Alvaro Vargas Llosa writes:
Is global capitalism making the poor even poorer, or is it in fact rescuing millions of people out of their misery?I recently had the chance to participate in a series of debates here about this issue organized by Foreign Policy magazine and Letras Libres, a Mexican cultural publication Nothing I heard at that meeting changed my conviction that the glass is half-full despite the doomsayers who predict horrific calamities.
The essay is excellent, but the fact that we still need to have this debate is somewhat silly. Too often, we are stuck on the debate regarding the distribution of income when discussing the success of capitalism. However, the distribution of income is a flawed measurement and represents the conditions only at a given point in time. Such analysis does not measure advancement and success over a longer period of time. Similarly, this analysis regards income as the only variable for measuring one’s standard of living.
It is a shame that more people do not read Schumpeter. If they did, they would understand why capitalism and economic growth actually benefit those at the bottom by providing them with goods and services that previously only the rich could afford. And perhaps more importantly, it does this without coercion, force, or central authority to direct it.