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My intrepid Mercatus Center colleague Veronique de Rugy writes about blame being pawned off virally. A slice:

Trump is also much to blame for the fact that the trade war he started with China has reduced Americans’ access to many essential medical supplies to fight the pandemic, including thermometers, face masks, medical-grade personal protective gear and hand sanitizer. It’s not for lack of being warned. Economists, health care professionals and even lobbyists all told the president that his tariffs would create shortages and higher prices. The president refused to listen. Now Americans and health care professionals on the frontlines are paying an exorbitant price.

John Tamny is rightly critical of Oren Cass and Marco Rubio for being ignorant of economics. A slice:

Part of the message that Cass pushed on Romney was a mercantilist one. “Get Tough on China,” or something like that. Cass sees imports as harmful. He’s funny that way. There’s a backwards quality to his thinking. He ignores that imports improve us. If the Chinese wanted to “get tough” with us, they’d cease producing. Again, with imports we buy them because they improve our lives and our productivity. Since most of us can’t cut our own hair, or make our own clothes, or manufacture our own TVs, we buy or “import” from those who do. And the more that the world’s producers can produce for us, the further our paychecks stretch.

Alberto Mingardi points to a reality that gives sensible people good reason to pause even longer before falling for industrial-policy proposals.

Thank goodness Simon Lester is on the job correcting Sen. Josh Hawley’s most recent public display of ignorance. And thank goodness also that Dan Ikenson is on this job as well.

I detest what Nick Gillespie accurately describes as “empty displays of ritual militarism.

Here’s more brilliance from Arnold Kling. A slice:

Many people believe that it is quite moral not to pay rent. Hardly anyone believes that it is moral not to pay taxes. I think that the intuition is that taxes are fair, but rent is not fair. If I owned rental property, I would not think it fair to pay taxes to a government that tells people they do not have to pay rent.


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