From Article: President Obama outlined many solutions to the problems of growth and inequality in his speech Tuesday to the United Nations. He explained how the United States has focused its reform and recovery efforts on helping the middle class gain better access to jobs, health care, training and housing. He argued that furthering these efforts — with new investments in child care, infrastructure and basic research — would keep this momentum going. He pointed out that immigration and assimilation can work for all of society.
But the policy solutions he put forth and the ones that other countries are adopting are all small-bore, specific and incremental. They are wonky efforts to nudge the market, government and people in ways that will work gradually. Meanwhile, the populists promise dramatic, bold solutions that sound much more satisfying. Donald Trump tells Americans that their lives are hard and there is a simple reason for it: foreigners. They steal American jobs, burden the United States’ welfare state and make Americans less safe. His solution is to get tough on them. That will make the country great again, he promises.
It’s not hard to understand the appeal of simplicity in a complex world. There is little drama in plans to expand early-childhood education — and yet they work. The persistent and energetic efforts at reform do pay off. Sensible, fact-based, market-friendly government policy makes a difference. A recent Census Bureau report, showing the biggest one-year drop in poverty in the United States in almost 50 years, highlights that these efforts are working. To the United States’ north, Canada is handling a slowdown in growth, welcoming thousands of refugees and celebrating diversity. And the two major leaders in the Western world with the highest approval ratings today are Barack Obama and Justin Trudeau. The center can hold.

Fareed Zakaria

By Fareed Zakaria
Thursday, September 22, 2016

It’s the annual gathering of world leaders in New York this week, and for most of them, it’s time for group therapy. Around the globe, leaders of all stripes seem afflicted with the same malady: low approval ratings. Morgan Stanley’s Ruchir Sharma has pointed out that the median approval rating for the leaders of the top 20 emerging and developing economies has dropped by 17 points over the past decade. What is going on?

Sharma argues that the cause is economic. Global growth has slowed from a post-World War II average of 3.5 percent to 2 percent since 2008. There is no region of the world that is growing faster today than it was before the global financial crisis. And yet, the very rich continue to prosper. Sharma notes that the number of billionaires globally has doubled, to more than 1,800. Seventy of…

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