Posts tagged libertarian
Posts tagged libertarian
“The U.S. government has no authority whatsoever to determine to whom a company may or may not sell. This concept should be absolutely clear to anyone with at least a casual allegiance to free markets. In particular, the U.S. Constitution makes it explicit that export duties are prohibited. Furthermore, energy extracted from the ground, and produced by a private enterprise, is no more a public good than a chest of drawers that has been manufactured from a tree that grows on U.S soil. Frankly, this point from Mr. O’Reilly comes straight out of the Marxist handbook and in many ways mirrors the sentiments that have been championed by the Occupy Wall Street movement. When such ideas come from the supposed “right,” we should be very concerned.”
Peter Schiff excoriating Bill O’Reilly and like minded ilk who publicly support free markets but want America to practice protectionism when it comes to fossil fuels.
See also: Open Letter to Bill O’Reilly by Donald J. Boudreaux
Only in America.
Peter Schiff goes over the GOP candidates and their would-be effect on the economy.
A must read.
Now what are all of those people doing camped out on Wall Street? Are they socialists? Commies? Anarchists? Left, right? For some reason the television news people don’t like them, which makes me sympathize. What’s going on?
Let’s say you are a young couple, newly married,…
My step-son’s science teacher was telling his class about how licensing was used to reduce competition, specifically for barbers and hair stylists. This fits perfectly, I’ll be sure to send it his way.
So what do Libertarians think about Chris Christie? My personal thoughts are that IF Ron Paul was not in the race for President, at least I could vote for Chris Christie. If it’s Mitt Romney or Rick Perry, it’s unlikely I’ll be voting.
I feel like Christie is a true fiscal conservative, just not sure about his views on war, the Constitution, Federal Reserve, liberty, etc. How does he rate on the libertarian scale?
Pat Buchanan would like to know,
I saw this news story as well and immediately forwarded on to the folks at cafehayak.com. When I read it, I though of protectionism and a lack of understanding about manufacturing…
Sorry, I wasn’t accusing you of being a protectionist. Over taxation and regulation are not insignificant, as Intel’s CEO pointed out last year. But the vast majority of Buchanan’s article, in my opinion, was trying to convince his readers that we must protect the U.S. worker from foreign competition and immigration. It’s a common theme for Buchanan, one that I happen to disagree with. I wanted to use his article to try and dispel some common myths about manufacturing in the U.S. Maybe I used the “reblog” feature incorrectly. :)
Pat Buchanan would like to know,
I saw this news story as well and immediately forwarded on to the folks at cafehayak.com. When I read it, I though of protectionism and a lack of understanding about manufacturing jobs. I knew this was something they would be interested in and true to form, here is Mr. Boudreaux’s response, Whose MONEY Is It, Anyway?
I would like add to his letter by trying to dispel a few myths about the loss of manufacturing jobs.
The first myth commonly heard is, “nothing is made in America anymore”. Buchanan didn’t actually say this in his article, but he certainly implies it. This is a favorite phrase of 99% of politicians. The fact is, as of 2009, the United States was still the largest manufacturing country in the world. I do realize that China is right on our heals and may soon surpass us, but one has to consider that the United States has a population of about 320 million people while China has a population of about 1.34 billion people. They have over 4 times as many people as we do, yet we still produce more. Which leads to the second myth, we’ve shipped all our jobs overseas.
This second myth is a common one that Buchanan makes in his article as well. “U.S. corporate executives leapt at the opportunity to close plants here and relocate abroad.” This may be true to an extent, but the major reason we have fewer manufacturing jobs in the US is because of technology and productivity advances. In fact, we have lost over 6 million manufacturing jobs since 1979 for this reason alone. This leads to the third myth, U.S. workers can’t compete with low skilled, lightly regulated workers abroad.
This third myth regurgitated by Buchanan is also a common one. “This plunged U.S. workers into direct competition with workers in Asia and Latin America willing to do the same jobs for far less, in factories where regulations are far lighter.” Not really, see myth 2. Today’s U.S. factory workers are not in direct competition with workers in Asia and Latin America because those jobs are gone. They are in Asia and Latin America, and good riddance! U.S. factory workers are now far more productive and much more highly skilled, which means an increased standard of living for everyone. Factories in Asia and Latin America simply can’t compete with U.S. factories in terms of output, which is why our workers are paid far more than theirs.
