Ideology is the enemy of growth

Global Growth United Nations_2018

United Nations Department of Economic and Social Affairs (UN, 2017)

This article is brought to you thanks to the strategic cooperation of The European Sting with the World Economic Forum.

Author: Dambisa Moyo, Author

Our ability to create and sustain economic growth is the defining issue of our time.

More than pandemics, climate change, terrorist militant groups and other geopolitical risks, economic growth is arguably the most crucial issue to help solve long term challenges that threaten to upend the global economy and destabilize the global political order.

In fact, unless and until we place global economic growth on a sturdy, sustainable and accelerating path, we will be unable to address the seemingly most intractable challenges of our world today; be they in health, education, environment or economic development, and improving living standards.

In this regard, the salient question before us is this: how will we create sustained economic growth?

Economic growth is still struggling to recover from the financial crisis
Image: IMF

Developed economies are still struggling to emerge from the shadow of the financial crisis. They’re shouldering high debts and deficits, while the quality and quantity of the workforce is changing. An ageing demographic means rising pensions and health costs, at a time of declining productivity. Capital, labor and productivity are the three key engines of economic growth, and they’re stuttering.

And in developing/emerging economies, where 90% of the world’s population lives and where, on average, 60-70% of the population is below the age of 25 years old, for now and the foreseeable future, economic growth has regressed below the 7% needed to double per capita incomes in one generation and meaningfully continue to put a dent in poverty.

With economic growth, societies are set in motion towards a virtuous cycle of economic opportunity, upward mobility, and rising standards of living.

Without it, communities contract and atrophy – not merely in the annals of economic indices, but more meaningfully in the lived experience of people and their communities.

Growth matters – powerfully – to ordinary people. If economic growth wanes, then everyone suffers; exacerbating numerous other problems – social, health, environmental, and political.

Critically, in the face of challenges to the blind pursuit of economic growth, it must be stressed that what is needed is stable economic growth but we need not pursue it in the manner we have in the past.

Reclaiming capitalism

Over past centuries economic growth has transformed the lives of hundreds of millions of people. And the engine for this success has largely been the capitalist system – an economic system where the factors of production – capital, labor, trade and industry are owned privately, rather than by the state.

More than any other economic system over time, capitalism has proven itself the best way thus far to increase growth (a surplus) and reduce poverty.

Even so, faith in capitalism has waned, and despite capitalism’s recorded success, there are mounting concerns that in its purer forms it fosters corruption, and contributes to widening income inequality. In essence, the benefits of growth are seen to accrue to the few, at the expense of the many.

Of course in practice the definition of capitalism is much more nuanced, so that the challenge before us is how can we improve capitalism and harness its best parts so that the global economy can return to a path that creates economic opportunities for more and we can address the raging social ills plaguing societies today.

Moving beyond Left and Right

Capitalism’s renewed attempt to create economic growth and address these ills must rest on an innovative policy path that is less dogmatic, and that blurs the lines between a facile Left-Right policy spectrum.

From a “Right-leaning” perspective, this could require embedding the principles of market capitalism, such as reward systems and personal accountability, into social programs.

Conditional transfers, a system where financial bonuses or rewards are given to individuals for good behavior, are an example. In essence the government pays people to do things that benefit society as a whole, such as sending their children to school or ensuring that their family is immunized against disease.

Quite apart from the debate of whether society should reward people for what many of us think we should be doing anyway, conditional transfers are a nod to the “Right-leaning” ideals of “pay for performance” that have already had notable success in Mexico, Brazil, and even in New York.

More “Left-leaning” ideas increasingly blur the lines between public and private roles and responsibilities. These proposals look to broaden the purview of government, so that the state takes on a greater role as an arbiter and allocator of the productive factors in an economy; that is allocating capital and labor, rather than leaving this responsibility solely to the private sector.

Meanwhile, there are private-sector initiatives (like Corporate Social Responsibility, or CSR, programs), where businesses take on a bigger role in social causes. In this case, the mandate of private corporations goes beyond merely maximizing the returns of investing shareholders, to maximizing the returns of investing shareholders while giving due consideration to social issues such as pay equity, and/or environmental concerns. Essentially this places a greater onus on private business to itself be a good citizen.

Public-Private Partnerships, witnessed in the build out of America’s infrastructure in the 19th Century and, more recently, in the development of the Internet are just some examples of what is possible when lines are blurred.

Abandoning dogged ideology should mean that we go beyond understanding economics and public policy only within the confines of the market capitalist system.

