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In this quote, Robert F. Kennedy is expressing the view that gross national product (GNP), which measures a country’s total economic output, is an incomplete metric that does not fully capture a society’s well-being and success.
Kennedy notes that GNP does not account for factors like the health, education levels, and happiness of a nation’s children. These are also important measures of a community’s prosperity and quality of life.
By highlighting that GNP overlooks these social and human aspects, Kennedy seems to be arguing that purely economic indicators like GNP do not tell the whole story and that a nation may have a high GNP but still be failing its citizens in important non-economic ways.
The quote suggests a balanced assessment of a society requires considering both economic and non-economic indicators like those related to people’s health, education and life satisfaction