22 January 2011
Mr. Ian Fletcher
Thanks for your e-mail today in which you offer to sell me a copy of your book Free Trade Doesn’t Work.
Just this once I’ll accept your argument that free trade, in fact, doesn’t work – and so, in honor of your discovery, I refuse to import a copy of your book into my home.
After all, I have my own competing book on trade, and I continue to produce writings on this topic almost daily. Surely you agree that any support that I give to a rival will only harm me – that my spending money on your book leaves less money for me to spend on my own book. And why would I do such an unstrategic thing? Why should I buy from strangers – persons, such as yourself, who are foreign to my household – products and services that I make a good living producing myself?
Indeed, why would anyone outside of your own household buy your book if, as you claim, free trade doesn’t work? The path to riches is for each household to write and print its own books!
Thank you for articulating the intellectual case that saves me – and, hopefully, every other human being outside of your own home – from making the mistake of buying your book.
Donald J. Boudreaux