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Furthermore on the Mean(s)ness of Protectionism

Economist Wilson Mixon sent to me the following e-mail in response to this blog post:

Furthermore, Irwin [Stelzer] and Irving [Kristol] fall into the pattern of thinking in groups. Only a subset of producers (if firms and their owners are the “producers”) are helped.  If workers in those firms are, in fact, the producers, then they gain by having higher wages and lose by paying more for would-be imports.  Probably they gain on net from “protection.”  In any event, the transfers are as much across individual “producers” (firms and workers) as it is between “producers” and consumers.

Indeed.  Remember that nearly 100 percent of all imports – and not only those that are conventionally described as raw materials and intermediate goods – are inputs used by American producers.