Saturday, November 18, 2006


Milton Friedman, one of the most influential economists of the past century and winner of a 1976 Nobel Prize, died today of heart failure at a San Francisco-area hospital, aged 94. Friedman preached free enterprise in the face of government regulation and advocated monetary policy that called for steady growth in money supply. How his ideas were implemented by governments and central banks and how Friedman helped popularise them made him perhaps the world's best-known economist, Gary Becker, who won the 1992 Nobel Prize for economics, said today. "If you had to ask people across the world to name an economist, by far his name would be the most common,'' Becker said. "He could express the most complicated economic ideas in the most simple language.''

Brooklyn-born Friedman's ideas played a pivotal role in informing the governing philosophies of world leaders like former British Prime Minister Margaret Thatcher and former US President Ronald Reagan. "Milton Friedman revived the economics of liberty, when it had been all but forgotten. He was an intellectual freedom fighter. Never was there a less dismal practitioner of 'the dismal science' (economics),'' Thatcher said in a statement.

"I am deeply saddened at the passing of Milton Friedman,'' former Federal Reserve Chairman Alan Greenspan said. "He had been a fixture in my life both professionally and personally for a half century. My world will not be the same.'' St. Louis Federal Reserve Bank President William Poole, another noted monetarist, said much of modern central bank thinking stemmed from Friedman's work. Poole said Friedman's most important contribution was to bring theoretical economic thinking to bear on a range of public policy issues.

Friedman's ideas on public policy were seized by Reagan, who shared Friedman's interest in low taxes and less regulation, said Martin Anderson, a Hoover Institution fellow and former domestic and economic policy adviser to Reagan. "You look at what Reagan did, it was what Milton had been advocating for a long time,'' Anderson said. "What Milton did was to confirm what he (Reagan) thought and make it more confident, and that became 'Reaganomics.'''

California Gov. Arnold Schwarzenegger, who recruited Friedman as an adviser after becoming governor, said in a statement, "`When I was first exposed to his powerful writings about money, free markets and individual freedom, it was like getting hit by a thunderbolt. "I wound up giving copies of his books and 'Free to Choose' videos to hundreds of my friends and acquaintances.''

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More government waste: "Hundreds of modular homes purchased by the Federal Emergency Management Agency for people left homeless by hurricanes Katrina and Rita were damaged beyond repair while in storage because they were not properly protected, according to a government report. Units worth a total ranging from $3 million to $4 million will have to be written off, Homeland Security Inspector General Richard L. Skinner writes in a report to FEMA Director R. David Paulison. Most of the homes were at an Army depot in Texarkana, Texas, where intense heat and rain had destroyed tarps covering the units. Cardboard containers holding toilets and fittings had deteriorated in the weather and caused the frames and wood of some components to warp, Skinner wrote".

AZ: Maverick dairyman fights lobbyists, lawmakers: "Long before he discovered a way to sell milk for far less than his competitors, before he enraged the multibillon-dollar dairy industry so much that Congress passed a law to stop him, Hein Hettinga clipped cow hooves for a living. It was menial work. But it put him on a career path that, in time, would lead him to found Yuma-based Sarah Farms, one of the largest and most innovative private dairy operations in the country. Now, 12 years after building his dairy business into a proverbial cash cow, Hettinga finds himself waging war against big-dairy lobbyists, high-profile lawmakers and the federal government."

Woman kicked off flight for breast-feeding baby: "A woman has complained that she was kicked off an airplane about to leave Burlington airport because she was breast-feeding her baby. A complaint against two airlines was filed with the Vermont Human Rights Commission, although Executive Director Robert Appel said he was barred by state law from confirming the complaint. He did say state law allows a mother to breast-feed in public. Elizabeth Boepple, a lawyer hired by 27-year-old mother Emily Gillette, confirmed that Gillette filed the complaint late last week against Delta Air Lines and Freedom Airlines. Freedom was operating the Delta commuter flight between Burlington and New York City. A Freedom spokesman said Gillette was asked to leave the flight after she declined a flight attendant's offer of a blanket."

Pathetic Canadian public broadcaster: The CBC’s television news coverage of the United States is consistently marked by emotional criticism, rather than a rational consideration of US policy based on Canadian national interests, according to The Canadian "Garrison Mentality" and Anti-Americanism at the CBC released today by The Fraser Institute. This anti-American bias at the CBC is the consequence of a “garrison mentality” that has systematically informed the broadcaster’s coverage of the US. Garrison mentality was a term coined by Canadian literary critic, Northrop Frye. He used it to describe a uniquely Canadian tendency reflected in our early literature, a tendency, as he put it, to “huddle together, stiffening our meager cultural defenses and projecting all our hostilities outward.” “The anti-Americanism of the CBC, we argue, is a faithful reflection of the garrison mentality evoked by Frye,” said Professor Barry Cooper, co-author of the paper ... In total there were 2,383 statements inside the 225 stories that referred to America or the United States on CBC in 2002. As with most news coverage, the largest number of statements was neutral; they constituted 49.1 percent of the attention. Thirty-four percent of the attention to America or the United States was negative, over double the 15.4 percent positive descriptors. Only 1.6 percent of the statements were considered ambiguous.

No cut and run? "The election of Rep. Steny Hoyer, a Democrat of Maryland, as House majority leader staves off, at least for the moment, the threat of a Democratic Congress cutting funding for the war in Iraq. Mr. Hoyer, who has signed three leadership letters to President Bush calling for a phased withdrawal of troops from Iraq, beat out Rep. John Murtha of Pennsylvania, who wants to set a date for an American exit and send the troops elsewhere in the Middle East. Last night, both the Democrats and the founder of the Democratic Leadership Council, Al From, said the Appropriations Committee would not cut funding for American forces, as the party did in 1974 to help end the Vietnam War.



"All the worth which the human being possesses, all spiritual reality, he possesses only through the State." -- 19th century German philosopher Georg Wilhelm Friedrich Hegel. Hegel is the most influential philosopher of the Left -- inspiring Karl Marx, the American "Progressives" of the early 20th century and university socialists to this day.

The Big Lie of the late 20th century was that Nazism was Rightist. It was in fact typical of the Leftism of its day. It was only to the Right of Stalin's Communism. The very word "Nazi" is a German abbreviation for "National Socialist" (Nationalsozialistisch)

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