Indeed, in the quest for economic growth, being more open-minded, and less ideological, means considering some aspects of the long-term initiatives used in countries, such as China, that are blatantly non-democratic and state capitalist. After all, their policy framework and economic approaches have delivered legendary economic growth and moved hundreds of millions of people out of poverty in just a few decades.

In a nutshell, our ability to address the world’s social challenges and ultimately create economic growth to advance human progress crucially rests on recognizing this fact; that ideology is the enemy of growth.

Advertising

Advertising

Advertising

Advertising

Advertising

Advertising

Advertising

Advertising

Advertising

Advertising

the European Sting Milestones

Featured Stings

These campaigners want to give a quarter of the UK back to nature

How to build a more resilient and inclusive global system

Stopping antimicrobial resistance would cost just USD 2 per person a year

Ambassador Zhang Ming: “Work Together for a Better Globalization”

G20 LIVE: World Leaders in Turkey for G20 Summit. Global Economy will be discussed in Antalya

104 countries have laws that prevent women from working in some jobs

Yemen hospital airstrike under investigation amid resurgence of deadly cholera

Brexit: PM May must hush Boris Johnson to unlock the negotiations

Anti-vaccers: does the empty can rattle the most?

This is the critical number that shows when housing breaks down

Trump wants to implicate China in US attacks against global order

Wednesday’s Daily Brief: Diplomacy for Peace Day, #VaccinesWork, the cost of war on Afghans, tech and well-being

Here are four ways ASEAN can help entrepreneurs thrive – especially women

‘BioSolar Leaves’ are better at cleaning the air than trees, say the technology’s developers

This AI-powered app aims to help people with autism improve their social skills

Opposite cultures: Should it be a problem?

Why CFOs need to rethink what it means to create value

A Sting Exclusive: “Delivering on the Environmental Dimension of the new Sustainable Development Agenda”, Ulf Björnholm underscores from UNEP Brussels

Girls groomed for suicide missions fight back against the extremists of Lake Chad

EU and Indian flags at EU-India Summit in New Delhi last October (copyright EU 2018, Source: EC - Audiovisual Service)

India and the EU get close to revive talks on proposed Free Trade Agreement

Commuters in these cities spend more than 8 days a year stuck in traffic

Senior UN adviser sees ‘rare’ victory for humanitarian diplomacy as aid convoy reaches desert camp in Syria

Tourism offers much to the EU gets a little

Is Data Privacy really safe seen through Commissioner’s PRISM?

Agreement reached on screening of foreign direct investment for EU security

3 charts that show the economics of European football

Brexit negotiations: Can May’s Britain bounce back?

DR Congo Ebola centre attacks could force retreat against the deadly disease, warns UN health chief

This cheap, 700-year old solution could change billions of lives

EU Commission: Growth first then fiscal consolidation

UN-led Yemen ceasefire monitoring team gets ready to begin operations

GSMA Mobile 360: Connecting Cities, Connecting Lives, Connecting Europe

UN pushes for universal health care on International Day

The inhumane face of crisis mirrored in numbers

Apple® logo (copyright: Apple)

Apple takes further step into music: EU Regulators formally approve its planned Shazam acquisition

How to fight back against misinformation and polarization

Austerity lovers and ‘relaxationists’ fight over the EU budget

The umpteenth Italian overturn takes Renzi and PD to unprecedented victory at EU elections

A silent killer: the impact of a changing climate on health

A Sting Exclusive: “The EU Cybersecurity Act for a more secure and cyber-resilient European Digital Single Market”, by EU Commissioner Gabriel

First Western Sahara talks at UN in six years, begin in Geneva

Finnish Prime Minister calls for a more united EU of concrete actions

Macro-Financial Assistance: Europe’s way to control Ukraine?

IMF – World Bank meetings: US – Germany clash instituted, anti-globalization prospects visualized

Action needed to tackle stalled social mobility

Sweden to reach its 2030 renewable energy target this year

Capital Markets Union: Making it easier for insurers to invest in the real economy

The Parliament defies a politically biased Banking Union

Mental health in medical students: the deciphered quandary

16 foods that are good for you – and the planet

Technology can help solve the climate crisis – but it will need our help

The European Parliament hemicycle in Strasbourg (Copyright: European Union, 2017 / Source: EC - Audiovisual Service / Photo: Mauro Bottaro)

EU Parliament sends controversial copyright law reform back to discussion

EU approves disbursement of €500 million in Macro-Financial Assistance to Ukraine

How much more political is the new EU leadership? Does this include personal bend?

