Sunday, August 03, 2008

Free trade - producing happiness

It is rather annoying to see the working man being used as cannon fodder by populistic politicians in various contexts - be it free trade, nuclear energy, EU treaties, NATO, the € etc. When media has largely given up on any critical and balanced analysis to focus on shortsighted moneymaking banalities and own too often leftist agendas it leaves more of the responsibility for balanced discussions to the blogosphere and Internet at large. We are already witnessing that the public has started to turn its back to the megaphoning mass media - realised why headlines and stories are so out of proportion. This will mean less advertising income, higher subscription fees, less qualified resources, less circulation, less resources - a very worrying vicious circle - when high quality analysis is needed more than ever before.

William J Bernstein's A Splendid Exchange: How Trade Shaped the World presents a very interesting story of how trade has evolved and how it really benefits the masses. Not only in the industrialised world where for low cost countries have helped to keep inflation down and enabled higher living standards - but also radically increasing the sum of human happiness by making it possible for 100ds of millions of 3rd world inhabitants to take the first steps from misery to basic consumption. Not to mention how this has produced resources for basic health - radically cutting the occurance of the worst of tragedies - children dying of hunger and diseases.

1 comment:

Nyke said...

A Splendid Exchange looks like it's going to be a history of long-distance trading.It's so packed with details and stories that blasting through it would be overwhelming.