Monday, November 05, 2007

Economics is quicker than politics? 

Former Treasury undersecretary John Taylor pretends to give testimony at the Iraq hearings. I like the last paragraph best:
You have heard much about the need to secure an area before significant political progress can be made; the same is true for economic progress. But economics is quicker than politics. We should move in economically even before our teams start helping on political reconciliation. If the environment is secure, entrepreneurs -- both Shiite and Sunni -- can create jobs much more quickly than politicos can reach agreement, let alone pass legislation. Job creation, the economic integration of communities and the taste of prosperity will accelerate political reconciliation and the achievement of our ultimate objective in Iraq.
Is it really that easy, though? While I believe that economic order is largely spontaneous, I'm not sure it's fast. Many of us who studied transition of the successor states to the USSR puzzled over this for years, and I don't believe we have an answer yet.

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