Sunday, June 12, 2011

Nine Ideas to Fix America's Economy



Although I started to write this entry from home, I am now in Paris. I'll be here for a week attending an OECD conference. We'll see what kind of time I will have to post and whether there is anything that will come out of this conference which could be of interest to the audience of this blog.

I have written this blog and posted from many different places this year; all in 2011. I celebrated the New Year in Maui. Then, I was in L.A. in early January. I also wrote from Edmonton, Ottawa, Philadelphia and, of course, Montreal.

All these places are experiencing different economic realities. Some are doing better than others. But, most importantly, all have different ways of addressing and resolving their own challenges. Everywhere, there are good ideas and good policies and everywhere there are bad ideas and bad policies. Wouldn't it be great if we could pick all the good ideas and root out all the bad ones to optimize government intervention?

Sometimes, this could simply mean "get out of the way and let the market handle it". Some other times, however, an intervention is still needed but the one that is being applied yields terrible results and leaves policy makers wondering what they could change to fix things up.

As I was looking at my piles of reading material this week-end, I came across a few interesting articles which were published recently and which discuss proposals to help the economy, in particular the U.S. economy. The one that I am proposing today was published last week in Bloomberg Businessweek and is entitled Fixing America's Economy: Nine Ideas from Around the World.

The ideas presented in the article are inspired from policies implemented around the world in countries as diverse as Canada, Germany, Brazil, Singapore and Thailand. The author Peter Coy claims - or maybe just hopes - that they "can offer ways for the U.S. to shore up its economy". I don't necessarily agree with all of them but I guess that this is the idea. Let's start a discussion on what works and what does not and let's see what happens.

Please follow the link above to access the piece.

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