Socialism. Really? A self-described “democratic socialist” from Vermont is breathing down the neck of the Democratic Party’s icon?
Do Bernie Sanders’ supporters, many of whom are under the age of 30, even know what socialism means? And why would they be willing to “sacrifice economic growth and prosperity in exchange for a bunch of bureaucratic programs that sound good but don’t actually work?”
Well, for years, writes Cato Institute’s Michael Tanner, politicians, academics and the media have pounded away at capitalism, making it “synonymous with Wall Street shenanigans or bank bailouts. Perhaps we need to be reminded of what free-market capitalism really is, and how much better it has made our lives.”
Consider that in the last 25 years, a period during which much of the world has embraced free markets, a billion people have been lifted out of poverty, and the global poverty rate has been slashed from more than 37 percent to less than 10 percent.
It’s not just the decline in poverty that tracks with the adoption of free markets and capitalism. Literacy rates increase and infant mortality declines as countries adopt market-based economies. Life expectancy rises, and people’s health improves. Even the environment gets cleaner.
According to the Human Freedom Index, more economic freedom correlates with more personal freedom. Just consider countries with state-controlled economies and how little personal freedom they allow. On the other hand, countries with free-market economies tend to be free in other ways, too.
Read more from Mr. Tanner here.
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