Monday, July 25, 2011

Demonising the source of improved social welfare

By 1934, the Depression's banking crisis had been resolved, "yet full recovery was still seven years away," (Nobel winner Robert Lucas)  said in the Milliman lecture. GDP stayed more than 10% below trend.

"Why?" The answer, he says, was growth-suppressing policies, such as the Smoot-Hawley tariff, cartelization, unionization and, "most important but hardest to measure, FDR's demonization of business."

The last point (the inverse of Bourgeois Dignity – for those who have been listening) is critical in N.Z. We are awash with demonising business, fearing gnomes of Zurich, believing that co-op free lunches (AMI ownership structure for instance) abound, fear of Yellow Peril, the belief that trade leads to invasion, hatred of phone companies…. et al.

All good fun, low effort news stories and no doubt cute… also dumb and deadly.

Full article on the Brent Wheeler Group site.


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