Joe Biden tours a middle class Colombian flower farm
It’s truly inspiring to witness the historic flowering of the global middle class and I think it’s way past time we all stand up and thank the wise political leadership in the European Union, the United States, and throughout the world for their fine dedicated efforts. These experts, educated through years of advanced study, have learned the essential formula for creating a prosperous middle class world and we are the beneficiaries. And here it is, the end result of centuries of human thought, the brilliant formula for middle class prosperity:
Unrestricted free trade, low taxes, free capital mobility, competitively low wages, balanced budgets, repressed unions, police discipline, high interest rates, strong business confidence, strictly enforced property rights, and a limited constitutional democracy under the ‘rule of law’.
The great fruits of this formula are, of course, self evident in the “developed” world as throngs everywhere are gathering on the streets to celebrate the gleaming 21st century utopian world. What’s even more exciting is the phenomenal achievement in Latin America! To mark this beautiful spring awakening for the Latino middle class, Joe Biden recently made a triumphant visit to that true bastion of Latin American middle-classdom, Colombia, and toured one of the great middle class industries of our new 21st century, the flower farm.
Colombia has long practiced the middle class formula and is rightly seen as a noble role model. It maintains a competitive wage structure through its innovative high poverty program which consistently secures poverty rates well above 30%. It has free trade agreements with the US, has high interest rates, currently a whopping 3.25%, and its investors are surely bursting with confidence, having achieved a remarkably high gini coefficient of .548. Perhaps Colombia’s most effective competitive advantage is its truly ground-breaking policy on unions, which, through the efficient murdering of union leaders, has kept union enrollment to less than 4%!
Biden was so impressed with his visit, he even wrote an article in the Wall Street Journal about it, entitled “Joe Biden – The Americas Ascendant: The Spread of Free Trade and Democracy has been a Boom to the Hemisphere”. “What I saw on the flower farm”, he gushed, “was just one sign of the economic blossoming in the year since a U.S. free-trade agreement with Colombia went into force.”… “Today, I believe we can credibly envision an Americas that is solidly middle-class, secure and democratic”.
Joe’s right, the flower farming industry in Colombia is truly inspiring, being one of the world leaders in maximizing profitability through the clever strategy of paying employees a wage of less than $2 per day. Equally helpful is the hands off regulatory environment which permits high output, an obvious key to maintaining middle class standards, without getting bogged down in petty grievances like the silly fact that two-thirds of the flower workers suffer sickness from pesticide exposure.
Because flower farming is such a critical industry for the 21st century middle class, Biden even produced a two minute video of his tour. Be sure to watch it as it’s quite exciting.
Walking through the farm amidst the clearly happy $2 per day middle class workers, he just can’t help but marvel at “the progress in the decent good paying jobs”. “We see a future for not just Colombia but for the hemisphere, all of us of middle class societies that are in fact democracies like Colombia that are growing and prosperous; and that’s the future and that’s not been anything more than a dream for the last century. In this next decade or so we can make tremendous progress”.
It’s really so exciting. Thank you Joe Biden and Barack Obama! And the other deserving leaders throughout the world!