Gross National Product

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Gross National Product Map (gross capita income per year)

Gross National Product (GNP) is the market value of all the products and services produced in one year by labor and property supplied by the citizens of a country. Unlike Gross Domestic Product (GDP), which defines production based on the geographical location of production, GNP allocates production based on ownership.

CONTENT : A - F , G - L , M - R , S - Z , See also , External links


Quotes are arranged alphabetically by author

A - F

  • (Archie and Mike are talking about the benefits of the USA)
Archie: They got the greatest country in the world here. The highest standard of living. The grossest national product.
  • For the logic of Saint-Simon is that the only legitimate social functions are those of production, and those of the scholarship which aids production. It is no accident that this corporatist utopia is today defended by western labour movements, for it exhausts the contemporary utopic vision of citizenship - good citizens are those who either boost Gross National Product or who conduct Wissenschaft as part of that process.
    • Peter Beilharz, in Labour's Utopias: Bolshevism, Fabianism, Social Democracy (1992).
  • The concept of man as mass robot was both an expression of and a powerful motive force in industrialized mass society. It was the basis for behavioural engineering in commercial, economic, political and other advertising and propaganda; the expanding economy of the 'affluent society' could not subsist without such manipulation. Only by manipulating humans ever more into Skinnerian rats, robots buying automata, homeostatically adjusted conformers and opportunists (or, bluntly speaking, into morons and zombies) can this great society follow its progress toward ever increasing gross national product.
  • I don't have a problem with guilt about money. The way I see it is that my money represents an enormous number of claim checks on society. It is like I have these little pieces of paper that I can turn into consumption. If I wanted to, I could hire 10,000 people to do nothing but paint my picture every day for the rest of my life. And the GNP would go up. But the utility of the product would be zilch, and I would be keeping those 10,000 people from doing AIDS research, or teaching, or nursing. I don't do that though. I don't use very many of those claim checks. There's nothing material I want very much. And I'm going to give virtually all of those claim checks to charity when my wife and I die.
    • Warren Buffett, Quoted by Janet C. Lowe, in Warren Buffett Speaks: Wit and Wisdom from the World's Greatest Investor (1997), pp. 165-166
  • There was a plea from honourable Members relating to the need for formal Gross National Product figures. Such figures are very inexact even in the most sophisticated countries I think they do not have a great deal of meaning, even as a basis of comparison between economies. That other countries make use of them is not, I think, necessarily a good reason to suppose that we need them. But, although I am not entirely clear what practical purpose they would serve in Hong Kong, I am sure they would be of interest. I suspect myself, however, that the need arises in other countries because high taxation and more or less detailed Government intervention in the economy have made it essential to be able to judge (or to hope to be able to judge) the effect of policies, and of changes in policies, on the economy. One of the honourable Members who spoke on this subject, said outright, as a confirmed planner, that he thought that they were desirable for the planning of our future economic policy. But we are in the happy position, happier at least for the Financial Secretary where the leverage exercised by Government on the economy is so small that it is not necessary, nor even of any particular value, to have these figures available for the formulation of policy. We might indeed be right to be apprehensive lest the availability of such figures might lead, by a reversal of cause and effect, to policies designed to have a direct effect on the economy. I would myself deplore this.
  • The computer field is intoxicated with change. We have seen galloping growth over a period of four decades and it still does not seem to be slowing down. The field is not mature yet and already it accounts for a significant percentage of the Gross National Product.
  • Macroeconomics deals with national aggregates like gross national product, employment, price levels, consumption and investment, money supply and demand, balance of payments, and so on.
    • D. N. Dwivedi (2005) Macroeconomics: Theory and Policy. p. 41
  • Keynes was chief economic adviser to the British government and largely responsible for keeping the British economy afloat at a time when more than half of our gross national product, and all of out foreign exchange, was being spent on the war. ...I was lucky to be present at one of his rare appearances in Cambridge, when he gave a lecture with the title "Newton, the Man." …Four years later he died of heart failure, precipitated by overwork and the hardships of crossing the Atlantic repeatedly in slow propeller-driven airplanes under wartime conditions.
  • ... in economic political discussions there is a nearly infinite number of specific questions that may be asked. Besides the ones mentioned in section 3 consider for instance these: "Should we build a road between points A and B in the country?", "Should we promote investments that will give employment to many people, or should we on the contrary promote such investment which will save labour?"… "Should we put more emphasis on things that have up to now not been included in the statistical concept of the gross national product? For instance, should we try to avoid air-pollution and all the kinds of intoxications that may be caused by refuse and waste (a problem that must be studied in its totality as a problem of circulation of matter in society, much in the same way as we study interindustry relations in an input-output table)?“, “Should we assess economic value to an undisturbed nature?” etc.

