With hurricane season in full swing, is there a difference how people all over the world cope with it? An exploration into how capitalism is saving lives.
As hurricanes like Florence come ashore in the U.S., Typhoons like Mangkhut hit the Philippines and Hong Kong recently.
These disasters each have a different result depending on where you live. The strength of the economics affects each area differently.
For example, Hurricane Florence hit the shore as a Category 1 hurricane. Her 90 mph winds dumping almost three feet of rain on North Carolina and two feet on South Carolina.
As a result of the extensive flooding, over 40 people lost their lives with an estimated $22 billion in property damage.
In the Philippines, Typhoon Mangkhut saw 150 mph winds. This would have been a category 5 hurricane if it had hit the U.S. As the storm moved to Hong Kong, storm surges brought flooding to their highest levels since 1904.
The damage to Hong Kong is extensive with the possibility of $1 billion in insurance claims forthcoming. Many people were injured in Hong Kong but the Philippines have over 100 dead, with bodies still getting uncovered.
The U.S., Philippines and Hong Kong are all different in their own way. But what makes the biggest difference is how disaster affects them. This is directly linked to their economic system and how these have improved their overall development.
What are the best economic systems, with the best defense against and response to natural disasters?
Hong Kong has the most free-market economic system in the world, the U.S. currently fifth, with the Philippines down the list at 39.
The economic freedom of a country is strongly tied to income, growth, along with other positive outcomes directly related to economics. It doesn’t take long to figure out that the U.S. and Hong Kong are wealthy nations, with an average income of $60,000.
The Philippines are much less fortunate, with 10 percent of its population living on less than $1.90 a day.
Economic growth does not make a difference whether these storms hit or not. But, the greater the degree of economic development a country has, the better its ability to weather natural disasters.
Increased economics in any given area allows the ability to implement early warning systems, better and stronger buildings, and more robust response systems. Just a few ways that show how capitalism is saving lives.
There is also more money to develop and afford superior infrastructure to provide more immediate aid in the event of an evacuation, as well as better and more distributed emergency response units.
How Capitalism is Saving Lives.
Capitalism doesn’t stop these disasters from happening but in richer countries, they do experience less death from these disasters.
As economist Matthew Kahn put it,
Where would you rather hold your head in the middle of a disaster?
You will eventually end up with your head under water under socialism, but capitalism will help keep you alive.
How Capitalism is Saving Lives
Sonia Rina Landry is a passionate entrepreneur, speaker, author, and personal development coach. She is an outspoken advocate of the free market economy and has helped countless clients identify their core values, envision and realize goals that resonate with those values. She oversees several businesses online and offline.