Protecting the Few at the Expense of the Many

President Obama, at the behest of the United Steelworkers union, will be adding a 35 percent tariff on tires imported from China.

The basic idea behind trade is that certain countries are better at certain things; international trade allows each country to specialize in what it’s best at.  Alternately — and this is what we’re choosing here — you can prop up industries where your nation is non-competitive instead of trying to spread into industries where you have a competitive advantage.

Here’s a great quote from the article:

Senator Sherrod Brown, an Ohio Democrat who had pressed for the tariffs, also praised the decision.

He said in a statement, “If American workers and manufacturers are going to compete in the global market, they need to have a government that uses trade enforcement tools.”

Allow me to translate:  “Because American companies and workers are inherently inferior to foreign companies and foreign workers, they require a crutch from their government.”

Thanks guys!  Now not only will my tires cost more, but China will likely impose retaliatory tariffs that target an industry where we do have a competitive advantage.  Those guys, of course, don’t deserve protection because they didn’t pay their congressman enough money.

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