King Rat (gkr) wrote,
King Rat

Eco 200: poverty

(group) Consider and evaluate the instructor's assertion that poverty is a function of the choices which individuals make.

All people make constrained choices. Few people have choices so constrained that they cannot rise from poverty, at least given their starting point. The choices a person might have to make may be quite unpalatable (e.g., moving to a foreign country where ones skills are worth more). But those are still choices. One might be forced to choose between family and income, but that is still a choice.

Add in the fact that many people do very poorly at predicting the result of their choices. They don't intend to be poor. They just don't see the result of their choices. For example, one person I know constantly is making poorly thought out plans to get rich quick. He's got a hundred ways to make a million, though none of them will ever work. Meanwhile he's foregoing opportunities to get a better education or into a job that will result in better income over the long term.

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