Lee Kwan Yew was first seen by @nytimes as a bit of a commie when he founded Singapore #OTD

Good question

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Good question

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Singapore Spring

He who is first is now last: real GDP per capita of the East Asian Tigers since 1950

Japan has gone first to be last having been just overtaken in the last year or two by South Korea on a per capita real GDP basis, PPP. The Lost Decade certainly has taken its toll on Japanese relative prosperity. Singapore overtook Japan in the 1970s – a testament to the Singapore miracle. Hong Kong too overtook Japan on a purchasing power basis in the mid-1990s followed not long after by Taiwan. Singapore is seriously rich.

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Source: The Conference Board. 2015. The Conference Board Total Economy Database™, May 2015, http://www.conference-board.org/data/economydatabase/

The Singapore Spring

Singapore at 50

The Quantity and Quality of Japanese, Singaporean and Hong Kong Lives, 1965 to 1995

Figure 1: increase in real GDP and increase in real GDP plus life expectancy GDP increase equivalent, Japan, Singapore and Hong Kong, 1965 to 1995

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Source: Becker, Gary S., Tomas J. Philipson, and Rodrigo R. Soares. The Quantity and Quality of Life and the Evolution of World Inequality, NBER Working Paper No. 9765 (June 2003).

GDP per capita is usually used to proxy for the quality of life of individuals living in different countries. Becker and his co-authors computed a "full" growth rate that incorporates the gains in health and life expectancy.

Figure 2 shows that Japan, Hong Kong and Singapore started from similar levels of real GDP per capita PPP in 1960.

Figure 2: GDP per capita in 2014 US$ (converted to 2014 price level with updated 2011 PPPs), Hong Kong, Japan and Singapore, 1960 – 2000

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Source: The Conference Board. 2015. The Conference Board Total Economy Database™, May 2015, http://www.conference-board.org/data/economydatabase/

Why a country’s average height is a good way of measuring its development | The Guardian

I spotted this 20 years ago when I first travelled in Asia and then lived Japan for two years. In Japan in 1995, each generation of Japanese was head and shoulders taller than the last. In the Philippines, I could look over the crowd – it was great to be tall.

No more, no longer. In the Philippines, young Filipinos are often almost as tall as me.

Meat_China_US

When I visited Hong Kong recently, both the young Chinese men and women were a bit taller than me at McDonald’s. I am average height for my generation of Australian men.

via Why a country’s average height is a good way of measuring its development | News | The Guardian.

Both Venezuelan and Singapore were ruled by socialist strongmen

Singapore’s Peoples Action Party was expelled from Socialist International in 1976. There is widespread government ownership of businesses in Singapore. So much so, that a new term was invented for it:  Government Linked Corporations.

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