Monday, June 06, 2005

You won't see this on CBS News

The Iraqi people are prospering despite the daily attacks. This is what happens in the aftermath of toppled tyranny, coupled with individual liberty and a free market. But don't count on hearing this trumpeted in mainstream media.

Destitute Iraqi teachers reclaim their dignity
Kassim used to teach geography in the morning and spend afternoons repairing shoes in the streets of the central Iraqi town of Azizyah. Those days are over.

Iraq's 300,000 teachers have seen vast changes since the regime of Saddam Hussein fell in April 2003, and Kassim can now feed his four children without having to cobble a living together.

From an average monthly salary of 10,000 dinars (around two-three dollars at the time) plus food subsidies, they can now earn 300,000-400,000 (200-270 dollars).

The result, says 40-year-old English teacher Jawad Mizhr, is that they can now do their job.
Did you expect that a truly liberated people would have a lesser blessing than prosperity?

Teachers can command salaries literally 30 to 40 times greater than under Saddam's rule. The economic definition of "price" tells us that Iraqi fulfil both requisites of the buyer: the ability to pay, and the willingness. The same principle applies to the Baghdad housing market. Back in April, I noted that it's simple supply and demand at work.

So the Iraqi people are getting wealthier. Iraqi parents are also willing to pay much greater greater sums for their children's education. And why not? Their children have a brighter future in the world. It also helps that the teachers aren't constrained by what Saddam says they can and cannot teach.

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