10 thoughts on “Post-Brexit Britain should adopt unilateral free trade”

  1. Posted 20/07/2016 at 19:10 | Permalink

    “genuine free trade doesn’t require a treaty” – Murray Rothbard

  2. Posted 22/07/2016 at 04:32 | Permalink
  3. Posted 30/07/2016 at 18:09 | Permalink

    “Their removal means consumers can buy what they want wherever it is produced most cheaply – delivering lower prices in the shops.”

    Right. So only price matters?!

  4. Posted 01/08/2016 at 07:00 | Permalink

    ‘”Their removal means consumers can buy what they want wherever it is produced most cheaply – delivering lower prices in the shops.” Right. So only price matters?!’

    What matters are the priorities of individuals, not the priorities of others who want to force them to buy locally produced goods.

  5. Posted 01/08/2016 at 07:49 | Permalink

    @ John P

    ‘”Their removal means consumers can buy what they want wherever it is produced most cheaply – delivering lower prices in the shops.” Right. So only price matters?!’ What matters are the priorities of individuals, not the priorities of others who want to force them to buy locally produced goods.

    Your respponse makes a moral point and does not answer the economic question I posed.

  6. Posted 01/08/2016 at 09:55 | Permalink

    Right. So only price matters?!’ What matters are the priorities of individuals, not the priorities of others who want to force them to buy locally produced goods. Your respponse makes a moral point and does not answer the economic question I posed.

    Economics deals with the choices of acting individuals. Therefore it is down to individuals to decide what matters.

  7. Posted 01/08/2016 at 11:01 | Permalink

    Indeed it does. And elected governments are entitled to enact policies that influence those individual choices where they are counter to the public interest. .

  8. Posted 01/08/2016 at 13:11 | Permalink

    Indeed it does. And elected governments are entitled to enact policies that influence those individual choices where they are counter to the public interest. .
    Post new comment

    What is the public interest but the interest of individuals up make ‘the public?’ What you’re saying is that government should prioritize the interests of certain individuals. Those individuals who want force to be used to stop other individuals from buying cheaper/better goods from abroad

  9. Posted 01/08/2016 at 15:46 | Permalink

    No. I am saying the interests of minorities should not dominate the interests of the majority. And I have not used the word “force” and nor do I advocate its use.

    Economics is also about influencing choices. Individuals would still be able to make free choices – it’s just that an ELECTED government should have the power to alter the payoffs of those choices so that the public interest is served.

  10. Posted 01/08/2016 at 18:00 | Permalink

    ‘No. I am saying the interests of minorities should not dominate the interests of the majority. And I have not used the word “force” and nor do I advocate its use. Economics is also about influencing choices. Individuals would still be able to make free choices – it’s just that an ELECTED government should have the power to alter the payoffs of those choices so that the public interest is served.’

    You are engaging in hypostatization.There is no society apart from the individuals who comprise it.Society doesn’t have goals, values or desires.The public is not one homogenous blob so that it has the same interests on every single question

    Consumers may choose to buy goods from abroad rather than a domestic producer.Why?ITS IN THIER INTEREST TO BUY GOODS FROM ABROAD. Newsflash: these individuals are part of the public.

    But in buying goods from abroad their interests haven’t dominated other people’s interest. They haven’t abrogated the property of domestic producers or anybody else.

    What if someone decides to shop at Sainsburys instead of Tesco? Has that person abrogated Tescos property rights? Have Tesco had their interests dominated? Far from it. That person may have hurt Tesco but they certainly haven’t done anything that requires the government to step in to make illegal.Nothing that requires the law to redress. They are simply exercising their freedom to but or not to buy. If the government were to make Sainsburys goods more expensive relative to Tesco so that consumers decide to shop at Tesco, that may help Tesco but it would hurt consumers. Would the the public welfare then have increased? No, it would not.Some people have gained, others have lost.Just as if you prohibit consumers from buying goods from abroad or make foreign goods more expensive relative to domestically produced goods, domestic companies gain whiles consumers suffer. You can’t say that the public interest has increased

    What about people who decide to buy goods from out of town? Would you be in favour of government stepping in and imposing a tax on those goods so consumers would instead choose to buy goods made in their hometown so as not to put local workers out of a job? Or what about a household which decides to have dinner at home on a particular evening and are therefore not giving any business to restaurants in their area?Would you be in favour of slapping a tax on them so it would be cheaper for them to go out to eat and give business to local establishments? Would this be in the public interest?

    What you want to see, is the state, which is predicated on force, prohibit consumers form buying foreign goods or make them so expensive that they chose to buy domestic goods instead,and then claim that this isn’t anyone dominating anyone else’s interest but,quite the contrary,is actually in the public interest.

    Even domestic producers in their roles as consumers are hurt when freedom of choice is prohibited. Because first and foremost we are all consumers. Production is for the sake of consumption, so any restriction on freedom of consumption hurts everyone in the long run.The public interest is served by simply letting individuals make their free choices.

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