In the United States, the East has had over the West all the advantages which protectionists say make it impossible for a new country to build up its manufacturing industries against the competition of an older country – larger capital, longer experience, and cheaper labor. Yet without any protective tariff between the West and the East, manufacturing has steadily moved westward with the movement of population, and is moving westward still. This is a fact that of itself conclusively disproves the protective theory.
The protectionist assumption that manufactures have increased in the United States because of protective tariffs is even more unfounded than the assumption that the growth of New York after the building of each new theater was because of the building of the theater. It is as if one should tow a bucket behind a boat and insist that it helped the boat along because she still moved forward.