Technological progress vs. diminishing returns

Source: Niskanen Center
by Brink Lindsey

“The world of modern economic growth and rapid, continuous technological advance feels natural to us, as it’s the only world we’ve ever known. But of course it’s anything but natural: it’s only been around for a couple of centuries, while Homo sapiens has been on the scene for a couple of thousand centuries. So now, as the engines of growth and progress are sputtering, it’s appropriate to wonder: How long can this go on? From my survey of the contributors to dynamism’s decline, I’ve come to the conclusion that the path of progress lies under a foot or two of molasses. Because of thermostatic cultural responses to mass affluence and the elimination of institutional competition, moving forward is going to be slower and messier than otherwise would be the case. But difficult progress is still possible progress.” (03/15/23)