Shire Network News #179 has been released, and I’m the guest host! The feature this time is a look at Operation Millenium, the bombing of the German city of Cologne and how it would have been covered by the mainstream media of today.  There are also some great blog news items. Click here for the show notes, links, and ways to listen to the show; directly from the web site, by downloading the mp3 file, or by subscribing with your podcatcher of choice.

Below is the text of my commentary.

Hi, this is Doug Payton for Shire Network News asking you to "Consider this!"

The Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development, according to its website, is a group that "brings together the governments of countries committed to democracy and the market economy from around the world to:    

  • Support sustainable economic growth

  • Boost employment

  • Raise living standards

  • Maintain financial stability

  • Assist other countries’ economic development

  • Contribute to growth in world trade"

The idea is that they invite in countries that show leadership and results in their economic policies.  In that sense, they are sort of the anti-United-Nations.  Instead of inviting any old dictator with a tin pot to stand on, you have to show you are serious about economic progress before you have a seat at the table to both get answers for your problems and offer solutions to other countries.  If you can’t keep your own house in order, no sense allowing you a chance to give building advice to others.  Get down to the hardware store yourself first, and then, maybe, we’ll see.

Which is clearly why they’re not even thinking about considering Venezuela as a member.  But there is one Latin American country that they recently allowed to join; the first one since Mexico, and the first one in South America.  That country is Chile.

Is this a result of fortune’s wind blowing favorably?  Hardly.  Investor’s Business Daily notes that just 3 decades ago this was an impoverished country, with labor unions shutting down international trade.  So much for blaming "globalists" for your woes.  It was ranked 71st in Economic Freedom.  Out of 72.  Now, however, it’s per capita GDP is over 10 times what it was then, and at the same time it’s now the 3rd most open economy according to the Cato Institute.

What brought about this huge turnaround in such a short time?  Was it more government control?  Was it dabbling in socialism, making everything completely fair (by government standards)?  No, it was free trade and market economics.

They opened wide their trade borders and didn’t, as labor unions would like you to believe, hemorrhage jobs.  They have pursued market policies and, in half a generation, have become the economic powerhouse of the neighborhood. 

So why does the Left think that moving away from that is the secret to combating poverty, or halting rising unemployment, or coming out of a recession?  Chile is marinating in a sea of neighbors that have attempted to save their economies by dabbling, to differing extents, with socialism.  How’s that working out for you guys, eh?  Chile, instead, bucked the peer pressure, stayed in school, and graduated magna cum laude from the Milton Freedman School of Economic Reality. 

Great job, guys.  Just one bit of advice:  When things get temporarily difficult, don’t divorce the lady who brought you here in the first place.  Every marriage goes through difficulties.  You just stay true to her, and when all the others around you are falling apart, you’ll come out of those tough times with a stronger commitment to each other.  You take care of her, and she’ll take care of you.  Consider this.

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