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What Do these Panel Data Reveal?

Posted By Don Boudreaux On March 23, 2012 @ 8:46 am In Crony Capitalism,Energy,Seen and Unseen,Subsidies,Trade | Comments Disabled

Here’s a letter sent a few days ago to the New York Times:

You report that “The Commerce Department has decided to impose tariffs on solar panels imported from China after concluding that the Chinese government provided illegal export subsidies to manufacturers there” (“U.S. to Place Tariffs on Solar Panels From China [1],” March 20).

Let me try to get this straight.  If Uncle Sam raises our taxes to subsidize our access to solar energy, that’s noble government intervention that (if it isn’t stopped by Cro-Magnon conservatives) will produce in America radiant benefits – but if Beijing raises the Chinese people’s taxes to subsidize our access to solar energy, that’s noxious government intervention that (if it isn’t stopped by “Progressive” politicians) will produce in America ruinous harm.

Hmmm….  I fear that I’m insufficiently enlightened to grasp this logic.

Sincerely,
Donald J. Boudreaux
Professor of Economics
George Mason University
Fairfax, VA  22030

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