Feb 26, 2004
From Dr. Madhukar Shukla's Alternative Perspective Blog:
"The Fiction of Numerical Growth
What you measure is what you get... and we measure that which is easier to measure. So, we are sort of stuck/ fixated with measuring GDP as an indicator of human happiness - surprisingly, against much evidence of an increasingly negative correlation between GDP and Happiness of a society. Just think of this irony: the cost of cleaning up the environment from a man-made or natural disaster gets added up in GDP, and not deducted from it!!! - e.g., yesterday, Morocco had an earthquake killing around 500 people. In the economics of the day, this will lead to more business for the insurance, heavy excavating equipments, coffin-makers, hospitals, etc., each adding to GDP... it is a topsy-turvy world.
Perhaps one of the fallacy of present-day economic measures is their narrow focus on consumption. So here is a framework to look at an economy, beyond the consumer economics paradigm. It is actually common sense, which we have sort of abondoned: a happy contented life, of course, is based on buying/possessing items of convenience. But happiness and well-being of a society/nation also depends on a clean environment, and a healthy, social life of its people.... sometime, it seems surrealistic that people have forgotten this simple fact of a happy life - that conservation and maintenance of things we have is as much important to our well-being, as consuming them!!!... Do explore this site."
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