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Gus Van Horn blog

Reblogged:Protectionism Trumping "Deregulation"

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George Will nails Donald Trump's self-contradictory economic policies to the wall, shortly after correctly stating that, "The descent of American capitalism into a racket is being greased by professed capitalists in government, in collaboration with professed capitalists in what is called, with decreasing accuracy, the private sector."

soybeans.jpg
Soybeans, in case George Will had you wondering. (Image via Pixabay.)
Protectionism -- laws and administrative rulings by which government determines the prices and quantities of imported goods and services -- is government regulation. So, it is probable that the current administration, which lists deregulation as among its glistening achievements, is producing a substantial net increase in economic regulation.

The American Action Forum, a center-right advocacy group, says the Trump administration's deregulatory efforts have saved Americans $1.3 billion this year. That, however, is only about one-ninth of the sum ($12 billion) of taxpayer dollars flowing to a small portion of taxpayers (those who are engaged in agriculture, less than 2 percent of the population) as recompense for injuries the government has done to them, and to all consumers, by protectionist policies that have provoked retaliatory tariffs against U.S. agricultural products. [bold added]
Of course, that's just the measurable amount. We're not factoring in all the ramifications -- à la Frederic Bastiat -- for everyone who had to overpay, or will overpay due to such policies.

So much for even that "bigly" 0.07% decrease in regulatory drag I was already getting ready to eat my hat over, tanks to Keith Weiner's analysis.

-- CAV

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