Monday, October 10, 2011

Why Economic Freedom Matters

From a World Bank working paper of all things... Jean-Pierre Chauffour (via theThinker)

… economic freedom and civil and political liberties are the root causes of why some countries achieve and sustain better economic outcomes. For instance, a one unit change in the initial level of economic freedom between two countries (on a scale of 1 to 10) is associated with an almost 1 percentage point differential in their average long-run economic growth rates. In the case of civil and political liberties, the long-term effect is also positive and significant with a differential of 0.3 percentage point… 
In contrast, no evidence was found that the initial level of entitlement rights or their change over time had any significant effects on long-term per capita income, except for a negative effect in some specifications of the model. These results tend to support earlier findings that beyond core functions of government responsibility—including the protection of liberty itself—the expansion of the state to provide for various entitlements, including so-called economic, social, and cultural rights, may not make people richer in the long run and may even make them poorer
More here (theIncindiaryInsight via Instapundit on the "Occupy Wall Street" Protests):
Capitalism is the best economic engine for creating wealth and prosperity that has ever been developed. The West once was capitalist, but today it is a corporatist juggernaut in it's death throes, whereby corporations and banks control the government in their favor, inevitably leading to corruption and decline. This is not capitalism, not even in the broadest interpretation of the word. I've posted a picture in a previous post on North Korea and South Korea to make a point: a capitalist country lives in prosperity, a dictatorship does not. If capitalism is so horrible, why has America lead the way in innovation, technology, scientific output, and made Americans the wealthiest (by far) workers of any nation on earth? The poor in America live better than middle-class Europeans.  
It's time to stop demonizing an entity that we have already benefited immensely from. It's damn time for Millennials to stop taking the fashionable position of saying "capitalism does not work" when they are the inheritors of a capitalist empire. The Occupiers in, at last count, 147 cities nationwide, protest a system that has been overtaken by corporations that are already in bed with the government anyway. If they have a problem with wealth, they should aim their frustrations at a government that sucked away trillions in tax-payer money for sinfully corrupt banks. Capitalism is not the enemy here, excessive government control and regulations is. 

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