Category: Lucas, Robert E., Jr.

“Of the tendencies that are harmful to sound economics, the most seductive and, in my opinion the most poisonous, is to focus on questions of distribution [of income and wealth]. In this very minute, a child is being born to an American family and another child, equally valued by God, is being born to a family in India. The resources of all kinds that will be at the disposal of this new American will be on the order of 25 times the resources available to his Indian brother. This seems to us a terrible wrong, justifying direct corrective action, and perhaps some actions of this kind can and should be taken. But of the vast increase in the well-being of millions of people that has occurred in the 200 year course of the industrial revolution to date, virtually none can be attributed to direct redistribution of resources from rich to poor.”

Robert E. Lucas, Jr.

Nobel Laureate

University of Chicago