Thursday, November 16, 2006

Saying Goodbye To Milton Friedman

The libertarian and free market movements have lost one of the great icons today. Milton Friedman has departed the world at the age of 94. All of us who believe in the free market owe him a great debt, one which we shall never be able to repay other than by carrying on in his stead and fighting for a true free market on our way to a world without masters.

The statement from the Milton and Rose D. Friedman Foundation sums it up much better than I ever could.

America has lost a true visionary and advocate for human freedom. And I have lost a great friend.

Milton’s passion for freedom and liberty has influenced more lives than he ever could possibly know. His writings and ideas have transformed the minds of U.S. Presidents, world leaders, entrepreneurs and freshmen economic majors alike. The loss of his passion, incisive mind and dedication to freedom are all national treasures that we mourn for today.

Milton never chose to slow down; even at 94 he kept fighting to bring educational equality to all of America’s children. And it’s this vision, this drive for educational liberty that the Friedman Foundation will continue to bring to families throughout America.

His impact on my life over the last 33 years was significant. His impact on the world was momentous. Without a doubt, few people have done more to advance civil and economic liberties throughout the world during their lifetime than Dr. Milton Friedman.

The light of liberty has just grown a bit more dim with this loss. It just means that the rest of us have to work harder now, to realise the dream of Milton and Adam Smith. Mr. Friedman's Foundation work has been on my mind of late, as I have once again been fiddling with the idea of a new system of education. While he advocated a system of reform and choice I have been looking for a new system entirely. Now, just as I seem to be on the right track one of the people who was an inspiration to me in this area has left us.

Goodbye and Bon Voyage, Mr. Friedman. We'll miss you.

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Mike Kole said...

Truly a great loss. Milton Friedman was a statesman in an era with so few statesmen and so many prattlers.

For those with the time, I recommend checking out video clips on Google or You Tube. Reading his works are one thing, but getting his calm, clear, firm statements and responses to questions is a joy to behold.

Michael said...

While Mr. Friedman embraced and even created some things which we, as libertarians find distasteful (withholding taxes, the centralised state, etc) he was, overall a staunch proponent of the free market and individual liberty. He will definitely be missed.