John Kenneth Galbraith, RIP


The influential economist is dead at the age of 97. Among the worst headlines I've seen so far is The (Australian) Age's "Galbraith takes his leave of the affluent society."

Back in 1999, Reason Contributing Editor Jack Pitney wrote of JKG's memoir Name-Dropping:

There is a quaint frozen-in-time quality to Galbraith's thought–sort of Austin Powers without the bad teeth and mojo. Looking at Great Society welfare programs, he maintains that the solution to poverty is simply to give money to poor people, without necessarily expecting them to do work. In the decades since LBJ's War on Poverty, all but the staunchest statists have surrendered to reality and abandoned such notions. Oddly, Galbraith vents inordinate anger about America's effort to defeat Soviet communism in the Cold War. Austin–I mean, Mr. Galbraith…we won.

More here.

Jacob Sullum dismissed Galbraith's fears of advertising and consumerism here.