The unique role of business in building social good

‘Regional security and integration’ in Central Africa under threat, Security Council warned

The most unlikely innovators are changing ICT for development – it’s time we took notice

How tiny countries top social and economic league tables (and win at football, too)

Remembering Kofi Annan

A Europe that Protects: Commission calls for more efforts to ensure adoption of security proposals

How to end overfishing in the global South

ECB’s first flight in Eurozone’s banking universe will be just a reconnaissance

European Citizens’ Initiative: A game of much publicity and one big lie

More Stings?

Comments

  1. Wingnut says:

    Hi

    We ALL see the pyramid scheme symbol on the back of the USA one dollar bill. We ALL see the servitude infestation in capitalism. We ALL see the “pay up or lose your wellbeing” Chicago mob-like felony extortion widespread within capitalism. We ALL see the “join or starve” felony extortion done to the 18 year olds… by this ugly competer’s church called capitalism. We ALL see how forcing competer’s religions onto 18 year olds, and/or LURING them into it with bling-dangling and promises of empowerments… kills membership in the cooperator’s church (Christianity/socialism). We ALL understand that AmWay (American Way) (New World Order) got “the exclusive” (legal tender) on the TYPE of survival coupons (money) accepted in supply depots (stores) and leverages 18 year olds into the organization via that felony activity. (It puts AmWay-coupon slaving requirements called price tags… on all the survival goods). We ALL understand how sure-to-collapse farmyard pyramids work… from our childhoods. Upper 1/3 are “heads in the clouds” while the kids on the bottom ALWAYS GET HURT from the weight of the world’s knees in their backs. And, we ALL see how such systems are illegal, immoral, and just plain sick.

    We American Christian socialists are patiently awaiting the natural fall of the pyramid-o-servitude, or the busting of the free marketeers felony… by the USA Dept of Justice. We Christians are VERY CLOSE to issuing a cease and desist order until the servitude and inequality goes away… which means it turns into a commune. Commune is a word we LOVE when used in the word “community”… but its one the caps HATE when used in the word “commune-ism”. Go fig. PROGRAMMED!!

    Do a Google IMAGE SEARCH for ‘pyramid of capitalist’ to see a full color picture made way back in 1911, when capitalism was first discovered to be a con/sham instigated by the Free Masons/Illuminati. Folks sure bought into the thing… hook, line, and sinker just the same. The caps didn’t even check if a string was attached! Now THAT’S easy fishing, eh?

    Time to level the felony pyramid scheme called capitalism. Abolish economies and ownershipism worldwide, and hurry. Economies just cause rat-racing, and rat-racing causes felony pyramiding. BUST IT, America! Look to the USA military supply/survival system… (and the USA public library system) for socialism and morals done right. Equal, owner-less, money-less, bill-less, timecard-less, and concerned with growth of value-criteria OTHER THAN money-value. Quit doing monetary discrimination immediately, and make it illegal. There are MANY measurement criteria of “value”… not just dollars. Try morals, efficiency, discrimination-levels, repairability, etc etc. Economies are cancerous tumors, and to cheer for their growth… is just insane. Profiting causes inflation, so if caps LIKE inflation, and if they LIKE a terrible time in afterlife when they meet the planet’s ORIGINAL OWNER before caps tried to squat it all with ownershipism, then keep it up with the felony pyramiding. I dare you. While us Christians are finally bulldozing that pyramid scheme back to level, lets make servitude and “join or starve” (get a job or die) illegal in the USA, and lets level the architecture seen in USA courtrooms, too. Right now, USA courtrooms are church simulators or “fear chambers”, by special design. Sick.

    Isn’t that back-of-the-dollar pyramid… a Columbian freemason symbol? And WHERE is the USA gov located? District of Columbia? (Not even part of the USA!) How much more blatant can ya get? The “Fed” runs a pyramid scheme called the free marketeers. If you’re using the “federal reserve note” certificates, or using no-other-living-thing-on-the-planet entitles of ownership, you’re bought into a servitude/slavery con/sham… called capitalism. Pyramiding 101.

    Larry “Wingnut” Wendlandt
    MaStars – Mothers Against Stuff That Ain’t Right
    (anti-capitalism-ists)
    Bessemer MI USA

Speak your Mind Here

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Google photo

You are commenting using your Google account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s