Thursday, January 18, 2007

Sound Economics = Unsound Politics

"The British historian Thomas Macaulay observed that free trade, one of the greatest blessings which a government can bestow, is in almost every country unpopular. Indeed, sound economics often makes for unsuccessful politics. That free trade is a great benefactor is one of the most convincingly established truths of economic science.

The economic case for free trade is essentially the case for voluntary exchange in general: no one freely enters into an exchange, whether as buyer or seller, unless he expects to emerge better off as a result of that exchange. Furthermore, the ability to exchange a single product one has produced for the many things one would like to consume makes possible the division of labor and the manifold expansion of production capacity that it permits. There is no economic reason why these gains do not apply equally to potential traders on different sides of national boundaries."

~ "Why Managed Trade Is Not Free Trade," By Robert Batemarco


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