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A Surprising Economic History of the World
Countries don't get rich by accident. They make choices that determine the path their economies take. The ones which succeed are the ones which don't get captured by special interest groups.
John Steinbeck The Pearl - a poor Mexican fisherman finds a giant pearl. Thinks it will be the answer to all his problems but all it does is destroy him. In same way, countries apparently blessed by natural resources - gems or oil - often find themselves worse off.
Most resource extraction capital intensive, and benefits only those who already have money.
Diamonds worst - zircons are indistinguishable to naked eye, but men die to drag diamonds from the earth to be cut, polished and sold .... and then put back underground in vaults.
Most countries which have dragged themselves out of poverty have done it with labour-intensive mass production, offering many low and medium-paying jobs.
C14 onwards Western Europe power of monarch and church steadily whittled away, first by landowners, then by merchants, and finally by industrialists - inconvenient laws changed.
Cf Islamic states where military empires, top-down control unchallenged.
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