The Invisible Woman

Only An Economist or an Idiot …

Imagine a housewife who diligently cares for her house and children.

She makes NO contribution to the economy according to GDP, the traditional measure of economic wealth.

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Now imagine she drowns the children and burns the house down.

This would lead to an increase in economic wealth!

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The cost of firefighters and vehicles, the clean-up and rebuilding of the house, the lawyers, the court case … all would contribute to GDP.

Keeping her locked-up, fed and clothed; providing psychiatric treatment, social-workers, building maintenance, prison guards, security, etc. … all would contribute to GDP.

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But, would anyone other than an economist or an idiot think that her actions brought anything but harm to her family, her community, and the economy?