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Milton Friedman: A Guide to His Economic Thought [Hardcover]

Eamonn Butler
4.2 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (9 customer reviews)

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Book Description

Oct 1985
"One of the most important economic thinkers of all time". (Paul Krugman). Milton Friedman changed the world. From free markets in China to the flat taxes of Eastern Europe, from the debate on drugs to interest rate policy, Friedman's skill for vivid argument and ideas led to robust and often successful challenges to a dizzying amount of received wisdom. Relying on big-picture economic analysis and an insistent faith in human freedom, he took on the economic and political orthodoxies of his day - and if he didn't always win, he never failed to change the terms of the debate. Rarely an uncontroversial figure, with his disciples and detractors to this day, this is neither a credulous nor a critical look at the Nobel laureate. A brand new guide, it simply sets out to explain his economic and public policy thinking in a straightforward and accessible way for the general reader and student. Find out: how Friedman undermined Keynesianism and the prevailing wisdom of large-scale economic intervention; how he demonstrated the true cause of the Great Depression and identified its real culprits (they weren't the ones jumping out of the windows); what Friedman believed really destroys the value of the money in your pocket and how it can be stopped; his arguments for why regulations and minimum-wage laws actually achieve lower standards and greater poverty; and, his reasons for why big corporations prefer markets that aren't free, and how high taxation harms the wealthy less than anyone else. With more, too, on democracy, equality, global trade, education, public services and financial crises, this is a concise but comprehensive guide to the influence of a key 20th century thinker. It is a must-read for anyone who wants to know more about the economist whose work changed everything.
--This text refers to the Paperback edition.


Product details

  • Hardcover
  • Publisher: Universe Pub (Oct 1985)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0876634765
  • ISBN-13: 978-0876634769
  • Product Dimensions: 21.2 x 14.6 x 2.8 cm
  • Average Customer Review: 4.2 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (9 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 6,517,287 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)
  • See Complete Table of Contents

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Product Description

About the Author

Eamonn Butler is director of the Adam Smith Institute, rated one of the world's leading policy think-tanks. He has degrees in economics, philosophy and psychology, gaining a PhD from the University of St Andrews in 1978. During the 1970s he worked on pensions and welfare issues for the US House of Representatives, and taught philosophy in Hillsdale College, Michigan, before returning to the UK to help found the Adam Smith Institute. Eamonn is author of books on the pioneering economists F A Hayek, Ludwig von Mises and Adam Smith. He is also co-author of Forty Centuries of Wage and Price Controls, and of a series of books on intelligence testing. Eamonn contributes to the leading UK print and broadcast media on current issues, and his recent popular books The Best Book on the Market, The Rotten State of Britain and The Alternative Manifesto have attracted considerable attention. --This text refers to the Paperback edition.

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Customer Reviews

Most Helpful Customer Reviews
5 of 5 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Introductory guide to Milton Friedman 29 Aug 2003
Format:Paperback
I was drawn back to Eamonn Butler's 1985 book while working my way through the latest venture by Brian Snowdon and Howard Vane. Almost twenty years after the publication it still seems as fresh as ever and should still be considered the best introductory work about Milton Friedman particularly for the student.
Given the advances in macroeconomics which have taken place since the 1970s, an era now fading away thankfully into distant memory, it is not surprising that concerns about money continue to dominate the debate. World events, such as deflation in Japan and the tremendous efforts by Federal Reserve Governor Greenspan to prevent such an occurrence in the United States, continue to place the Friedman analysis and theory at the centre of the ongoing discussion.
This magnificent little book has at it's centrepiece Friedman's work on Monetary Theory. Butler, writing from the position of a fellow free-marketeer does an outstanding job restraining his infectious free market self to provide an exemplary elucidation of Milton Friedman's writings and how they overcame sustained attack from the Keynesian orthodoxy to establish themselves as a counter-revolution. He does not assume much prior knowledge of the reader but seeks to establish with remarkable clarity Friedman's position and how he got there. He certainly does real justice to the nature of the attacks and examines their arguments carefully. Fairness is a good description of his approach. He is not afraid to bring in criticism from the Austrian school to show that attacks on Friedman's work are not only from the left.
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars An outstanding 'Primer' on Friedman 31 May 2013
Format:Paperback|Verified Purchase
As Newton(?)said, great men rest on the shoulders of giants : Smith, Von Mises, Hayek, Friedman. To understand Friedman's economic philosophy, this beautifully written text is an outstanding introduction and its excellence has prompted me to buy the author's text on Hayek. Eamonn Butler is a gifted Economist and writer who outlines economic philosophy coherently and in plain english. Highly recommended.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
Format:Paperback|Verified Purchase
Recently, I've been having an intense craving to learn the mechanics of economics. I've recently herd of a fellow called Milton Friedman and how great of an economist he was, so I looked into him and his views. I agreed with alot of his material. He seemed suitable enough to learn from, so I decided on learning the basics from him first

This book was a great introduction to who he was. Eamonn, the author walks us through the career of this man right from the ground up. I learnt all sorts of things, such as why he studied economics in particular, his early work, who he was friends with, papers he wrote and so fort. but my favourite thing about this book is how concise it is. Eamonn is a pro at keeping the pace moving along smoothly. The book is barely repetitive, something most authors seem to can't refrain from doing...it made me think about things in a different way and altered many of my view points on certain topics. So if you're a novice, or even have a strong working knowledge of economics and want to learn the work of milton friedman. Then i think this book is well deserved

The verdict:
Very robust and concise book addressing the works of Friedman, very suitable for the layman and advanced learners

Physical Quality:
The book is published by harriman house. The quality is extremely good, the text is rich. It is indeed one of the best paperbacks i own in terms of physical quality
Feel free email me if you'd like a chat "moneymavericks92@Gmaill.com"
Was this review helpful to you?
1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars A beginner's guide to Milton Friedman 29 Aug 2003
Format:Hardcover
I was drawn back to Eamonn Butler's 1985 book while working my way through the latest venture by Brian Snowdon and Howard Vane. Almost twenty years after the publication it still seems as fresh as ever and should still be considered the best introductory work about Milton Friedman particularly for the student.
Given the advances in macroeconomics which have taken place since the 1970s, an era now fading away thankfully into distant memory, it is not surprising that concerns about money continue to dominate the debate. World events, such as deflation in Japan and the tremendous efforts by Federal Reserve Governor Greenspan to prevent such an occurrence in the United States, continue to place the Friedman analysis and theory at the centre of the ongoing discussion.
This magnificent little book has at it's centrepiece Friedman's work on Monetary Theory. Butler, writing from the position of a fellow free-marketeer does an outstanding job restraining his infectious free market self to provide an exemplary elucidation of Milton Friedman's writings and how they overcame sustained attack from the Keynesian orthodoxy to establish themselves as a counter-revolution. He does not assume much prior knowledge of the reader but seeks to establish with remarkable clarity Friedman's position and how he got there. He certainly does real justice to the nature of the attacks and examines their arguments carefully. Fairness is a good description of his approach. He is not afraid to bring in criticism from the Austrian school to show that attacks on Friedman's work are not only from the left.
Read more ›
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