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Government Spending, Money For Nothing

Economics / Economic Theory Sep 23, 2009 - 09:07 PM GMT

By: Charles_Maley

Economics

Someone stole all my credit cards, but I won’t be reporting it. The thief spends less than my wife — Henny Youngman

Milton Friedman was a great American economist and statistician among other admirable things. He is best known among scholars for his theoretical and empirical research.


Friedman’s philosophy was basically opposed to government regulation of many types, including The Federal Reserve. He once stated that his role in eliminating U.S. conscription (the mandatory military draft) was his proudest accomplishment, and his support for school choice led him to found The Friedman Foundation for Educational Choice.

The Economist hailed him as "the most influential economist of the second half of the 20th century…possibly of all of it".

Here is Milton’s wonderful look at spending money. 

“There are four ways in which you can spend money. You can spend your own money on yourself. When you do that, why then you really watch out what you’re doing, and you try to get the most for your money.

Then you can spend your own money on somebody else. For example, I buy a birthday present for someone. Well, then I’m not so careful about the content of the present, but I’m very careful about the cost.

Then, I can spend somebody else’s money on myself. And if I spend somebody else’s money on myself, then I’m sure going to have a good lunch!

Finally, I can spend somebody else’s money on somebody else. And if I spend somebody else’s money on somebody else, I’m not concerned about how much it is, and I’m not concerned about what I get. And that’s government. And that’s close to 40% of our national income.”

Attitudes about what we will spend and how much sure do change with circumstance. Like the actor George Raft once said, “Part of the $10 million I spent on gambling, part on booze and part on women. The rest I spent foolishly.

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Charles Maley
www.viewpointsofacommoditytrader.com
Charles has been in the financial arena since 1980. Charles is a Partner of Angus Jackson Partners, Inc. where he is currently building a track record trading the concepts that has taken thirty years to learn. He uses multiple trading systems to trade over 65 markets with multiple risk management strategies. More importantly he manages the programs in the “Real World”, adjusting for the surprises of inevitable change and random events. Charles keeps a Blog on the concepts, observations, and intuitions that can help all traders become better traders.


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