Poverty And Boredom

Dave Killion — April 30, 2011

Since we view big government as a threat, libertarians don’t want governments collecting information on the populace, and frown on that particular form a information collection known as the census. But between you and me, I find the collections themselves fascinating, and the recent Mexican census is no exception. The high point for me –

“More houses have televisions (93%) than fridges (82%) or showers (65%). In a hot country with dreadful television this is curious.”

Readers know that I have an interest in developing countries, and what I have┬ápreviously┬áread suggests to me that this phenomenon may be the rule rather than the exception. Time and again I have seen photos of impoverished folks gathered around television sets, sometimes with VCRs or DVD players. Well, maybe we shouldn’t be surprised. I imagine being poor gets pretty dull. Could it be that once the threat of starvation is no longer ever-present, tedium is harder to tolerate than hunger?

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