Economic Freedom Extends Life Expectancy
Following my recent post on life expectancy and economic growth in Chile, here's a more comprehensive analysis in the chart above of the relationship between: a) economic freedom measured by the Heritage Foundation, on a scale from 1 (repressed) to 100 (free), and b) life expectancy for 176 countries in 2009.
The regression line in the chart above shows a clear and positive relationship between economic freedom and life expectancy, with higher levels of economic freedom being associated with longer life expectancies. Specifically, from the regression equation we can say that every 10 point increase in the economic freedom index is associated with a 4.6 year increase in life expectancy.
Bottom Line: As Larry Kudlow reminds us all the time, "Free market capitalism is the best path to prosperity," and I'll add "the best path to a longer life." There's nothing more precious than human life, and the evidence shows that economic freedom will sustain, nurture, conserve and extend human life, while economic repression does the opposite: it stifles and squashes the human spirit and shortens life expectancy.
HT: Charles Musick for the data and idea.