Friday, 7 December 2018

"Separating the trading entities into national aggregates allows a variety of fallacious conclusions to be drawn by artful intriguers. Historically such intriguers formed practically an entire 'school' of economic policy now known as mercantilism." #QotD


"Separating the trading entities into national aggregates allows a variety of fallacious conclusions to be drawn by artful intriguers. Historically such intriguers formed practically an entire 'school' of economic policy now known as mercantilism. In his classic work 'The Wealth of Nations' (1776), Adam Smith exposed many of the errors and misconceptions of this school and argued forcefully for freedom of trade as the policy consistent with maximisation of people’s wealth as a whole rather than augmentation of the intriguers’ wealth at the expense of the general public. As Smith concluded, 'Nothing . . . can be more absurd than this whole doctrine of the balance of trade'.”
        ~ Robert Higgs, from hist article 'Against the Whole Concept and Construction of the Balance of International Payments'
[Hat tip Cafe Hayek]
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