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George Selgin on Trump Advisor Peter Navarro

Three years ago, Peter Navarro – now a top economics advisor to Donald Trump – published this error-ridden op-ed in the New York Times.  George Selgin sent this letter to the NYT in response:

Dear Sir,

Concerning Peter Navarro’s essay (“The Price of ‘Made in China‘,” August 4th): Thank goodness that, being more enlightened than in the past, we no longer will tolerate, much less provide a public forum to, such uncouth bigots as still persist in accusing the Jews of trying to take over our economy and subvert our way of life by lending us money on better terms than our fellow gentiles can offer. No sir. We have advanced well beyond that. We now devote op-ed space in the New York Times to uncouth bigots who blame the Chinese for trying to take over our economy and subvert our way of life by selling goods to us for less than what our own manufacturers can offer.

A wonderful thing to behold, this steady march of civilization!

George Selgin
Professor of Economics
The University of Georgia

George’s letter is spot-on apposite.  Unfortunately, the NYT appears not to have published it.

Peter Navarro, a trained economist, is also a mercantilist.  Such an economist today is the equivalent of a trained biologist who is also a creationist: neither really grasps the logic of his science.