Shareholder Value - Friedman's Dumbest Idea?

Tenebrous wrote:

It is simplistic to hang this all on shareholder value. I would think globalization and increases in competition aided by the opening of China and the end of centuries of on again off again of conflict in Europe which periodically destroyed capitol and gave the US a "peace advantage" only really interrupted by the Civil War were much greater factors.

"Shareholder value" is probably just the most visible and easily articulated piece within a whole suite of economic philosophy that underpins the thinking behind much of the market liberalisation we've seen since the 80s. Hence it's a somewhat easy target to argue over.