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Why are poor countries poor?

What is the biggest reason poor countries are poor?

  • Lack of infrastructure

    Votes: 0 0.0%
  • Widespread disease

    Votes: 0 0.0%
  • Civil war

    Votes: 0 0.0%

  • Total voters
    19

Kandahar

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What do you think are the main reasons that poor countries are poor?
 

Scarecrow Akhbar

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I said "Lack of economic freedom" because wealth cannot be created when people are not certain that what they make they'll be able to keep.

Government corruption - denies people "economic freedom"

Lack of infrastructure - certainly important, but is there a point in having a road between villages when the traders can't keep their goods to trade or sell?

Lack of education - again, important, but education doesn't help if no one is willing to start a business the government will rob blind.

Widespread disease - actually, the Black Death in Europe unlocked a lot of wealth as rich uncles died with ghastly sores....it served to unlock a petrifying society. However, in the short term it's not all that helpful, especially in Africa where large swaths are being cut through the adult population by The Gay Disease. But serious as it may be, raging HIV and malaria (thank god for that tree-hugger ban on DDT protecting birds...) are the causes for those region's poverty. It's a symptom.

Civil war - they're usually waring because the leaders believe they have a right to other's property. It's a means of denying the citizen their property.

Exploitation by wealthier nations - Again, "exploitation", by definition, means that the owners of the property are denied their ownership.

Having a non-democratic government - There's no reason why a democracy is necessarily better than some of the other forms of government. How many here think the American model has been immune to corruption and abuse of the citizen? How many of you know that Bush hisself made his fortune by improper application eminent domain? That's an example of a corrupt government serving private special interests exploiting the weak by denying them their property.

Overpopulation - no. Too many people in Bob's family shouldn't stop a prudent Jake from having only a couple of kids and starting a successful business that lifts him out of the mire...except when the masses demand that Jake's wealth be re-distributed to them.

Lack of natural resources - That could hurt. Certainly having nothing to sell makes it hard to make money. But what's Iceland got? Fish? A spot in the ocean? Agriculture? They do well enough.
 

alphamale

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Lack of natural resources - That could hurt.

Your other reasons are better - look at Japan - almost no natural resources. Look at the africans - rolling in natural resources.
 
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Scarecrow Akhbar said:
I said "Lack of economic freedom" because wealth cannot be created when people are not certain that what they make they'll be able to keep.

You've convinced me. Seriously, your arguments are very sound. Even looking to this country...we are overtaxed (no matter what tax bracket you're in), underpaid (speaking primarily of the working class/laborers), and heavily burdened with government regulations (pick a business; any business; and see if the regulations don't intimidate you from taking a chance)...it's extremely difficult to create new wealth.
 

aquapub

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Hong Kong has zero resources, yet they are a thriving metropolis. This is a result of their capitalist, free history.

India has abundant resources and a population density equivalent to New Jersey. Their economy is stagnate. They are one of the most regulated (i.e. Socialist) countries in the world.

It isn't resources.
 

Kandahar

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aquapub said:
India has abundant resources and a population density equivalent to New Jersey. Their economy is stagnate. They are one of the most regulated (i.e. Socialist) countries in the world.

That's no longer the case FYI. In the past decade, India has made significant reforms to its fiscal policies to allow for more free trade and capitalism. Predictably, their economy has boomed almost in lockstep with these reforms.

I agree with Scarecrow; economic freedom seems to be the main driving factor.
 

jamesrage

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Kandahar said:
What do you think are the main reasons that poor countries are poor?
Government corruption.Look at Mexico.Their government is obviously currupt.
Palastine,I bet Yassar arafat pocketed alot of thot foreign aid.
 

libertarian_knight

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Corruption hands down the biggest problem, second biggest problem is ignorance on the part of the people and the government leaders, which just exacerbates the corruption problem also.

Civil war, lack of economic freedom, "exploitation" (in part) and lack of democratic traditions are subsets of the corruption problem.

Lack of infrastructure, lack of education, "exploitation" (in part), disease and overpopulation are offshoots of the corruption problem.

With the exception of natural resources all the other listed problems are essentially votes for the worst part of government corruption. As has been noted, natural resource deficiencies can be overcome, see Japan, Taiwan, South Korea, etc.

Don't forget though, not all poor countries, though suffer the plight of over burdening corruption, some have suffered other ill effects, and just need to to recover the destruction done to their countries, before they can rebuild. (though much of the destruction, was a result of corrupt policies, but the major corrupt mechanism may have been discarded, and healing is beginging).
 

aquapub

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I think Kandahar, Scarecrow and I are all pretty much on the same page on this one. Whatever impunes competition/capitalism, whether it be economic oppression, monopolies, or political corruption, it is the lack of economic freedom that ultimately seals the fate of the countries in question.
 

JOHNYJ

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The Truth is often unpopular. Other than Belgian or Portugese colonies in africa.Many African countries were better off as,colonies. No one harms an African better than another African. Nigeria,Rwanda,,Darfur,Belgian Congo,Liberia, the list goes on.Africans slaughtering other Africans. Only now hey have only each other to blame !
 

Kandahar

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JOHNYJ said:
The Truth is often unpopular. Other than Belgian or Portugese colonies in africa.Many African countries were better off as,colonies. No one harms an African better than another African. Nigeria,Rwanda,,Darfur,Belgian Congo,Liberia, the list goes on.Africans slaughtering other Africans. Only now hey have only each other to blame !

Agreed. At least when the colonial powers were occupying African nations, they were large and in charge. While they might have been just as kleptocratic as the present rulers, they could reasonably expect to be in charge long enough to make more money by helping the African economies, instead of stealing everything today. Many African countries today are so unstable that the rulers think they may as well steal everything now and let their successors worry about fixing the roads or schools.
 

