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Businessweek Archives

Mike Milken: A Hung Jury Of Public Opinion

Readers Report


Re "Mike Milken for Treasury Secretary" (Economic Viewpoint, Sept. 5), I applaud Paul Craig Roberts for providing an overdue encomium for Michael Milken, who was a convenient scapegoat for those who disdain the free-market system. I am continually appalled at the misconceptions people hold about capitalism. The arguments in favor of it as the only system that supports individual liberties have been made repeatedly by such great minds as Adam Smith, Milton Friedman, and Ayn Rand.

Susan M. Mangiero

Monroe, Conn.

I was shocked to read Roberts' view that the ends justify the means once you reach the billion-dollar level. Milken should be recognized for his brilliant understanding of the use of junk bonds. He also deserved to be jailed for his illegal activities that assured every transaction he engineered using junk bonds would succeed. Milken is the worst kind of villain, one who is so blinded by his own brilliance that he becomes amoral, believing his actions transcend any moral or legal restraints as long as their intention is to prove his ideas are correct.

Sydney J. Hooper


The kind of energy, vision, and spirit Milken has shown in the past is just the right medicine for us to stay competitive in the global society of the future.

Robert K. Fox

Poway, Calif.

Your article on Mike Milken for Treasury Secretary was six months late for the April Fools' edition.

Wendy Bernath Larson

Boulder, Colo.

Michael Milken has no more business being Treasury Secretary than a fox does guarding a henhouse.

Joel Spector

San Diego

Roberts' article is on the mark, and I second the motion.

Henry V. Pelton

Damariscotta Mills, Me.

Nominating Milken for Treasury Secretary is akin to suggesting sainthood for a churchgoing Mafia kingpin.

Michael E. Dunne

Littleton, Colo.

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