segunda-feira, 21 de junho de 2004

Entrevista a Milton Friedman (3)

Nobel Prize-Winning Economist With David Asman

DA: I've always wanted to ask you who you consider to have been the greatest president?

MF: Well, you have the almost mythic presidents like Washington and Lincoln. Let me talk, rather, of those presidents who I've known in my own lifetime. And there, there's no doubt in my mind that Ronald Reagan was by far the greatest.

DA: Why?

MF: Because he had real principles and he stuck by them. He made clear what he was going to do, and he did it. He didn't back down. And it took real principles to do what he did. For example, one of the things he was determined to do was to end inflation. Now, there's no way to end inflation without having recession. The month after Reagan became president, Paul Volker (then head of the Federal Reserve) started to slow down the rate of monetary growth. And that did lead to a recession. And that recession led to a sharp decline in the President's poll ratings. In my mind there is no other president in my lifetime who would have stood by to support the Fed in those circumstances.

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