… believes that the best and surest path to the enrichment of us Americans is for all of us to stand side by side each other in the form of a giant circle, with each of us then instructed to pick the pocket of the person to his or her right – or, alternatively, to his or her left.
Protectionists differ mightily amongst themselves depending on party affiliation. Some protectionists, those of one party, believe that the enrichment of all Americans is greatest if each person picks the pocket of the person to his or her right, while other protectionists – those of the other party – believe that the enrichment of all Americans is greatest if each person picks the pocket of the person to his or her left. Rivers of ink are spilled and buckets of hot breath are exhausted by the combatants in this debate. “To the left!” scream one group of partisans. “No! Never! To the left is evil,” bellow the rival partisans. “National enrichment will be achieved only if each of us picks the pocket of the person to his or her right!.”. Daytime ‘news’ programs feature debates between the “Lefts” and “Rights,” each confident that his or her side is the Truth and that of the other side is the Devil.
And on those relatively rare occasions when there appears in their midst a genuine free trader – someone who argues against all pocket-picking – the Lefts and Rights momentarily join together to denounce the free trader as a fool – as someone who is equal parts unrealistic, anti-American, and a shill for some mysterious person somewhere. After the “simplistic” argument of the free trader is dismissed by mutual acclaim, the Lefts and the Rights return to the important, relevant battle: which direction of picking each others pockets is best: to the left or to the right.