Serious Cat is serious - Used under Creative Commons License

Our long time friend over at Cafe Hayek, Don Boudreaux, has been running a series “A Protectionist is Someone Who…”, one example of which is:

… is convinced that 5-1=6.

Our own conclusion to the statement is:

A protectionist is someone who argues that you should be poorer so they can be richer.

Additional versions and variants are welcomed in the comments. After all, it’s always true that the readership knows more, has greater talent, than the staffing of any newspaper.

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Fred Z
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Fred Z

A protectionist is someone who thinks that 500 employees continuing to earn 50,000 per year is much, much more important than 300 million consumers saving $100 per year.

A protectionist is someone who can barely add, cannot multiply and thinks statistics has something to do with beating the odds at Vegas.

Tommydog
Member
Tommydog

“A protectionist is someone who argues that you should be poorer so they can be richer.”

When you benefit from government policies you begin to appreciate the merits of those policies, which is the rationale for the lobbying industry.

Warren Platts
Guest
Warren Platts

A protectionist is someone who thinks that a manufacturing job that produce $200,000 to $500,000 output in goods per year is better for the economy than an Uber driver that provides $20,000 per year in services.

Warren Platts
Guest
Warren Platts

A protectionist is someone who thinks trade policy ought to favor the interests of people who actually work for a living over the interests of Wall Street bankers, welfare queens, and tenured professors.

Warren Platts
Guest
Warren Platts

A free trader is someone who argues that you should be poorer so they can be richer.

Warren Platts
Guest
Warren Platts

A free trader is someone who argues that if the poor cannot afford to eat bread, then they should eat cake instead.

Smithy
Member
Smithy

Warren – as free trade is simply more trade – a bigger marketplace – please explain how this could possibly make bread, or anything else, more expensive.

Warren Platts
Guest
Warren Platts

Easy: free trade lowers the real wages of scarce labor factors of production. In the USA, that’s also known as the working class–workers who mostly don’t have college degrees: the majority of American workers IOW. Google the Stolper-Samuelson Theorem sometime.

NiV
Guest
NiV

Unskilled labour isn’t scarce, and Stolper-Samuelson doesn’t model the effects of reducing the prices of goods and services on real wages.

Southerner
Member

A protectionist is someone like WP who can comfortably afford to soak up a one hundred per cent increase in the price of washing machines and air conditioners, and expects everyone else to follow his noble example.

Not Sure
Guest
Not Sure

Whether or not WP (or anybody else) can afford a more expensive washing machine is not really important here. What is important is that the extra dollars he spends on it can’t be spent on anything else. So- instead of a washing machine + a nice dinner out with friends, all he has is a washing machine. And multiplied by enough washing machine buyers, maybe the restaurant has to lay off a couple of workers. I’m sure the washing machine companies are happy, though.

Hallowed Be
Member
Hallowed Be

…is an advocate of making of hay where the sun don’t shine.

BlokeInTejas
Member
BlokeInTejas

Now this set of responses is a prime example of good material to moderate with extreme prejudice…