G - L

  • It's crazy that America gives such a paltry percentage of its GNP to the starving nations.
  • I didn't care about the statistics in anything else. I didn't, and don't pay any attention to the statistics of the stock market, the weather, the crime rate, the gross national product, the circulation of magazines, the ebb and flow of literacy among football fans and how many people are going to starve to death before the year 2050 if I don't start adopting them for $3.69 a month; just baseball. Now why is that? It is because baseball statistics, unlike the statistics in any other area, have acquired the powers of language.
  • Gross National Product counts air pollution and cigarette advertising, and ambulances to clear our highways of carnage. It counts special locks for our doors and the jails for the people who break them. It counts the destruction of the redwood and the loss of our natural wonder in chaotic sprawl. It counts napalm and counts nuclear warheads and armored cars for the police to fight the riots in our cities. It counts Whitman's rifle and Speck's knife, and the television programs which glorify violence in order to sell toys to our children. Yet the gross national product does not allow for the health of our children, the quality of their education or the joy of their play. It does not include the beauty of our poetry or the strength of our marriages, the intelligence of our public debate or the integrity of our public officials. It measures neither our wit nor our courage, neither our wisdom nor our learning, neither our compassion nor our devotion to our country, it measures everything in short, except that which makes life worthwhile. And it can tell us everything about America except why we are proud that we are Americans.
  • The Gross National Product does not allow for the health of our children, the quality of their education, or the joy of their play. It does not include the beauty of our poetry or the strength of our marriages; the intelligence of our public debate or the integrity of our public officials. It measures neither our wit nor our courage; neither our wisdom nor our learning; neither our compassion nor our devotion to our country; it measures everything, in short, except that which makes life worthwhile.
  • The university is being called upon to educate previously unimagined numbers of students; to respond to the expanding claims of national service; to merge its activities with industry as never before. Characteristic of this transformation is the growth of the knowledge industry, which is coming to permeate government and business, and to draw into it more and more people raised to higher and higher levels of skill. The production, distribution and consumption of knowledge is said to account for 29 percent of gross national product, and knowledge production is growing at about twice the rate of the rest of the economy. What the railroads did for the second half of the last century, and the automobile for the first half of this century, may be done for the second half of this century by the knowledge industry; and that is, to serve as the focal point for national growth.
    • Clark Kerr: in David Lance Goines, 1993, The Free Speech Movement: Coming of Age in the 1960's, Ten Speed Press, p. 49.
  • Britain, with the most completely socialized health system in the West, now spends the lowest fraction of GNP on health care of any major nation. There are frequent complaints of excessive waits for elective surgery and other inconveniences, but British citizens live slightly longer than Americans, on average, and our overall health conditions are comparable.
    • Robert Kuttner, The Economic Illusion (1984), Chapter 6, Welfare, p. 250
  • The usefulness and importance of a system of national accounts can most readily be appreciated by returning to origins of the method and at the same time considering the actual necessity of this type of analysis. This new analytical technique was first introduced in Great Britain during the Second War. John Maynard Keynes was at that time an expert adviser to the Treasury on problems of war finance, and his assistants included Richard Stone. Keynes took as his starting point a balance between total current resources (including real gross national product) on the supply side and total consumption, investments and expenditure for the war effort on the demand side. Richard Stone's experiments in the systematic processing of the copious flood of statistical material in the form of national accounts moved Keynes to exclaim: "We are in a new era of joy through statistics"

