Just because someone does not live in a developing country does not mean they are better off. Nobel pricing winning economist Amartya Sen views development as empowering people to lead a life they find meaningful. Meaningfulness is a relative concept. Being able to follow other’s consumption patterns or get health care or send your child to school may be meaningful. Currently many people across the globe do not have these capabilities especially in America.
We live in America and I am shocked at how many parents talk about their children joining the military in order to be able to give their children a college education. There is nothing wrong with that option. What is wrong is there are primarily two options for most people, military service or extreme debt.
Similar people have few option to maintain health care.
So we see that people start to sense a lack of capacity to lead a life they find meaningful. The root cause links back to poverty and income distribution. In America we promote the idea (not a fact based truth) that poverty is a personal choice and problem. The idea translates culturally to us thinking people made bad choices so now that is their problem. The reality is when people feel they lack the power to lead meaningful lives it effects us all and is everyone’s problem.
More to come.