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protectionism

Economics/Politics

Free Markets At Home The Cure To Outsourcing Abroad

Fixing the outsourcing epidemic requires looking to treat the cause, not the symptom. The case for free trade is simple. Businesses should be able to locate where they want and import what they want. International free market activity is fundamentally parallel to that which occurs within U.S. borders. Thus, when everyone is doing what they are most efficient at, all benefit. For example, Floridians may be efficient at producing produce while Missourians may be most efficient raising livestock. Kansans may be best at growing crops while Pennsylvanians may be best at making steel. The same holds true internationally. The U.S. may be the best at developing technology while Korea may be the best at producing said technology. Canada may be a great exporter of maple syrup while Mexico may be great at producing boats. Keep Reading

Economics/Philosophy/Tech

Is Buying American Really Being American?

On Monday night, “Dirty Jobs” host Mike Rowe joined Tucker Carlson on Fox News to discuss Ford’s and Chrysler’s respective plans to reinvest in U.S. manufacturing. Rowe, who is a proponent of technical and skilled jobs, told Carlson, “Get a skill that’s in demand, that’s really in demand, that can’t be outsourced. Plumbers, steamfitters, pipefitters, carpenters, mechanics, those men and women right now … can pretty much write their own ticket”. Rowe is right about skilled jobs. According to the Manhattan Institute, there are around a half-million U.S. skilled jobs that aren’t being filled. Millennials are spending their time in the college safe spaces instead of doing the ‘dirty jobs’ which can pay well. However, when Rowe talked about making things in the U.S. he got it wrong. “There’s just something … larger at work here,” Rowe said. “It has to do with our identity, it has to do with what it feels like when we’re actually making things as a country.” This ‘be American, buy American’ attitude has… Keep Reading

Economics/Politics

The Magic Box Of Free Trade

With the presidential campaign of Donald Trump comes much discussion about trade with foreign nations. A common theme is the notion that trade needs to be restricted, or at least heavily taxed, in order to protect domestic production. The line of thinking goes that if foreign companies are able to compete on even footing with American companies, their access to cheaper labor and fewer environmental regulations gives them an unfair advantage. This advantage could harm domestic businesses and cost American jobs. This fact is nearly undeniable. Jobs in manufacturing sectors competing with foreign producers will undoubtedly be displaced by these cheaper alternatives. However, the impulse to restrict and tax imports is misguided. The French economist, Frederic Bastiat, demonstrated the absurdity of domestic protectionism in a satirical piece called The Candlemaker’s Petition. In it, the producers of light-emitting goods lobby the government for special laws restricting their unfair competitor, the sun. Another Bastiat work, That Which is Seen and That Which is Not Seen, presents the idea that the direct… Keep Reading

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