Topic: Free Trade

adamsmith-1380

Adam Smith, Born Today in 1723, Does Not Approve

– June 16, 2018

It’s the 295th birthday of Adam Smith, champion of trade and the philosophical mastermind who explained the end of the old world and the beginning of the new. And yet, on this day, after so many centuries of intellectual work to promote free trade, a trade war is upon us.

READ MORE
tradingship

A Completely Unnecessary Trade War

– June 4, 2018

We’ve got a genuine problem, a new crop of world leaders who are willing to sacrifice economic rationality, international cooperation, and world peace to feed their nationalistic political ambitions via the brute force of protectionism. Trump is leading the way.

READ MORE
ZTEtrade

The Strangest Twist Yet on Trade with China

– May 15, 2018

The company ZTE (Zhongxing Telecommunications Equipment) in Shanghai had employed as many 75,000, and does business in 160 nations, while relying heavily on importing American component parts and manufacturing cellphones and other digital equipment. The US Commerce Department came down hard on the company for dealings with North Korea and Iran. It fined the company $1.2 billion and banned American exports to the company for fully seven years. It was all part of the “get tough” policy that Trump has been promoting his entire career.

READ MORE

Monetary Policy and Trade Wars

– April 10, 2018

A trade war would not only make the United States less productive. It would also make monetary policy more difficult.

READ MORE
1812

Two Trade Wars: 1807 and 2018

– April 8, 2018

The legal uncertainties surrounding trade with China have sent people looking for historical precedent for this mess. One jumps out: the targeted trade embargo that the US imposed against Britain in 1807. Let’s look at the parallels and lessons.

READ MORE
chinatrade

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.

READ MORE
china

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.

READ MORE
versailles

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.

READ MORE
Trump

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.

READ MORE
tariffs

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.

READ MORE

Monetary Offset: Trade War Edition

– March 8, 2018

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

READ MORE
dillydillycans

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.

READ MORE