Three Cheers for the Industrial Revolution

International Liberty

At the start of this interview, I cite Economic Freedom of the World and the Index of Economic Freedom to make the point that more economic liberty is correlated with more human prosperity.

For purposes of today’s column, I want to focus on the last half of the interview. I point out that a handful of nations began to escape poverty, largely back in the 1800s, when the fiscal burden of government was very small.

But that’s just a partial explanation. As Professors Donald Boudreaux and Deirdre McCloskey explained in short videos, the adoption of capitalism in a few nations enabled a stunning increase in living standards starting a couple of hundred years ago.

If you want a one-sentence summary, all you need to know is that capitalism enabled the industrial revolution and the industrial revolution triggered a huge increase in living standards.

If you prefer to see…

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