A Familiar Pattern
In his seminal The Structure of Scientific Revolutions (1962), Thomas Kuhn details how people most often recognize major changes only after they occur–when, he says, “the pieces suddenly [begin] sorting themselves out and coming together in a new way.” (The Road Since Structure, Thomas S. Kuhn, edited by James Conant and John Haugeland, Chicago: 2000 University of Chicago Press, p. 17)
This is happening now, with economic growth.
Kuhn asserts that new ideas catch on, not when people change their minds, but when the older generation, raised and educated on the older ideas, dies out. Florence Nightingale, for example, is justifiably famous for her work promoting cleanliness in hospitals, yet she died in 1910 still convinced vapors from the earth, and not germs, cause infectious diseases.
Resistance to new thinking about economic growth will continue, of course, but will disappear in accordance with another familiar process. Jacques Monad, who won the 1965 Nobel Prize in medicine for his work in the genetics of microbes, observed that many people continue to call new ideas absurd long after evidence to support them becomes overwhelming. They then, he says, begin to call the new ideas obvious.