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Quotation of the Day…

… is from page 146 of Robert Higgs’s Winter 2001 Independent Review article, “Unmitigated Mercantilism,” as it is reprinted and slightly revised in the superb 2004 collection of some of Bob’s essays, Against Leviathan:

As for the job creation that the bank declares to be its very purpose, one need not pause long over the mathematics. U.S. gross domestic product (GDP) is now approximately $10 trillion. Even if all of the workers required to produce the $16.7 billion of bank-subsidized exports were to become permanently unemployed — a highly unlikely outcome, especially in today’s tight labor markets — the resulting increase in the U.S. rate of unemployment would be swallowed up in the rounding error. The repeated claim that the nation needs the Eximbank to create or maintain jobs is not just bad economics — the kind that disregards opportunity cost, among other things — it is also inapt arithmetic.