Harry Browne

Harry Browne

Infobox Person
name = Harry Browne

image_size =281
caption = Harry Browne
birth_date = birth date|1933|6|17|mf=y
birth_place =
death_date = death date and age|2006|3|1|1933|6|17|mf=y
death_place =
occupation = Writer, Politician, Investment analyst
spouse = Pamela Browne
parents =
children = Autumn Browne

Harry Browne (17 June 19331 March 2006) was an American libertarian writer, politician, and free-market investment analyst. He was a U.S. Presidential candidate for the Libertarian Party in 1996 and 2000.

Early life and writing career

He was born in New York City to Cecil Margaret and Edson Bradford Browne, and resided in Franklin, Tennessee at the time of his death. Following graduation from high school, Browne enlisted in the United States Army, where he served for five years.

Browne worked as an investment adviser for much of his life. He came to prominence in 1970 with his first book, "How You Can Profit From The Coming Devaluation", which correctly predicted the devaluation of the dollar and subsequent inflation. Browne's second book was 1973's "How I Found Freedom In An Unfree World", which focused on maximizing personal liberty. This book became an instant classic in libertarian circles. "You Can Profit from a Monetary Crisis" was Browne's third book and reached #1 on the "New York Times" bestseller list. He continued to author books and articles on investing through the late 1990s. In all, Browne wrote 13 books and sold 2 million copies of his books.

Browne's books are popular with Libertarian, "hard money", and survivalist readers. [ [http://www.reason.com/blog/show/112822.html Hit & Run > Harry Browne, R.I.P. - Reason Magazine ] ]

Books authored by Harry Browne

(All book-descriptions come from the [http://www.harrybrowne.org/Books.htm Books Page] on Harry Browne's website.)
*"How You Can Profit from the Coming Devaluation" (1970) "A clear and extensive explanation of how the government money system perverts the free market."
*"How I Found Freedom in an Unfree World" (1973) "How you can apply libertarian principles to your personal life to have greater freedom from those who would like to tell you how to live your life — whether the government, relatives, friends, or just nosey people."
*"You Can Profit from a Monetary Crisis" (1974) "A clear and extensive explanation of how government intervention perverts the free market."
*"Harry Browne's Complete Guide to Swiss Banks" (1976) "A lot of useful information about Switzerland; however, the bank information is now outdated."
*"New Profits from the Monetary Crisis" (1978) "An outdated explanation of the investment markets."
*"Inflation-Proofing Your Investments" (with Terry Coxon, 1981) "The introduction of the Permanent Portfolio plan. The investments suggested have been superseded by the latest version of "Fail-Safe Investing"."
*"Investment Rule #1" (privately published, 1985) "What is the one investment rule you can rely on no matter what?"
*"Why the Best-Laid Investment Plans Usually Go Wrong" (1987) "A critique of all the investment and speculative trading systems that purport to beat the markets. Guess what — none of them can be relied upon."
*"The Economic Time Bomb" (1989) "The dangers that investors worry about, and how to be protected against all of them."
*"Why Government Doesn’t Work" (1995) "Why all those government programs have failed to live up to the promises made when they were enacted — a program by program critique of government health care, education, crime control, foreign policy, and much more."
*"Fail-Safe Investing" (1998) "How you can create a bulletproof portfolio you can walk away from — while protecting you from inflation, deflation, or recession, while allowing you to profit from prosperous periods."
*"The Great Libertarian Offer" (2000) "A summary of how libertarian programs can solve America's problems."
*"Liberty A to Z" (2004) "872 libertarian soundbites you can use right now."

Unfinished books

*"The War Racket" (started by Browne but ended due to his death; a few libertarianswho have proposed finishing the book in Browne's honor)

Posthumous Collections

Since his death, Harry's wife Pamela has put together several collections of his speeches and writings in audio and e-book format.

*"Investment Strategy in an Uncertain World"
*"Rule Your World!
*"Freedom Speeches, Volume 1"
*"Freedom the American Way"

Political candidacy

Browne was the presidential candidate of the United States Libertarian Party in 1996 and 2000. He received 485,798 votes or 0.5% of the vote in 1996 and 384,516 votes or 0.4% of the vote in 2000. His campaign qualified for matching funds during each election but didn't accept them. Browne's refusal to accept matching funds won him expected praise from libertarians and those who are against the concept of federal matching funds, but also earned him somewhat greater exposure in the "mainstream" media, as very few American presidential candidates who qualified for matching funds denied them. In interviews, Browne had claimed he needed to be true to what he had preached in his libertarian speeches and that "it would be highly inappropriate for me to stick my nose in the trough after having denounced the Republicans and Democrats for doing so". During both of these elections, the Libertarian Party managed to get on the ballot in all fifty states and the District of Columbia. Browne did not appear on the 2000 Arizona ballot, however, as the Arizona Libertarian Party instead chose to run L. Neil Smith, whose candidacy was a protest against that of Browne.

