This is a harsh and uncharitable, but sophisticated and accurate view of Friedman's monetarism
08 August 2017 | Pago Pago, American Samoa
Although he was my teacher with whom I argued much about much and a wonderful mentor, teacher and friend, at base Friedman was a libertarian and driven to oppose Keynes and much else by his views that government solutions were always worse than market solutions and that governments should not interfere in markets or the economy.
As this article shows, even monetary policy is impuned, in Friedman's view, as being useful only in the short run and afterwards not at all, with fiscal policy, as I was taught, always being a mistake because it crowded out private investment.
Friedman, not well focused on national income accounting -- a Keynesian byproduct -- had no concept of hoarding beyond a bit of cash. And therefore didn't really understand Keynes' liquidity trap and liquidity preference notions. There are myriad ways of derailing money from the circular flow against goods and services without that money becoming current consumption or current real investment. Secondary financial markets will do for starters.
Behind a highly intelligent mind that could theorize about and rationalize much, in all macro and many micro regards Friedman was driven by libertarian values that leaked out from under his positive economics. He did know economics well, but his worth as an economist has, I believe, been compromised by his libertarian beliefs and the now established veracity and success of Keynesian economics.
I had Mundell and another there to teach me Keynesian economics while Friedman criticized it, so I was well grounded in Keynesianism and did not drink the Chicago kool aid like those who came later did after Mundell left. And so I am not much of a Chicagoan, with many instead thinking I came of of Harvard. Princeton or Columbia. In truth, Chicago did well by me, given my timing.
Regrettably, I would now go so far as to say I think Milton Friedman's career and legacy as an economist has been largely destroyed by his foundational libertarian beliefs. For an empiricist to ignore those testable beliefs was his core mistake.
There Is Nothing Much that Milton Friedman Got Right