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Poverty Today?

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EternalMind posted on Fri, Apr 16 2010 11:15 PM

I got an interesting statement during a question. It seemed to have been pulled out of his ass, though it brought up some points.

 

"I find no problem with the new technology, but it doesn't fit in to an economy based on human labor. Capitalist are in the business of making products to make profit, regardless of what theory one has on what else it might be. Read the Wall Street Journal. Did I say the serfs were better off? No, I was talking about the trauma associated with a dramatic change.Your entire position on capitalism is based on things that do not exist. You negate imperialism, transnational capital, and the current global economics of the transition from nation states to market states. In the period of the most ruthless capitalism ever, you talk about it as saving humanity. Every statistic shows humans worst off then ever before.... this discussion on capitalism has no value because it's not based on the real world."

My response is "lawl wut" initially, honestly. It seemed to have been almost imaginary. However - there is poverty that exists. I know Henry Hazlitt's Conquest of Poverty works. What else could possibly be shown here empirically?

I know some people have mentioned India, etc. This guy also mentioned narco slave trades, as well. The argument feels inconsistent and broken on his end, however the question I wonder is there any research I can read on the poverty problems today in various countries with explanations behind it?

Oh and also on the transition from serfdom if anyone has a good explanation/information on that. D= Unless Hazlitt explains it - I haven't finished Conquest of Poverty yet. Can anyone give some direction on understanding poverty here? It is a very common argument, I am sure more than Hazlitt has been attentive to it.

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His argument is nonsensical. Just look at the reduced poverty rates in China, India, etc. Millions of Chinese died from starvation during "the great leap forward" when, under Mao, they collectivized agriculture production. After China introduced markets and some basic property rights, they have had huge economic growth, and economist Alex Tabbarok correctly calls what happened in China since liberalization "The greatest anti-poverty program the world has ever seen."

I would say more, but I have to eat!

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What about Latin America, however? I suppose Mexico/Central/Latin America has always bugged me. I am of Mexican descent myself so the topic interests me the most. I saw that there was never any true free market institutions in Latin America - I know there's a book Making Poor Nations Rich that explains it. Alas, there is no free PDF for me to skim through the essays. Does anyone have any articles dedicated to the poverty in Latin America? I know Hernando de Soto addressed it, but I think it's ridiculous to get the government to advocate strict property rights. What is the Austrian perspective?

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EternalMind:

What about Latin America, however? I suppose Mexico/Central/Latin America has always bugged me. I am of Mexican descent myself so the topic interests me the most. I saw that there was never any true free market institutions in Latin America - I know there's a book Making Poor Nations Rich that explains it. Alas, there is no free PDF for me to skim through the essays. Does anyone have any articles dedicated to the poverty in Latin America? I know Hernando de Soto addressed it, but I think it's ridiculous to get the government to advocate strict property rights. What is the Austrian perspective?

From my observations in Brazil, there isn't much capitalism going on down there, when you compare it to the USA. They also have a gigantic history of rulers who imposed many social programs and major interventionist policies that seems to have kept the country from ever really taking off. I can't speak of it too much because I really haven't done a lot of research on it but most of my opinion comes from the couple of weeks that I was down there and saw how bad it really is for most of the people who live there. I read from different news sources about what is going on there today and it doesn't seem like much is going to change for them. Not to mention, they are going through their own real estate boom right now and doing many things in the name of helping the poor, which will actually do more harm then good in my opinion.
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Mike replied on Sat, Apr 17 2010 11:10 AM

Look into the "chilean miracle". While not totally in line with AE it was a switch from socialsm to much more free markets. and they have been the leading SO. AM country ever since.

Also to me the No/so Korea, East/West Germany and China - Taiwan - hong kong  evidence is irrefutable.

Profits are the only thing that allow the expansion of everything for everyone. where the hell does the state get anything to "give" the poor - if someone didn't make a profit first!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

Be responsible, ease suffering; spay or neuter your pets.

We must get them to understand that government solutions are the problem!

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This is a good article explaining that poverty today is caused by the state. http://reason.com/archives/2002/09/18/poor-planning
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Sieben replied on Sat, Apr 17 2010 11:33 AM
EternalMind:
Capitalist are in the business of making products to make profit, regardless of what theory one has on what else it might be.
If you want, you can go and buy up a bunch of land with your hippy commie friends and smoke pot all day. Have universal health care etc. As long as you don't attack people and do it on your own property you're in the green.
EternalMind:
In the period of the most ruthless capitalism ever,
State-corporate-socialism. Capitalism = free association + homesteading principles.
EternalMind:
I know some people have mentioned India
End international debt slavery ala IMF. It is not legitimate to hold a whole people accountable for what their dictators did.
EternalMind:
This guy also mentioned narco slave trades, as well
End the war on drugs. Easy.
EternalMind:
he argument feels inconsistent and broken on his end,
Epic thread. http://mises.org/Community/forums/t/15824.aspx
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