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To: 1rudeboy
All good points, but I've never been one to put a lot of emphasis on GDP figures. One of my complaints about it is that when GDP is used to define "growth" in the economy, we find that much of this "growth" has been artificially inflated by things that have nothing to do with real economic activity.

For example, I'd make the case that much of this nation's "growth" over the last few decades has been driven by nothing more than a sharp increase in financial transactions for things that simply never required financial transactions before. Landscaping and child care are two good cases in point. If you mow your own lawn and raise your own kids, almost nothing shows up in the nation's GDP figures. But once you pay someone else to do these things, we suddenly have economic activity and "industries" that don't really give a good indication of just how economically healthy we are as a nation.

2 posted on 08/02/2012 5:43:54 AM PDT by Alberta's Child ("If you touch my junk, I'm gonna have you arrested.")
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To: Alberta's Child
True, but 30 years ago, I was paid $25 to cut a lawn with a push-mower. It would take about 2 hours. Now, a lawn service (not using illegal aliens) does the same job in about 15 minutes (because it has one of those quick ride-on mowers). They charge, wait for it, $25.

So there has been some economic "growth," there. The tricky part is how to measure it.

3 posted on 08/02/2012 5:49:25 AM PDT by 1rudeboy
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To: Alberta's Child
"growth"

You said you could make the case that much of the "growth" in the last twenty years is due to financial transactions. Meaning, in your opinion, there hasn't been much real growth. You'll have to explain that one better. Most financial transactions are made with the implicit or explicit expectation that economic conditions warrant the transaction. If there is no overall increase in GDP i.e. wealth, financial transactions are just passing paper back and forth so to speak.

But there has been real economic growth in the last thirty years ( I can point to my own siblings and my wife and myself to partially prove that point), and with most increases in real wealth comes financial transactions. The two are inextricably linked. You'll have to better explain your argument that we've mostly had financial transactions with no real economic growth taking place.

4 posted on 08/02/2012 5:58:27 AM PDT by driftless2
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