Today me and my father had quite a dinner conversation. We discussed different theories on why wealthiness and progress differ so much in the world depending on the region. Two theories are very interesting, but not entirely politically correct. There is “climate theory” which explains the difference between north and south as natural due to environment. If you live in a place which is too hot you will become slow and indolent whereas if you live in a more tempered zone you’ll find that your body will work more properly and efficient. This would then be one explanation to why there are basic differences between Europe and Africa in the first place when it comes to social and economic progress. The other one is even more controversial. Race, Evolution and Behavior: A Life History Perspective is a book written by J. Philippe Rushton, a professor of psychology at the University of Western Ontario, and the current head of the Pioneer fund. Rushton claims that race is a valid biological concept and that it can explain many things when “race IQ” is being compared together with economic progress etc.
I have my own theory then of course and that is about economic freedom. Economic freedom allows for independent sources of wealth that serve both to counterbalance political power and to nourish a pluralistic society. For instance in Estonia or in other earlier-on oppressed countries, economic freedom has steadily increased, thus strengthening democracy, thus strengthening education for the people (improvement of IQ) and benefitting to the total amount of wealth for the country itself.
In 1962, Nobel laureate in economics Milton Friedman observed:
History speaks with a single voice on the relation between political freedom and a free market. I know of no example in time or place of a society that has been marked by a large measure of political freedom, and that has not also used something comparable to a free market to organize the bulk of economic activity.
The collapse of central planning in Third World countries and of socialism itself in the past 20 years seems to support Friedman’s thesis. The rise in economic freedom has accompanied that of political and civil freedom around the world, and both have been significant as countries have moved away from authoritarianism and opened their markets.