M - R

  • Having eliminated the soul, modern science cannot understand the body in its most important aspect, which is its capacity for self-importance. Modern biology, particularly the theory of evolution, is based on the overriding concern for survival in all life. This is surely wrong in regard to human life. If you cannot look around you and must insist on indulging a taste for the primitive, you have only to visit the ruins of an ancient people and ponder how much of its GNP was devoted to religion, to its sense of the meaning of human life rather than mere survival.
    • Harvey Mansfield, How to Understand Politics: What the Humanities Can Say to Science (2007)
  • These examples confuse effort with result, one of the most common mistakes of this kind is designing systems around the wrong goal. Maybe the worst mistake this kind has been the adoption of the GNP as the measure of national economic success. [...] If you define the goal of a society as GNP, that society will do its best to produce GNP. It will not produce welfare, equity, justice, or efficiency unless you define a goal and regularly measure and report the state of welfare, equity, justice, or efficiency.
  • A long decade ago economic growth was the reigning fashion of political economy. It was simultaneously the hottest subject of economic theory and research, a slogan eagerly claimed by politicians of all stripes, and a serious objective of the policies of governments. The climate of opinion has changed dramatically. Disillusioned critics indict both economic science and economic policy for blind obeisance to aggregate material "progress," and for neglect of its costly side effects. Growth, it is charged, distorts national priorities, worsens the distribution of income, and irreparably damages the environment. Paul Erlich speaks for a multitude when he says, "We must acquire a life style which has as its goal maximum freedom and happiness for the individual, not a maximum Gross National Product."

S - Z

  • (re an antique book on his desk) Oliver, would you mind leaving that alone? It's not mine, and it's worth half the gross national product.
(on Guillam's Porsche) What a perfectly revolting little car! How ever will we all fit in?
  • The GNP by itself is no mark of our national achievement. For it includes smokestacks that pollute, drugs that destroy, and ambulances which clear our highways of human wreckage. It includes a mugger's knife, a rioter's bomb, and Oswald's rifle, but if the GNP tells us all this, there is much that it does not tell us. It says nothing about the health of our families, the quality of their education, or the joy of their play.
  • Jule [to Hardenberg during a conversation at table]: The First World could cancel the Third World's debts. That's only 0.01% of the GNP!
Hardenberg: That would collapse the world's financial system.
Jule: You want them poor! It's the way to control them. Make them sell their raw goods at dirt cheap prices...
  • Simon Kuznets is best known for his studies of national income and its components. Prior to World War I, measures of GNP were rough guesses, at best. No government agency collected data to compute GNP, and no private economic researcher did so systematically, either. Kuznets changed all that. With work that began in the 1930s and stretched over decades, Kuznets computed national income back to 1869. He broke it down by industry, by final product, and by use. He also measured the distribution of income between rich and poor.
    • The Concise Encyclopedia of Economics (2008). "Simon Kuznets" Library of Economics and Liberty. 10 June 2014.
  • The dominant role played by... exporters’ and importers’ GNP and distance in explaining trade flows.
  • Dorian Tyrell: Okay, Twinkle-Toes, I want to know where my money is and I want to know right now!
The Mask: Okay. [puts on a green eyeshade and pulls out an accounting machine] You've got 17.5% in T-bills amortized over the fiscal year. 8% in stocks and bonds. Carry the nine, divide by the gross national product. Fortunately, funeral bouquets are deductible!
Dorian Tyrell: [to Orlando] Ice this deadbeat!
  • Economics also succeeded in grafting onto the countries of the third world impressive theories and isolated important concepts such as gross national product, gross domestic product, and income per capita. These concepts served as building blocks with which economics constructed elaborate and impressive theories of development, including formula for predicting the rate of economic development of a given nation. According to economics, gross national product (GNP) is the total value of goods and services produced by a given country during a specified time period, such as a year. Gross domestic product (GDP), on the other hand, is gross national product minus the net income the nation earned abroad.
    • Denis Chima E. Ugwuegbu (2011) Social Psychology and Social Change in Nigeria, p. 32

See also

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