Skip to comments.America was founded as a protectionist nation
Posted on 09/13/2010 10:42:54 AM PDT by rmlew
Contemporary American politics is conducted in the shadow of historical myths that inform our present-day choices. Unfortunately, these myths sometimes lead us terribly astray. Case in point is the popular idea that Americas economic tradition has been economic liberty, laissez faire, and wide-open cowboy capitalism. This notion sounds obvious, and it fits the image of this country held by both the Right, which celebrates this tradition, and the Left, which bemoans it. And it seems to imply, among other things, that free trade is the American Way. Dont Tread On Me or my right to import.
It is, in fact, very easy to construct an impressive-sounding defense of free trade as a form of economic liberty on the basis of this myth. Unfortunately, this myth is just that: a myth, not real history. The reality is that all four of the presidents on Mount Rushmore were protectionists. (Even the pseudo-libertarian Jefferson came around after the War of 1812.) Historically, protectionism has been, in fact, the real American Way.
Read more: http://dailycaller.com/2010/09/13/america-was-founded-as-a-protectionist-nation/#ixzz0zQpQypXn
(Excerpt) Read more at dailycaller.com ...
Back the failed socialism of the Plymouth Colony?
Free trade works among free nations
Across State lines, as embodied in the Constitution.
Foreign trade was always meant to be regulated and taxed, as it was the original source of revenue for the Federal government.
Well, it has feathered the nest of many a Florida sugar grower, at the expense of the American consumer who has to pay much more for sugar at the grocery store, and at the expense of American candy manufacturing.
An artificially high price for sugar in the USA due to protectionism of the US sugar producing industry has driven many a job and factory that used to produce candy or chocolate overseas.
But we still have our heavily government subsidized sugar growers! Good job! NOT!
Red China is free?
We could easily have a policy of libertarian, free wheeling capitalism within our national borders but be protectionist and non-libertarian when it comes to commerce and trade with other nations. In fact that is how we used to be and tariffs were the main source of revenue for our young Federal Gov’t. Alcohol and tobacco taxes were also important.
These three main revenue streams are what the Feds ran their operations on
I don’t think what we have with China is my idea of “free trade”. Many of those factories and companies are owned by the People’s Liberation Army
We have had mission creep. Now we want to protect the world with troops, jobs and money.
It's also pushed a lot of U.S. producers of sweetened products to use corn syrup instead of sugar in their products.
I guess that's one of the goals of the sugar protection racket, too -- when you consider how much influence U.S. agricultural giants like Archer Daniels Midland have in the Federal government.
The statement is true to a certain extent, but the Southern states supported free trade as they were exporters of the raw products of cotton and tobacco.
One of the reasons I don’t think the Tea Party can be considered an actual party or anything more than an anti-tax movement, is that it (whatever the TP actually is) has not addressed this important issue.
How about steel and oil? We should buy them from other nations? How about letting Toyota and Nissan and Hyundai set up factories on US soil? You think that is smart? If you have no problem with the above then you are not an American. You are a world citizen like 0bama fancies himself
The argument over trade has been going on since the founding. There’s a long history of both free trade AND protectionism that both worked AND didn’t work but somewhere in the middle America became wealthy.
Free trade works among free nations
And with unfree nations? And what of free nations who don't reciprocate?
Free trade only works in the long term with a common government between the free traders.
I think right now the best idea we can aim for is a revenue-generating value-added import tariff of about 22% with the aim of making domestic production and imports revenue-neutral to the federal government. Then let everyone do whatever they want without further government interference!
The Civil War was about protectionism, not slavery. Slavery was a throw in, a bargaining chip.
The protectionists won the Civil War.
People who hate free trade hate it because they hate competition.
This said, countries certainly have to make sure they are not being abused by other countries re: dumping, price manipulation, etc.
Furthermore, war creates additional concern and exceptions for marshalling raw materials and controlling production needed for weapons and materiel.
It's much easier for a nation to have protectionist trade practices when it is doing business with other wealthier countries (as was the case for much of the early history of the U.S.). Having a somewhat lower standard of living than your trading partners makes it easier to be cost-competitive for products and services that can be obtained elsewhere.
That whole scenario falls apart in today's world, however. Because the U.S. pretty much has the highest standard of living among the major nations of the world, there's really nothing we can do to develop and maintain a competitive export-based economy. What exactly does the U.S. produce that can be sold competitively overseas these days?
Free Trade does not exist. It has never existed since the day the king, the prior or the Earl took his cut in taxes.
We need less regulation and taxation. That's the way TEA Parties can be tied into this. Taxation always hurts trade - whether international or intranational.
As someone who's made a living for many years in the export business I can tell you that Free Trade based on Comparative Advantage is a fine ideal but there is also a definite place for protection of domestic agriculture and manufacturing. Compared with the way every country I export to manages their import regime we have plenty of room to move toward better support of our domestic industries before the "playing field" becomes anything resembling level.
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