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Other ways to measure living

March 15, 2008

Re "Going downhill," Opinion, March 10

Robert Costanza is right on the money when he says that the gross domestic product is a deeply flawed measure of our national well-being. As he points out, many things that increase GDP, such as oil spills and healthcare for illnesses resulting from pollution, are actually bad for our quality of life. Standard of living is not the same as quality of life, and not everything that is valuable comes from the mall.

I would like to see The Times and other media recognize the validity and importance of this view by reporting more on the alternative measures of national well-being, such as the Genuine Progress Indicator, that Costanza describes.

David Salahi

Laguna Niguel

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