I am posting two of the papers I wrote under my Phillips Foundation Fellowship in 1997-1998, on the topic of Hong Kong. This is the first, titled "Hong Kong As a Model for a Free Society." The upshot:
The irony is this: That even five months after becoming a part of the largest remaining commuist nation on earth, Hong Kong remains a much freer place in many respects than does the United States. While the government of Hong Kong has maintained a policy of minimal intervention in the economy and people's lives for over a century, government in the United States has increased dramatically, both in size and in the degree to which it exercises control over the lives of its citizens.
As recently as 1960, over half of Hong Kong's population lived in abject poverty. By the time I wrote this paper, per capita income in Hong Kong was among the highest in the world and unemployment was virtually nonexistent. In this paper, I think I do a pretty good job of showing how the territory's economic success is a direct result of its laissez-faire policies.
When I wrote this series of papers, I was planning to put them together as a book or monograph and have them published. Instead, I got a job with The Asian Wall Street Journal which kept me occupied for the next few years. My plan now is to turn at least the first two (the others may have been too time sensitive to be really relevant now) into a book and publish it myself. For now though, I am posting the content here.