This is just some of my thoughts on reading Russell D. Roberts book "The Choice".
Mr. Roberts makes a very valid argument for free trade. The book is interesting because it counters all the arguments that Japan is going to take over the US. Free trade does make sense, from the point that everybody manufactures what they do best and in the end the consumers benefit. Now, the question is why do so many companies support quotas and tariffs? I believe it has a lot to do with how the American companies operate, for short-term profit. Long term planning today to an American company seems to be what will next quarters profit be and to satisfy the shareholders. With this type of mentality it is no surprise that many companies support quotas and tariffs, it is in their best interest and only theirs. Free trade will benefit the whole country in the long run at the expense of inefficient companies.
This is the other problem, how many individuals would be willing to close their inefficient plants so the country as a whole could become more efficient, not many that I know. Totally free trade sounds good in theory but in my mind will never happen because each individual is going to look out for his or hers own interest, which quotas and tariffs support in the short-term and not the interest of society as a whole.
The story began in the heavenly court where a young English economist named Dave Ricardo. He believed the United States is about to embark on a policy of protectionism that could destroy the American economy. His mission was to help put America on the path of free trade and prosperity. But, he was granted one day to fulfill his task. Meanwhile, in a...