Jim

Follow the money

In Biz, Politics, Smartness on October 8, 2007 at 12:21 am

Interesting (in a seriously wonky, World Bank way) note on where nations’ wealth comes from. The short answer: The rule of law and good schools are way more important than natural resources or manufacturing.

Just another reason to resist edging to a more and more powerful presidency, if you ask me.

Quotable:

The bottom line: “Rich countries are largely rich because of the skills of their populations and the quality of the institutions supporting economic activity.”

So how much of it belongs to you? As a journalist, you sometimes feel like a third-world man.

Overall, the average per capita wealth in the rich Organization for Economic Cooperation Development (OECD) countries is $440,000 …. Switzerland has the highest per capita wealth, at $648,000. The U.S. is fourth at $513,000. By comparison, the World Bank study finds that total wealth for the low income countries averages $7,216 per person.

Run, don’t walk:

Mexico’s total … capital per person is … $62,000 per person. … When a Mexican, or for that matter, a South Asian or African, walks across our border, they gain immediate access to intangible capital worth $418,000 per person. Who wouldn’t walk across the border …?

The article is from reason.com, a libertarian publication.

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