October 22, 2005

Fighting poverty

I am a big fan of Bryan Caplan. It is a pitty that he holds some weird, I would say stevenpinkerish, ideas about genetics. But I like what he writes about many other topics. I like this, for example (from this, found here):
Countries that "did nothing" about poverty during the twentieth century frequently became rich through gradual economic growth. Countries that waged "total war" on poverty frequently not only choked off economic growth, but starved.


  1. Interesting essay but then I ran into this contradictory statement, which is half right:

    "Totalitarianism ended not because totalitarian policies were unaffordable, but because new leaders were unwilling to keep paying the price in lives and wealth."

    Also, you mention Pinkerish ideas. Which of Pinker's ideas are you referring to? Just curious.

  2. Pinker is one of those who is convinced that we have genes for this and that bit of behavior, and that differences among people are largely due to genetic differences. I do not argue the opposite. I just think that those ideas have no sound backing in empirical data.

  3. I was also interested in your comment on Pinkerish ideas. Thanks for the explanation.

    I like your blog