If you were given the following options, which would you choose:
- An absolute guarantee that the Canadian material standard of living in 2200 will be identical to what it was in 2009 – that is to say, the same number of computers, lightbulbs, sandwiches, appendectomies and everything will be consumed.
- For the material standard of living in 2200 to be determined by the economic and technological development that occurs between now and then?
For those who believe that long-term growth in wealth can be maintained, the level of prosperity in 2200 can be expected to be much higher. For those who are fearful or either stagnation or catastrophe, the certainty of present levels is more appealing.
Note that I am not saying anything about the distribution of the material standard of living. For the purposes of this survey, please ignore the question of whether the top 10% of the population end up consuming 10%, 30%, or 50% of the material goods and services consumed.