More Pro-Growth Progessivism

Here is a World Bank paper by Aart Kraay and David Dollar, called, bluntly enough “Growth Is Good for the Poor,” [pdf] which finds that “Average incomes of the poorest fifth of society rise proportionately with average incomes.”

As the world grows increasingly globally interconnected, you have to squarely face the fact that slowing growth in the big economies really, really hurts poor people elsewhere. This is not dogma. It’s what you might call “reality based,” or the truth. And that’s one of the main reasons I find it despicable when comfortable western intellectuals argume to the effect that England, say, ought to impose policies meant to get their citizens to work less and enjoy more leisure time, since the added wealth created by their economic production isn’t doing THEM as much good as longer vacations would. But policies that effect the productivity of the English economy don’t just effect the English. Lower growth in England means more hungry, sick and dying babies in China. That’s why growth-slowing “quality of life” reforms in advanced economies can be construed as “progressive” only relative to a repugnant nationalist, anti-cosmopolitan standard.