Just a note on current reading... In 2000 Hernando de Soto, the famed Peruvian economist, published a book called The Mystery of Capital. According to his studies the total wealth of the shadow economy, extralegal assets filling legal niches in the third world (e.g. houses to which no one has a title) is $9.34 trillion. To put it in context let's just say that it's immensely more than the total wealth held legally in those countries. The reason: the legal structure necessary for ownership doesn't exist in the third world. The result: $9.34 trillion dollars disconnected from the global economy and 80% of the inhabitants of the third world unable to connect their functional economies to the global economy. Talk about a glass ceiling. Time to talk less about bringing democracy to these nations and more about bringing bureaucracy to them. The nearly instantaneous addition of a functional and legitimized middle-class to the third world would almost surely bring about democratic change within a generation.