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Poverty, Living Wage, and GDP

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PostPosted: Wed Jul 22, 2009 3:30 pm    Post subject: Poverty, Living Wage, and GDP Reply with quote

Poverty in the U.S. is overstated. U.S. per capita income was over $45,000, in 2007, while E.U. per capita income was roughly $35,000. Also, prices, interest rates, and taxes were lower in the U.S. than in the E.U.

Government is too often a competitor rather than a complement of the private sector. Regarding equality, the question should be is it better to have absolute increases in living standards for the poor, although the rich benefit more, or have smaller absolute increases and larger relative increases for the poor to achieve greater equality.

Moreover, I may add, there seems to be a problem when Chinese wages at $0.25 an hour are taking jobs away from Mexican workers earning $1.00 an hour. A universal minimum wage may not be the answer. Nonetheless, all workers should earn subsistence wages, or not slave wages.

Don't go around saying the world owes you a living. The world owes you nothing. It was here first. ~Mark Twain

Energy Efficiency

GDP only reflects the production side. It's likely all the efficiency gains on the production side were used on the consumption side.

The U.S. not only leads the world in the Information and Biotech Revolutions, it leads the rest of the world combined. Consequently, the U.S. economy has become "lighter" on the production side. The products Google, Microsoft, Intel, Cisco, Apple, Genentech, Amgen, etc. weigh almost nothing.

However, the U.S. economy became "heavier" on the consumption side, e.g. measured in quantity of houses (including square feet), size of autos, volume of imports, etc.

U.S. living standards likely peaked recently, and may not improve for many years.
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