The world has made astounding progress in the last few decades, with world poverty dropping by more than 80 percent in just 36 years. While the dramatic reduction is a remarkable achievement, too many are still living in poverty and many of those fortunate enough to live above subsistence are having a hard time making ends meet.
However, just expressing concern for those struggling in poverty is not enough. We have to advocate a solution. That solution is economic freedom or the right of people to peacefully pursue a living free of government restrictions.
The evidence is overwhelming: Economic freedom is the antidote to many of the world’s economic problems. The Fraser Institute’s latest study on the topic—Economic Freedom of North America 2015—only bolsters this conclusion. In their report, the institute finds jurisdictions defined as “least free” produce an average income of $2,767 per person. In the most economically free jurisdictions, the average income was $43,102.
The same trend is true at the “subnational level,” which measures economic freedom at the provincial, state, and municipal levels in Canada, the United States, and Mexico.
This part of the report is most relevant for Pennsylvania, which ranks 21st overall. Historically Pennsylvania has been a slow growth state, weighed down by excessive government spending and burdensome taxation.
Continuing down this path will lead to a less free and prosperous Pennsylvania, which is why it’s critical for lawmakers to ensure the budget impasse ends on the right note.