GDP Growth Doesn't Mean We're On The Right Road

Dr. B. Posted this on Marketwatch last week:

America's recent GDP growth reflects population growth, the resurgence of the financial sector (speculation), the impact of QE2, the growth of national debt, and "real inflation" in services (meaning the same prices in many cases but reduced quality, thus necessitating the creation of "remedial" and supplemental service work that adds to GDP, but not constructively). These are not indicators of societal progress. GDP growth in these circumstances reflects how far astray we're going from a sustainable model and from real justice. Its nothing to celebrate unless one wishes to applaud the increased concentration of power in the hands of elites.

I especially appreciate the notion that GDP growth isn't necessarily an indicator that our country is moving in a positive direction. We can be so programmed by news reports to think that all "growth" is good, but it's really time to think differently.

It reminds me of what Dr. B. wrote about the impact of GDP growth back in October 2008:

Prudence was not the mantra of free markets during the 1987-2007 period — a period when markets grew GDP massively but only by leveraging the economy into a crisis condition. These markets facilitated plunder and pillage for financial elites. As a result, we now move toward over-regulation and the dubious expansion of governmentally chosen winners and losers. This unfortunate development reflects not only laissez faire excess but an underlying culture of greed. Who wants to be patriotic about excess!

What will it take for our country to find different measures to decide whether we're following a good path? Will it take the sovereign debt crisis that Dr. B. predicts?