchers, just to name a few

“A Monetary History of the United States,” which he published in nineteen sixty three
Investigates the role of money supply and economics in U.S. history

“Free to Choose,” another book that he and his wife did write,
Is where on monetary policy they shed much light

A staunch supporter of libertarian ideas, he took a chance,
When he fought for legalization of drugs and prostitution, not a popular stance

“Nothing is so permanent as a temporary government program” is his quote,
Noting: Once a program is started, participants will do everything to keep it afloat

He coined the phrase, “There’s no such thing as a free lunch.”
Someone always pays in the end, and will feel the punch

Milton Friedman taught many good economic lessons
Which if heeded, may have kept us out of horrid recessions

With a full life behind him and theories not previously in the mix,
Friedman died on November 16 of two thousand and six

Though he is gone, this week we honor the day Friedman was born
Today his advice to us would be, go free the market rather than mourn

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