Quotation of the Day…

by Don Boudreaux on September 15, 2012

in Growth, Inequality

… is from page 14 of Julian Simon’s Introduction to his brilliant 1995 edited volume, The State of Humanity (original emphasis):

Data on the absolute gap between yearly incomes of the rich and poor countries are beside the point; widening is inevitable if all get rich at the same proportional rate, and the absolute gap can increase even if the poor improve their incomes at a faster proportional rate than the rich.  Here one should notice that increased life expectancy among the poor relative to the rich reduces the gap in lifetime income, which is a more meaningful measure than yearly income.

Of course, the same holds true when speaking of the incomes of rich and poor individuals or families.


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