How rapidly a country grows economically and politically is greatly dependent on the quality of its legal system. This is even true for other forms of organization, including businesses and people. Comparative law is a way that you can analyze which system of government causes the most effective amount of growth. We will look at two.
- USA – The USA is known throughout the world for having a high quality system of justice, at least on the surface. The excellent American constitution has been a model for more recent governments. However, as it has aged, the USA has become more bureaucratic in its governing style. The U.S. Congress has loosened restrictions on what people can consume, and tightened restrictions on individuals entering the market and selling through various legal barriers such as licensing, high income taxes, and minimum wages. This has greatly increased the personal and public debt of America.
- People’s Republic of China – In ancient times, China went through various periods of civil war to empire. The power of China grew immensely during the Han period, which coincided with the Roman Empire. Modern China has seen a similar cycle of warring between various factions, and the recent unification of the Communist government. Modern China’s government resembles an efficient corporation with multiple boards of experienced engineers. This probably explains its high 7% growth rate recently.
The Secret of Growth
What helps a country grow is if the legal system places moderate restrictions on what people can buy. If the citizens of a country can buy anything, they will, including destructive products like pornography, cigarettes, alcohol, drugs, and time wasting entertainment. A wise government, such as the technocrats running China, Singapore, and South Korea, place moderate restrictions on the importation of foreign goods. There needs to be some allowance for importation of new and helpful ideas and products, but too many imports destroys the personal character of a nation. It harms unity.
The next thing a wise government does is remove most restrictions to individuals entering the market and selling their services and products at home. People should be able to enter the marketplace very easily with minimal requirements (e.g. China, India, Hong Kong). Things like a high personal income tax, minimum wage, and costly certifications for every profession (not just the safety intensive ones) destroy the incentive to work in most of the population. This leaves a disciplined minority supporting the lazy majority. A situation common in Europe, and increasingly common in the United States.
Experts like Sujit Choudhry (https://works.bepress.com/sujit_choudhry/about/) can consult with you to provide answers. You can connect more with Sujit at his LinkedIn account.