Thursday, March 15, 2007

Fuelling inequality

It struck me, after I posted the piece about prosperity, population and property rights yesterday, that one of the lessons of the situation that led to the introduction of sumptuary legislation is that a falling population decreases social inequality - property values fall and labour values rise, which narrows the gap.

The corollary of that is that when the population rises you get the opposite - increasing property values that favour the most wealthy, and decreasing labour values that harm the poorest.

It's odd, then, that the people most concerned about bringing about a more equal society are invariably also those who argue in favour of the main cause of this source of social inequality: immigration.

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