We have seen the future, and it sucks.

Reflections on World on Fire

28th February 2011

Bryan Caplan has some thoughts on Amy Chua’s less controversial book.

The negative side effect of free-market reforms: The market-dominant minorities disproportionately benefit, increasing popular resentment.  The negative side effect of democratization: Market-dominant minorities disproportionately suffer, because the majority finally gets a chance to legally enforce its resentment.  Pushing both reforms on developing countries simultaneously – which Chua claims the U.S. government habitually does – gives the worst of both worlds: Increasing resentment – and the opportunity to politically act upon it.  If the stars align badly enough, preaching democratic capitalism gives you Yugoslavia or Rwanda.

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