No One Wins a Trade War

– April 3, 2018

The results of this war are as follows. US consumers get to pay more for imports from China. American companies lose markets as Chinese consumers and importers turn to other countries to provide wines, pork, and fruit. And this is only round one. The financial markets have suffered a terrible quarter one, just as all this interventionist rhetoric picked up steam. We are doing ourselves no favors here. This is not how a nation becomes great again.


This Is How Trade Wars Happen

– March 24, 2018

In a political sense, Trump might be onto something, temporarily, in the most cynical way. It is very easy for the hoi polloi to think in terms of national collectives. It’s us vs them, our guys vs. their guys. The trouble is that the world is no longer organized primarily along these nationalistic lines. We all depend on the productivity of each other and therefore on trade with each other, regardless of the nation states that trap us in their borders. The other main problem with trade war: it is a ruse to distract citizens from their real oppressor which is their own government.


The Long Life of the Mercantile State

– March 19, 2018

The goal of feeding the power of the chief executive is always the core motivation of all forms of mercantilism, whether in the 17th century, the interwar years, or our own times.


Tariffs: A History of Repeated Failure

– March 12, 2018

A simple trip down memory lane, specifically the 1930s, paints a lurid image of what could potentially occur if this far-reaching tariff policy is actually implemented.


International Trade: Freedom Beats Arbitrary Rule

– March 9, 2018

It’s been a beautiful thing to observe the wonderful effects of the tax cuts and deregulation of the last year. The tariffs take us off this clear path to the goal. The only question remains: is this a cul-de-sac or a u-turn? My own hope is that the political posturing is over in this one sector and we can move forward again with progress toward a world of peace, prosperity, and free trade, and that arbitrary rule will not permanently derail the rule of law in international economic relations.


Monetary Offset: Trade War Edition

– March 8, 2018

Restricting trade to boost aggregate demand is a fool’s errand.


So Much for Tax Cuts and Deregulation

– March 3, 2018

And this isn’t only about the price of beer (you won’t say “dilly dilly” to $2 Bud Lights). It is about cars, computers, homes, offices, fixtures, and countless other items you use every day. The costs could very easily take away all the benefits accrued from income and corporate tax cuts. It also makes a joke of the Trump administration’s position against red tape and regulation. If my company can’t shop around for the best deal for my customers but instead must face a terrible trade bureaucracy to decline or permission in my every choice, we don’t have free enterprise.


Trump The Redistributor

– March 2, 2018

Corporations and many households rightfully celebrated when the Trump administration led the way in cutting their taxes. Now, the administration is in effect clawing at least a little of that tax cut back in the name of increasing the profitability of two ailing American industries.


Pro-Trade Economists Helped Elect Trump the Protectionist

– February 7, 2018

Economists tend to minimize those people who are hurt in the short run by free trade, but they’re hard to ignore as a political voting bloc.


We Are the True Liberals

– December 19, 2017

In the 19th century liberalism was used to describe the people who believed in liberty, a creed unifying the belief in free markets with the beliefs in freedom of speech and the press.


Repeal NAFTA and Replace It With Free Trade

– October 27, 2017

The “FT” in NAFTA may stand for “free trade,” but that doesn’t mean it is.


Why Is the United States Blockading Hawaii?

– October 26, 2017

The Jones Act prevents Hawaii from prospering from free trade.