A Protectionist is Someone Who…

by Don Boudreaux on May 18, 2018

in A Protectionist is..., Trade

… would, if nature were a conscious and acting entity, accuse nature of unfairly inflicting economic damage on the people of a country if and whenever the rate at which natural disasters strike that country falls.

When the rate of natural disasters falls, the protectionist would see, correctly, the resulting loss of jobs in construction, home repair, and emergency medical services.  From this vision the protectionist would conclude, incorrectly, that nature is inflicting upon the country decreased overall employment and reduced economic well-being.  Businesses and workers whose livelihoods are threatened by the reduced incidence of natural disasters would accuse nature of unfairly robbing them of what is theirs by right – namely, the presumed right to have consumers purchase from them some minimum amount of goods and services.

And when nature turns a deaf ear to those who demand that she resume her previous, higher rate of visiting destruction upon the country, the whining producers who lose business because of the fall in the rate of natural disasters will turn to government to demand that it pursue policies that restore their previous levels of business.

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