NCPA - National Center for Policy Analysis


July 17, 2007

Despite the endless doom and gloom dished out by many in the media and political class, the objective evidence is that by almost any measure the world this past year was a better place for most of its habitants, says Richard W. Rahn, chairman of the Institute for Global Economic Growth.

Not only is economic growth, and most importantly, per capita economic growth, occurring almost everyplace, but the rate of growth is increasing.  Consider:

  • At a growth rate of 2 percent per year, it takes 35 years for income to double; but at 5 percent per year it takes only 15 years.
  • World gross domestic product is now growing about 5 percent per year.


  • Longevity, the percent of the world population suffering from malnutrition, the percentage of the global population that is literate, are improving almost everywhere ever year.
  • At the moment, there is substantial real economic growth in every country on the planet with the exception of only a couple of small despotic states.

One danger, however, is the U.S. Congress, which continues to have its share of economic know-nothings proposing one daffy and destructive idea after another, says Rahn:

  • Protectionists in the U.S. Congress have proposed legislation that would, in effect, have the U.S. government dictate currency exchange rates to their liking.
  • In addition, through their destructive support for agricultural subsidies and trade restrictions, they seem bent on reducing the real incomes of their fellow Americans.
  • All too many members of Congress want to increase taxes and micromanage both domestic and international companies -- all recipes for economic disaster.

Source: Richard W. Rahn, "The Good News," Washington Times, July 17, 2007.


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