This is known as “bad luck”

Sunday, May 14th, 2017

The creative class drives cultural and economic flourishing, Richard Florida argued (in The Rise of the Creative Class), but now the “superstar cities” that attract the creative class have grown increasingly unequal, a problem he dubs The New Urban Crisis:

We find that as a city gets bigger, denser, more productive and more economically successful, inequality rises. In a way, the more successful a city or metro area becomes, the more unequal it becomes, and that is quite challenging.

I’m reminded of what Heinlein had to say about creativity and poverty:

Throughout history, poverty is the normal condition of man. Advances which permit this norm to be exceeded — here and there, now and then — are the work of an extremely small minority, frequently despised, often condemned, and almost always opposed by all right-thinking people. Whenever this tiny minority is kept from creating, or (as sometimes happens) is driven out of a society, the people then slip back into abject poverty.

This is known as “bad luck.”


  1. Sushi Musashi says:

    The idea that out of control housing prices only drive out the economically useless and uncreative underclass is a gross over simplification. Bringing creativity to fruition requires long time spans of work with no immediate payoff, and oftentimes a fair amount of capital. When even the professional middle class is leading a hand-to-mouth existence, most people are too busy trying to keep a roof over their heads to develop stupid little things like inventions or innovative business models.

  2. Sushi Musashi says:

    On second thought… maybe Heinlein was describing this exact problem.

  3. Lu An Li says:

    Singapore is an exception to the rule?

    Japan, South Korea, and Taiwan are also exceptions to the rule?

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