Enlightened Economics

Economics for an Enlightened Age

Posts Tagged ‘GDP’

• Weekend read: The trouble with growth

Posted by Ron Robins on April 12, 2015

“A theme of particular interest is understanding what might be possible in advanced economies in the absence of economic growth and reductions in throughput.

Would these economies collapse without growth? Would mass unemployment result? Could the existing institutions — in particular, financial institutions — survive without growth, and if not, what sort of changes might be required? What would be the implications for economic growth of strict limits on throughput?”
Weekend read: The trouble with growth, by Peter A. Victor and Tim Jackson, April 11, 2015, GreenBiz, U.S.A.

Commentary: Ron Robins
There’s no doubt — barring the economic extraction of resources from other heavenly bodies — that Earth’s resources are limited and that for economic growth to continue indefinitely is impossible unless Earth’s resources are used far more efficiently. If we’re to avoid wars and famines where countries and peoples plunder each others resources, there has to be a marked change in consumer behavior. How can this happen? Will scare stories and killer climate events cause the change in consciousness? Perhaps so, but a more humane way is best.

And the nature of that humane response is for governments, educational institutions, and companies encourage changes in individual and collective consciousness the like of which I’ve written about in many of my posts that include: The Missing Ingredient In Economics — Consciousness!Cultural Creatives to Dominate in the Age of Enlightened Economics; and ‘Voluntary Simplicity’ Brings Higher Consciousness into Economics.

Posted in Consciousness/Psychology, Economics, Environment, GDP Alternatives, News, Commentary, Spiritual | Tagged: , , , , , | 1 Comment »

• Has the Global Trade Engine Stalled? (Goods, perhaps. Services, maybe not)

Posted by Ron Robins on December 21, 2014

“For the first time in nearly half a century, trade between nations has grown slower than the global economy. Some economists believe trade may be at a peak, at least for a while. “Peak Trade” suggests the world could hit a long-term ceiling in terms of the effects of trade growth as an economic driver.”
— Has the Global Trade Engine Stalled? By Eric Justian, December 19, 2014, TriplePundit, U.S.A.

Commentary: Ron Robins
Buy local, make locally, is a major trend in all countries. The huge U.S. economic stimulus package of five years ago mandated domestic sourcing and production, wherever possible. In the U.S., as in many countries, there are large constituencies who see global trade as contributing to massive losses of high paying domestic jobs. Hence, like the U.S., countries around the world are emphasizing buy local, make locally.

Furthermore, renowned trends forecaster Gerald Celente of the Trends Research Institute predicts these trends growing globally together with an anti ‘made in China’ mindset among developed countries’ consumers.

Most of these trends likely apply mostly to the goods trade. But it remains to be seen if the services side of global trade is similarly constrained. My suspicion is that with the growth of the web and recently introduced simultaneous multi-lingual VOIP services such as Skype has inaugurated, services might yet see much further globalization. Services also constitute about 70% of global GDP.

For a more detailed understanding on the growth of the global services trade, read my post, Huge Migration of Service Jobs to Developing World Looming. That essay implies that over the long-term global trade in services — and due to lower cost structures particularly benefits the developing economies — could grow appreciably faster than world GDP.

From an Enlightened Economics perspective, the freer the trade, the better. There’s no better means to economic growth than for the ‘invisible hand’ of the market to function seamlessly and optimally.

Posted in Labour Issues, News, Commentary | Tagged: , , , , | Leave a Comment »

• If Success Was Measured in Social Progress, Which Nation Would Win?

Posted by Ron Robins on December 19, 2014

“So where, you may be wondering, does the United States fall in all of this? Spoiler alert: not among the top 10. The United States ranks 16th, just ahead of Belgium and just behind the Republic of Ireland. The report also notes that Canada, despite being neighbors with the U.S., and sharing several similar strengths, still significantly outpaces us in almost every measure.”
— If Success Was Measured in Social Progress, Which Nation Would Win? By Katey Troutman, Business CheapSheet, December 17, 2014, U.S.A.

Commentary: Ron Robins
The measure being used is the Social Progress Index (SPI). It attempts to measure basic human needs, foundations of well-being (health, education, etc.) and opportunity (in terms of personal rights, freedoms, and so forth). Performance on these measures forms the foundation for economic success and personal fulfillment. The fact that the U.S. is purportedly performing ‘well’ (on highly adulterated GDP numbers) does not diminish the fact that on measures associated with the SPI, it performs relatively poorly. The public perception of the value of GDP is totally illusory and misguided as measures such as the SPI illustrate. One interesting finding is that all the leading nations have small populations and as usual in these types of measures, are mostly from Scandinavia.

Posted in Economic Measurement, GDP Alternatives, News, Commentary | Tagged: , | Leave a Comment »

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