July 23, 2015 at 12:45 pm #18606tony.destroMember
My younger cousin is a leftist and a Sociology professor. I finally got around to reading some of her academic work http://www.wzb.eu/sites/default/files/u31/poverty.pdf on poverty statistics and poverty in the US vs countries with “more developed” welfare states. The assertion is of course that the US would benefit more from a more european style welfare state.
Now I know that a lot of these european countries the us is being compared to had free market histories. http://www.iea.org.uk/sites/default/files/publications/files/Sanandajinima-interactive.pdf
I also know that a lot of these countries, still today are ranked high in economic freedom. http://www.freetheworld.com/2014/EFW2014-POST.pdf
I don’t think it is entirely as clear as a leftist might want it to be.
From an Austrian perspective does it make sense that countries that have high economic freedom/freer markets in basically everything else, except they have a well funded centrally planned welfare state would have less poor than a country with a less developed welfare monopoly?
Regardless, since they are still centrally planned monopolies that have crowded out private welfare, wouldn’t total elimination of the welfare state still be better even if it is correct that european welfare programs can lower poverty?
I’m sure I’ll have to defend my views in the future on the matter of the effectiveness of welfare and would greatly appreciate any information you could provide. Also, if I have stated anything you know to be false please correct me on it.July 23, 2015 at 5:15 pm #18607jmherbenerParticipant
Studies of poverty are notoriously shoddy. Cross-country studies are especially problematic. If you look at just the U.S., the poverty rate was declining until LBJ’s war on poverty. Take a look at the work at the Independent Institute:
Charles Murray made this point in his book, Losing Ground.
Thomas Sowell has done some good work on poverty. Take a look at his book, Poverty, Wealth, and Politics:
Here Sowell points out that market reforms have lifted hundreds of millions of people out of poverty in China in the last three decades:
Henry Hazlitt wrote an entire book on that point:
Here is a Mises Institute wiki on poverty:
Here’s a recent Mises Daily article:
Another point is that private charity actually works to reduce poverty whereas government programs do not. Here is Michael Tanner:
Marvin Olasky has written about this as well:
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