Donald Trump versus Adam Smith and tariffs

Mark Franke

Guest Columnist


When I was a college freshman taking my first political theory class, my professor explained why some government policies are good (meaning popular) and others are scorned. The answer is simple: It depends on whose ox is being gored.

Tariffs are exactly that kind of policy. In a free-trade environment, struggling domestic industries being undercut in price or otherwise losing market share to foreign imports see their oxen getting readied for the barbecue.

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