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Bonus Quotation of the Day…

… is this Facebook post from exactly five years ago by the great economic historian Bob Higgs:

When every transaction between trading partners in different countries — buying, selling, lending, borrowing of whatever goods, services, financial instruments, and currencies — is voluntary and therefore subjectively gainful to each of the trading partners, it is nonsense to suppose that such transactions are somehow bad (e.g., because there is a “deficit” in the current account, or balance of trade, in the international balance of payments). No one can add a set of positive numbers and arrive correctly at a negative sum.

The international balance of payments has to be the most nonsensical accounting statement ever devised, serving no purpose but to justify to gullible people the government’s pernicious application of force and fraud as if its so-called protectionism were a benefit to the general public.

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