LeftyHenry

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The reason counries are poor are a really a collaboration in between lack of infastructure, government corruption, exploitation by wealthier nations, and lack of education. When a nation has no infastructure, there is no healthcare, economy, welfare or etc.. people are left to fend for themselves in a collapsing nation. If there is corruption, money doesn't reach the people and their daily nessecities. If there is a lack of education, no good jobs will come in from abroad. But also all small nations are exploited by larger nations. It's just human nature to conquer the weak.
 

Kandahar

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Che said:
The reason counries are poor are a really a collaboration in between lack of infastructure, government corruption, exploitation by wealthier nations, and lack of education. When a nation has no infastructure, there is no healthcare, economy, welfare or etc.. people are left to fend for themselves in a collapsing nation. If there is corruption, money doesn't reach the people and their daily nessecities. If there is a lack of education, no good jobs will come in from abroad. But also all small nations are exploited by larger nations. It's just human nature to conquer the weak.

It seems to me that the countries that allow themselves to be "exploited" the most are the quickest to grow out of poverty, while those that resist the most are little better off several decades later.
 

Stinger

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aquapub said:
I think Kandahar, Scarecrow and I are all pretty much on the same page on this one. Whatever impunes competition/capitalism, whether it be economic oppression, monopolies, or political corruption, it is the lack of economic freedom that ultimately seals the fate of the countries in question.

Economic Freedom, when people are free to act in thier own self-interest and keep the rewards of their efforts ALL freedoms are possible, without economic freedom there are NO freedoms.
 

FinnMacCool

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It seems to me that the countries that allow themselves to be "exploited" the most are the quickest to grow out of poverty, while those that resist the most are little better off several decades later.

I heard that argument before and its bullshit.

Ireland was always poor but it was poorer when the Brits took every single crop they made and sent it back to England while starving the Irish at the sametime.

It's not like the Irish benefited anyways. They "benefited" once they were replaced.
 

Kandahar

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FinnMacCool said:
I heard that argument before and its bullshit.

Ireland was always poor but it was poorer when the Brits took every single crop they made and sent it back to England while starving the Irish at the sametime.

It's not like the Irish benefited anyways. They "benefited" once they were replaced.

I was responding more to the kind of "exploitation" I assume the previous poster was referring to when he said that all countries exploit others. Namely, investing in the country and providing its citizens with jobs, which some people consider exploitation for some crazy reason.

Ireland has gone from one of the poorest countries in Western Europe to one of the richest, as a result of this kind of "exploitation."
 

ptsdkid

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I believe these poor countries are poor because all of their smart people (those with a desire to better themselves) have left their banana republic to either sneak in illegally or come to America legally to start a new and prosperous life. The people left on their island of despair are usually the one's that expect the government to hand them cradle to grave benefits, i.e. the lazy liberal types.
 

Kelzie

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Che said:
The reason counries are poor are a really a collaboration in between lack of infastructure, government corruption, exploitation by wealthier nations, and lack of education. When a nation has no infastructure, there is no healthcare, economy, welfare or etc.. people are left to fend for themselves in a collapsing nation. If there is corruption, money doesn't reach the people and their daily nessecities. If there is a lack of education, no good jobs will come in from abroad. But also all small nations are exploited by larger nations. It's just human nature to conquer the weak.

A slight issue with the exploitation claim. I have no doubt that free trade might be better for bigger countries. Raw goods have a much lower value than processed goods. However, the poorer country trades voluntarily. Nobody forces them to trade. Even if they only get 10% of the benefit, that is 10% more than what they would get if they weren't trading.
 

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Kelzie said:
A slight issue with the exploitation claim. I have no doubt that free trade might be better for bigger countries. Raw goods have a much lower value than processed goods. However, the poorer country trades voluntarily. Nobody forces them to trade. Even if they only get 10% of the benefit, that is 10% more than what they would get if they weren't trading.

And when people, not countries, are free to operate in their own self interest and profit from their efforts and reinvest those profits soon the processing facility are built on site.
 

Kelzie

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aquapub said:
Hong Kong has zero resources, yet they are a thriving metropolis. This is a result of their capitalist, free history.

India has abundant resources and a population density equivalent to New Jersey. Their economy is stagnate. They are one of the most regulated (i.e. Socialist) countries in the world.

It isn't resources.

Ummm...yeah. India's growth rate is an astounding 8.1%. So....yeah...
 

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ptsdkid said:
I believe these poor countries are poor because all of their smart people (those with a desire to better themselves) have left their banana republic to either sneak in illegally or come to America legally to start a new and prosperous life. The people left on their island of despair are usually the one's that expect the government to hand them cradle to grave benefits, i.e. the lazy liberal types.

Exactly. Those immigrants then prosper and get lucrative high paying jobs such as cab driver or a maid. If they're lucky, they'll live in luxurious neighborhoods and places like Spanish Harlem oor South Bronx. If they're really, really lucky, they'll get paid minimum wage
 

Kelzie

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Che said:
Exactly. Those immigrants then prosper and get lucrative high paying jobs such as cab driver or a maid. If they're lucky, they'll live in luxurious neighborhoods and places like Spanish Harlem oor South Bronx. If they're really, really lucky, they'll get paid minimum wage

Nobody's forcing them to move here. They obviously do it because they feel it's in their best interest.
 

LeftyHenry

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Kelzie said:
Nobody's forcing them to move here. They obviously do it because they feel it's in their best interest.

I know I'm just saying that the immigrants don't do as great as Aquapub makes it seem they do.
 
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