In many ways, China is the most capitalist country in the world right now. In the big Chinese cities, living standards and per capita income are at the level of countries the World Bank would deem “high middle income,” already higher, for example, than that of the Czech Republic.
Pointer from Tyler Cowen. To call Fogel a China optimist is an understatement. The article is a must-read. We interviewed Fogel in From Poverty to Prosperity. We also interviewed others who were not nearly as optimistic about China.
[UPDATE: Specifically, Amar Bhide and Edmund Phelps question whether China has the sort of “venturesome consumers” who can support innovation. While Fogel in his essay emphasizes the impact of Chinese education, William Lewis argues that education is not such a large factor in international productivity differences. So these are not settled issues, by any means.]
Ryan Streeter points out that Chile has become the first South American Country to join the OECD. This is vindication for free-market economists, starting with Milton Friedman. It indicates the importance of what we refer to in FP2P as the “operating system” for the economy.
Incidentally, I am told that the publisher is printing more copies of FP2P, because some outlets have run short. That sound promising.