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Gasbags in Congress

Posted By Don Boudreaux On March 19, 2013 @ 8:55 am In Crony Capitalism,Other People's Money,Seen and Unseen,Trade | Comments Disabled

Here’s a letter to the Washington Post:

You rightly criticize members of Congress who aim to keep energy prices in America artificially low by restricting U.S. exports of natural gas (“The benefits of a free-trade deal with Japan [1],” March 16).  As Benjamin Franklin wrote in July 1778 to James Lovell, “To lay duties on a commodity exported, which our neighbors want, is a knavish attempt to get something for nothing.  The statesman who first invented it had the genius of a pickpocket, and would have been a pickpocket if fortune had suitably placed him.  The nations who have practiced it have suffered fourfold, as pickpockets ought to suffer.”*

Sincerely,
Donald J. Boudreaux
Professor of Economics
and
Martha and Nelson Getchell Chair for the Study of Free Market Capitalism at the Mercatus Center
George Mason University
Fairfax, VA  22030

*See footnote six here [2].

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[1] The benefits of a free-trade deal with Japan: http://www.washingtonpost.com/opinions/the-benefits-of-a-free-trade-deal-with-japan/2013/03/15/b23fce00-8da5-11e2-9838-d62f083ba93f_story.html

[2] here: http://www.public.coe.edu/~theller/soj/ttl/franklin/b605.htm

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