Talk:Milton Friedman

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Good articleMilton Friedman has been listed as one of the Social sciences and society good articles under the good article criteria. If you can improve it further, please do so. If it no longer meets these criteria, you can reassess it.
Article milestones
DateProcessResult
December 8, 2006Good article nomineeNot listed
February 27, 2007Good article nomineeListed
February 29, 2008Featured article candidateNot promoted
September 12, 2008Good article reassessmentKept
Current status: Good article

Friedman as an "unofficial adviser" to Chile[edit]

I have modified a line, and been reverted saying that "In 1976 Friedman defended his unofficial adviser position with: "I do not consider it as evil for an economist to render technical economic advice to the Chilean Government, any more than I would regard it as evil for a physician to give technical medical advice to the Chilean Government to help end a medical plague." I changed the part that described Friedman as an "unofficial adviser" to simply "Friedman responded" As can be seen here. The editor who reverted my changes claims that "both Friedman and Newsweek say he was" I disagree. I do not have access to the Newsweek article itself but in free to choose he expressly says he was not: " I am not now, and never have been, and economic adviser to the Pinochet Chilean Junta." This seems unequivocal to me. I am reverting that editor's change unless he/she can produce some good evidence that he was widely regarded as an "unofficial adviser" to The Pinochet government. Bonewah (talk) 20:18, 16 September 2019 (UTC)

MF and Pinochet[edit]

In the Chile section, I changed a reference to Pinochet and Friedman that read "Friedman did not criticize Pinochet's dictatorship at the time, nor the assassinations, illegal imprisonments, torture, or other atrocities that were well-known by then.[122] In 1976 Friedman defended his unofficial adviser position with: "I do not consider it as evil for an economist to render technical economic advice to the Chilean Government, any more than I would regard it as evil for a physician to give technical medical advice to the Chilean Government to help end a medical plague."[123]" to "Friedman did not criticize Pinochet's dictatorship at the time, nor the assassinations, illegal imprisonments, torture, or other atrocities that were well-known by then. In 1976 Friedman countered: "I do not consider it as evil for an economist to render technical economic advice to the Chilean Government, any more than I would regard it as evil for a physician to give technical medical advice to the Chilean Government to help end a medical plague.""

Even setting aside the accuracy of the claim that Friedman didnt criticize Pinchet's regieme, the phrase "unofficial adviser position" pushes the point of view that MF was complicit in Pinochet's crimes. I have changed it to the much more neutral and better worded "Friedman countered". There is no need for us to describe Friedman's role in Chile using Wikipedia's voice, we describe the criticisms and his counter arguments as we should. Adviser sugests that he had more of a relationship with Pinochet than he really did. We can let the readers draw their own conclusion based on the information we provide. Bonewah (talk) 17:55, 12 November 2019 (UTC)

I disagree that "the phrase "unofficial adviser position" pushes the point of view that MF was complicit in Pinochet's crimes." I note that you have already posted a rant on this talk page in which you assert that you don’t believe it fair to call Friedman an unofficial adviser to Chile even though that is the language the sources use. Your argument is that Friedman said he wasn’t an official advisor so we should take his word for it, unfortunately thats not how it works and if we have WP:RSs which disagrees with the subject’s own autobiographical musings we must side with the WP:RS every single time’'. Also I note that the Friedman quote doesn't actually say he wasn’t an unofficial adviser just that he wasn’t an official advisor, its not “unequivocal” as you argued. This is a GA article, so unless you have a good reason to change something (which you don’t appear to have) I’m going to side heavily with the status quo. Horse Eye Jack (talk) 16:43, 13 November 2019 (UTC)
None of this speaks to why you think your preferred edit is superior. What sources are you claiming use that language? What Reliable source do you think disagrees? Bonewah (talk) 17:41, 13 November 2019 (UTC)
Your edit is unnecessary, it addresses perceived non-neutral language which is in fact neutral. Your other argument is that Friedman claimed he wasn’t an unofficial advisor, but he didnt do that (at least not in the text provided). Horse Eye Jack (talk) 00:19, 14 November 2019 (UTC)
Again, why is your preferred edit better? You keep imagining reasons why my changes are wrong, but say nothing as to why the edit you prefer is superior. Bonewah (talk) 14:17, 14 November 2019 (UTC)
Thats not an argument I’m required to make... (although if you cant tell what my argument would be I don’t know how to help you) You're the one who wants to make a change to a GA article therefore the *entirety* of the onus to demonstrate that the new text is an improvement is on you. Horse Eye Jack (talk) 15:32, 14 November 2019 (UTC)
Actually it is an argument you are required to make. That is the purpose of talk sections, to discuss potential changes, even to GA's. I cant help but notice that you have yet to site any reliable sources which you claimed described MF as an "unofficial adviser" above. I also note that you have yet to say why you think your preferred edit is superior, beyond WP:ILIKEIT. I think perhaps you are unfamiliar with what is expected with regards to article discussion and consensus seeking. Check out WP:TALK, WP:CONSENSUS and WP:BURDEN for starters. Its incumbent on you to make a good argument as to why an article should be a certain way, not just declare that one edit is correct because it has been there. Bonewah (talk) 16:25, 14 November 2019 (UTC)
Its common knowledge that MF was a confidant and advisor of Pinochet, saying “unofficial advisor” is being extremely neutral as wikipedia should be... There is a particular letter of his to Pinochet which is famous. I find it hard to believe you’re editing in good faith but will continue anyway. You love MF’s own words so much have these "Dear Mr. President, During our visit with you on Friday, March 21, to discuss the economic situation in Chile, you asked me to convey to you my opnions about Chile’s economic situation and policies after I had completed my visit. This letter is in response to that request.”[[1]] and he goes on btw... Is this really the first time you’ve come across this information? Horse Eye Jack (talk) 01:28, 15 November 2019 (UTC)
None of this makes him an "unofficial adviser". The problem here is the the neutrality of the phrase. Ive read his letter and understand his limited role in Chile. He held no position with the Pinochet government and, as such, calling him an adviser is overstating things quite a bit and, when put in the same sentence that describes Pinochet's crimes makes it sound as if MF was complicit in those crimes. You have still not provided a single reliable source that describes him as such nor have you explained why your preferred edit is superior to mine. Im going to ask that you put your best case forward and if no consensus can be reached, i will ask for a third opinion. Bonewah (talk) 14:10, 15 November 2019 (UTC)
You’re describing a government minister, anyone who gives advice is an advisor (and someone who gave advice outside of their formal job is an unofficial advisor). The level of wikilawyering here is extreme. Please request a third opinion, I’ve said repeatedly now that your argument that the language is non-neutral has no basis in reality. Horse Eye Jack (talk) 16:31, 15 November 2019 (UTC)
I dont want this to get forgotten, and, seeing as you and I are the only ones to weigh in, id like to put it to a third opinion. One requirement of a third opinion is a neutral, one or two line description of the dispute. I propose the following "In what way should Wikipedia describe Milton Friedman's responses to criticisms of his relationship with Pinochet and Chile? Like this or this?"
Let me know if that wording is ok with you and ill put in the request. Bonewah (talk) 15:09, 26 November 2019 (UTC)

A Commons file used on this page or its Wikidata item has been nominated for deletion[edit]

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