“Material insufficiency and environmental problems have their benefits, over and beyond the improvement which they invoke. They focus the attention of individuals and communities, and constitute a set of challenges which can bring out the best in people” (emphasis added).
– Julian Simon, The Ultimate Resource 2 (1996), p. 587.
“We need our problems, though this does not imply that we should purposely create additional problems for ourselves.”
– Julian Simon, The Ultimate Resource 2 (1996), p. 588.
Simon argued that there was a third driving force or condition for human improvement beyond the institutional framework for progress (private property, voluntary exchange, the rule of law) and the insightful reasons given for capitalistic progress (motivation, effective use of knowledge, trial and error feedback, etc.).…