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« Newspapers | Main | Background on the Plame affair »

July 05, 2005

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cntodd

Thanks for looking at my post. I think you might have misunderstood what I said. If you go back and read my post, you will see that I did not make the argument that you attribute to me. In fact, you link to my post saying it was a "discussion of CAFTA". Actually, the post is not a discussion of CAFTA. Its about contrasting what politicians say they do and what they actually do. The received wisdom is that Reagan was a master of the "free market" when in fact that is far from true. Bush himself loves to champion the free market when in fact he has been playing politics with trade.

The challenge was not to CAFTA, but to those like the NRO who don't like Bush's protectionism. They are bitching now about Bush, but my point was that Reagan - who they adore to no end - did the exact same thing. That was the point - to explode a received myth.

One of my biggest pet peeves are politicians and journalists who proclaim the virtues of the "free-market" when in fact something else is going on entirely. Remember when everyone praised the internet as being one of the greatest products of free enterprise? What a joke! It was the product of the Pentagon dumping billions of public dollars into private corporations.

Thanks again for the link. Please try and read me more carefully next time.

cntodd

One more thing: I thought I would mention that you called the argument that you attributed to me an "anti-trade" argument. Another clue that it was not my argument: I am not and never have been "anti-trade". I am for fair-trade - which is very different. That doesn't make me an isolationist (or whatever the proper term is for someone who is anti-trade).

Indeed, the positions I distinguished in my post were "free-trade" and "managed trade". So whatever the other option was that was on the table, it was never "anti-trade."

Protagoras

Well, as far as I'm concerned, "fair trade" and "managed trade" are anti-trade positions. I understand that we disagree about that.

cntodd

Well, its all good if you want to make that assertion. Do you have an argument for it?

Protagoras

I am appealing to the vast consensus of economists mentioned in the post. I have on occasion read some of the supporting data, but I could not produce a detailed citation off hand.

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