Posted on May 24th, 2023
by Rab Bruce’s Spider
There’s a great article in The National today about GDP and how ineffective it is at providing any detail on the health and wellbeing of an economy. It reminded me that the UK boosted its own GDP recently by including an estimate of the amount of money spent on prostitution and illegal drugs. With this help, the UK maintained its position as one of the largest economies in the world.
If you were in any doubt at all as to why GDP is such a poor measurement, take a look at the current UK. The levels of wealth inequality, poverty and destitution are at their worst for a century, yet the UK is still viewed as a major economy. Obsession with GDP places focus on the wrong things. If we want a healthy society, we need to use other principal measurements such as employment, wealth inequality, poverty levels, life expectancy and so on. Yes, these are measured, but they are not the principal focus of either the UK or the Scottish Governments. If we are to become a richer society in terms of mental wellbeing and happiness, that needs to change.