Home   Google ARCHIVE SEARCH: Date:

Friedman praised by Schwarzenegger,
Hennessy, pot legalization group

Milton Friedman
Photo courtesy UMass Dartmouth

By Jason Bennert, Bay City News Service


November 16, 2006

STANFORD (BCN) - Gov. Arnold Schwarzenegger and Stanford University President John Hennessy this afternoon praised Nobel laureate Milton Friedman as one of the most influential economists of the 20th century.

Friedman, 94, died today in San Francisco. He had been a senior research fellow at Stanford's Hoover Institution since 1977, the year after he won the Sveriges Riksbank Prize in Economic Sciences in Memory of Alfred Nobel, commonly known as the Nobel Prize in Economics.

"Today Stanford has lost a great scholar and friend, and our country has lost one of its leading economists,'' Hennessy said in a statement. "Dr. Friedman's ability to explain complicated economic theories has had a profound impact beyond the university. We will miss his candor and intelligence, but we are quite certain that his insights will live for generations.''

Friedman was one of the most influential economists of the postwar era. He served as a key economic adviser to Presidents Richard Nixon and Ronald Reagan as well as to Schwarzenegger.

"Milton was one of the great thinkers and economists of the 20th century, and when I was first exposed to his powerful writings about money, free markets and individual freedom, it was like getting hit by a thunderbolt,'' Schwarzenegger said in a statement.

Friedman opposed the economic theories of John Maynard Keynes, who supported government regulation of the economy and who provided the theoretical foundation for Franklin Delano Roosevelt's New Deal. Friedman argued that the free market should operate without government interference.

Friedman's won the Nobel Prize for his work on the influence the supply of money has on economic conditions. He believed that there was a close link between the money supply and inflation.

In addition to his work as an economist, Friedman was also politically active. He helped end the draft in the United States with his work on Nixon's All Volunteer Army Commission in 1969-70. He also supported several controversial libertarian ideas, including the legalization of marijuana.

"There is no logical basis for the prohibition of marijuana,'' Friedman said in a 2005 Forbes magazine article. "Our failure to successfully enforce these laws is responsible for the deaths of thousands of people in Colombia. I haven't even included the harm to young people. It's absolutely disgraceful to think of picking up a 22-year-old for smoking pot. More disgraceful is the denial of marijuana for medical purposes.''

Executive Director Rob Kampia of the Marijuana Policy Project said in a statement today, "Dr. Friedman was a lifetime dues-paying member and a strong advocate for ending marijuana prohibition. He understood that the government's war on marijuana users is an assault on basic conservative values of freedom and small government. We will miss him greatly.''

Copyright © 2006 by Bay City News, Inc. -- Republication, Rebroadcast or any other Reuse without the express written consent of Bay City News, Inc. is prohibited.




The Hunger Site

Cooking Classes
in Buenos Aires

Buenos Aires B&B

Calitri in southern Italy

L' Aquila in Abruzzo

Health Insurance Quotes


Bruce Brugmann's


Civic Center

Dan Noyes

Greg Dewar

Griper Blade


Malik Looper






MetroWize Urban Guide

Michael Moore

N Judah Chronicles


Robert Solis

SF Bay Guardian





SFWillie's Blog



Sweet Melissa