There are plenty more myths to bust, but I’ll stop here. This kind of thinking about U.S. manufacturing jobs can be difficult to deal with. We worry about being able to employ everyone, but the fact is - if left alone, the economy will work itself out and everyone will find employment. The reason is simple, Individuals Have Unlimited Wants and Desires and That Prevents Persistent Unemployment.
I’ll leave you with this. In 1790, 90% of the U.S. population was working in agriculture. Think about that. It took 9 out of 10 people to feed a growing country. Today, less than 2% of the U.S. population works in agriculture, yet we rarely lament those job losses. Why? Because the loss of jobs in farming was the greatest thing ever to happen to the United States. I won’t even go into the necessity of productivity in order to feed a planet of 6 billion people, instead realize that these job losses gave us things like plumbing, electricity, light bulbs, music, wash machines, cheap clothing, phones, cars, microwaves, computers, iPods, iPhones, free shipping, and on and on and on and on. Technological improvements free up resources, both human and non-human, which allows us to progress. It improves our standard of living.
The protectionist notions of people like Pat Buchanan are not beneficial. If they were, all we would need to do to solve our unemployment problems would be to revert back to 1790’s farming techniques. Think of all the jobs we could create!
From the article, Postal Service Is Nearing Default as Losses Mount.
The United States Postal Service has long lived on the financial edge, but it has never been as close to the precipice as it is today: the agency is so low on cash that it will not be able to make a $5.5 billion payment due this month and may have to shut down entirely this winter unless Congress takes emergency action to stabilize its finances.
“Our situation is extremely serious,” the postmaster general, Patrick R. Donahoe, said in an interview. “If Congress doesn’t act, we will default.”
There is a simple solution to this problem. Congress or whoever made the “no-layoff” agreement with the union that represents postal workers made a huge mistake.
Labor represents 80 percent of the agency’s expenses, compared with 53 percent at United Parcel Service and 32 percent at FedEx, its two biggest private competitors. Postal workers also receive more generous health benefits than most other federal employees.
Because of this mistake, the government should revoke the Post Office’s monopoly on first class mail delivery and let UPS and FedEx (or anyone else) compete. The Post Office should be allowed to go out of business. Private companies will hire workers and buy equipment (most likely from a postal going-out-of-business sale) and deliver mail in a way that meets market demand.
The unfortunate part in all of this is that the government does so many things it shouldn’t be doing, it can’t do the things it should be doing. If we don’t have mail service this winter and nobody else is legally allowed to deliver first class mail, it will be another clear failure of big government (if it isn’t clear enough already).
If you haven’t heard, the federal government raided Gibson Guitar’s factories, seizing around a million dollars worth of wood and guitars. Apparently the U.S. has a law called the Lacey Act that says all wood products and plants imported into the U.S. must come from legal sources. In this case, there is an Indian law that says imported wood must be finished by Indian workers. You can read details here.
There are all sorts of allegations flying around. One is that Gibson’s competitor, C.F. Martin, is using the exact same wood but is not being prosecuted. Another is that Gibson’s CEO contributes to Republicans and is being punished for it, while C.F. Martin’s CEO contributes to Democrats and is thus being protected.
I don’t know anything about how true these allegations are, but it really doesn’t matter. I have two problems with this raid.
First, Gibson was raided in 2009 over wood it imported from Madagascar. It has been 21 months and the government still has Gibson’s property, and they still have not filed charges. The Sixth Amendment to the Constitution of the United States reads,
In all criminal prosecutions, the accused shall enjoy the right to a speedy and public trial, by an impartial jury of the State and district wherein the crime shall have been committed…
I’m not a lawyer, but 21 months with not so much as a charge filed sure doesn’t seem like “a speedy and public trial”.
Second, there comes a point when their are so many laws on the books that we are all criminals. No matter what we do, the government can find a reason to prosecute you. What’s worse is they can apparently seize your property and never charge you with a crime.
Think about this case. Imagine how difficult it must be to follow a law that says you can’t buy something from another country if the product violates the laws of the originating country. So not only do you need to worry about U.S. laws, but you must fully understand the laws of the country you are purchasing the product from. You must investigate the person or company you are trading with, and pray that they aren’t withholding anything from you about their business practices or the products they are selling. On top of that, and I don’t know if this is the case or not here, but if that Indian law is just on the books but isn’t enforced (ie. the person selling the wood will never get in trouble because nobody really cares), it doesn’t matter. You can still be found guilty. Well, technically to be found guilty you need a trial, and to have a trial the government actually has to files charges.
Regardless of his guilt or innocence, I can certainly understand Gibson’s CEO, Henry Juszkiewicz’s frustration.