Gdp has become the standard way of evaluating countries" economies. Can look at it over time - has it grown, shrunk, etc. Doesn"t tell us about other conditions in the economic system. Doesn"t address non-monetary costs (such as pollution and health effects) Doesn"t distinguish between different kinds of things getting produced. Doesn"t include the grey market (e. g. - illegal drug sales) Core consumer price index leaves out the price of gas because the price if volatile - changes often. Trade deficit: you"re importing more than you"re exporting. Democratic forms of government do better economically than non-democracies. It"s less likely to be corrupt - checks & balances. More concerned about improving the population as the whole versus only a few key individuals (for their own benefit) Under electoral pressure to improve economic conditions for the general population. Elected affinity - free markets and democracy require the same things. Transition to democracy does not always lead to the end of corruption.