Wednesday, November 24

A small feel-good post. And Happy Thanksgiving!

There's a hell of a lot I don't know, but one thing I think I'm proficient with is numbers.

Frankly I'd rather be a good pianist, but here we are. In any case, I chanced on this little snippet of info:
Adjusted for inflation, per capita GDP was 22.8 percent higher in 2000 than it was in 1990.
That almost certainly didn't impress you. After all, economies grow over time. But consider that the U.S. is a "mature economy." While poor nations--with tiny GDPs--can occasionally take off and produce 4 or 5 percent growth rates for a few years, it's extremely hard for a huge, fully mature economy to do that.

For comparison, our population probably grew 1% per year during that decade, or probably around 11% over the whole period. Absent constant improvements and innovation, one would expect the GDP to rise by about this same percent over the same time.

Instead, the growth rate of our economy was double the population growth.

What that shows is that despite all the pessimism and whining, there's still a hellofa lot of productivity improvement and innovation going on in this country.

Happy Thanksgiving to all. I know I'm sure thankful to live here in one of the last oases of peace, prosperity and reasonably sane people on the planet.


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