May 20, 2006

How to Fix Mexico

It's striking how the liberal media pays so little attention to one massive flaw of the Mexican state: not enough taxation of the rich.

A major reason that 65% of the Mexican population has no more than a 9th grade education is that Mexico can't spend enough on public schools. Richard Lynn found that , n general, Latin Americans do the worst on school achievement tests relative to their IQs than any other large group of people. Some of that is cultural -- Mexicans, especially, don't like to read and don't like to go to school, but a lot of it is financial. There's just not enough funds in the treasury to pay to send everybody to public school through, say, the tenth grade.

Similarly, the Mexican state can't pay cops enough in salaries to persuade them not to shakedown people for bribes.

Why not?

Because Mexico's rich cheat like crazy on their taxes.

Here's a study by the CEPR that shows that Mexico's tax revenue as a share of its GDP is less than half of America's. And, even though the top 10% in Mexico get a larger share of the national income than in America (e.g., the world's third richest man, Carlos Slim, is Mexican), a larger percentage of Mexican tax revenue comes from regressive sales taxes.

My impression is that the American media now sees criticism of the Mexican government as being vaguely racist and anti-immigrant, and thus largely off limits.

My published articles are archived at -- Steve Sailer

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