30 juni 2005

The new religion (The Flemish Beerdrinker)

Some Belgian left-wing politicians worry about the global liberal economy. They call it a new religion. But it’s a religion that fails. It’s an invention of a global elite of speculators getting richer, while the poor are getting poorer. The liberal economy, they say, not only isn’t working, it’s inhumane. Is it? Not in India. The Financial Times reports:

India’s economy surged by 7 per cent in the fourth quarter of 2004-05, lifting the full-year growth to the 6.9 per cent predicted by the government, as strong manufacturing and services output compensated for a weak performance by the agricultural sector. The figures released Thursday provide the latest evidence of the weakening link between rural incomes and industrial activity thanks to the rise of a mass affluent middle class, a booming export sector and the growing availability of rural credit. The growing purchasing power of India’s expanding urban middle class is behind much of the shift. NCAER says 13 per cent of India’s population will have an annual income of £2,439-£12,500 by 2009-10, compared with 3 per cent in 1995-96.

No growing purchasing power isn’t everything, but for millions of formerly poor people, it’s a lot. It’s their way to a humane existence.


At 17/4/07 11:14, Anonymous Anoniem said...


I can only asume you are a wealthy caucasian male individual talking about something you havent experienced - poverty - am I right?

Just a few thoughts:
* Being poor could be defined as having a low income relative to the average income. The question is not how high the average income is, but how big inequality. India does not score well in terms of equality.

* If the economy grows, then the average income rises, but does this mean the icome of the poorest people goes up? Maybe the rich are just getting richer while the rest stays the same...

* Our economy is capable of feeding every person on the world. How do you defend the incapability of a liberal economy to provide food, water and shelter to all (or most) people of the world?

Also look at the numbers in this article


Also if i give you 1 USD, and raise it by 100% each year, then by 2009 you will have ... 4 USD ... congrats you are now rich, oh no wait your still poor. (note that the economy raises by 7% not 100 xD).

Finally you said the income is what they need right? Well in a liberal economy you need money to be worth something, now this is where there is disagreament. Some people might say everyone has a right to live a life worthy of a human being EVEN WHEN YOU HAVE NO MONEY.

Whoever you are and for whatever reason you discided to promote the idea of poverty reduction trough growth, please look into the data and the point of view of people who work in the field of poverty reduction and who actually know what they are talking about, rather than taking some average macro economic numbers to prouve some abstract statement.

At 14/4/08 23:59, Anonymous Anoniem said...

Dear Sir,
Please forgive me Sir to trouble you when you are busy.
I cannot speak Netherlandish.
Viva EU!!!
Viva Airbus!
Boycott Japanese cars, goods and capitals!!!

Very sincerely yours,


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