The Arab Spring

The world is just a few dictators away from a radically different Arab world. Americans are fond of thinking that it is something peculiar to our character that has made this country great. Perhaps so. But never underestimate the significance of good government (Good government believe it or not is what we have. It is defined not so much by its dysfunction, of which we have plenty, but by the reason why politicians go into government. In our country most politicians go into government to serve and create a better society however they define that. In many third world countries people go into government to enrich themselves. It is a huge difference). Now that Egypt, Tunisia and Libya have replaced their dictators there is a chance that those countries can get good governments and enjoy the kind of economic growth that good government allows. Since this is a blog about stamps, here’s the philatelic angle. I would be buying the current issues of these three countries and selected earlier issues as well. Economic liberalization has traditionally meant economic growth and economic growth is a precondition of philately. It is entirely possible that the economic prospects of these Northern African nations won’t improve or if their economies get better that stamp collecting won’t take off. But remember China and Korea and Japan. Not every emerging growth country has seen its stamps soar in price. But then they don’t all have to. $100 put in 1966 PRC new issues would be worth $25,000 today.

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