Browne won a majority of the vote in the town of Searsburg, Vermont (pop. 96) in 2000.Fact|date=September 2008


Claims of wrongdoing within Browne's 1996 presidential campaign surfaced during his second run in 2000. In 2001, it was revealed that Perry Willis had worked on behalf of Browne's 1996 campaign while serving as national director of the Libertarian Party. To avoid potential conflicts of interest, party bylaws prohibit any party staffer from working for a campaign before a nominee is officially decided. After an investigation, the party leadership [ [http://www.lp.org/lpnews/0110/willis.html] Dead link|date=August 2008] censured Willis and admonished Browne, who responded in detail to allegations surrounding the controversy. [http://www.harrybrowne.org/2000/Controversy.htm ]

Policy advocate

After the 2000 elections, Harry Browne had continued working to increase the popularity of libertarian goals to reduce the size and scope of government. In addition to writing and making appearances on behalf of the Downsize DC Foundation (an organization he helped to co-found and for which he served as Director of Public Policy for a year and a half), he hosted two weekly network [http://www.harrybrowne.org/Radio.htm radio shows] , one on Saturdays dealing with politics, which he often called “The Libertarian Conversation” (since listeners were encouraged to call in), and the other on Sundays, called "The Money Show", dealing with financial topics. Both of these radio programs were on the Genesis Communications Network. Browne also worked with the Free Market News Network, of which he was the President for much of 2005, and a Senior Political Analyst. Via Free Market News, he had his own internet-based television show called "This Week In Liberty", which ran for 25 episodes. [http://www.harrybrowne.org/Archives%20-%20TV.htm]

Prior to his death, he was also working on a book called "The War Racket: The Lies, Myths, and Propaganda that Feed the American War Machine". War, he contended, was just another government program, and was essentially flawed because "government never solves anything." According to Jim Babka, "As Harry explained to me, the book was unlike any other he had ever written. Harry was well-read in his history, but after starting on the project he realized that 'well-read’ wasn’t enough." According to Browne's wife, Pamela, he collected over 400 books, read almost all of them, and made copious notes. He was struggling with the book's structure at the time of his death. [ [http://www.downsizedc.org/blog/2006/mar/03/thanks_for_changing_my_life_president_browne DownsizeDC.org ] ]

Harry Browne also authored thousands of articles, most of which can be found on his [http://www.harrybrowne.org/TopicalIndex.htm website] . He was also a contributor to the news and opinion blog LewRockwell.com, to Antiwar.com, and to World Net Daily. He published the financial newsletter "Harry Browne Special Reports" from 1974 to 1997.

A column he wrote titled “When Will We Learn” [ [http://www.worldnetdaily.com/news/article.asp?ARTICLE_ID=24444 When will we learn? - part 1 ] ] discussing the September 11 attacks persuaded Larry Elder to break with the Libertarian Party and join the Republican Party. Browne, however, always tried to make it clear that his opinions were his own, and not necessarily reflective of the Libertarian Party. It was his most-read column, ever, and was also published in foreign languages.

According to Jim Babka, “Harry had warned that a day like [September 11, 2001] was coming and he was actually surprised that some of those who’d listened to him and supported him were shocked. He thought the anger should’ve been directed at the geniuses who’d managed our nation’s foreign policy.”


In June 2005, Browne was confined to a wheelchair by amyotrophic lateral sclerosis. After spending a considerable amount of time in the hospital, he resumed some of his writing and speaking. He died at his home on the evening of March 1 2006 at the age of 72. [http://www.upi.com/NewsTrack/view.php?StoryID=20060302-054923-6723r] He is survived by his wife, Pamela Lanier Wolfe Browne, and his daughter, Autumn Browne. Following Browne's death, he was eulogized in Congress by Representative Ron Paul.

ee also

* U.S. presidential election, 1996
* U.S. presidential election, 2000


External links

* [http://www.harrybrowne.org/ HarryBrowne.org]
* [http://www.downsizedc.org/ DownsizeDC.org]
* [http://www.downsizedc.com/ Downsize DC Foundation]
* [http://www.freemarketnews.com/ Free Market News Network]
* [http://www.lp.org/ Libertarian Party homepage]
* [http://www.worldnetdaily.com/news/article.asp?ARTICLE_ID=24444 When Will We Learn? September 12, 2001]
* [http://washingtontimes.com/national/20060302-112917-9413r.htm "Washington Times", "Libertarian leader Browne dies at 72", March 3, 2006]
* [http://www.theadvocates.org/harry-browne.html Harry Browne In Memoriam] tribute page at [http://www.theadvocates.org/ Advocates for Self-Government]

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