American as GDP Pie

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Economist Mark J. Perry has reported some fascinating data on world CDP growth, taken from the Economic Research Service of the u.S. Department of Agriculture. They are figures President Obama ought to consider.

It turns out that despite Democrat moans about America losing all its jobs to sweatshop dictatorships abroad, America’s share of world CDP has remained essentially constant over the past four decades, at about 26%. Latin America has also held constant, at about 6% of world GDP. Despite all the oil money, the Middle East together with Africa shows a flat 5% of world GDP, year over year, over this period.

The two blocks that show significant change are the EU15 countries and the Asian ones. The EU15 block has declined linearly from 36% of world CDP in 1969 to only 27% in 2009. The Asian block, on the other hand, has seen a near-linear rise in share from 15% in 1969 to about 25% in 2009.

So the first thing that should strike Obama (not that it will – he appears to be remarkably dense) is that the block of countries whose economies have, in general, become more statist has dropped dramatically in relative standing, while those that appear to be growing away from statist economics have seen their relative share rise remarkably. Those that never had free market economies have stayed on the bottom, and the country that has never (yet) adopted statist economics still rides high.

The second point is that the whole pie has grown. World CDP has increased nearly threefold in this 40-year period. So there is little evidence to support the notion that countries such as China and India have hurt America’s prosperity: our 5% of the world’s population still enjoys more than a 25% slice of a global pie that has (I repeat) tripled in size over 40 years. No doubt Obama is working to change all that.

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