Sumner on Neoliberalism
By David Henderson
The neoliberal policy revolution that began in the late 1970s might be the most important recent event in world history. But it remains a curiously elusive and underreported phenomenon. Many on the left question the motives behind the reforms, as well as their efficacy, while some on the right talk as if the neoliberal revolution never happened.
Yet, the neoliberal revolution has been widespread and highly successful. And the motives of neoliberal reforms are much purer than one would imagine after reading left-wing criticisms of free-market reforms.
So does Scott Sumner begin this month’s Feature Article on Econlib. The article is titled, “The Unacknowledged Success of Neoliberalism.” I asked Scott to do this piece after I read a blog post he had done on it in May and realizing that there’s a lot to tell here that isn’t being widely told. Scott documents the neoliberal revolution in economic policy that has swept the world in the last three decades, and shows that countries that most reformed in the direction of economic freedom have done better, measured by growth of real GDP per capita, than countries that have done least.