The definitional dispute over Cuban poverty

I'm fascinated by the comment section to this Brad DeLong post, in which many of the commenters struggle to redefine poverty so that it excludes Cuba. Most of the arguments are daft. I'm particularly floored by the people arguing that begging and prostitution are not a result of poverty, but rather of Cuba's currency controls--as if not being able to earn enough money to live on is somehow different and better if your plight is the direct result of a government edict.

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Megan McArdle is a columnist at Bloomberg View and a former senior editor at The Atlantic. Her new book is The Up Side of Down.

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